Industrial strategy seen as way to save environment

An industrial strategy represents the best opportunity to make the shift to the zero carbon economy needed to avoid the risks and disruptions expected as climate change gets worse. That’s the conclusion of environmental campaigner Andrew Simms in an op-ed in the Guardian this week.

He also points out that each year the date by which the world consumes more resources than nature can supply in one year and produces more waste than the earth can absorb in one year — known as ecological overshoot — is occurring earlier.

While he’s talking about Britain, his comments could just as easily be applied to Canada. The areas he suggests should be priorities for the British government — renewable energy and reducing carbon emissions from housing — have also been identified as opportunities for Canada to significantly lower greenhouse gas emissions.

The challenge is getting governments to recognize the need for a modern industrial strategy and then making sure a key goal is moving to an environmentally sustainable economy in a way that minimizes the impact on workers and their communities.