A Sting Exclusive: “Paris is the moment for climate justice”, Swedish MEP Linnéa Engström claims from Brussels

Linnéa Engström

Mrs Linnéa Engström is Swedish MEP at the Group of the Greens/European Free Alliance.

This article was exclusively written for the Sting by Mrs Linnéa Engström, Swedish Green MEP and Vice-chair of the Fisheries committee at the European Parliament.

Climate change is the single most present global injustice, facing our and future generations, and one of the greatest human rights challenges of our time. In the last six years, two percent of the world population has been displaced by climate related disasters alone. By 2050, 200 million people are expected to be displaced by climate change, according to figures from the UN. This will create a tremendous pressure on less affected countries. Business as usual is simply not an option. Climate change is not just a scientific or environmental issue, it is also about human rights, gender equality and development.

Developed countries have grown wealthy due to the exploitation of fossile fuels and natural resources worldwide. Therefore we in the western world have a responsibility to help developing countries to adapt to climate change and to make the transition towards zero carbon development models. To date, this responsibility has not been met, which has eroded trust and quashed ambition in the negotiations.

Climate change is not gender neutral. Women are disproportionally and more severely affected by climate change. Today women make up 20 of the 26 million estimated refugees displaced by climate change. Women, thus comprise 80 percent of the world’s climate refugees. Yet, less than one percent of climate funding is allocated specifically towards the need of women in the most affected countries. Empower women and we can change the world, that is the message from diverse actors such as UN special climate envoyé Mary Robinson and the World Bank.
Raising awareness on climate justice, the need for gender mainstreaming and the consequences of climate change, such as the challenge caused by 200 million climate-refugees by 2050, is a prerequisite to tackle the challenges we are facing. This stems from the fact that the balance between adaptation and mitigation is unjust, those who need the most, get the least. Climate funding has become ”big business” and the most affected, and the most vulnerable, are not part of the deal.

A human rights based approach is needed to ensure that climate mitigation and adaptation policies do not endanger the full enjoyment of human rights. Against the opposition of a group of countries led by Saudi-Arabia, and despite the shameful quietness of the EU on this topic, clear language on a human rights based approach has been included in the draft 2015 climate agreement, thanks to the so-called ”Geneva Pledge”. We now need to ensure this language is kept in the final deal. A fair deal, is a deal that ensures human rights for all, gender equality and the right to development.

Women need to be represented at all levels in the UN climate regime and in the Green Climate Fund. At present, women are largely under-represented in decision-making processes regarding climate change, greenhouse gas-emissions and the resource allocation for adaptation/mitigation. A fair resource allocation between mitigation and adaptation must be ensured. Women are affected differently and more severely by climate change and its impact on agriculture, natural disasters and migration, due to social roles, discrimination and poverty.

No country alone can protect their citizens from the impacts of dangerous climate change. All countries and citizens must act together motivated by enlightened self-interest and human solidarity for a better future for all. It is in our collective self-interest to support this transition and this new model of development, without it we will exceed the carbon budget and be forced to accept the consequences of a 4°C world. And that world will be far more unfair and unjust than the one we live in now.

A fair transition is one where no one is left behind, neither the workers dependent on the fossil-fuel industry, nor the people who are poor, and live in situations where they are vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. A fair transition looks at means and  opportunities for industrial transformation and new quality jobs in the green economy, as well as greater equality.

The actions we need to take to achieve sustainable development are the same actions we need to take to adapt to climate change, and implement an economy based on 100 percent renewable energy sources. We need a green, bio-based circular economy, which is defined by a value-based rationality, human rights and gender equality.

The New Climate Economy Report produced by the Calderon Commission of which Nicholas Stern is a member, finds that over the next 15 years, about US $90 trillion will be invested in infrastructure in the world’s cities, agriculture and energy. This gives the world an unprecedented opportunity to drive investment in growth with low CO2-emissions, bringing multiple benefits to jobs, health, business productivity and quality of life. The report finds that climate action and high quality growth are not just compatible, but that climate action is necessary for short and long term prosperity. Above all, the commission stresses that countries of all levels of income can seize these opportunities, particularly if the 2015 processes send clear signals that we are leaving the ”business as usual“ approach behind.

About the author

Linnea ENGSTROM - 8th Parliamentary term

Green MEP from Sweden. First vice chair of the fisheries committee, substitute member in committees ENVI and FEMM. Political scientist with a great interest in Russia, development, gender and security policy. Before becoming a member of the European parliament, mrs Engström worked as a gender coordinator and with development support directed towards Russia, Belarus, Georgia and Eastern Europe. Her great interest and knowledge in development issues brought her close to African green partners mainly in Western Africa. Mrs Engström is now working on an initiative report on the EU external dimension of the Common fisheries reform, addressing issues of great importance to the long-term sustainability and fairness of EU-fisheries agreements, joint ventures and charter agreements with third countries. Mrs Engström is also the gender coordinator in the committee ENVI, where her main focus is the issues on climate justice and gender mainstreaming of environmental and health legislation. 

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Featured Stings

EU to spend €135.5 billion in 2014 or 6.5% less than this year

Biggest London City Banks ready to move core European operations to Frankfurt or Dublin?

A new global financial crisis develops fast; who denies it?

How did Facebook fool the Commission that easily during the WhatsApp acquisition?

The EU can afford to invest trillions in support of employment

On the euro but out of it?

Turkey caught in a vicious Syrian circle bringing terror and war at home

JADE Testimonial #1: Marcello @ Enlargement

On Youth Participation: Are we active citizens?

The Parliament accuses core EU countries of exploiting their dominant political position

EU to spend €6 billion on youth employment and training futile schemes

EU regional differences betray an unjust arrangement

World Health Organisation and young doctors: is there any place for improvement?

Summer pause gives time to rethink Eurozone’s problems

Two women threaten to tear the world apart

Imaginary Journeys Into Eternal China

MEP Cristiana Muscardini @ European Business Summit 2014: International Trade in Europe

High-technology manufacturing saves the EU industry

Galileo funding: A ‘small’ difference of €700 million

Can Europe and the US reverse their nationalist and xenophobic drift? Is the West becoming belligerent?

The Brits are not an exception and that’s why they voted to leave

Minsk “ceasefire” leaves more doubts than safety, with EU already planning steps further

ECB’s first flight in Eurozone’s banking universe will be just a reconnaissance

The British “nonsense”, the relaxed Commissioner and the TTIP “chiaroscuro” at this week’s Council

MWC 2016: IoT experts fret over fragmentation

Why France, Italy and the US press Germany to accept a cheaper euro and pay for Greece

IMF: How can Eurozone avoid stagnation

High level political talks didn’t break the stalemate in Ukraine

“Airbnb and YouTube are two great examples of a crowd based capitalism”, key stakeholders outline the boundaries of the 4th Industrial Revolution in Davos

Can the EU afford to block China’s business openings to Europe by denying her the ‘market economy status’?

Trump asked Merkel to pay NATO arrears and cut down exports ignoring the EU

EU to gain the most from the agreement with Iran

Who cares about the unity of Ukraine?

Brexit: when the hubris of one man can set the UK, the EU and the entire world on fire

Hollande protects the euro from the attacks of extremists

New chapters in EU-China trade disputes

Two major EU projects falter; the Schengen Agreement now freezes and Eurozone fails to resolve the Greek enigma

“No labels for entrepreneurs!”, a young business leader from Italy cries out

Europe slammed by Turkey’s shaky Erdoğan; both playing with immigrants’ agony

Inegalitarian taxation on labour haunts Europe’s social model

2013, a Political Odyssey: What future for Italy?

The EU Parliament and the ECB unknowingly or unwillingly fail to protect our financial assets

ECB’s new money bonanza handed out to help the real economy or create new bubbles?

Dear China

ECB: The bastion of effective and equitable Europeanism keeps up quantitative easing

JADE President opens JADE Spring Meeting 2014

Cancer research put at risk by General Data Protection Regulation? The possible dangers of a data privacy EU mania

Opening Remarks by H.E. Ambassador Yang Yanyi, Head of the Chinese Mission to the EU at the Chinese Fashion Night

An entrepreneurial point-of view on tackling the migration crisis and the risks of abolishing Schengen

France and Poland to block David Cameron’s plans on immigration

More Stings?

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s