Environmental sustainability, climate change and the green economy


The link between climate change, economical scarcity and poverty is straightforward. The world’s poor are especially prone to natural disasters given the fact that in many cases their livelihoods are directly dependent on natural resources. Moving towards a green economy is expected to improve the living conditions of the poor in the long run. By securing livelihoods and promoting sustainable jobs, the green economy can eradicate poverty and reduce vulnerability across a range of sectors (eg. fishery, agriculture, forestry).

Social protection can enhance resilience of people and protect them from the negative impacts of climate change and can facilitate transitions to more sustainable economies.


Photo credit: “Sustainability” by Kyle MacKenzie (CCBY 2.0 via Flickr).

Legal Instruments

Convention on Access to Information, Public Participation and Decision Making and Access to Justice in Environmental Matters

The United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) Convention on Access to Information, Public Participation in Decision-Making and Access to Justice in Environmental Matters  was adopted on 25 June 1998 in the Danish city of Aarhus (Århus) at the Fourth Ministerial Conference as part of the “Environment for Europe” process. It entered into force on 30 October […]


Energy, migration and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development

Key messages Migration can contribute to improving access to reliable, affordable modern energy services (SDG target 7.1) through higher incomes for migrants and the sending of remittances. The informal or irregular status of many migrants is a barrier to universal access to modern energy services. Migrants in informal settlements and displaced people often experience a […]

The Aarhus Convention: an implementation guide

The Aarhus Convention, which is open for global accession, offers powerful twin protections for the environment and human rights. It provides an effective model for ensuring public input in defining and implementing green economy programmes, in choosing the most appropriate road maps to sustainability and for increasing transparency and Government accountability, thereby putting Principle 10 […]

The Future of Work: A Literature Review

An enormous amount of literature has emerged over the last few years in the context of the “future of work”. Academics, think tanks and policy makers have fuelled rich discussions about how the future of work might look and how we can shape it. Indeed, labour markets in developing and developed countries are likely to […]

World Employment Social Outlook: Greening with Jobs (2018)

While climate change mitigation measures may cause short-term job losses, the report shows that a just transition to a more sustainable economy offers much potential for job creation and the promotion of decent work. The report also looks at key issues linked with the path to a greener economy, including macroeconomic and environmental policy, public […]

Indigenous Peoples and Climate Change: from victims to change agents through decent work

The present report analyses the situation of indigenous peoples in the context of climate change. It suggests that indigenous peoples are affected in distinctive ways by climate change, and also by the policies or actions that are aimed at addressing it. At the same time, it highlights that, as agents of change, indigenous peoples are […]

Protected Against Climate Damage? The opportunities and limitations of climate risk insurance for the protection of vulnerable populations

Climate change is not a problem of a distant future; it is already a bitter reality for millions of people around the world today. Bread for the World (Brot für die Welt) and ACT Alliance’s partner organisations report that the regions in which they operate are increasingly experiencing the impacts of climate change. These effects […]

No Accident: resilience and the inequality of risk

A new international emphasis on building resilience offers real promise to allow the poorest women and men to cope with, and ultimately thrive, in the face of shocks, stresses, and uncertainty. But only if risk is more equally shared globally and across societies – this will require a major shift in our approach to poverty […]

Social Protection and Climate Change: How can social protection address regular climate-related risks in the Sahel?

The effects of climate change are increasingly apparent in many Sahel countries. Relief efforts during crises and in response to everyday deprivation have been largely led by outside actors. However, many Sahel countries have now adopted national strategies for social protection, providing new opportunities for them to establish basic guarantees and incorporate lessons from neighbouring […]

Social Protection and Climate Change: How did the Philippines combine emergency relief with lasting protection after Haiyan?

In the wake of Typhoon Haiyan, the Philippines’ Integrated Livelihood and Emergency Employment Program (DILEEP) provided emergency employment opportunities to affected populations, and affiliated participants to several social insurance schemes. Nearly 80,000 programme participants received immediate relief after the typhoon struck in 2013, and were enrolled in the national health and employment injury insurance schemes.

Social Protection and Climate Change: How are rural workers and residents in China faring with conservation efforts?

In China, there are big efforts to combat deforestation, with logging and other restrictions placed on large swaths of land. Nearly a million workers in state-owned forest enterprises lost their jobs, but got help with job training and placement services. Other rural residents received cash to perform conservation activities.  

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