New Greenness of Stimulus Index Report

17 December 2020, 00:00:00

Latest index shows Australia, Canada, India, South Africa and the United Kingdom have improved their scores, but overall nature remains neglected in stimulus opportunities. Seven of the 25 economies analysed invested in nature-based solutions creating 580,000 jobs, but this is a tiny share of what would be possible with greater stimulus focus on these job creating, nature protecting opportunities.

The 4th edition of the Greenness of Stimulus Index is published today.

Australia, Canada, India, South Africa and the United Kingdom have  improved their scores with new greener investment packages and policies.

But overall in the green stimulus to date, nature and biodiversity have been neglected. Where large green stimulus measures have been introduced, these have largely focused on reducing carbon emissions, with only occasional attention to preserving and enhancing nature and natural capital. Of the total quantified green stimulus to date, worth US$567 billion, only US$108 billion was related to improving biodiversity or preserving ecosystems.

US$219 billion of stimulus was  associated with negative impacts on nature: pollution or direct habitat destruction.

Only seven of the 25 economies analysed have invested in so-called nature-based solutions (NBS), such as tree planting, forest protection and regenerative agriculture. This investment has created more than 580,000 jobs, but our analysis shows that represents a tiny share of what would be possible with greater stimulus focus on NBS.

Read the Report

Press Release


Whats new

This update incorporates significant new information that has become available since the previous release in October, including the latest announcements on stimulus flows, deregulation and environmental policies. It also contains two fresh pieces of analysis that examine the job-creating potential of nature-based solutions, and that uncover insights by analysing stimulus based on its policy type rather than its sectoral impact area. Altogether, this release includes the following highlights:

  • Addition of Colombia and Switzerland to the index.

  • An increase in the total quantity of measured stimulus to US$13.0 trillion, from US$12.7 trillion. This includes increases in stimulus packages in Canada (from US$301 billion to US$391 billion), India (from US$276 billion to US$323 billion), Indonesia (US$46 billion to US$74 billion), the United Kingdom (from US$628 billion to US$686 billion) and the addition of the two new countries (US$67 billion total).

  • Improvements to some index scores. Notably, Australia, Canada, India, South Africa and the United Kingdom have leveraged new packages and policies into increased scores.

  • Additional analysis on the enormous potential of stimulus packages to create green, nature-based jobs, with an estimated 7 million additional jobs created globally with a nature-focused stimulus compared to more traditional forms of stimulus investment. Nature-based solutions are particularly well-suited to deliver job opportunities but are dramatically under-represented in stimulus across the countries analysed in this edition.

  • New analysis that takes a closer look at the policy composition of stimulus. Policies involving public sector investments have the most positive impact on the environment, driven by low carbon infrastructure projects. Unfortunately, stimulus policies that increase cash flow for businesses make up the bulk of total stimulus to date. Because the business-as-usual economy is environmentally unsustainable, and unconditional rescue support for business perpetuates the norm, this type of spending exacerbates negative environmental trends.