Pioneers of Change - 21 Good Practices for Sustainable Low Carbon Development in Developing Countries
Thomas Hirsch, Christine Lottje and Nina Netzer
FES Special Release, October 2015
Learning from the »Energiewende« - What Developing Countries Expect from Germany
FES Study, April 2015
More publications of the FES on the topic of Energy and Climate Change Policy can be here:
Events on the topic
Civil Society Perspectives on Low Carbon Development
Side-Event at COP 21
5 December 2015 in Paris
All upcoming events of the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung on the subjects of Sustainability, Energy and Climate Change Policy can be found here. Past events of the Global Policy and Development department can be found here.
Video Interview with Cleo Paskal: Geopolitics, Geoeconomics and Geophysics Reshape the World
Op-ed in der Freitag: UN Climate Conference Fails
Video Documentary: A Young Agenda for Climate Protection
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Combating climate change by immediate and drastic emissions reductions and dealing with its existing and future effects represents one of the most urgent challenges for the international community. This cannot be solved at the national level alone, but only by the cooperation of the industrialised countries, together with the emerging and the developing countries. In order to achieve the goal agreed at the Global Climate Change summit in Copenhagen of limiting global temperature rises to no more than 2 degrees Celsius binding international targets on emissions reductions, agreements on increasing energy efficiency and the proportion of renewable energy and adaptation strategies with regard to climate change must be formulated. In addition, agreement must be reached on how a fair distribution of the burden between North and South can be achieved with regard to structural transformation in economic and energy policy and adaptation measures in response to climate change.
A binding international agreement can be reached only if a compromise is found between the industrialised, developing and emerging countries which takes equal account of the interests of all nations. Such an agreement requires intensive rapprochement concerning respective positions and exchanges of views on how an international energy policy must be organised in order to make a significant contribution to reducing climate change and, at the same time, to promoting growth and development. The Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung supports the process of closing the gap between the different positions and interests by fostering dialogue between actors from the industrialised, developing and emerging countries. This mainly takes the form of international specialist meetings and expert workshops with the participation of experts from science, politics and civil society with a view to working out concrete policy recommendations and courses of action.
In the uprun to the Rio+20 Summit in June 2012 the FES launched its new Sustainability Portal.
It offers information, reports and publications concerning the various international FES activities aiming at implementing the concept of sustainability in a just, social and democratic way.
With a joint interview series on Post Growth, FES and the project Stream Towards Degrowth introduce debates on and actors fighting for a socio-ecological transformation. The interviews are conducted in the context of the joint event series »Wege in eine ökologisch und sozial gerechte Gesellschaft« of FES, Urania e.V. and the 4. International Degrowth-Conference. In the first interview, Christine Bauhardt, Professor for Gender and Globalization at Humboldt-Universität Berlin, talks about »Degrowth – seen from the future«. In the 2. part, Barbara Muraca and Tanja von Egan-Krieger talk about emancipation and growth.
With their article series »Democracy & Sustainability« FES Sustainability and SGI news investigate the relationship between sustainability and democracy. In part 1 of our series, the political scientists Ingolfur Blühdorn and Stefan Wurster discuss whether sustainability is a question of regime type, and look to identify the factors that make for successful sustainability policy. In the 2. part, Angelina Davydova and Jan Hofmeyr ask whether the idea of Sustainability positively affects civil society and democracy in the BRICS countries. In the 3. part, Carsten Bünger and Halina Ward discuss how sustainability, democracy and education are connected. In the 4. part, Ha Thi Quynh Nga and Susanne Brucksch discuss the influence of civil society groups on environmental and energy policy in Vietnam and Japan. Part 5 focuses on the social dimension of the sustainable development paradigm. Using the examples of Peru and the Nordic Countries, Paul Maquet, Mi Ah Schoyen and Marianne Takle discuss the meaning of democratic participation and social inclusion and analyse how they are changing.
In the discussion forum, young and committed leaders from all over the world deal with sustainable concepts such as Green Economy and jointly develop progressive ideas for a socially just future.
Visit FES Sustainabilty and engage in the discussion - we appreciate your interest!
Providing sustainable development for all and fighting climate change – these are two major challenges the world faces today. The project »Exploring Sustainable Low Carbon Development Pathways« aims to point out ways how to combine both: climate protection and sustainable development. As a joint initiative by Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung (FES), Bread for the World (BftW), World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), Climate Action Network International (CAN-I) and ACT Alliance of Churches, the project is led by the common understanding that any future development model has to be:
Low Carbon. That means with a minimal output of greenhouse gas emissions.
Ecologically Sustainable. That means fully respecting planetary boundaries.
Human Rights-based. That means with a strong focus on poverty reduction and participation.
Socially Inclusive. That means creating wealth and employment while absorbing negative social impacts.
Just. That means equally sharing burdens and opportunities between different stakeholders.
Nationally appropriate. That means respecting countries different backgrounds and challenges towards sustainable development.
The project was started in 2013 in four pilot countries: Kazakhstan, Peru, Tanzania and Vietnam. In close co-operation and ownership with different national partners from civil society, politics and science we aim to
•Explore Sustainable Low Carbon Development Pathways in these countries which could serve as regional and international examples.
•Show that Low Carbon Development is not only possible but economically and socially beneficial.
•Create platforms for dialogue at the national level for a range of different stakeholders.
•Support and intensify networks between civil society actors in the respective countries and regions.
Further information, articles and publications are available atFES Sustainabilty.
Besides the reinforcement of adaptation strategies and significant emissions reductions a fundamental paradigm change is needed to sustainable economic and social models. FES measures in this area address how today’s industrialised societies can be environmentally restructured and modernised or new national economies constructed in developing countries on the basis of renewable energies, while at the same time promoting growth and development. The FES supports an exchange between industrialised, developing and emerging countries on sustainable economic models in which environmental and climate change policy are no longer considered to be burdensome cost factors and brakes on growth, but instead are viewed in terms of future-oriented industrial policy, innovative coping strategies and smart location policy within the framework of international competition. In the transition from the previous fossil-fuel and resource-intensive type of national economy towards the low-carbon economy sustainable production systems, products and infrastructures play as important a role as the future energy mix. The key question is what energy sources are most appropriate for the various countries and regions in terms of sustainability and climate-friendliness, competitiveness and security of supply and how they can be promoted. In addition, there must be a debate on how the environmental restructuring of national economies can be used as an opportunity for »green growth« and for the emergence of »green jobs«.
Climate Change Justice
In order to ameliorate climate change and to limit global temperature rises to 2 degrees Celsius, in future economic activity must be pursued in a more environmentally friendly manner: in other words, industrial production, energy supply and the transport and housing sectors must be organised at a much lower level of greenhouse gas emissions. This requires an agreement on the maximum permissible greenhouse gas emissions – that is, what is at issue is how economic growth is to be shared between different states. Given the historical responsibility of the industrialised countries as principal initiators of climate change they need to cut back so that the economies of developing and emerging countries can grow. How emissions limits can be organised globally in a fair way and what level of financial and technological support should be made available to developing and emerging countries to enable them to cope with structural transformation in terms of economic and energy policy, as well as climate change-related adaptation measures, is a key issue in our work. Also important in this context is the question of how the individual climate change-policy financing mechanisms and instruments are to be assessed from a development-policy standpoint. In addition, issues of climate change justice arise not least with regard to climate change and trade: almost a quarter of all global emissions arise from the manufacturing of goods which are traded internationally. Via trade, the industrialised countries relocate emissions to a considerable extent to emerging and developing countries in order to make the latter, in turn, responsible for their reduction.
Governance Structures among Global Climate-Change, Environmental and Energy Institutions
The tough negotiations on a new, internationally binding climate change agreement as successor to the Kyoto Protocol has made it clear that the UN climate change process has come up against the limits of its institutional capacities. It also shows that the UN’s Environmental Programme (UNEP) is in urgent need of reform. A solution must urgently be found to the question of how the institutions of global environmental policy under the UN umbrella can be developed in such a way that the logjams which emerged once more in Copenhagen can be permanently broken. Otherwise, non-binding and voluntary approaches threaten to establish themselves as a real alternative. In order to fashion a just and transparent governance system with regard to global environmental and climate change policy and thereby to broaden the range of options for a global climate change agreement there must be dialogue between all the participating states and actors on what this agreement will be like. FES measures in this area are aimed at supporting the realisation of a global agreement on climate change and the reform of the international governance system with regard to global environmental and climate change policy. The FES is calling for a dialogue between decision-makers from the industrialised, developing and emerging countries and working out concrete practical options and policy recommendations.