In a week dominated by the scandal around the Government’s Internal Market Bill - which stands to break international law - a lot of important environmental news has flown under the radar. This week's Focus section brings together the most recent news and research on the environmental emergency.
Registration is open for this Friday's webinar on job creation with Frances O'Grady (General Secretary, TUC), Matthew Taylor (Chief Executive, RSA) and Alice Martin (Labour Specialist, PIRC).
Read our In Brief and Reflections sections for the latest research and analysis around economic recovery and reform Beyond Covid.
In Focus: The accelerating pace of environmental breakdown
Wildfires - the scale and intensity of which have shocked even environmental scientists - continue to ravage the West Coast of the US, serving as the latest reminder that environmental breakdown is happening now.
Meanwhile, new research last week revealed the death toll of air pollution in Europe.
~~It is crucial that governments follow a “strong green recovery” to prevent climate breakdown from spiralling beyond human control.
The failure of neoclassical economics: While climate scientists have long warned of the catastrophic impacts of the environmental emergency, some influential “climate economists” have been far more sanguine.
~~A coalition of investors representing $47 trillion in assets has demanded net-zero plans from the world’s top emitting companies.
Job creation: A coalition of Labour leaders, including Gordon Brown and the UK’s Metro Mayors, launched the Alliance for Full Employment to “mobilise all the resources of the United Kingdom to end the recession and create good, quality jobs across our nations and regions.”
Brexit: "State aid" has become a key sticking point in UK-EU negotiations (explainer here), especially since the UK appears to be agreeing to stricter arrangements in its trade deal with Japan.
~~For wider context, see IPPR's briefing on EU state aid rules and Brexit here.
Meeting net zero: The Institute for Government finds the government’s net-zero plans lacking, suggesting “a lack of coordinated policies, constant changes of direction, a failure to gain public consent for measures and too little engineering expertise and delivery capability has left the UK well off track to meet its target".
Green investment: The CBI has outlined its suggestions for how the Government could “galvanise private investment” to deliver a green recovery from the pandemic, including the establishment of a new national infrastructure bank.
Social security reform: In a new report from the Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose, Dr Hilary Cottam argues for investment to create a new social settlement: Welfare 5.0.
Data policy: Last week the Government published its National Data Strategy and details of its stakeholder engagement.
~~ICYMI, Common Wealth and IPPR published reports on the political economy of data this summer.
Climate justice: Rich countries must commit to proper financial support for poorer and environmentally-vulnerable countries in the next round of international climate negotiations, argues Zoha Shawoo of the Stockholm Environment Institute.
"How They Made Us Doubt": Peter Pomerantsev explores how the disinformation tactics used to stymie action on smoking have been applied to climate science for BBC Radio.
Charity versus taxes: Paul Valley writes for the Guardian on the architecture, ethics and socioeconomic impacts of private philanthropy.
Industrial strategy: The Euro needs an EU-wide industrial policy to survive, argues Professor Xavier Vives (IESE Business School) for Project Syndicate.
Central banks need to be greener: Kate Mackenzie writes for Bloomberg on how attempted central bank 'neutrality' supports the unsustainable status quo and undermines green recovery efforts.