Employment, Social Affairs & Inclusion

News 11/11/2022

EU and ILO launch first ever Just Transition Pavilion at COP-27

This year at COP27 in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt, the European Commission together with the International Labour Organization (ILO) is hosting the first ever Just Transition Pavilion at the annual UN climate conference.

On 9 November 2022, the Pavilion was officially opened by Joost Korte, Director-General for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion of the European Commission (DG EMPL) with Eric Oechslin, Director of the Decent Work Team for North Africa and Country Director for Egypt and Eritrea at the ILO, and James Grabert, Director for Mitigation at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).

The panel of the high-level opening event included:

  • Kwaku Afriyie, Minister of Environment, Science, Technology & Innovation of Ghana
  • Sharan Burrow, ITUC President
  • Peter Govindasamy, Senior Director, Climate Change International Team, Ministry of Trade and Industry, Singapore & co-chair of the Katowice Committee of Experts on the Impacts of the Implementation of Response Measures (KCI)
  • Catherine Ann Goldberg, Senior Climate Policy Officer, Office of Global Change, Department of State, United States & co-chair of the Katowice Committee of Experts on the Impacts of the Implementation of Response Measures (KCI)
  • Robert Marinkovic IOE representative 

At the launch event of the Pavilion, the speakers took stock of just transition commitments and measures globally. The social partners welcomed the initiative and confirmed that they would support it, expressing the hope that this pavilion could become a permanent feature under COP.

In the context of the Paris Agreement’s imperative of a just transition, the Pavilion builds upon key strategies and instruments, such as:

Speakers also reflected on the progress of the Climate Action for Jobs (CA4J) initiative, which aims to enable ambitious climate action that delivers decent jobs and advances social justice, and on how it can further support a human-centred climate agenda.

The new Just Transition Pavilion hosts side events across a range of topics spanning from decent work, the circular economy and social dialogue to financing and transitions in specific sectors.

Just Transition Knowledge Hub

The Pavilion also features a Just Transition Knowledge Hub  to discuss specific practices, policies and measures.

At an online platform, businesses, workers, unions and communities and other stakeholders are invited to raise their questions, which will be answered by experts in the field. Q&As are collected during COP and followed up after the conference to develop the Knowledge Hub and exchange platform further.

Green Jobs for Youth Pact

On the opening day of the Pavilion, ILO, UNEP and UNICEF/Generation Unlimited together with Director-General Joost Korte launched the Green Jobs for Youth Pact. Participating panellists included Allen Blue, co-founder of LinkedIn, and Vladislav Kaim, UN Secretary General's Youth Climate Advisor, YOUNGO Contact Point on Green Jobs.

Working with and for young people, the Pact is a bold partnership for action to close the skills gap for green jobs in developing countries, targeting climate vulnerable sectors and contributing to systemic change.

Just sustainability, circular economy and social justice

The same evening, the EU Pavilion hosted a related side event on Just sustainability, Circular Economy and Social Justice: employment and social policies to support a just green transition across the globe.

The session explored the theme of social justice and fighting inequalities, including in the context of the current energy crisis. It discussed the main challenges and opportunities of the transition in the EU and globally, with a focus on justice and the view of policy makers, the role of the circular economy and concrete support schemes, such as the training of the trainers, for ensuring just sustainability.

What data say: a look at the (just?) transition to a greener economy

DG EMPL also participated in a side event organised by the CEM-EPI co-leads (Canada, U.S. and EC/DG EMPL) and LinkedIn, to discuss the findings of a new report by LinkedIn on green skills and career pathways.

Watch live

Watch all the events live from the just transition pavilion on the ILO website.

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