Building Back Better

Updated: Jul 7, 2021

Written by: Maya Kattler-Gold


I cringe when I hear people hoping for a return back to “normal” from the pandemic. I also want to see my friends and go to school, but what else comes along with this normal? The earth can’t afford for us to ramp back up our fossil fuel economy and then maybe eventually get back to thinking about making some changes. Progress is usually slow, and meaningful change can be even slower. But change has been very fast lately. Why would we want to go back to normal rather than rebuild something better?

The good news is, this idea is entering the mainstream. On July 14th,  when Joe Biden unveiled his new $2 trillion climate plan, an upgrade from the $1.7 trillion plan he touted during the Democratic primaries, he promoted the idea of “building back better.” 

Biden said when he announced his new climate plan: ‘"Here we are now with the economy in crisis, but with an incredible opportunity not just to build back to where we were before, but better, stronger, more resilient, and more prepared for the challenges that lie ahead." Although climate activists are pushing Biden to improve his plan*, it is encouraging that people are beginning to recognize the potential to use this crisis as an opportunity to grow.