Programme

Race to Zero: Bolstering whole of society engagement for climate neutrality and sustainable recovery

This page is also available in

10:00 | Welcome remarks

10:10 | Opening plenary

  • Brief opening remarks on behalf of DIE by the Moderator: Prof. Dr Anna-Katharina Hornidge, Director at DIE

Speakers will include:

Main questions for the opening plenary:

  • How do we engage all of society in a sustainable recovery?
  • What can Europe do to support a whole-of-society approach to a sustainable recovery?
  • Which challenges need to be overcome to activate (parts of) society?

11:00 – 11:15 | Q&A

11:15 – 12:30 | Break-out sessions

Group 1 | Mobilizing non-state and subnational actors for EU climate neutrality

Climate neutrality by 2050 cannot be achieved without effective mobilization of all parts of society. Although many non-state and subnational actors such as businesses, investors, civil society organizations have stepped up with climate commitment, many more are yet to actively engage in this major transition. This session aims to identify opportunities to mobilize non-state and subnational actors in Europe beyond the ‘frontrunners’, and to the role of the EU as a facilitator and mobilizer of such climate action.

Inputs to the debate by:

Discussion among participants around the following questions (but not exclusively):

  • Which sectors are currently underrepresented in EU-based climate action? What strategies/methods can ensure their alignment with a climate-neutral Europe?
  • How can the EU maximize voluntary climate action among non-state/subnational actors? What are the limits of voluntariness?
Group 2 | Strengthening youth voices: engaging the underrepresented/affected

This session gauges youths’perspectives on climate action in Europe, and highlights their inspirationalengagement. The session aims to identify opportunities to strengthen youth engagement in the quest for a climate neutral and resilient Europe.

Inputs to the debate by:

Discussion among participants around the following questions (but not exclusively):

  • Although many youth/young people speak up, many also don’t? How can more youth across Europe be mobilized? - What role can the EU play? What place for youth in the European Climate Pact?
  • The call from youth/young people for ambitious climate action in Europe is becoming louder. How can the youth voice be better translated into policies that further a climate neutral and sustainable Europe?
Group 3 | When climate action bites: conflicts between sustainable development and climate goals and the need for a ‘race for resilience’?

Although climate action often goes hand in hand with sustainability, this is not always the case. Climate action should not increase inequalities; nor should other ‘sustainable development goals’ be disregarded. Moreover, climate change is already hitting vulnerable communities; measures to adapt to climate change and to increase resilience are crucial. The session aims to identify opportunities to maximize sustainability benefits of climate action and to build resilience towards a climate neutral and resilient Europe.

Inputs to the debate by:

Discussion among participants around the following questions (but not exclusively):

  • To which extent have SDGs been considered in EU recovery and climate strategies? How can we make sure that a climate-neutral EU is also a fair, sustainable and resilient Europe?
  • When do conflicts between sustainable development and climate action occur? How can these conflicts be resolved in a fair manner with sustainable outcomes?
Group 4 | Strengthening climate action through the COVID-19 crisis response: finance, technology and capacity

Finance, technology and capacity are key elements in the quest to provide innovative solutions to both the pandemic and climate crises. This session aims to identify opportunities for finance and technology to contribute and facilitate a climate-neutral and resilient Europe. 

Inputs to the debate by:

Discussion among participants around the following questions (but not exclusively):

  • How can sustainable investment be enabled to foster climate-resilient development?
  • How can the European Climate Pact help providing both material (technical assistance, capacity building, funding, etc.) and non-material (recognition, greater visibility, etc.) support to climate actors?
  • Can the responses to the COVID crisis by national/local authorities go beyond a short-term approach and adopt principles of a wellbeing economy/SDG implementation?
  • How can communities, including in rural areas, citizens, organisations of the social partners and of civil society contribute to plans for reforming of the economy and society and to leaving no one behind in post-COVID recovery?

 

12:30 – 12:45 | Break - Time for co-moderators to synthesize results from break-out groups

12:45 – 13:30 | Closing plenary

  • Reports by co-moderators of break-out sessions

Reactions by: