Let's protect our planet, our water and our air; for everyone's well-being!

For our next Europe Together event in Paris we will be focusing on sustainability.

Add your voice

We are aware that the abuse of natural resources, driven by selfish interests and short terms profits, ruins the quality of our environment and our society. We know that climate change, if not properly mitigated, will increase inequalities making the already poor even poorer. This trend is not irrevocable. By framing and properly regulating an ecological and social transformation and by providing the necessary political and financial support, we can create the right conditions to increase the well-being of our people. We need to put the people at the centre of an economic transformation so that profits are not channelled to the few but shared with the many. We need an economy that promotes more resource efficient technologies, creating better quality employment. Instead of economies that need to grow no matter what, we need economies that “make us thrive”.
Together, we stand for:

Transforming Societies within Planetary Boundaries!

Smart Cities, Sustainable Cities!

Strong Participatory Democracy!

Investment for Transformation!

 

Add your voice to the debate!

Debate



These are testing times for progressive Europeans. Moving Europe forward requires a programmatic revitalisation of Social Democracy. Sustainability should play a crucial part. This means we have to ensure the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN Agenda 2030. This move has to come from the bottom up, driven by cities and regions to ensure a high quality of life everywhere in Europe. A consistent long-term strategy (rather than short-term tactics) must be devised and it should, in my opinion, include the following: 1.) Clear measures to battle social, economic and territorial inequalities, specifically providing the most vulnerable people with opportunities to lift themselves out of poverty and social exclusion. 2.) Empower local and regional communities to achieve our strategy. Local and regional governments should be given more leeway in funding and decision-making, supported in a coordinated effort by national and European authorities. We must give the people on the ground the chance to participate in the debate and be the driving force of this social and ecological transformation. 3.) An energetic transition shifting to renewable energy sources, away from fossil and nuclear power. This must include a comprehensive jobs program in the clean energy sector, with significant investment in the building of energy infrastructure, training and social protection measures for those who are affected the most by this transition. 4.) Promote low-emission mobility by extending and improving the functionality and sustainability of affordable public transport solutions in urban and rural areas. Again, this demands investment in infrastructure like bike lanes, low-emission buses, train lines and charging stations for electrical vehicles. 5.) Build a circular economy and help build a new corporate responsibility culture. Large-scale waste reduction is both economically and ecologically viable. We must strive to build a business culture that encourages the re-use of goods and renounces single-use production patterns. Only if production patterns (such as plastic packaging) become more eco-friendly, consumption patterns can follow suit. State of the art eco-efficient recycling and waste management facilities should become the standard of European cities and municipalities, creating jobs and saving natural resources. Social Democracy has recently struggled on the European and national level. In the cities, however, we are alive and kicking. Cities like Paris, London, Berlin, Milan and Vienna are great examples for that. Let’s trust our people on the ground and help them achieve tangible results. Let’s build a truly progressive Europe from the bottom up. Then, I’m sure, European Social Democracy will pass this test of time!

3 days, 18 hours ago in The Europe of Tomorrow; it’s left!
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The climate change, indisputably, consist one of the greatest challenges for the humanity for the years onward. However, besides the undesirable effects of the climate change, firstly to the environment and after to the well-being of the people, it is important to mention also the societal effects of this phenomenon. Nowadays, the near-term effects of climate change could have severe consequences on poor countries and already fragile regions around the world with weak governance structures and thereby to worsen the regional and local tensions in ‘hot-zones’. Specifically, the climate change could lead to multiple problems of instability like water scarcity, food shortages, conflict over resources and migration. Therefore, the ”weak” states that gonna experience these problems, could risk to transfer the increased regional tensions to Europe, that might be seem as a ”safe heaven” for these affected people. So, the EU should respond quickly to this security problem given its leading role in development and protection of the environment with the wide range of tools that has in its disposal. First, the EU should have prepare its necessary functions for the preparedness and prevention of disasters or conflict that may arise worldwide and that could affect its member states. Second, the active role of EU as a negotiator for a better and prosperous future is vital and must be continue. Therefore, the EU must promote its multilateral leadership for the enhance of the international cooperation around this serious issue through all the important forums (UN, G7 etc). The EU, as an international regulator by framing and providing the necessary support, could create the right conditions in order to solve the problems. Third, through its instruments the EU should strengthen its dialogue with third countries that belong to the most affected by the climate change and seek for solutions in order to the pretend the tensions and lead to directly answers to their problems. The EU must, indeed, put the people at the center of its policy and increase the resources that can change their quality of life and economy in general. To conclude, the EU aware for the future and driven by its interest for better conditions of human rights and development should take the lead for the protection of environment that could stop these global security issues.

3 days, 18 hours ago in The Europe of Tomorrow; it’s left!
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The creation of a sustainable, environmentally friendly and community-respecting development model is beyond any doubt the most urgent challenge humanity will be facing in the following decades. As hundreds of scientific studies have shown, contradicted only by a meagre group of greedy and selfish men on the payroll of oil and automobiles corporations, the unrenewable, fossil-based production model that was adopted in industry and transportation ever since the first industrial revolution has failed: the indiscriminate usage of such resources, together with the destruction of immaculate regions of our planet for farming, has dramatically damaged the fragile equilibrium that made the Earth suitable for life. At present times, the consequences of such a wicked industrial model can be witnessed in every country of our world: a significant increase of the average global temperature, desertification, rising sea levels, droughts, increasingly hot summers as well as heavy rains causing floods and snowfalls. Despite someone arguing global warming is fake news because he felt the weather was colder from his skyscraper in NYC, more and more local communities are being affected by this completely man-made phenomenon, with droughts in south California, floods in central Italy, wildfires all over Australia and more. All things being the same, the predictions of the effects of climate change are far from reassuring: at the current rate, global average temperature should increase by 2 °C by 2050, with some regions of the planet being affected more than others. In particular, temperatures will rise more in Africa, which will then be threatened by weather phenomena damaging the economy and population. Between 350 and 600 million people will experience severe food and water shortage and it is very likely that, if nothing is done to prevent such changes, a massive wave of climatic migrations and social upheavals will burst all over the Earth. In the worst possible scenario, such catastrophe would turn into a class struggle, with the wealthiest part of the population, by then a ridiculously small percentage of the whole humanity, taking over the remaining sources of water, food and energy, securing themselves in the remaining safe regions of the planet, while the poorest half is starving to death. Global warming is no longer a spooky, far possibility, but rather an incumbency that needs to be addressed by solid, irreprehensible policies by the national, European and global authorities. Many have tried to depict climate change as a worry of the wealthy, while the working class is oppressed by far worse issues: job insecurity, social safety, delocalisation of industries, migrations and so on and so forth. According to many right wing politicians, global warming is not as pressing for the poor, but only for the wealthy, since they will no longer be able to spend their holidays in their Caribbean islands, submerged by the sea. In my opinion, this is undoubtedly one of the greatest lies ever spoken. As scientific research has shown, the effects of climate change will hit harder those who are already in greater need of food, water and energy. Global warming could be the cause of an unprecedented social struggle for resources and this is precisely why the progressive parties of every country should focus their efforts on preventing the worst scenario to happen. The current members of the S&D group are the parties or the political heirs of those parties who were born in the XIX century to defend the working class against the exploitation of the early capitalistic industry: their success was linked to their presence and their support to the last ones, to the victims of an ill system increasing the power of the few on the shoulders of the many. It was only thanks to the passionate struggle of the leftist parties in defence of the working class that many of the social rights we benefit from now were conquered. However, history repeats itself and a strikingly new scenery has created: the big corporations are the only ones benefitting from the current industrial model, trying to gaining as much as possible before it is too late. On the other hand, not only the poorest, but everyone who does not benefit from this insane exploitation is being deprived of the basic human rights: our planet, our common house is being destroyed by a handful of people; our health is being threatened by the exposition to dozens of dangerous chemical substances; many are witnessing the destruction of their homeland and cannot to anything against it. If the progressive parties want to reconquer the support of the people, of their electoral basis who has left them for the unrealistic promises of the right wing extremists, they have to start fighting again for them. The struggle against climate change is the greatest threat to a future of equality, justice and liberty and therefore the greatest chance for the progressive family to come back on the side of the many, not the few. As a participant in the School of Democracy organised by the S&D group, I could realise how the fight for a sustainable economy and the need to regain the people’s support are the most urgent challenges for the European progressive parties. I do believe that is it possible for our family to combine such issues together in a successful fashion. The S&D group parties all over Europe should focus on those communities that are already affected by the consequences of global warming or by the side effects of the current industrial model. They should invest their resources in sensitize people of such communities about the need to change our development model, convincing them that the greatest struggle of our times is not the migration wave, but rather the serious threat created by our industries. We should make them see that the enemy is not the refugee or the economic migrant, but rather the big corporation that falsifies the data on the carbon emissions of its cars or the factory that releases carcinogenic substances in the air, the subjects that the right wing and conservative parties all over the world have successfully defended against strict, environmental-friendly policies. The progressive parties should focus their agenda on environmental issues, on the shared goods such as natural resources, landscapes and collective health. They should propose regulations on the environmental-dangerous activities of corporations and industries as well as promote an alternative, sustainable economic and industrial model by increasing national and European investments in innovation. The interests of local communities threatened by the action of big companies should be protected by the governments, inverting a tremendously sad trend that characterised the modern era. The safety and the health of citizens should be preferred over the creation of few jobs and possible damages to the environment. The destiny of humanity as a whole is likely to be determined in the following decades. It is beyond any doubt the greatest political struggle that progressive parties have ever fought: the struggle against the model that led to an apparent increase of global wellness, but only improved the already optimal conditions of the few at the price of the basic rights of the many. Progressive parties have to act in defence of those they were born to protect, remembering the meaning of socialism: to bring forward those who were born behind.

3 days, 18 hours ago in The Europe of Tomorrow; it’s left!
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Shaping our future by embracing environmentally friendly lifestyle manners should turn into our common goal. Self-awareness is the very first step that needs to be undertaken. Environmentally-conscious society is a society which takes care of its resources. We need to promote consecutive educational campaigns by focusing on reduce of waste so that people could become aware of the importance of recycling. By clearly understanding the negative impact of the plastic products that they reach out for on a daily basis, they might want to reconsider daily habits which are in apparent detriment of our planet. There should be further investments on campaigns focused on environmentally friendly causes, mainly executed by young people. A young person’s enthusiasm is quite contagious. Their actions are usually inspired by pure conviction of a better and thriving society which requires responsibility and significant efforts. Fostering usage of homegrown food and consuming less meet is another possibility that enhances both our lifestyles and at the same time it preserves our nature healthy. Banning plastic cutlery at fast-food restaurants by replacing them with sustainable alternatives is a must. A key word of our plan should be alternative. The next time I grab a cotton bud, I shall know that I have an alternative that might not only guarantee sustainable development of the world I live in, but it also may turn out to be the healthier option for me as an individual. We must build a bridge between our own needs and those of our common home.

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The biggest challenge in the upcoming decades is to successfully make the transition towards a green and cleaner economy. As we all know, climate change will have a meaningful impact in our lives, especially of those who are more disadvantaged. Several studies demonstrate that poverty and inequality are expected results from extreme climate events, a changing ecosystem and, evidently, resource shortage. Therefore, we, as socialists, have the duty to ensure environmental protection and widespread usage of renewable energy while, simultaneously, advocating for new ways of human organization and lifestyle, namely in cities. The latter will have a crucial role in our common future. Urban density, when combined with proper public transportation and planned infrastructures, can ensure a more efficient society. Proper management of the local resources will lead to more efficient business, economy and society, which no longer struggle with it – this includes recycling, water and waste management. Incentives for decarbonisation and education on sustainability practices are also directly responsible for laying the ground to a more inclusive and green society. Fundamentally, we need to guide our investment and innovation efforts towards transforming our society within the global climate and environmental challenges. Ensuring sustainable options is the best way to promote prosperity, equality and fairness. We need to act – the future of the human race depends on it.

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By 2030, cities around the world will be responsible for 74% of the greenhouse gas emissions. Facing this challenge, we must not only be ambitious but also visionary. In this spirit, we must give priority to the circular economy and eco-design, foster environmental education and choose a radical and effective energy transition. Cities have always been in the forefront of change. Cities in Europe have countless of concrete solutions that will enable humanity to overcome the planetary challenges that we have already started to face.   We must reinvent our cities, finding novel ways for our fellow citizens to make way for cultural, economic, social and societal innovation. In this respect, we must truly use technological innovation at the service of sustainable cities, ensuring that our European cities are the most prosperous and dynamic on earth. Their strength comes from values of tolerance and mutual respect that unite our peoples far more than our differences divided us. Tolerance equals strength!   A year after President Trump announced the US exit from the Paris Climate Agreement we need to continue our collective fight with unwavering determination. We need to knock down walls and put up bridges. We need for forge truly progressive urban policies for cities where life is good.   We need to continue to fight contamination, choosing clean energies and favoring electric modes of transportation, car-pooling and cycling. We need even stronger commitment towards finding the proper solutions to achieve universal shared progress for the good of the people. For this reason, we need to ensure that we can collect best practices on ecological transformation across Europe, using in-depth local and regional knowledge.

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