EPSU fights for Just Transition at COP24

EPSU at COP 24, Katowice, December 2018

(14 December 2018) Between 6-9 December 2018, the European Federation of Public Service Unions (EPSU) participated in the COP24 of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in Katowice, Poland. This year’s negotiations are particularly important because the party states need to agree on a rule-book on how to deliver on their commitments to the COP21 know as the Paris Agreement.

EPSU participated in the COP24 as part of the International Trade Union Delegation, which brought together unionists from all over the world under the umbrella of the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC). Together we called for a just transition for workers and local communities, as we actively participated in numerous events to transmit our message to all relevant stakeholders.

The trade union delegation’s first success at the COP24 came already on the first day of the event. In our article (see here) we reported on the adoption of the “Solidarity and Just Transition Silesia Declaration” presented by Poland, following an intense trade unions advocacy effort to ensure a just transition that leaves nobody behind.

EPSU participated in a number of events organized by different allies and relevant stakeholders, including the ones organized by Trade Unions for Energy Democracy (TUED), the Institute for Sustainable Development and International Relations (IDDIRI) on coal transition, the International Labour Organization (ILO), the German Trade Union Confederation (DGB) and the ITUC. EPSU also participated on an informal basis in several side-events during which it raised the issue of just transition, public ownership and energy democracy.

EPSU calls for:

  • Net-zero emissions by 2050 through a just transition for workers and local communities that leaves nobody behind;
  • An energy democracy approach that is based on the public ownership of energy production, transmission and distribution;
  • Solid public investments with an objective of quality public services;
  • A just transition that puts people over profits and addresses inequalities through a strong role for public services; 
  • A right to energy for all European inhabitants and the ban of disconnections.

An exhaustive report of the events we attended in Katowice is available here.

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