From the TUC

Climate Change negotiations: From Bangkok to Brown

19 Oct 2009, by in Environment

At the Lancaster House Major Economies Forum on Energy and Climate today, Gordon Brown argued for “convergence on the principle issues” for the Copenhagen agreement to succeed:

  • binding economy-wide CO2 caps for developed countries and national mitigation actions for developing ones;
  • finance for adaptation, technology- and capacity-building;
  • technology cooperation including areas like solar power and carbon capture and storage; and
  • national communications, monitoring and verification.

With these building blocks, every national economy – North and South – is now bent on a low carbon pathway. The UN kept our call for a “Just Transition for the workforce” in its Bangkok text, and now heading for Barcelona next month.

Our ‘Just Transition’ framework is now paragraph 10 of the UN’s Shared Vision:

“An economic transition is needed that shifts global economic growth patterns towards a low emission economy based on more sustainable production and consumption, promoting sustainable lifestyles and climate-resilient development while ensuring a just transition of the workforce. The active participation of all stakeholders in this transition should be sought, be they governmental, private business or civil society, including the youth and addressing the need for gender equity.”

More references in para. 5: “promoting a gradual and just transition in the most affected economic sectors and contributing to building new capacities for both production and service-related jobs”.

In Bangkok, we hear, the US Government backed references to workforce training. Argentina was again working for JT. But the fragility of union demands lies in challenges from the African group, New Zealand, India and others.  We think the EU is on board. We believe we have the assured support of the UK, but we need voices of support at the highest levels.  Full text is on the UNFCCC website.