Making Decarbonisation Fair: An International Conference on a Global Issue

1 March 2021
making decarbonisation fair - map


A global clean energy transition is technically possible. Ensuring it is also ‘fair’ gives rise to challenges that can be addressed only through targeted action in spheres related to access to energy and energy services, environmental and climate change impacts associated with energy production and consumption, energy pricing, and geographical, social and cultural considerations.

Making Decarbonisation Fair (1-4 March 2021) will bring together more than 380 actors and academics from diverse perspectives to explore current barriers and possible solutions, and who needs to do what to ensure the global bid to reach net-zero emissions does not adversely affect vulnerable groups. Major themes include gender and energy poverty; how energy poverty relates to other types of poverty; and inclusive social movements to influence energy policy. Day 1 (1 March) will put Portugal in the spotlight, including a presentation by João Galamba, Portuguese Deputy Minister and Secretary of State for Energy.

“In Europe, data suggest 50 to 80 million low-income and vulnerable households already face energy poverty,” says Dr. Aimee Ambrose, Chair of Fuel Poverty Research Network (FPRN). “While a clean energy transition is critical, we will need strong action in policy and related spheres to uphold the principle of a ‘right to energy’ as outlined in Article 18 of the EU Pillar of Social Rights.”[1] 

With video presentations uploaded to an online library in advance, a unique feature of this event is a strong focus on opportunity for interaction. In each 90-minute session, presenters will be limited to 5 minutes each, leaving a full hour for audience engagement. 

Ensuring all citizens have sufficient energy to support health, well-being and a dignified quality of life is a core principle of calls for universal access to reliable, sustainable and modern energy, as outlined in the UN Sustainable Development Goal 7 (SDG7) and in the EU Just Energy Transition.

The past 20 years have brought to the fore the need to ensure not just access but also affordability. Substantial advances have been made in deploying low-cost electricity in developing countries, yet 831 million people still lack access and 3 billion continue to rely on wood and biomass for cooking and heating. In industrialised countries, where energy is readily available, the aspect of affordability is what drives people into ‘energy poverty’. 

It is now clear that relying solely on market forces will not deliver a just clean energy transition: this event seeks to identify where intervention by other actors is needed and raise awareness of effective solutions ready for broader application.  

For more information, visit the event web site: Making Decarbonisation Fair