Ending the Carbon Economy to Build Back Better

In August 2020, more than 100 economists called for an end to the carbon economy in a letter published by The Guardian. They argue that, while the current crisis drastically reveals the weaknesses of the current economic system, it also offers a window of opportunity to build back better and foster stability. The letter includes three key demands to governments, financial institutions, and society:

  • “Governments must actively phase out the fossil fuel industry”: Instead of supporting oil, gas, and coal companies, governments should shift funds toward green technologies, sustainable infrastructure, social protection, and good jobs.
  • “Institutions of financial power must end their fossil fuel investments and funding”: Banks and investors should divest from the fossil fuel industry and reinvest in resources for a just and green future.
  • “People must build political power to advocate for a fairer economic system”: The economists call for a green recovery supporting the vulnerable around the world, creating more resilient and fair societies.

“We call on our policymakers to recognize the role that meaningful climate action has to play in rebuilding our world – to recognize that a healthy economy and society require a healthy planet.”