Advocacy

#ClimateJusticeThursday: Ensuring a just transition for all

just transition - climateaction

Hello readers. Welcome to #ClimateJusticeThursday on CleanbuildVoices!

Climate change is not only causing severe damages to our planet but also posing significant challenges to the economic growth and sources of livelihood of several communities with a promise of even greater risks in the long run.

While the world races against time to meet emission targets and lessen the impact of the climate crisis on vulnerable communities, one cannot help but see the silver lining.

The rapid shift to a green economy as well as actions taken against climate change has the potential to not only create more jobs but to make existing jobs better.

However, this can only be truly achieved if just transition policies and processes are applied in order to avoid these economic changes resulting in uncompetitive businesses, social inequality, reduced productivity, disillusionment in workers, civil unrest or strikes, and disrupted markets.

A just transition is an important phrase for the climate justice movement and it means transitioning to a more sustainable economy in a way that is as fair and inclusive as possible to everyone concerned.

That way, there is respect for fundamental labor principles and rights, and the social and economic opportunities of climate action are fully maximized while challenges are carefully managed via effective social dialogue among all impacted groups.

A just transition aims to support jobs and livelihoods, and create a fairer and more equal society when the fossil fuel industry and other polluting sectors decline.

To put this into context, as the world tilts towards renewable energy, creates green transportation, and restores nature, new industries will emerge and a just transition will create room for the workers in those high polluting industries to be part of the green workforce.

Workers wouldn’t have to face the harsh realities of an abrupt disruption of their sources of livelihood. Instead, would be easily integrated into cleaner industries.

We all have a role to play

For a just transition to be successful, there needs to be a collaboration between governments, workers, local authorities, unions, employers, and other stakeholders.

Also, just transitions should be tailored towards specific regions to better factor in their peculiarities.

Finally, a just transition without funding is very unlikely. For communities to shape outcomes, funding is needed and governments need to support them in every way possible.

One of the ways governments can help is by funding initiatives that serve as solutions to unemployment caused by fossil fuel phase-out. It could be in form of investing in renewable energy so that sustainable jobs are created.

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