This report identifies actions the UK government can take to drive systemic change towards a sustainable and resilient economic model – a transition that all nations must make if humanity is to have a prosperous future.
In the wake of COVID, tackling the multiple interlinked crises the world is facing – climate change, biodiversity loss, food and water security, and inequality among others – requires policy makers to answer a key question: where should we focus to help drive this transition most rapidly, efficiently and fairly?
This report, commissioned by WWF UK and led by ZOE-Institute for future-fit economies (ZOE) in cooperation with the New Economics Foundation (NEF) and the Wellbeing Economy Alliance (WeAll), aims to provide answers.
Based on a comprehensive review of the literature, the report identifies the key areas of change required to bring about the transition to a sustainable economy, as set out below:
The report then identifies a set of more immediate policy changes that the UK government could implement in order to take the next key steps in the journey towards economy-wide, long-term systemic change – both for its domestic economy and to help drive change at an international level.
- Introduce a UK wellbeing budget
- Modernising the UK’s fiscal framework and rules to embed sustainability
- Establish a new national investment authority
- Mandatory financial risk assessments and disclosure
- Roll out green credit guidance
- Introduce a land value tax
- Introduce resource caps based on biodiversity impact
- Introduce an environmental border tax
These targeted policies – all readily implementable in the UK, and many equally applicable in other economies – will deliver multiple gains for society, supporting both a jobs-rich green recovery in the short-term and catalysing a shift towards a more sustainable and resilient economic model for the future.
As we enter 2021 – a year in which climate, nature and economic recovery will be centre stage – we have an opportunity to change course. These proposals show the scale and nature of the reforms needed and set out the practical next steps required.