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Global efforts to mitigate climate change are ramping up, with a rising numbers of countries, companies and financiers taking action to tackle climate change. At the same time, climate changes, such as temperature and weather changes, are increasing, with dramatic impacts on populations. These are having material impacts on the economy and society. In the short term, dealing with this transition has materialised primarily in a focus on the decarbonisation of the energy systems. In the medium to long term, this will extend to virtually all sectors and segments of society.

In this context, the just transition agenda has taken centre stage. It aims to lower the risks faced by the most affected and vulnerable stakeholders, such as working people, small businesses and low-income communities, while providing an opportunity to maximise the development of new opportunities and redress historical injustices.

Establishing a credible fact base is paramount for designing and implementing an evidence-based just transition. To allow easy access to a growing body of work on just transition, TIPS has curated relevant content into an open knowledge portal. This provides short summaries as well as key findings and recommendations from a diversity of reports, strategies, videos and podcasts. The knowledge portal focuses on South Africa but will be extended to other areas in the future.

The portal is a living initiative. Should you know of additional resources which could be added or spot any errors, please contact Lerato Monaisa at lerato@tips.org.za

Featured material

Just transitions and the green economy - navigating the fault lines

SUMMARY: The paper frames the Just Transition from a moral and business perspective. It assesses how much responsibility companies and organisations should have for the impact their clients have on

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National employment vulnerability assessment: analysis of potential climate change-related impacts and vulnerable groups

SUMMARY: The report provides a detailed analysis of the capacity of vulnerable communities, workers and businesses to adjust to climate change-related impacts in the coal, metals, transport-based petroleum, agricultural value

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Down to zero: The politics of Just Transition

SUMMARY: This book looks at the anticipated impact of climate change and the experiences of millions of people who are facing a climate disaster, focusing on Southern and South Africa.

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Unlocking a just energy transition for SA

SUMMARY: Professor Mark Swilling discusses the global renewable energy revolution, the public sector’s role in investment in renewables and how renewable energy has the potential to change social politics and

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Remaking our energy future: towards a Just Energy Transition in South Africa

  • Institution / Author: Project 90 by 2030 [Richard Halsey, Neil Overy, Tina Schubert, Ebenaezer Appies, Liziwe McDaid and Kim Kruyshaar]
  • Year: 2019
  • Sectoral focus: Energy
  • Thematic focus: Advocacy, Policy interventions / recommendations
  • Type of analysis: Desktop research, Stakeholder engagement
  • Type of document: Research report

SUMMARY: The report offers an analysis of the current energy system and its dynamics in employment, the current international shift from coal to renewable energy, the drivers of an energy system change in South Africa such as the falling cost of renewable energy, climate change, coal production, addressing socio-economic challenges, and the urgent need to reform Eskom. It emphasises the importance of a transparent and people-centred Just Energy Transition led by social dialogue and consultation, ensuring equality in all forms.

KEY FINDING / RECOMMENDATIONS: The main drivers for coal transitions are related to strengthening global climate action in line with the Paris agreement and pressures for emissions reduction, local climate-change policies, and lessening stress on the environment. A Just Energy Transition could lower electricity prices, increase energy access to remote communities through off grid renewable energy, lead to greater job creation, and reduce health and environmental costs if it is managed properly. South Africa can adopt lessons from other countries on the importance of stakeholder engagement to emphasise the economic argument for an energy transition, and proactive and efficient planning to manage the transition.

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