Ensuring a Post-COVID Economic Agenda Tackles Global Biodiversity Loss

31 Pages Posted: 10 Jul 2020

See all articles by Pamela McElwee

Pamela McElwee

Department of Human Ecology

Esther Turnhout

Wageningen UR

Mireille Chiroleu-Assouline

Paris School of Economics (PSE)

Jennifer Clapp

School of Environment, Resources and Sustainability, University of Waterloo

Cindy Isenhour

University of Maine

Tim Jackson

University of Surrey

Kelemen Eszter

Environmental Social Science Research Group (ESSRG)

Daniel Miller

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign - Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Sciences (NRES)

Graciela Rusch

Norwegian Institute for Nature Research

Joachim Spangenberg

Sustainable Europe Research Institute

Anthony Waldron

Cambridge Conservation Initiative

Rupert Baumgartner

University of Graz

Brent Bleys

Ghent University

Michael Howard

University of Maine

Eric Mungata

University of Pretoria - Centre for Environmental Economics and Policy in Africa

Irene Ring

International Institute Zittau, TU Dresden

Rui Santos

CENSE - Center for Environmental and Sustainability Research, NOVA School of Science and Technology, NOVA University Lisbon

Date Written: June 22, 2020

Abstract

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused dramatic impacts to the global economy that are unprecedented in scale and scope. Many governments are now proposing recovery packages to get back to normal economic functioning, but the 2019 IPBES Global Assessment indicated that business as usual was responsible for ecosystem degradation and species extinction risks. Therefore, a vision of a post-COVID world needs to put biodiversity measures front and center, but so far, most attention related to the current pandemic has primarily focused on wildlife trade bans and expanded nature conservation. Such limited measures do not tackle the wider issues and drivers that create economic demands and ecological disruptions in the first place. Consequently, in this paper we put forth suggestions for short term stimulus measures and longer-term revamping of global, national and local economies that take biodiversity into account. These include measures to shift away from economic activities that cause undue harm to biodiversity and ecosystems (such as harmful subsidies and unsustainable production and trade) and towards activities that support ecosystem resilience through a variety of economic tools (including incentives, regulation, fiscal policy and employment programs). Only by treating the current pandemic as an opportunity to reset the global economy to move to a more sustainable path are we likely to be able to reverse decades of biodiversity and ecosystem losses.

Keywords: sustainable economies, transformative change, COVID-19, biodiversity, climate, economic policy

Suggested Citation

McElwee, Pamela and Turnhout, Esther and Chiroleu-Assouline, Mireille and Clapp, Jennifer and Isenhour, Cynthia and Jackson, Tim and Eszter, Kelemen and Miller, Daniel and Rusch, Graciela and Spangenberg, Joachim and Waldron, Anthony and Baumgartner, Rupert and Bleys, Brent and Howard, Michael and Mungata, Eric and Ring, Irene and Ferreira dos Santos, Rui, Ensuring a Post-COVID Economic Agenda Tackles Global Biodiversity Loss (June 22, 2020). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3647411

Pamela McElwee (Contact Author)

Department of Human Ecology ( email )

311 North 5th Street
New Brunswick, NJ 08854
United States

Esther Turnhout

Wageningen UR ( email )

Hollandseweg 1
Wageningen, 6706KN
Netherlands

Mireille Chiroleu-Assouline

Paris School of Economics (PSE) ( email )

48 Boulevard Jourdan
Paris, 75014 75014
France

Jennifer Clapp

School of Environment, Resources and Sustainability, University of Waterloo ( email )

Waterloo, Ontario N2L 3G1
Canada

HOME PAGE: http://https://uwaterloo.ca/environment-resources-and-sustainability/people-profiles/jennifer-clapp

Cynthia Isenhour

University of Maine ( email )

Orono, ME 04469
United States

Tim Jackson

University of Surrey ( email )

Guildford
Guildford, Surrey GU2 5XH
United Kingdom

Kelemen Eszter

Environmental Social Science Research Group (ESSRG) ( email )

Budapest
Hungary

Daniel Miller

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign - Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Sciences (NRES) ( email )

United States

Graciela Rusch

Norwegian Institute for Nature Research ( email )

Gaustadalléen 21
Oslo, NO-0349
Norway

Joachim Spangenberg

Sustainable Europe Research Institute ( email )

Overath
Germany

Anthony Waldron

Cambridge Conservation Initiative ( email )

Rupert Baumgartner

University of Graz ( email )

Universitaetsstrasse 15 / FE
A-8010 Graz, 8010
Austria

Brent Bleys

Ghent University ( email )

Coupure Links 653
Gent, 9000
Belgium

Michael Howard

University of Maine ( email )

Orono, ME 04469
United States

Eric Mungata

University of Pretoria - Centre for Environmental Economics and Policy in Africa

Physical Address Economic and Management Sciences
Pretoria, Gauteng 0002
South Africa

Irene Ring

International Institute Zittau, TU Dresden ( email )

Markt 23
Zittau, 02763
Germany

HOME PAGE: http://https://tu-dresden.de/ihi-zittau/ess/die-professur/Head?set_language=en

Rui Ferreira dos Santos

CENSE - Center for Environmental and Sustainability Research, NOVA School of Science and Technology, NOVA University Lisbon ( email )

2829-516 Caparica
Lisboa, 2829-516
Portugal

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