“Build back better” has become a rallying cry. As governments grapple with formulating responses to repair the economic damage wrought by the Covid-19 pandemic, an ever-growing list of people, organisations, businesses, investors and politicians are demanding that action to address climate change should be uppermost in the minds of policy-makers working on stimulus packages.
“We have to recognise two things which should guide our action,” says Professor Nicholas Stern, chair of the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment.
“The first is that there should be no going back to the old normal. Surely we will have recognised from the Covid crisis just how fragile our economies were. The dangers involved in climate change are still bigger than the dreadful crisis that we’re experiencing from Covid. If we let the climate get out of control, they would last for centuries, and be in large measure irreversible.