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NESC publishes a Conference Report Delivering a Just Transition for All: 28th EEAC Annual Conference


MEDIA RELEASE: February 22nd

How to Deliver a Just Transition for All?

Ireland is facing multiple complex and overlapping pressures and necessary transitions: addressing climate change, biodiversity loss, inequality and the impact of digital technology.  Now, Covid-19 is driving radical change in Ireland and globally.

Just Transition is a powerful idea: leave nobody behind in a transition where there is significant societal change. Those who are most impacted, and those who are most vulnerable, should not lose out. These individuals and their communities require support to be part of the transformation.

Today, the National Economic and Social Council (NESC) publishes a Conference Report which examines a just transition. In late 2020, NESC along with a European network, the EEAC, organised a major international conference, ‘Delivering a Just Transition for All.’  It focused on how to respond to these pressures for change, and to capture the opportunities in a just, fair and inclusive way. In particular, it focused on climate change and biodiversity loss.

President of Ireland, Michael D. Higgins provided the keynote address highlighting that  ‘major transitions in our society and economy must be approached with the ‘Just Transition’ concept in mind’.  Supporting this call the conference report, written by Sinead Mercier, highlights a number of practical ways to support a just transition and build resilience: These include:

  • Targeting supports at impacted workers and their wider communities, taking into account local context and history;
  • Developing and co-designing an inclusive participatory process with those most impacted, at an early stage;
  • Setting out a clear, coherent vision and pathway forward drawing on just transition principles;
  • Creating well-defined personnel restructuring processes to ensure an orderly phase-out for workers; and
  • Using public-sector investment and supporting institutions to help drive the transition.

The Director of NESC, Dr Larry O’Connell said ‘the conference report helps us to think about how we can deliver the transformation required to address the climate and biodiversity emergencies while at the same time, using the principles of justice, fairness, equality and equity act as a lever and guide to shape policies and practices’.



Note to Editors

About the National Economic and Social Council (NESC)

The National Economic & Social Council (NESC) was established in 1973.  NESC is an expert advisory and consultative body, focusing on strategic economic, social and environmental policies.  The Council was set up to analyse and report to the Taoiseach on strategic issues relating to the efficient development of the economy, the achievement of social justice and environmental sustainability.  It addresses the public system and the institutional challenges related to implementation, monitoring and learning.  It is chaired by the Secretary General of the Department of the Taoiseach.  The members of the Council are appointed by the Taoiseach, for a three year term.  They are representatives of business and employers’ organisations, trade unions, agricultural and farming organisations, community and voluntary organisations, and environmental organisations; as well as heads of Government departments and independent experts.  The Council has published 149 agreed reports on a wide range of policy issues, as well as research papers by its professional Secretariat and other experts.

About the EEAC

The European Environment and Sustainable Development Advisory Councils Network (EEAC Network) brings together advisory bodies established by national or regional governments or parliaments. EEAC members offer independent advice to their respective national or regional governments and parliaments related to climate change, the environment and sustainable development.

Eighteen advisory bodies from fourteen European countries and regions are member of the EEAC Network. With representatives from academia, civil society, the private sector and public bodies the EEAC network brings together experts with years of experience producing independent advice.

About the October Conference

The conference included a mix of keynote speakers, panel discussions and spotlight sessions with experts, academics, community groups, government, councils and policymakers.


For further information, please contact:


Dr Larry O’Connell, Director                                   Dr Jeanne Moore

E:                                         E:

T: 01 8146332                                                             T: 01 8146366



To view conference report click here                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                



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