von Alina Pogoda, Polish Green Network

It’s time for the Just Transition Agency!

The lack of an institutional just transition coordinator in Poland weakens this process. The Just Transition Agency may prove to be a good remedy for this situation.

The process of just transition in Polish coal regions is suffering from a lack of a host. The preparation of the Territorial Just Transition Plans, the National Just Transition Plan and the mine closure schedule rests on the shoulders of various ministries. This process involves a number of stakeholders who should cooperate and move in one direction.

Professor Adam Drobniak, director of the Institute for Ecology of Industrial Areas, which is responsible for the development of the National Just Transition Plan, prepared a concept for the creation of the Just Transition Agency (JTA), which is to be the institution coordinating the process of just transition in Poland. It is to supervise the proper implementation of this extremely difficult process through institutional support for all entities involved, in the dimension of financing, management, coordination of policies and strategies, information flow, counseling and education, as well as social participation and democratization of transformation.

This institution will perform its task well if local government units are involved on a broad front to coordinate the process. Their participation is necessary for the proper dissemination of knowledge about just transformation, initiating institutional partnerships, as well as project implementation and monitoring. So far, in the draft concept of establishing JTA, local governments are only mentioned as addressees of the Agency’s activities, although they should develop solutions the effects of which will have a huge impact on their communities and the economy.

A very important idea presented in the document is the creation of regional branches of the Agency, where local stakeholders will be able to obtain information, consult their ideas and apply for technical support for their projects.

The Polish Green Network, along with other social organizations involved in the process of just transition in Poland, sent a letter to the Ministry of Climate and Environment and all 74 stakeholders indicated in the JTA concept, which expresses recognition for the idea of ​​establishing such a body, and at the same time recommends solutions that will make this institution will be better able to fulfill its opinion.

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