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Green change to be fair to citizens

2020-01-30 12:23

Artykuł w języku polskim >

The second day of the "Towards a Green Economy" conference held at the International Congress Center in Katowice was filled with discussion panels. Among others the topic of an equal opportunities for individual regions that will benefit from the Fund under the Just Transformation Fund was included.

As a reminder, on January 14, the European Commission published a draft of regulation on the creation of the Just Transformation Fund, a mechanism aimed at supporting regions in which the implementation of climate policy objectives, including the achievement of European climate neutrality by 2050 by the European Commission, will be a particularly difficult challenge.

Poland is the first Member State in which the Fund was officially presented, and this happened during a conference organized at the International Congress Center by the Ministry of Funds and Regional Policy and the Marshal's Office of the Silesian Voivodeship.


One of the guests of the second day panel “Just Transition – “Green change” fair  to the EU’s citizens  moderated by Judit Rózsa, head of unit from the Commission’s Directorate-General for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion, was Grzegorz Puda, secretary of state at the Ministry of Funds and Regional Policy.

"First of all, I would like to thank the Marshal of the Silesian Voivodship Jakub Chełstowski not only for the invitation, but also for the very idea of ​​organizing this event. The visit of EU Commissioner for Cohesion and Reforms, Elisa Ferreira, is of great importance. Such an important personality is a guest with us - in Silesia - and not in Warsaw. The EU wants to know the problems of our region from the inside. It is no accident that Poland will be the largest beneficiary of funds allocated for Just Transformation. Let us remember, however, that it will be a long-term process, spread over years, requiring additional financial support, also from the government".

Deputy Minister Grzegorz Puda pointed out that the current so-called mix of coal in the economy - hard coal and lignite - is 70 percent, and around 100,000 people are employed in the entire sector. So moving away from these fossil fuels cannot happen overnight. However, the transformation does not concern the industry itself, but also the sectors cooperating with mining.

"We must take care of the good of people. Gradually retraining them so that transformation does not become a threat to their existence", added Grzegorz Puda, reminding of ongoing activities such as "Program for Silesia", where till now there was PLN 62 billion allocated for 116 tasks.

Klaus Freytag, representative of the Brandenburg’s Prime Minister, praised the capital of the voivodship for its dynamic development.

"I am very impressed with the changes that have been made in Katowice over the last 20 years. The city looks impressive. Your experiences can be a lesson and an inspiration for us today. Much has been done for ecology, which is why I am convinced that Katowice, as well as the entire region, will cope with the new challenges without any problems”, stressed Klaus Freytag.

The panel was also attended by: Florin Tiberiu Iacob Ridzi, Mayor of Petrosani, Lucie Studničná, Chairwoman of the Consultative Commission on Industrial Change from the European Economic and Social Committee, Karel Tichý, Deputy manager of the RE:START Strategy, Ministry of Regional Development in the Czech Republic and Marcin Połomski, Mayor of Rydułtowy and Member of the Board of the Association of Mining Communes.

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