Europe and the world have to prepare for the unavoidable impacts of climate change. COVID-19 has made things more difficult, but it has also created an unprecedented opportunity: to use the EU recovery funds to revitalise the economy and at the same time ensure that the EU becomes climate-resilient and fully adapted, while achieving climate-neutrality.
On 22nd of April we celebrate the Earth Day to empower and expand the environmental movement. This year's emphasis is on supporting local communities, focusing on areas that are disproportionately affected by environmental issues.
In response to the Commission Communication Stepping up Europe's 2030 climate ambition, the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) reaffirms that the Commission's decision to raise the EU's ambition on reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions to at least 55% below 1990 levels by 2030 is the right one. However, in its opinion Stepping up Europe's climate ambition, the EESC insists on increasing efforts to achieve the intermediate targets, speeding up the process and placing the European citizens at the centre of climate action. Failing this, the EU will be at risk of missing its climate-neutral goal by 2050.
To discuss ways to accelerate action on the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for a sustainable recovery, the EESC Section for Agriculture, Rural Development and the Environment held a debate on 15 December in connection with the Europe Sustainable Development Report 2020, published on 8 December. The report is a joint initiative by the Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) and the Institute for European Environmental Policy (IEEP), in collaboration with the EESC.
On one of the most important weeks of the year for climate action, with the fifth anniversary of the Paris Agreement, the European Council on Climate, and the launching on 16 December of the Climate Pact by the European Commission, the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) calls upon ownership and empowerment of civil society as a precondition to success.
Lutz Ribbe, newly elected president of the Sustainable Development Observatory for the term 2020-2023, shares his views on Sustainable Development, the challenges ahead and the priorities of his mandate.
A short statement by the newly appointed NAT section president (Mr Peter SCHMIDT), highlighting the priorities for his mandate and sharing his vision for a sustainable recovery, post Covid-19.
Poverty and the role of civil society organisations in combatting it will be the focus of his Presidency
With the start of the 2020-2025 term of office of the EESC, Séamus Boland takes over the Presidency of the its Diversity Europe Group. Members confirmed his new role for the next two and a half years during the first group meeting of the new term held today, 27 October. Mr Boland's Presidency will focus on the topic of "Poverty and the role of civil society organisations in combatting it".
The European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) has adopted the opinion 2030 Biodiversity Strategy during its September Plenary session, following the European Commission's communication on the EU Biodiversity Strategy for 2030 - Bringing nature back into our lives.
Young people have the right to have a say on matters that concern them. The climate emergency the world is facing today has mobilised millions of young people around the world, many of whom are profoundly affected by the threat it poses for their future. At the same time, it is the young people who have repeatedly demonstrated their energy, creativity and motivation to challenge current unsustainable models and push the decision-makers to adopt ambitious policies. Despite that, a wide gap remains between listening to young people, and actually acting upon their calls and demands.