COP21: The question now is how we transition to a carbon-free era


Post by Charlotte Billingham. FEPS Executive Advisor.

The fundamental achievement to come out of this is that for the first time ever, all the countries agreed in committing to reducing emissions and taking action against climate change.

This sends a very strong and clear signal to business, investment, the people and governments from now on. This in itself is a major feat and to especially because it was considered at many stages that it might not be possible at all. Many side initiatives have also been agreed between different groups of countries which also sends a very positive message to future action.

The details of course are to be looked at carefully and decisions of how to reduce emissions effectively will be wrangled over. The main immediate threat still lies for many countries that are being deeply affected by climate change already although mitigation and adaptation measures have been carefully included in the text and the climate fund over the next years aims to help those countries a lot. Nevertheless the recognition of the need for climate action has effectively been 30 years delayed.

For Europe the message is clearly that we need to step-up investment in renewables and energy efficiency and we need to get to work quickly in implementing such initiatives as the Energy Union and circular economy.

As Progressives the table has been laid now to set out a detailed version of what a just, sustainable transition will entail. The next question is the how? – We now have the opportunity to draw out the implementation policies that need to follow and this positive outcome provides now an important backdrop in offering people the tools to make the change happen, and quickly.

Continuing the developments in Paris, the work begins now!

This is the final article of a series of posts that Charlotte Billingham will write from Paris during the COP 21. 

Read the first post: COP 21: ‘Put yourself in their shoes’ – Finding Solutions to Climate Change and Refugees

Read the second post: How desirable is the Just Transition at the COP21?

Find all related publications

The real effects of Next Generation EU

Recovery Watch Series

A positive narrative for a Just Transition

An approach to a more people-centred communication

Redefining European engagement in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict

From financial aid to institution building

Growing remittance industry

Progressive Migration Group series
Find all related news

FEPS at UN Civil Society Conference in Kenya


Notice of vacancy – Policy analyst on international relations


FEPS celebrates 20 years of the biggest EU enlargement


FEPS welcomes the signing of the La Hulpe Declaration

Find all related in the media
In the media

Orbánov boj z zunanjim sovražnikom ni bil kos inflaciji

by DELO 28/05/2024
In an article in Delo, László Andor criticises Viktor Orbán government's economic policies, such as not allowing Hungary to join the euro area, which he believes would have helped curb inflation. He also criticises the government for blaming external enemies such as the President of the European Commission, to cover up its own failures.

Ex-EU-Kommissar Andor: Orbán gerät an die Peripherie

by Austria Presse Agentur 28/05/2024
"Former EU Commissioner Andor: Orbán is relegated to the periphery" Austrian news agency APA interviewed FEPS Secretary General László Andor on Europe's political situation ahead of the upcoming EU elections.

Edição especial sobre as eleições europeias já nas bancas

by SÁBADO 21/05/2024
"Special Edition on the European Elections Now Available on Newsstands" Read the special edition by SÁBADO focusing on the European election in Portugal, with an interview by Maria João Rodrigues, FEPS President

Youth unemployment hurts communities, its time for a new deal, says Andor

by Euractiv 15/05/2024
Read FEPS Secretary General László Andor's interview on the consequences of youth unemployment for communities