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Join us as we  bring together different experts from across Europe to discuss the demand changes requiredto achieve a climate neutral world. From policy amendments to governance interventions,we’ll explore how to frame the controversial issue of demand in our current economy.

About the event

As Russia’s war in Ukraine puts pressure on energy supplies across Europe, governments are preparing for an uncertain winter, with concepts like rationing and controlled blackouts suddenly on the table. 

Yet the need to structurally rethink our demand for energy and other key goods is not new. Amid the multiple crises facing Europe and the world, not least the climate emergency, there is a continued failure to acknowledge the role of reducing demand in the rapid and fundamental change needed. Mainstream understanding of demand management focuses on improving efficiency and engaging consumers, which tends to reproduce existing consumption levels with marginally less energy and resource use.  This is insufficient to deliver the reduction in energy use needed as part of a rapid shift to zero carbon and to remain at 1.5°C warming. 

A better understanding of the realities of demand change is required, and exploring how to frame this difficult topic is critical to reaching climate targets and energy independence goals. This expert roundtable will bring together academics, politicians, activists and NGO/foundation representatives to discuss to what extent we need to reduce energy demand and how we can go about it in a just yet decisive manner. Results of this discussion will inform a framing paper to be published in the autumn. 


This event is part of the GEF transnational project Climate Emergency Economy: Rethinking Demand. Building on several years of work exploring what it means to create an economy fit for the climate emergency, GEF and its partners are this year focusing on the crucial question of how to reduce demand for energy and materials. With the support of Green House Think Tank, Etopia, and Green Foundation Ireland, we will explore how to frame rethinking demand politically, and articulate clear plans for demand reduction so green narratives are better grounded in reality and a shared vision of hope. 


More details on the programme will follow. 


Date and Time: Thursday, 15th September (15:00 – 17:00 CEST)

Audience: This is a closed roundtable. For more information please contact sien.hasker@gef.eu 


This expert roundtable is organised by the Green European Foundation with the support of Green House Think Tank and the financial support of the European Parliament to the Green European Foundation. 

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