Turning Point: The pandemic as an opportunity for change

The COVID-19 pandemic has forced humankind to take a long, hard look at itself. Two years in, the recognition is there, a return to ‘normal’ is not possible, because the ‘old normal’ was broken: we live on a finite planet with finite resources, yet live by the mantra of infinite growth.

But here’s the good news: people and nature CAN thrive together.

The responses from governments to the corona crisis show that political arrangements do not have to be set in stone and that where there is a will, there can indeed be a way. Still, systemic change cannot rely on a top-down crisis management approach, it needs to be driven by a truly transformative bottom-up process.

‘Turning Point’ differs from the more traditional EEB publications as it is neither a report nor a position paper. Rather, it is a personal thought piece, a long op-ed, written in a more informal style, aiming to be thought-provoking and inspiring.

What follows is a reflection on how the pandemic unfolded and what a post-pandemic progress could look like. After following the ‘journey’ of the virus in PART 1. of this book, in PART 2. we will explore some of the more ‘outside-of-the-box’ solutions that have the potential to both reduce the risk of future pandemics, as well as help us heal.


French version available here thanks to EEB member organisation France Nature Environnement (FNE).

Table of contents

PART 1: The pandemic is like the fall of Icarus

1.1 The war on wildlife

1.2 Conquering the world on cruise control

1.3 Lifelong lung-damage

1.4 Chemicals & corona: best friends forever?

1.5 The nefarious “neoliberal normal”

1.6 A particularly malevolent virus

PART 2: Ten turning point proposals

2.1 FOOD SUPPLY. From vulnerability to new roots

2.2 MEAT. From cowrona to closing circles

2.3 TRADE. A transformation from free to fair

2.4 MOBILITY. Stay Grounded. Back on Track.

2.5 MINING. Keep it in the ground

2.6 DEMOCRACY. Stop sabotaging, deepen democracy

2.7 MONEY, DEBT and WEALTH. Time to trash taboos

2.8 WORK. Bail out working people

2.9 ECOFEMINISM. For the greater good of all

2.10 JUSTICE for all is not altruism


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Turning Point: The pandemic as an opportunity for change
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