Humanity is facing two major crises, economic and environmental. Over the past 50 years our current global economic model has failed to deliver the sustainable society that we need. Poverty has increased in absolute terms. The gap between rich and poor is growing as wealth is not redistributed equally. At the same time, we have already breached the “safe operating limit” of our planet in three key ways: climate change, loss of biodiversity loss and the excessive production of nitrogen and phosphorus. The world’s population is increasing rapidly (a projected 9 billion by 2050).

The TUC’s annual Congress has consistently supported progressive policies on climate change. See for example the motion on a Low carbon economy at Congress 2011: http://www.tuc.org.uk/the_tuc/tuc-20074-f0.cfm
Decarbonising the economy – in energy supply, transport, at home and at work - is essential to promoting sustainable growth, high quality employment and security of energy supply.

The TUC and its 58 affiliated unions believe that the scientific evidence from the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) http://www.ipcc.ch/publications_and_data/ar4/syr/en/contents.html underlines the urgency of a concerted approach to tackle climate change. This requires effective government action both nationally and internationally.

Our reports, conferences, campaigns and alliances with employers and campaigners address  the many employment, skills and economic issues involved in the Just Transition to a low carbon economy. We seek to influence national policy in contacts with Government, including through the Trades Union Sustainable Development Advisory Committee (TUSDAC),a key interface between the TUC and its affiliates and the Department for the Environmental and Rural Affairs.


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