Sustainable development

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    Making the European economy more resilient and dynamic through growth while at the same time prioritising environmental protection are not mutually incompatible but essential to future-proofing the continent's society. That is the main message from a European Economic and Social Committee conference "Sustainability and prosperity at the heart of the European project", held on 30 November on the fringes of an extraordinary Bureau meeting, where the EESC met with the upcoming Belgian presidency of the Council of the EU.

  • On 7 November, the Rural Pact Coordination Group (CG) convened for its second meeting since its inception. The CG plays a crucial role in developing strategies, coordinating actions, and ensuring effective implementation of the Rural Pact and brings together diverse stakeholders to address challenges and advance sustainable development in rural areas.

  • Maroš Šefčovič, Executive Vice-President of the European Commission, chose the conference Empowering consumers on climate change, hosted by the Civil Society Organisations' Group of the European Economic and Social Committee on 11 October, for his first green dialogue. Mr Šefčovič first spoke about the green dialogues at last week's European Parliament Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety hearing confirming that he would be responsible for the European Green Deal.

  • Inaugural speech at the conference on 'Empowering consumers on climate change' organised by the Civil Society Organisations' Group on 11 October 2023

    Séamus Boland, President of the Civil Society Organisations' Group

  • The SDG Summit was held on 18-19 September 2023 in New York with the aim to review the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Peter Schmidt, President of the NAT section, attended the summit and called on the EU to redouble efforts and accelerate the implementation of SDGs. 

  • This year again, as the advisory body representing Europe's organized civil society, the EESC engaged in the High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF) to advocate for the voice of European citizens and promote sustainable development policies aligned with the EU's priorities.

  • The Civil Society Organisations' Group organised a photography exhibition in collaboration with the City of Culture of Galicia in the framework of its conference on EU food sovereignty: the role of agriculture, fisheries and consumers. The subject of the exhibition supported and complemented the Group's and the EESC's work on resilient and sustainable European food systems. The Group invited the Galician artist, Adrián Baúlde, to present parts of the series Mariscadoras.

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    At its March plenary session, the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) hosted Ambassador Lachezara Stoeva, president of the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC). Ambassador Stoeva strongly supported the key role civil society must play in implementing the 2030 Agenda.

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    On Tuesday 24 January, the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) held an exchange of views with Guillaume Lafortune, Vice-President of the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network (UN SDSN), on the implementation of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The debate revealed that the EU is failing to meet the objectives of the UN's 2030 Agenda. Yet, there is hope. The EU has the opportunity to take the lead, including through financial support. The EESC plays an important role in monitoring progress.