On World Environment Day, 5th June 2020, global institutions working on development, labour and environment have united around key actions for spurring a green, just and transformative recovery. The COVID-19 crisis is exacerbating existing global inequalities within and between countries and communities, while exposing how vulnerable our socio-economic systems are to external shocks.
The Partners for Inclusive Green Economy are calling for recovery efforts that recognise the interdependencies between human and environmental health, and aim to build resilience to even more profound risks on the horizon – biodiversity loss, widening inequality and climate change.
There are already some inspiring examples of countries and decision makers taking leadership to prioritise green and pro-poor stimulus packages. If these efforts can build towards deeper and more integrated policy approaches, developed in consultation with stakeholders and civil society, the response to COVID-19 could provide a powerful accelerator for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the Paris Agreement.
Together, the partner organisations have identified the following ten policy options that will guide a fast, fair and green recovery:
- The Green Economy Principles of Wellbeing, Justice, Sufficiency & Efficiency, Planetary Boundaries, and Good Governance should guide recovery plans and actions.
- Advance national green economy plans, ‘Green Deals’, green industrial strategies and COVID-19 recovery plans to build long-term resilience and prosperity. Countries should use this opportunity to redouble efforts to meet the ambitions of the SDGs and Paris Agreement.
- Structure fiscal stimulus and financial aid packages to accelerate the transition to a fair and green economy – not to undermine it.
- Recognise and value the role of nature in reducing systemic risks, and mitigate the risk of future zoonotic disease outbreaks by addressing their root causes.
- Build resilience to external shocks by investing in sustainable infrastructure and stronger public health and environmental protection.
- Strengthen and broaden inclusive social protection mechanisms and advance human rights.
- Accelerate the energy transition and tackle fossil fuel subsidies.
- Apply a gender-responsive approach to the recovery to effectively address underlying issues of gender inequality.
- Prioritise small and informal enterprises to accelerate the private sector transition to greener practices.
- Improve global cooperation and coordination to more effectively respond to other global crises.
Partners for Inclusive Green Economy is an initiative involving UN Environment, the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), the Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI), the Green Economy Coalition (GEC), the Green Growth Knowledge Partnership (GGKP), the International Labour Organization (ILO), the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), Poverty-Environment Action for SDGs (PEA), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), the United Nations Partnership for Action on Green Economy (UN-PAGE) and United Nations Research Institute for Social Development (UNRISD).