Policy coherence for sustainable development

Coherent policies for sustainable and low-carbon societies


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Friday 25 September 2015, 16h00 - 18h00
United Nations HQ, North Lawn Building, Conference Room 6, New York 


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Read the background note.

The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development cannot be achieved without addressing climate change and transitioning to a low carbon economy. An effective climate response is necessarily an integral part of any sustainable development strategy, but there will always be trade-offs between climate and sustainable development objectives. As highlighted by the IPCC 5th Assessment Report (AR5), some climate responses can impose other environmental pressures, have adverse distributional effects, draw resources away from other developmental priorities, or risk limiting growth and development.

How to manage trade-offs associated with a transition to a sustainable and low carbon society? How to move towards a low carbon economy without jeopardising growth or compromising other fundamental policy goals, such as employment, investment or competitiveness? How to achieve prosperity without over-reliance on carbon-intensive fossil fuels? What incentives do businesses and governments have to invest and move to low-carbon? Can one country’s climate, and sustainable development efforts be undermined by another’s domestic policy choices? These are some of the difficult questions that policy makers and industrialists will have to face

Co-organised by the government of Korea and the OECD, this side event focuses on how policy coherence can be enhanced to build synergies and managing trade-offs between different sectors critical for a low carbon transition and for achieving the SDGs, looking beyond climate and development policy domains. The event will also emphasise the need for countries to develop broad policy diagnoses of misalignments between overall policy frameworks, sustainable development and climate goals.

This side event draws on OECD reports: “Aligning Policies for a Low-carbon Economy”, and “Better Policies for Development 2015: Policy Coherence and Green Growth”.



Opening remarks: Angel Gurría, OECD Secretary-General

Introduction:“Climate change, the challenge and our response”, Oh Kyung-Tae, Deputy Minister, Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (MAFRA), Korea


Åsa Romson, Minister for Climate and the Environment, deputy Prime Minister, Sweden

Kare Chawicha Debessa, State Minister for Environment and Forests, Ethiopia

Paulo Lemos, Secretary of State for the Environment, Portugal

Pascal Canfin, Co-chair of the French Presidential Commission on Climate Finance

Måns Nilsson, Research Director at Stockholm Environment Institute

Moderator: Kitty van der Heijden, Director of World Resources Institute (WRI) Europe.


Please note that registration for external guests (without UN ground pass) is closed now. For more information please email to



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