Saihanba Wind Farm in Inner Mongolia. © Simon Lim / Greenpeace
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#Climate #Consumption #Health How to recover from the coronavirus pandemic

How Canada recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic can be a new beginning.

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Our government said last month that a green and just recovery will be their number one priority when Parliament resumes this fall. Let’s hold them to it. We don’t have a moment to lose we know big polluters have been lobbying federal officials to ask for bailouts and rollbacks of environmental rules. 

Like Prime Minister Trudeau, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Chrystia Freeland holds a lot of power when it comes to determining which way the COVID-19 recovery steers our country. We are calling on both of them to prioritize health, better social safety nets and the needs of workers alongside essential investments that protect nature and build resilience to future crises. This means they must fully commit to:

  • A fair transition to a sustainable low-carbon economy
  • Protecting and restoring of land, freshwater, and ocean ecosystems along with the wildlife that call these places home
  • Ending single-use plastics in favour of building a circular economy
  • Replacing toxic chemicals used in agricultural, consumer goods and manufacturing with safer alternatives 
  • Developing accessible, affordable and healthy communities and transportation networks
  • Prioritizing social and racial justice, economic equity, and well-being, in partnership with Indigenous Peoples and the communities most exposed to environmental harm

We have a once-in-a-generation opportunity to build a more just, sustainable, and healthy Canada — a Canada that works for everyone, not just a wealthy few. But big polluters are pushing the federal government to funnel recovery spending into their pockets instead. We can’t let this happen.

Millions have already joined the call for a green and just recovery. Today, let’s make sure that Justin Trudeau and Chrystia Freeland keep their promises!

Chrystia Freeland

Minister Chrystia Freeland is Justin Trudeau’s right-hand woman in the federal government and her role has now been expanded to include managing Canada’s finances. As our society recovers from COVID-19, she should lead the way towards a green and just recovery for all .

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., thanks for promising a . Will you back up your beliefs by helping Canada transition to a low-carbon economy, restore land, freshwater, ocean ecosystems & protect wildlife? pic.twitter.com/x8XS9okMRX
., thanks for promising a. Will you commit to developing healthy communities, affordable transportation networks, economic equity & social and racial justice? pic.twitter.com/x8XS9okMRX

Comment on Facebook or Instagram

Copy and paste the text below as a comment under Minister Freeland’s last post on Facebook or Instagram or share and tag her in a story:

Minister Freeland, thank you for committing to a green and #JustRecovery. To rebuild our country better and stronger after COVID-19, it’s critical that we address the intersecting crises facing society, including: wealth inequality, colonialism, racism and climate change. Will you commit to a budget that invests in a green and #JustRecovery that puts people and our climate first? @greenpeacecanada https://act.gp/3jI1Xyh
Minister Freeland, I’m looking forward to hearing your government’s green recovery plans on September 23rd. I hope that they will protect and restore land, freshwater, ocean ecosystems and wildlife. One of the best ways to do this is by building a circular economy and ending single-use plastics, as well as by replacing toxic chemicals used in agricultural, consumer goods and manufacturing with safer alternatives. Will you commit to a budget that invests in a green and #JustRecovery that puts people and our climate first? @greenpeacecanada https://act.gp/3jI1Xyh

Call Chrystia Freeland (Minister’s office: 613-369-3710)

“Hello Minister Freeland, I am calling to ask that you publicly commit to a budget that invests in a green and just recovery. Your government was elected on a mandate to deliver on climate action and build a stronger, more inclusive and more resilient country. You have spoken about the need for sustainable and equitable recovery. There is no better way to do both than by tackling the climate crisis & social inequalities as we recover from COVID-19. Will you commit to a budget that invests in a green and Just Recovery that puts people and our climate first?”

Send an email ([email protected])

Hi Minister Freeland, 

I want to thank you for your work in these difficult times.  As we continue to respond to the COVID-19 health crisis and prepare to rebuild, we cannot go back to the way things were. We need a recovery that puts people first and steers our society towards a climate-safe future. 

As Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, you have a lot of influence when it comes to determining which way the COVID-19 recovery steers our country, and you have spoken in support of a green and just recovery. To rebuild our country better and stronger after COVID-19, it’s critical that we address the intersecting crises facing society, including: wealth inequality, colonialism, racism and climate change. As such, the economic recovery plan must ensure a  Just Recovery, including these key principles for a green recovery:

  1. A fair transition to a sustainable low-carbon economy
  2. Protecting and restoring of land, freshwater, and ocean ecosystems along with the wildlife that call these places home
  3. Ending single-use plastics in favour of building a circular economy
  4. Replacing toxic chemicals used in agricultural, consumer goods and manufacturing with safer alternatives 
  5. Developing accessible, affordable and healthy communities and transportation networks
  6. Prioritizing social and racial justice, economic equity, and well-being, in partnership with Indigenous Peoples and the communities most exposed to environmental harm

The recovery from COVID-19 must make our society more resilient, fair and sustainable. I urge you to develop a recovery plan that invests in a just and green recovery. 

Sincerely,

Your name.

Prime Minister Trudeau

Months ago, as the pandemic unfolded, Prime Minister Trudeau himself posed this question to Canadians: “We should always take advantage of moments of crisis to reflect: Can we change the system to do better?”  The answer is yes, and the moment is NOW! 

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You can use the tweet samples below or create your own. 

., last fall, you asked us to Choose Forward. Now, it’s your turn. Commit to a that protects health, creates jobs, safeguards nature & takes . Don’t hold Canada back. pic.twitter.com/0GpYGXymtN
., choose forward: commit to a fair transition to a low-carbon economy that will help protect & restore land, freshwater, ocean ecosystems and wildlife. This is what a looks like! pic.twitter.com/0GpYGXymtN

Comment on Facebook or Instagram

Copy and paste the text below as a comment under Prime Minister Trudeau’s last post on Facebook or Instagram or share and tag him in a story (@justinpjtrudeau):

Prime Minister Trudeau, I am asking you to publicly commit to investing in a green and just recovery. Your government was elected on a mandate to deliver on climate action, and you have spoken about the need for a sustainable and equitable recovery. There is no better way to do it than by tackling the climate crisis & social inequalities as we recover from #COVID19. On September 23rd, will you commit to a budget that invests in a green and #JustRecovery that puts people and our climate first? @greenpeacecanada https://act.gp/32TgXTh
Prime Minister Trudeau, I’m looking forward to hearing your government’s plans for a green and equitable recovery on September 23rd. Now’s the time to show that your promises on climate action and reconciliation were not just empty words. Will you commit to kickstarting the economy through measures that protect our environment, achieve economic equity and deliver social and racial justice, in partnership with Indigenous Peoples and vulnerable communities? @greenpeacecanada https://act.gp/32TgXTh

Call Justin Trudeau (Prime Minister’s office: 1 613-992-4211)

“Hello Prime Minister Trudeau, I am calling to ask that you publicly commit to a budget that invests in a green and just recovery. Your government was elected on a mandate to deliver on climate action and build a stronger, more inclusive and more resilient country. You have spoken about the need for sustainable and equitable recovery. There is no better way to do both than by tackling the climate crisis & social inequalities as we recover from COVID-19. Will you commit to investing in a green and Just Recovery that puts people and our climate first?”

Send an email ([email protected])

Dear Prime Minister Trudeau,

I want to thank you for your work in these difficult times.  As we continue to respond to the COVID-19 health crisis and prepare to rebuild, we cannot go back to the way things were. We need a recovery that puts people first and steers our society towards a climate-safe future. 

Alongside your new, hand-picked Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland, you promised a green and equitable recovery from COVID-19. Now we need you to deliver on this promise in the upcoming Throne Speech and budget.To rebuild our country better and stronger after COVID-19, it’s critical that we address the intersecting crises facing society, including: wealth inequality, colonialism, racism and climate change. As such, any economic recovery plan must ensure a Just Recovery, including these  key principles for a green recovery:

  1. A fair transition to a sustainable low-carbon economy
  2. Protecting and restoring of land, freshwater, and ocean ecosystems along with the wildlife that call these places home
  3. Ending single-use plastics in favour of building a circular economy
  4. Replacing toxic chemicals used in agricultural, consumer goods and manufacturing with safer alternatives 
  5. Developing accessible, affordable and healthy communities and transportation networks
  6. Prioritizing social and racial justice, economic equity, and well-being, in partnership with Indigenous Peoples and the communities most exposed to environmental harm.

Polling shows that 61% of Canadians want governments to prioritize climate action in their response to the pandemic. Already,  we are far, far behind many other countries taking the opportunity the COVID-19 recovery presents to shape a better world — from the green agendas in the European Union and South Korea to the labour reforms being explored in New Zealand.

This is your chance to make your campaign slogan a reality and Choose Forward — make history by transforming Canada to be fairer, kinder, greener. Now is the time to make big shifts. Don’t waste the opportunity by tinkering around the edges.

Sincerely,

Your name.


The federal government has to step up with real support for communities to recover from the pandemic in a way that builds resilience and sustainability. It’s NOT a time for handouts to the oil companies, causing the climate crisis or increasing our vulnerability to threats like climate change.

Let’s speak out together and make sure the recovery plan puts people and nature first.

Thank you and keep the pressure up!