Different perspectives

Hello, and welcome to the final edition of Transform for 2020, and the first of 2021!

By any standards, 2020 has been a tumultuous year – one that many people will be happy to see the back of. The emergence of COVID-19 as a global pandemic disease, causing a human and economic catastrophe; the race to produce not one, but three vaccines at a speed few would have thought possible even a few months ago; a change of leadership in the US and a president-elect committed to addressing climate change – this year has shown the best and worst of what humanity has to deal with.

Perhaps for this reason, this edition of the magazine is a contemplative one, tackling some major philosophical issues. Is it possible, for example, to produce climate change solutions through pure market mechanisms? We speak to a 
group of thought leaders and activists who believe it is. Elsewhere, other environmental and sustainability leaders suggest there should be more room for conversations around the spiritual and value-driven aspects of combatting climate change.

“Thanks to science and human ingenuity, there is the prospect of a return to normal life in the foreseeable future”

Our interview this month is with Danny Sriskandarajah, chief executive of Oxfam GB. He does not shirk from the challenges caused by earlier staff misconduct scandals, and speaks powerfully about climate justice and inequality.

Wherever you are in the world, this time of year is one when thoughts turn to gathering with family and friends. For some of us this year, this will be impossible; for others, it will be a much-reduced celebration. However, thanks to science and human ingenuity, there is the prospect of a return to normal life in the foreseeable future. May I take this opportunity to wish all IEMA members and their families a very merry Christmas, if you celebrate it, and a peaceful and prosperous New Year.

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