What is the challenge?
In August 2021, the UN Climate Panel, the IPCC, presented their latest report, in which they state that climate change is accelerating and there is a clear link between human impact and extreme weather events. We need to increase our level of ambition and take more action to achieve the globally agreed targets in the Paris Agreement and the 2030 Agenda.
However, it is important that comprehensive, far-reaching climate measures are fair and promote a more just society. To create a fair climate transition, we must motivate the innovation power found in all areas of society and help new actors to collaborate. Measures must be designed using the perspectives of vulnerable regions, groups and individuals, and taking into account the interactions and conflicts between environmental and societal goals.
How can the programme contribute to a solution?
The Fair Transformations to a Fossil Free Future research programme, Fairtrans, will utilise the experience and engagement found in civil society to facilitate and accelerate a fair climate transformation. Working together, academia, civil society and other actors with different perspectives will create scientifically based strategies and frameworks that are perceived as fair, justifiable and effective. These strategies and frameworks must be compatible with the targets in the Paris Agreement, and be based upon the planetary limits and societal goals in the 2030Agenda, among others.
Fairtrans will review national roadmaps, taking into account a globally fair national carbon budget. National roadmaps will be compared to sector-specific roadmaps to identify goal conflicts linked to aims such as reduced emissions and bioenergy. The programme will also explore scenarios that go beyond technical solutions and re-evaluate visions for good, sustainable quality of life, independent of GNP growth.
“Scientific knowledge is decisive for the necessary transformation. It must be built up and utilised in dialogue with a wide variety of actors. Our approach builds upon a scientific basis, where political and economic frameworks are co-produced by business, trade unions, and other popular movements.”
Thomas Hahn and Stephan Barthel, Programme Directors for Fairtrans.
Who will benefit from the programme?
Understanding the barriers and openings for a fair transformation, and turning conflicts into synergies, comprise the programme’s foundations. To reduce polarisation and create legitimacy for frameworks and policies, the programme will build capacity for popular movements’ internal work on this transformation. The biggest central trade union organisations, with more than three million members, are participating in the programme.
Stockholm University is the programme host, and programme participants are: the University of Gävle, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Uppsala University, IVL Swedish Environmental Research Institute, Lund University, the Global Challenge thinktank, the central trade union organisations LO, TCO and Saco and their member unions, Fossil Free Sverige, the Swedish Society for Nature Conservation, KF (cooperative association), Hyresgästföreningen, AI Sweden, Företagarna, the Confederation of Swedish Enterprise, SISD (Swedish Investors for Sustainable Development) and other actors.