Climate change and decent work

Linking climate and just transition at the Paris One Planet Summit

During the Paris One Planet Summit, Vic Van Vuuren, director of the ILO Enterprise Department took part to the International side event titled “CLIMATE SOLIDARITY, A National and International Challenge at the crossroads of the Paris Agreement and of the Sustainable Development Goals”.

News | 15 December 2017
The event focused on the challenges that most vulnerable groups face when exposed to the impacts of climate change and response policies, and discussed strategies to address them. It was recognised that it is crucial to tackle social inequalities and promote equity in climate action, including adaptation policies.

In this context, the ILO highlighted the linkages between challenges in the world of work and environmental issues, emphasising that they should be addressed in an integrated manner. Climate change is exacerbating unemployment and situations of vulnerability. With 200 million people unemployed, including 75 million young people out of work, addressing social deficits will require paying more attention to the impacts of climate change and response measures, to maximise job creation opportunities and minimise and address potential negative effects.

A just transition for all towards low carbon economies is an imperative for effective climate solutions. In this regard the ILO Guidelines for a just transition towards environmentally sustainable economies and societies for all provide a framework and practical tool for action. With a mix of coherent policies, and ensuring social dialogue to foster consensus and participation, acting on climate can offer many opportunities for advancing decent work and social justice.

The ILO is working to support countries on policies for a just transition. In the Philippines, for example, the ILO has accompanied the implementation of the Philippine Green Jobs Act, and supported policy dialogue among the government, trade unions, and employers’ organisations.

To give more effect to the ILO guidelines on just transition, the French Ministry for Ecological and Inclusive Transition reiterated its will to lead a global coalition on just transition.

The Paris One Planet Summit was organised on 12 December 2017 in Paris by the French government. It aimed at bringing together international leaders and committed citizens from around the world to take concrete actions in the framework of the Paris Agreement to help tackle the ecological emergency the world is facing.