Issues and Options for a Just Transition Work Program

Governments not only recognize that the transition to a zero- or low-emission economy is critical, but also that it must be “just.” In other words, it must maximize social and economic opportunities of climate action while also minimizing and addressing the challenges to those affected in this shift. At the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change’s (UNFCCC) 27th Conference of Parties (COP27), Parties launched a work program on “just transition” to discuss pathways to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement. At COP28, Parties will adopt the modalities and terms of reference for the just transition work programme and host the programme’s first high-level ministerial roundtable. The just transition work programme provides an opportunity to examine, focus, build upon, and advance ongoing work on just transition issues across the UNFCCC and Paris Agreement, while avoiding unnecessary overlaps and duplication.

This paper provides background on just transition, as well as poses options and questions for the elements, modalities, and terms of reference for the work programme.