Poverty and Social Dimensions in Green Economy

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Jan Dusik, Deputy Director, UNEP Regional Office for Europe

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  • This slide illustrates the large component of natural resources in the overall wealth of the poor. The table can be used to illustrate the large percentage of natural resources in the GDP of developing countries – particularly when adjusted for non market and ecosystem services – and also, fundamentally, of the GDP of the poor. GDP of the poor – total amount of economic activity of the poor – monetized and non-monetized The bottom line here is that by depleting environmental assets the poor are typically most adversely affected. Hence the importance of moving towards a green economy for those most dependent on natural resources – by investing in natural capital as a source of economic growth and well-being.
  • Innovative and imaginative public policies will be vital to generate enabling conditions that, in turn, can unleash markets and direct private sector investments into a Green Economic transition. These include: Sound regulatory frameworks , a prioritizing of government spending and procurement in areas that stimulate green economic sectors and limits on spending that deplete natural capital. Removing subidies could save 1-2% of global GDP a year, open fiscal space and makes room for public and private investment for a green economy transition Taxation and smart market mechanisms that shift consumer spending and promote green innovation. Public investments in capacity building and training , alongside a strengthening of international governance.
  • Innovative and imaginative public policies will be vital to generate enabling conditions that, in turn, can unleash markets and direct private sector investments into a Green Economic transition. These include: Sound regulatory frameworks , a prioritizing of government spending and procurement in areas that stimulate green economic sectors and limits on spending that deplete natural capital. Removing subidies could save 1-2% of global GDP a year, open fiscal space and makes room for public and private investment for a green economy transition Taxation and smart market mechanisms that shift consumer spending and promote green innovation. Public investments in capacity building and training , alongside a strengthening of international governance.
  • Poverty and Social Dimensions in Green Economy

    1. 1. Poverty and Social Dimensions in a Green Economy Jan DUSÍK Deputy Director Regional Office for Europe
    2. 2. <ul><li>Ecosystems and biodiversity providing benefits for humankind </li></ul><ul><li>Economic invisibility . </li></ul><ul><li>Complex and valuable ecological infrastructure. </li></ul>What is natural capital?
    3. 3. <ul><li>A Green Economy is one that results in increased human well-being and social equity , while significantly reducing environmental risks and ecological scarcities. </li></ul><ul><li>UNEP Green Economy Initiative </li></ul>What is a Green Economy ?
    4. 4. <ul><li>National development plans and strategies </li></ul><ul><li>Key sectors of GE : Energy and Agriculture </li></ul><ul><li>Low-carbon systems </li></ul><ul><li>“ Double dividend” policies: employment and green growth </li></ul><ul><li>Labour market adjustment : high labour mobility-income security and national and education systems </li></ul><ul><li>Weaknesses of a “business as usual” approach </li></ul>Role of governments
    5. 5. Why a Green Economy ? <ul><li>Initiative born out of multiple crises and accelerating resource scarcity </li></ul><ul><li>An economic vehicle for sustainable development </li></ul><ul><li>Can take advantage of new growth trajectories designed to be more socially inclusive, as well as responsive to poverty reduction and economic diversification objectives </li></ul><ul><li>A new economic paradigm that can drive growth of income and jobs, without creating environmental risks </li></ul>
    6. 6. Least Developed Countries <ul><li>Low levels of carbon emissions </li></ul><ul><li>Relatively low investments in technologies </li></ul><ul><li>More dependent on natural resources -> ecosystem degradation, resource scarcity and climate change challenges to ending poverty </li></ul><ul><li>Investments , policy reforms and maximize local knowledge are needed </li></ul>
    7. 7. A Green Economy is an opportunity <ul><li>Common interest between developed and developing countries </li></ul><ul><li>For achieving the MDGs </li></ul><ul><li>Partnership of policymakers and business community </li></ul><ul><li>Crucial to prioritize spending in sectors that can simultaneously promote social, economic and environmental gains </li></ul><ul><li>ODA and South-South cooperation </li></ul>
    8. 8. Green Economy can reduce poverty and inequality <ul><li>Inextricable link between poverty alleviation and wise management of natural resources and ecosystems </li></ul><ul><li>Ecosystem services provide 47% to 90% of the so-called ‘GDP of the Poor’ </li></ul><ul><li>Hence need to invest in natural capital as a source of growth and well-being </li></ul>Natural-resource dependent sectors and ESS (2005) Brazil Indonesia India Original share of GDP (%): agriculture, forestry, fisheries 6% 11% 17% Share of ESS/non market goods of total income of the poor (%) 90% 75% 47%
    9. 9. Some challenges <ul><li>Multilateral trading system </li></ul><ul><li>Technological innovation and transfer </li></ul><ul><li>Global intellectual property </li></ul><ul><li>Extent of private investment in the development of environmentally-sound technologies </li></ul>
    10. 10. Enabling conditions for a Green Economy <ul><li>Establish sound regulatory frameworks </li></ul><ul><li>Remove harmful subsidies (e.g. fossil fuels, fisheries) </li></ul><ul><li>Prioritize green investment </li></ul><ul><li>Utilize market mechanisms and taxation </li></ul><ul><li>Build capacity through training and technology transfer </li></ul>
    11. 11. Enabling conditions for a Green Economy <ul><li>Transform consumption patterns – not just technology! </li></ul><ul><li>Use poverty alleviation/MDG targets </li></ul><ul><li>Policy coherence </li></ul><ul><li>Private sector engagement </li></ul><ul><li>Local authorities’ engagement </li></ul><ul><li>Public awareness & mobilisation </li></ul><ul><li>Intergovernmental co-operation </li></ul>
    12. 12. The Green Economy is on the agenda for Rio 2012 <ul><li>UNCSD : a call for renewing efforts towards sustainable development and poverty eradication </li></ul><ul><li>“ Green Economy for sustainable development and poverty eradication” -> recognising importance of the social dimensions of development </li></ul>
    13. 13. Thank you Regional Office for Europe

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