The European Commission is launching its new EU Adaptation strategy to “set out the pathway to prepare for the unavoidable impacts of climate change.” At a time where 80% of EU habitats are in poor or bad conditions and soil quality suffering, the EU would be well advised to quickly phase out many of today’s destructive practices that are avoidable. Otherwise, the strategy risks becoming another ill-adapted measure operating only superficially.

We stand before unprecedented challenges to transition to a net zero and well-being oriented economy. Despite years of talks on Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation, global emissions continue to grow, while biodiversity loss accelerates both in Europe and beyond. Instead of investing in building a sustainable and regenerative economy, 50% more is today spent on fossil fuels than clean energies in G20 recovery packages, as laid out by ManagersForFuture. At the same time, now more widely used ESG metrics by companies actually say nothing about progress on sustainability. And the world’s largest banks spent USD 2.6 trillion on sectors driving biodiversity loss.

Against that background: how resilient can the EU become, if it is not tackling the most pressing issues regarding the survival of Europe’s ecosystems, biodiversity, real community involvement and economic anchorage in local and regional business ecosystems?

As highlighted in our article on “Unleasing the Power of Nature: Cultivating Natural Intelligence”, we at Perspectivist believe that we need to shift our perspective to see clearly and inform our action wisely to tackle our systemic challenges. This shift in perspective requires giving up our overly technology-focused, instrumental and limitative view on living systems such as EU habitats, communities or companies. As Albert Einstein used to say, “we cannot solve our challenges with the same kind of thinking that created them”.

A regenerative approach is needed to build a truly and deeply sustainable economy and society. It is a society that consciously designs conditions conducive to economic, social and natural life to thrive. People and nature are not boxes nor separated from one another. Yet, we treat them as if they were. The result is today’s War on Nature, but also unprecedented levels of mental ill-health. We need to heal the story of separation that produces contemporary ecocides, social tension and degenerating health.