Reshaped Economy Could Create Common Ground Between Conservatives & Environmentalists

Past ideological barriers may be shifting fast.

For a long-time, Conservatives and Environmentalists have been seen as foes.

However, there is reason to believe that the Coronavirus Pandemic which originated in China will reshape our economy and way of life so drastically that old ideological barriers will fall.

For example, there are areas in which Economic Nationalism – which is increasingly being embraced by Conservatives – and Environmentalism can go together.

For example, both emphasize localism, reducing the power of international corporations, moving production out of countries where labour and environmental standards are lower, and moving away from endless global trade towards stronger communities.

There is also a strong focus on self-sufficiency among both environmentalists and economic nationalists, though that focus tends to be more on the community side for environmentalists, and more on a national level for economic nationalists.

And stronger borders/reduced immigration can appeal to both groups, since stronger borders and reduced immigration means a lower carbon-footprint, and less cheap labour which undermines the wages of Canadian workers.

If the long-term economic response to the Coronavirus results in repatriating our supply chains, combined with an increase in local manufacturing and robotic manufacturing here at home, both economic nationalists and environmentalists would have reason to celebrate. Besides, more robotic labour means less of a need for things like the temporary foreign worker program in the first place, while meaning less emissions from shipping stuff back and forth across the world.

Now, there are some areas that will continue to be points of disagreement. For example, when it comes to oil production, many Conservatives would be unhappy if oil shipments to foreign countries like China were reduced, while many environmentalists would be unhappy if Canada banned foreign oil and built pipelines across our nation – mandating that all of Canada use Canadian oil.

However, such a move would be better for the environment, would protect our national security, and would ensure the continued survival of Canada’s energy sector.

That said, there is a dramatic reshaping of our economy taking place, and our country will need new ideas and new common ground to emerge from this dark moment and succeed in the future.

Spencer Fernando

Photo – Twitter