The Task Force for a Resilient Recovery identifies 5 bold moves that over the next 1-5 years would contribute to a robust COVID-19 recovery:
- Invest in climate resilient and energy efficient buildings
- Jumpstart Canada’s production and adoption of zero-emission vehicles
- Go big on growing Canada’s clean energy sectors
- Invest in the nature that protects and sustains us
- Grow clean competitiveness and jobs across the Canadian economy
While this would require the Canadian government to invest about $50 billion, these investments generate more jobs, protect the environment, and tackle inequalities.
With the recent deficit forecast for 2020-21 at over $340 billion it becomes imperative to ensure that future expenditures are made wisely and make Canada stronger economically, socially and environmentally. The proposed actions aim to make a future Canada more resilient by speeding the energy transition, taking care of our natural environment, and reducing inequality.
The economic growth over the past decades has been achieved by depleting the world of its natural capital effectively indebting future generations. The billions of dollars government have spend in COVID responses and recovery creates additional debt, which will fall also on the shoulders of young people. These funds must be used to create a better world, otherwise it will only burden our societies with unsustainable debt and less resilient to economic shocks such as natural disasters and future pandemic outbreaks.
Rather than kill the European Green Deal, COVID-19 made is stronger. This is in part because the pandemic highlighted how environmental protection and economic growth are complementary. You cannot have a healthy economy without a healthy environment. A more resilient economic system can only be built by protecting, investing, and rebuilding natural capital – that is the lesson COVID-19 teaches us. Nature is the foundation of greater resilient, equitable and healthy societies.
The Task Force recommendations echo those of others that highlight the imperative of a green recovery.