Implementing the European Green Deal Through Transformational Change

The European Green Deal (EGD) is the EU’s magnum opus for implementing the Paris Agreement and the United Nations 2030 Agenda. The EGD intends to tackle the climate and environmental crisis, while pursuing economic growth and respecting the Leave No One Behind principle. This paper argues that a systemic approach based on the Six Transformations (Sachs et al., 2019) can enable policymakers to address multiple Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and exploit synergies between various policy areas, minimizing trade-offs, identifying priorities, and addressing conflicting agendas. Focusing on an analysis of the EU Energy and Climate Policy, this paper puts forward important policy recommendations to successfully implement the EGD and the SDGs, following the Six Transformations approach. It also highlights the unique opportunities offered by the Recovery and Resilience Facility to overcome the socio-economic challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. In this respect, a case study of the Italian National Recovery and Resilience Plan illustrates how the European recovery can successfully operationalize climate action along the Six Transformation framework. Lessons learned from this experience can be extrapolated and replicated in other EU member states and other regions of the world.

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