Title of the Event
Reclaiming the Economy: The Role of Social Ownership in Reaching Climate Goals
Organizing partners (to be discussed):
Trade Union Confederation of the Americas; Public Services International, International Transport Workers Federation; International Union of Food Workers; Canadian Labour Congress; CUT Brazil; SENTRO, Philippines; Trade Unions for Energy Democracy
Today it is clear that the world is not going to limit global warming to the 1.5 – 2 degrees range without a major policy shift away from market-based approaches. It has been shown that these approaches lead to more profit making and commodification and do little to control rising emissions levels. Despite years of speeches and promises, the much-needed transformations in energy, transport, food and agriculture and energy conservation are simply not happening and we now face a full-blown planetary emergency.
As acknowledged by the international trade union movement, the crisis of the UNFCCC process requires a change of course, with more attention paid to strengthening trade union ties to social movements who share our commitment to deep structural change in the political economy – including more democratic accountability and control over economic life.
As expressed by the resolution emerging from the trade union assembly held in Rio de Janeiro just prior to the Rio+20 talks, and captured in the 2014 Development Platform for the Americas (PLADA), trade unions around the world are beginning to reassert the need for social and public ownership of key economic sectors as a means to address both the social and ecological crises.
The struggle to reclaim the economy from the domination of multinational corporations is crucial in order to implement a fair and equitable transition to a truly sustainable world. This will require unions and their allies committing themselves to a long-term struggle for economic democracy, rebuilding the public sphere, and expanded levels of social and community-based ownership.