The country where the historical Paris Agreement was reached is one of the most pro-Europe and pro-Climate in a complex and tense global geopolitical context. The ECF’s France programme aims to advance domestic policies that drive emissions cuts in the real economy, and to strengthen France’s diplomatic influence at the European and global levels in the run-up to the next major UN Summit in 2020.
The main mission of the ECF’s France programme is to accelerate a just transition toward a zero-emission society by:
- Supporting the implementation of the carbon neutrality strategy: Now that France has committed to achieving carbon neutrality by 2050, we are working to ensure that governance bodies and civil society actors are in place to inform the development and monitor the implementation of the appropriate and additional policies and measures needed to reach this goal at the local, regional and national levels.
- Accelerating the transition toward zero-emission mobility and buildings: Transport is responsible for almost 30% of emissions, while the construction sector accounts for 20%. To accelerate the ecological transition, we support structural reforms in these two sectors, which can also deliver huge co-benefits, especially for health.
- Gaining societal support for climate action: To win the battle against climate change, we need everyone on board. That is why we are working to understand people’s priorities and concerns in relation to climate change, to support their involvement in policy design and to help strengthen the consensus needed for climate action.
- Raising progressive voices: In order to win the battle, we are helping the voices of climate defenders to emerge and influence the public debate on climate change policies. The mobilisation of young activists, scientists, local leaders, journalists, parliamentarians, and celebrities, among others, is essential to create the political space for climate action.
- Helping to bring together social and climate actors: The yellow vest movement is a strong example how climate policies, if not well-designed and anticipated, can impact the most precarious populations. In order to avoid such mistakes in the future, we are supporting a wide spectrum of civil society actors – unions, organisations acting against poverty, insurances, environmental NGOs and others, in sharing their experience and expertise and developing common approaches to the crisis.
- Sustaining strong climate diplomacy: France is the third largest economy in the EU after Germany and the UK, and has been at the heart of the European project and the driver of its ambitions for global leadership. Following the UK’s decision to leave the EU, strong French leadership is vital to ensure that Europe will progress in the realisation of the broad societal goals embodied in the Paris Agreement.
How we work
The ECF identifies gaps in the French response to climate change by funding organisations and coalitions of stakeholders with the right expertise and public profile to address key issues at local or national level. We take a broad approach to the types of interventions we fund – from litigation and political caucusing to activism and media engagement – because all of this activity builds towards an ambitious and thoughtful movement that reflects the full diversity of our society. Together our grantees seek social and political transformation that will ensure a secure and sustainable future for all.