GREEN NEW DEAL
THE GREEN NEW DEAL BRAZIL IS NOT JUST ANOTHER ECONOMIC RECOVERY PLAN. IT'S A CALL
At the 20th edition of the "Sustainable Future Dialogues", a proposal that seeks to structure a fair and sustainable growth model is detailed and discussed by representatives from Brazil and Germany.
The first edition of the year of the international seminar "Sustainable Future Dialogues", held by iCS - Institute Climate and Society and the German Embassy, took place yesterday, February 10th, with live broadcasting on iCS' YouTube. The theme of the debate was "A Green New Deal for the world and for Brazil", and the feasibility and approaches for the implementation of the plan in the country were discussed.
The event was opened by Heiko Thoms, German Ambassador, and by the iCS Program Director, Teresa Liporace, mediated by Marina Marçal, coordinator of the iCS climate policy portfolio, and gathered Federal Congressman Alessandro Molon; Professor Carlos Eduardo Young, coordinator of the group of economists from UFRJ who drafted the text of the Brazilian Green New Deal; and Stephan Contius, Head of Division United Nations, Developing Countries and Emerging Economies, of the German Ministry for the Environment.
At the beginning of the event, Heiko Thoms pointed out that the world is moving towards a greener economy. "We are moving towards a global green economy. Not only governments, but also private investors, recognize that environmental and climate protection targets do not represent an obstacle, but rather an important element for a prosperous development of the economy and for social peace. The green recovery strategies of Germany and the European Union are good examples of this.
The Ambassador also pointed out that, with consumers increasingly aware of what they want for the future, the origin of products becomes more important, and Brazil should be concerned about this. "In Europe, we see that consumers are increasingly interested in the supply chains in more detail, they want to know from where the meat on their plates and the alcohol for the tank of their car come. So, the fact that deforestation in the Amazon is increasing is also a problem for our economic cooperation. I am seriously concerned that Brazil risks losing the confidence of the world and the investing markets, because of deforestation," he said.
Stephan Contius talked about the importance of sustainable financing and highlighted the work already developed in Germany. "We believe that sustainable financing is fundamental for the climate goals and the SDGs to be achieved. We need funding for investments in technology, infrastructure, and expertise. Together with a number of partners, Germany is promoting a rapid shift to sustainable finance as a way to mobilize the financial sector to become more resilient and support green recovery."
According to the Commissioner, the German Ministry of the Environment, together with other ministries, cooperates with partner countries to raise awareness and develop sustainable financing skills. One of the examples he mentioned is the work done with South Africa. "In South Africa, the German Ministry of the Environment supports the development of green bonds in cooperation with UNEP. Two municipalities, for example, are being supported by green bonds in terms of training, development of green bond structures, and identification of new projects," he said.
In his speech, Alessandro Molon detailed the proposal for Brazil and its main goals. For the Brazilian economy to become neutral in carbon emissions until 2050, it will be necessary a budget of BRL 509 billion per year (6.9% of the 2019 GDP). "The Green New Deal Brazil seeks to structure a fair and sustainable model of growth with social and fiscal accountability. In a context where we recognize the current decade as decisive to avoid even more disruptive impacts on the survival of humankind, it is no longer about only an economic recovery plan, but a calling. The renegotiation of universal values. Our set of thirty actions until 2030 is distributed throughout five thematic axes: infrastructure, cities, use of soil and forests, fair and sustainable economic transition and political and normative change".
Molon also revealed how the goals would be achieved in practice, and some of the actions promoted by the plan would be the following: recovering and expanding the railways infrastructure, guaranteeing the universalization of basic sanitation services, promoting the recovery of forests, and guaranteeing green jobs. The federal representative also mentioned which are the main singularities of the Green New Deal. "The biggest difference between this proposal and previous green projects is that it is merged with and crossed by social impacts. It is not only a proposal for the environment; it is a proposal that, through environmental actions, also focuses on social issues, which certainly means a special outlook on original peoples: native populations, black people of our country, also passing through the affirmative actions that we defend. That is, it has a very strong social aspect to it, this is not a project only about nature that forgets the human being", he says.
Professor Carlos Eduardo Young, who coordinated the team of economists from UFRJ who elaborated the program Green New Deal Brazil, restated that it is not possible to think about economic growth dissociated from the social process and the environmental process, and remembered how natural tragedies have had a strong economic impact. "The cost of climate disasters, only related to floods, flashfloods and landslides – which has already been estimated – is in the order of dozens of billions of Reais, moving towards hundreds of billions of Reais. When a disaster happens – as the ones we are having every summer in Minas Gerais, Santa Catarina, São Paulo – there are costs due to lack of adaptation, resilience. This requires an active participation from the state alongside the private initiative, but it needs to be headed with focus on the population’s understanding. It is no longer about increasing the GDP, what is paramount is a better GDP”, he stated.
Among the expected results with the implementation of the Green New Deal Brazil, some of the highlights are: 9.5 million jobs created, being 5.4 million formal jobs with an average salary of 26 thousand Reais per year; 121 billion Reais per year of increment in tax collections, from the economic growth that will be induced by the plan; and a decrease of 1 gigaton of carbon dioxide per year, which is equivalent to half of the reduced emissions.
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