Blog 14.04.20

Longing to be frightened by the old normal

The convention centre in Glasgow which was to house the annual climate change negotiations in November is now a coronavirus field hospital.

Climate change is off the agenda. Way off, for now. 

But while the ravages of Covid-19 will eventually diminish, climate change is here to stay. The existential threat remains and there are no carbon vaccines in the pipeline.

After lockdown becomes but a bad memory (and it will), we at Context subscribe to the argument that governments, certainly in the developed world, will have to continue stimulating their economies much as the US did after World War II.

The green deals long touted by the politicians in the West provide a quick shovel-ready solution to boost economies by developing essential infrastructure, creating long-lasting green jobs and effective solutions to the complex challenges of climate change.

Even if our prediction is only a little bit right, there will be a return to what was becoming a bit of a climate frenzy before we went into lockdown. Remember, central bankers were talking about climate stress tests and even green quantitative easing. France and the UK set net zero emission targets and the EU was talking about carbon neutrality by 2050 brought about by an EU-wide green deal.

Such talk now seems fanciful. As unlikely as a 16-year-old Swedish schoolgirl becoming a global celebrity in her campaign against climate change, hanging out with the Pope and niggling Trump. Who would have thought?  But indeed, who would have thought that most of us would be holding remote business meetings in our pyjamas?   

In anticipation that things will quickly change for the better, we’ll be returning to the issues of climate change and green deals in this blog. We’ll start with a quick analysis of what was emerging as a new and rather confusing lexicon of corporate climate-speak. We’re referring to terms such as offsets and carbon neutrality (surely, out of date?) and the supposedly contradictory terms of climate positive and carbon negative that actually mean the same.   

All will be explained. 

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