Second meeting of the Policymaker Platform on Long-term Climate Strategies
The second meeting of the Climate Recon 2050's Policymaker Platform took place in October 2018 in Warsaw. Representatives from governmental institutions from across 14 EU Member States and EU institutions, as well as policy, governance and modelling experts from a number of European research institutes and think tanks discussed challenges and good practices of developing long-term national climate and energy strategies.
During the first session, interactions and linkages between the EU and Member States were discussed. Mr Akshay Patki representing DG CLIMA of the European Commission presented the process and status of preparing the 2050 Long-Term EU Strategy. The first vision for the document, after finishing and assessing the inputs of the stakeholder consultation, will be published on 28 November 2018.
Representatives of various MS shared how they are preparing their national LTCS and NECPs, and their views on the relationship between the European and national strategic documents. It was highlighted by several participants, especially from the side of the policymakers, that they expect the EU to lead the process of the strategy building, and set the pathway for the Member States. Without knowing the common vision, it is rather difficult for Member States to prepare effective and coherent national strategies. The need for using common assumptions, figures and building common scenarios was expressed by several participants. Transparency and openness in the modelling approach and data input was also highlighted and discussed.
In another session, the relationship between the 2030 NECP and the 2050 LTCS, and potential synergies and conflicts were explored. It was mentioned by almost all participants, that the long timeframe (especially 2050) makes it more difficult to achieve commitment of politicians, as it is easy to question the certainty of the model scenarios. Therefore storytelling, positive framing and easy to understand narratives play a significant role in the interactions with politicians.
This led to the next session about how policy-making and modelling can best interact. It was discussed in small groups on how modellers can explain scenarios to policy-makers, what options and good practices exist to enhance mutual understanding and to establish a coherent language, as well as to support the communication needs of policy-makers and politicians.
In the last session, possibilities, benefits and good practices of stakeholder involvement and engagement were discussed and shared by the participants. Some form of stakeholder consultation is applied by most of the MSs – in many cases it is requesting written comments, but in several countries also personal workshops and stakeholder meetings are held (e.g. Slovenia, Portugal, France, Denmark) and formal bodies involving NGOs and various stakeholders have been created (e.g. National Climate Change Committee in Latvia). It was agreed that involving various groups of stakeholders can effectively help reducing bias caused by e.g. lobbying groups, and improve the quality of data and assumptions.
The meeting was by invitation only and was the second of three such workshops under the Climate Recon 2050 project.