As the Government considers how to rebuild after the Covid-19 pandemic, there will be pressure on policy makers to roll back some environmental protections in order to stimulate the economy. Combined with the challenge of securing post-Brexit trade deals, the post-pandemic response has the potential to accelerate what many see as the UK’s environmental protection problem.
In the context of the difficult decisions currently facing the UK, we think it is important to see what lessons can be learnt from history. In this briefing, we begin to explore the extent to which deregulation has undermined the achievement of environmental objectives, created negative externalities, or contributed to adverse environmental or societal outcomes.
Our hope is that, by highlighting the lessons to be learnt from the past, we will help to make the case for a protective approach to environmental policy making, which places strong environmental rules at the heart of the UK’s post-pandemic recovery program.