Climate change and the forestry sector (GS Report 2021)

      As we have been experiencing daily impacts of climate change in years, the phenomenon has become a profound element of our lives which has been affecting our living and working conditions day by day. In this regard, green economy, just transition and zero-carbon industries have become familiar concepts directly representing upcoming changes in the work life alongside with digitalisation.

      Our Strategic Plan for 2018 – 2021 thus acknowledges the work around climate change as one of the main areas of BWI actions. As indicated in the Plan that, “ILO estimated in 2012, 15 to 60 million jobs could be created in the next 20 years as we move to green economy affecting 1.5 billion people. Forestry, building and transport (infrastructure) are 3 BWI sectors that will play a central role among the 8 forefront industries and climate change policies have direct impact on BWI industries. The call for Just Transition is echoed by BWI as our members are at the forefront renovation, retrofitting, reconfiguring for smart buildings, sustainable forest management and green construction."

      The 4th BWI Congress also approved a resolution to integrate climate change as one of the main agenda topic of trade unions by recognizing that the struggle for protecting natural resources and combating climate change as a constant counterpart of workers’ movement.

      In line with this, BWI conducted its 10th Workers’ Voices Webinar Series on Climate Change and the Forestry Sector” last 15 April 2021. 

      In the webinar, we discussed the following:

      • How climate change affects workers and their working conditions,

      • How trade unions can and should respond to climate change,

      • Workers’ approach to how their work can contribute to combat the climate crisis and how a sustainable forest-based industry can contribute to combat climate change

      • Main elements of a just transition to a green future.