The overlooked side of the ecological transition

Discussion Paper

Climate, Energy & Sustainability

This discussion paper aims to stimulate a debate on how to support a sustainable ecological transition, taking into consideration aspects ranging from cost, financing and the facilitation of a whole-of-society approach to decarbonisation. It addresses the pitfalls and dilemmas that are regularly overlooked in the conversation on the ecological transition.

The authors tackle a number of controversial subjects in their analyses, such as the costs and benefits of the transition, the decoupling of GDP and carbon emissions, carbon mechanisms and pricing, fossil fuel subsidies, digital emissions, smart resource management and the fundamental role of nature. By adopting an innovative approach to problem-solving, this paper seeks to open a space for discussion on the challenges presented by the ecological transition.

While there is much consensus about the need for climate action, grasping the complexity of the ecological transition is a different matter. As a result, this report intends to shed light on the key elements that require our attention if we are to succeed in achieving a holistic ecological transition.

Given the policy leverage of the public sector in Europe, the recommendations proposed in this report focus primarily on procurement capacity, investment in research and development (R&D), citizen-driven change and how to influence private sector approaches by setting frameworks of legislation, standards and pace. Our hope is to create greater policy coherence and to accelerate the transition to a low-carbon future.

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