As nations begin to emerge from the Covid-19 public health crisis, we have a unique opportunity to build back better with a central emphasis on sustainability. We can't afford a return to the "business-as-usual" approaches that were rapidly heating the planet. We need to reimagine all aspects of the global economy to meet the needs of society and the environment.
Energy Transition and Green Jobs
Transitioning to a low-carbon future starts with clean energy. The good news is that the emerging renewable energy sector—wind, solar, hydro—has the power to drive job creation worldwide.
Goal: This working group will generate proposals to drive the energy transition and foster green jobs in the wake of the pandemic.
Adaptation and Resilience
Climate change is already here, and whatever changes we implement now will take decades to start undoing the damage. So even as we work to reimagine our economies and enshrine sustainability in policy, we must also address the realities of global warming that are facing us today.
Goal: This working group will focus on enhancing the role of youth in driving adaptation and resilience, in part by eliminating barriers to entry.
Technology can help us build a sustainable economy, but we can't forget that the ulimate key to life on Earth is nature itself. Nature-based solutions—approaches to sustainable development respecting and drawing inspiration from the wonders of the world around us—will allow us to restore the vibrancy of life on earth, saving endangered species, protecting ecosystems, and revitalizing areas damaged by sea rise, drought, and desertification.
Goal: This working group will explore the interrelations between climate change, nature and health, generating strategies to build back better via natural solutions.
We can’t achieve a low-carbon future if finance and financial flows do not support it. Subsidies to coal and gas have long hindered the affordability of green energy technologies—it's time to bring an end to these perverse incentives. Innovative market-based solutions exist for creating low-carbon economies, and we need to harness them to drive the global economy toward a sustainable model. When climate-positivity is linked with profit, the goals of the climate movement will be much easier to reach at the required scale.
Goal: This working group will produce proposals on how countries can realign their financial flows to facilitate a low-carbon future.
Read "Delivering on the $100 Billion Climate Finance Commitment and Transforming Climate Finance, a report from the UN
Get a quick primer on climate finance from Science Direct
Bone up on the World Bank Group's efforts in Climate Finance
Study the World Bank Group's materials on Carbon Markets and how they can help cut back on greenhouse gas emissions
Study Carbon Markets and how they can help cut back on greenhouse gas emissions
Learn from UNCHR how Carbon Financing can support the world's most vulnerable populations
Plane flights, boat rides, lodging, souvenirs and other elements of tourism contribute heavily to carbon emissions. For some countries, tourism represents a significant percentage of GDP, but that doesn't mean climate consciousness isn't an option: it just means more work needs to be put in to green the tourism economy as we build back from Covid-19. "Ecotourism" has become a popular niche in the last ten years, but we have to reimagine tourism from top to bottom to properly address its impacts on our atmosphere.
Goal: This working group will generate proposals to guide the smart, sustainable recovery of the tourism industry worldwide.
Read the UN News article "Greener tourism: Greater collaboration needed to tackle rising emissions"
Size up the Carbon Footprint of Tourism with this resource from Sustainable Travel International
Read "Transport-related CO2 Emissions of the Tourism Sector - Modelling Results," a report from the UNWTO
Learn from Climate Brief where in the world tourism has disproportionate impacts on climate
Familiarize yourself with "Banking on Protected Areas: Promoting Sustainable Protected Area Tourism to Benefit Local Communities," a new report from the World Bank