“The global coronavirus pandemic, which has already caused unimaginable devastation and hardship, has brought our way of life to an almost complete halt. The outbreak will have profound and lasting economic and social consequences in every corner of the globe. In the face of such turmoil, as the Secretary-General has indicated, COVID-19 will require a response like none before – a “war-time” plan in times of human crisis.
And as we inch from a “war-time” response to “building back better”, we need to take on board the environmental signals and what they mean for our future and wellbeing, because COVID-19 is by no means a “silver lining” for the environment.
Visible, positive impacts – whether through improved air quality or reduced greenhouse gas emissions – are but temporary, because they come on the back of tragic economic slowdown and human distress.