UN Secretary-General Launches Climate Action Summit Jobs Initiative
Mlondolozi Mbolo/Decent Work Regulation
story highlights

The ‘Climate Action for Jobs’ initiative provides a roadmap to ensure that people’s jobs and well-being are at the core of the transition to a carbon-neutral economy.

The ILO Guidelines for a Just Transition provide a framework to guide countries’ transition to low-carbon economies.

18 September 2019: UN Secretary-General António Guterres announced an initiative aimed at ensuring that creating decent jobs and protecting livelihoods are at the center of countries’ efforts to ramp up climate action, and urged States to join the initiative.

The ‘Climate Action for Jobs’ initiative was developed jointly by the Climate Action Summit, the International Labour Organization (ILO) and other members of the Summit’s Social and Political Drivers coalition, co-led by Spain and Peru. The initiative provides a roadmap to ensure that people’s jobs and well-being are at the core of the transition to a carbon-neutral economy.

Launching the initiative, the Secretary-General noted that around 1.2 billion jobs, or 40% of world employment, “rely directly on a healthy and stable environment.” Warning that business “cannot succeed on a planet that fails,” and jobs “cannot be sustained on a dying planet,” Guterres urged governments, businesses and people everywhere to join efforts to “put climate action into a higher gear.”

Business cannot succeed on a planet that fails. Jobs cannot be sustained on a dying planet.

The initiative calls on countries to formulate national plans for a just transition while creating decent work and green jobs, and introduces specific measures to include in national plans, including:

  • Assessing the employment, social and economic impacts of climate action;
  • Implementing skills development and upgrading measures;
  • Designing innovative social protection policies to protect workers and vulnerable groups;
  • Increasing the transfer of technology and knowledge to developing countries, and innovation and responsible investment;
  • Fostering a conducive business environment to enable enterprises, in particular small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), to adopt low-carbon production processes;
  • Devising economic policies and incentives to support and encourage enterprises’ transition towards the environmentally sustainable production of goods and services; and
  • Creating mechanisms for inclusive social dialogue to build consensus for transformative and sustainable change.

The ILO ‘Guidelines for a Just Transition Towards Environmentally Sustainable Economies and Societies for All,’ adopted through tripartite consensus, provide a framework to guide countries’ transition to low-carbon economies.

The initiative was launched on 18 September, and subsequently presented at the Secretary-General’s Climate Action Summit on 23 September at UN Headquarters in New York, US. Implementation of the initiative will be spearheaded by the ILO, with support from other partners in the Social and Political Drivers action area, including the B-Team, the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) and the International Organisation of Employers (IOE). [UN Climate Action Summit Press Release] [ILO Guidelines for Just Transition] [SDG Knowledge Hub Story on Climate Action Summit]


related events


related posts