Is the Grass Greener in a Post-Pandemic World? (Re)Connecting Humanity with Nature for a Just Recovery


  • Hannah Blitzer University of Sussex



This article assesses the potential for reconnecting human and non- human nature in global post-COVID-19 recovery plans. The article utilises a critical perspective on the neoliberalisation of nature as a framing, as well as the case of sustainability and deforestation in forest risk commodity supply chains, to assess whether sustainable development initiatives and neoliberal environmental governance adequately protect the interests of vulnerable human and non- human nature. It finds that existing approaches to sustainable development in international governance prioritise liberalised global markets and the neoliberalisation of nature through commodification, privatisation and marketisation, thus furthering an unjust human-nature dichotomy by placing humans separate from nature and removing the intrinsic value of non-human materiality. It identifies a synergy between the global campaign to ‘build back better’ after COVID-19, environmental regulation and principles of Wild Law. The article concludes by recommending that a just post- pandemic economic recovery must realign the human experience as a part of the wider whole of the non-human natural world.