Sustainable Recovery 2020

Sustainable Recovery 2020
For whom? How green? Why now?

The myriad economic stimulus packages that have been launched in 2020 offer an important opportunity to fast track sustainable development. This time, we must get it right.

The Sustainable Recovery 2020 campaign of IISD´s Infrastructure Program advocates that this unprecedented global wave of public spending is allocated exclusively to economic actors and infrastructure projects that minimize impacts on nature, account for climate risks, stimulate green innovation, and improve social cohesion.


We are using the Sustainable Asset Valuation, or SAVi, to run “What-If” SIMULATIONS that assess the societal outcomes of green stimulus packages and measures.

Why Low-Carbon Renovation Is a Pragmatic Recovery Plan: The case of Canada

This SAVi what-if simulation forecasts the economic and environmental benefits of investing in energy efficiency and flood resilience within Canada’s building sector. The forecasts point to substantial net benefits, demonstrating this to be a sustainable recovery strategy.


Making a green recovery inclusive for all Canadians

Canadians want a green and inclusive recovery. Here’s how to advance both. The damage that COVID-19’s dual economic and health crises have brought on Canada have been well-documented. Although the economy has started to recover, Canadians continue to face a lengthy period of economic turbulence ahead. The federal government has indicated that spending on an…Read more »

How Can India’s Energy Sector Recover Sustainably from COVID-19?

The International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) and the Council on Energy, Environment and Water (CEEW) published the second part of a commentary series about the recovery of India’s energy sector. The series takes a detailed look at how India’s energy sector is coping with the impacts of COVID-19 and what this means for the…Read more »

Next Webinars

Our new webinar series will unpack recovery and stimulus questions. Join us for a substantial half hour of good conversation.

Sustainable Infrastructure. Why is it not happening? (webinar recording available)

30. July 2020. 2 p.m. Central European Summer Time/ 8 a.m. Eastern Standard Time What is impeding the deployment of sustainable infrastructure? Despite all the rhetoric on sustainability and sustainable recovery from politicians, commentators, investors, project developers and citizens, sustainable infrastructure has yet to happen. Howard Mann, Senior Law Adviser with IISD, shared observations on…Read more »

Read about further COVID-19 related work of IISD.


How Governments Can Boost a Green Recovery

In an article published in September 2020, authors from the Boston Consulting Group (BCG) make the case for scaling up green recovery efforts worldwide. The article underlines that well-designed economic stimulus packages can create much needed jobs and lower emissions, while also transforming the countries for leadership in the green economy over the longer term….Read more »

British Inquiry: People want fair and green recovery

In September 2020, The Guardian reported that a majority of people across Britain supports an ambitious transformation of the United Kingdom into a greener, fairer, and more equal society. The assessment is based on an extensive inquiries by a cross-party group of MPs, which involved over 55,000 people through representative polls, workshops, and telephone conversations….Read more »

Clean Recovery: Australia to invest in future energy technology

The Australian Government announced an AUD 1.9 billion investment package supporting low-emission energy projects. To facilitate these investments, the mandates of the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) and the Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC) will be expanded. The package, which was revealed on September 17, 2020, aims to get the country’s emission-intensive manufacturing, transport, and…Read more »

Resilient Recovery: Canadian Task Force shared final report

The Task Force for a Resilient Recovery has released its final report, recommending CAD 55.4 billion in green recovery investments to support long-term jobs and economic growth in Canada. The Task Force encourages Canada’s leaders to learn from the missed opportunities after the 2008/09 financial crisis when countries invested in recovery measures that resulted in a historic…Read more »

IEA Report Demands Greater Efforts for the Clean Energy Transition

The International Energy Agency (IEA) has published its new flagship report, Energy Technology Perspectives 2020. It analyses more than 800 different technology options to assess pathways to reaching net-zero emissions by 2070 while ensuring a resilient and secure energy system. According to the report, transitioning only the power sector to clean energy would get the…Read more »

Clean Recovery: Spain offers EUR 181 million for renewable energy projects

On September 10, 2020, the Spanish authorities announced EUR 181 million in spending on renewable energy projects. The investments are meant to boost a clean economic recovery by creating employment and cutting carbon emissions. The financial support will benefit seven regions across the country; while a majority is earmarked for Andalucía, funding is also provided…Read more »

GBP 40m for Nature-Focused Initiatives in the U.K.

The British government has launched its GBP 40 million Green Recovery Challenge Fund, supporting up to 5,000 jobs in areas such as tree planting and nature conservation.  Environmental groups can now apply for grants worth GBP 50,000 to GBP 5 million. The fund is aimed at labour-intensive projects that deliver nature-based solutions to climate change…Read more »

Green Recovery: OECD publishes analysis

The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) published a new policy brief about opportunities for a green, inclusive COVID-19 recovery. The document, called Making the Green Recovery Work for Jobs, Income and Growth, includes a review of announced recovery and stimulus policies in OECD and Key Partner countries. On the one hand, OECD governments…Read more »