“This is the roadmap out of climate crisis that Canadians have been waiting for.” — Naomi Klein, activist and New York Times bestselling author of This Changes Everything and The Shock Doctrine
Canada needs to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 50% to prevent a catastrophic 1.5 degree increase in the earth’s average temperature — assumed by many scientists to be a critical “danger line” for the planet and human life as we know it.
It’s 2020, and Canada is not on track to meet our targets. To do so, we’ll need radical systemic change to how we live and work—and fast. How can we ever achieve this?
Top policy analyst and author Seth Klein reveals we can do it now because we’ve done it before. During the Second World War, Canadian citizens and government remade the economy by retooling factories, transforming their workforce, and making the war effort a common cause for all Canadians to contribute to.
Klein demonstrates how wartime thinking and community efforts can be repurposed today for Canada’s own Green New Deal. He shares how we can create jobs and reduce inequality while tackling our climate obligations for a climate neutral—or even climate zero—future. From enlisting broad public support for new economic models, to job creation through investment in green infrastructure, Klein shows us a bold, practical policy plan for Canada’s sustainable future. More than this: A Good War offers a remarkably hopeful message for how we can meet the defining challenge of our lives.
COVID-19 has brought a previously unthinkable pace of change to the world—one which demonstrates our ability to adapt rapidly when we’re at risk. Many recent changes are what Klein proposes in these very pages. The world can, actually, turn on a dime if necessary. This is the blueprint for how to do it.
Available September 1, 2020. PRE-ORDER NOW!
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Seth Klein was the founding British Columbia director of the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives for over two decades and has been immersed in climate change and inequality issues for his working life. He is currently an adjunct professor in urban studies at Simon Fraser University and remains a research associate with the CCPA. He lives in Vancouver, B.C.
Published: September 2020
Dimensions: 5.5 x 8.5 in.
“The COVID-19 crisis and Seth Klein’s timely book demonstrate heroic measures that become possible in times of crisis. The coronavirus crisis is not yet assessable by historians. World War II presented the West with an existential crisis for which government institutions, corporations and civil society were utterly unprepared. Yet in astonishingly rapid order, society, government and industry were united in resolve and enabled unprecedented government action and leadership. Read this inspiring book to realize giving up is not an option and ‘can’t be done’ is not an excuse.” — David Suzuki
“Seth Klein’s critically important book tells the climate truth: our climate emergency needs a WW2-style mobilization. In this strategic call to action we learn about Canada’s impressive war production, and how we can join the war against climate devastation. Your children’s futures are on every page. Read, organize, act!” — Raffi Cavoukian, singer, author and founder of Raffi Foundation for Child Honouring
“Pacifists are not known for evoking war-like rhetoric, so it is one of life’s quirks that I first met an 18-year-old Seth Klein as he toured Canada calling for nuclear disarmament. But, like me, he sees that the only way for human civilization to survive the climate emergency is through an ‘all hands on deck’ approach that has only been seen in times of war — or recently in pandemic. Saving ourselves is a huge challenge. Marshaling the facts, the hope and the path forward is essential work for which writer and policy wonk Seth Klein is ideally suited.” — Elizabeth May, MP and former leader of the Green Party of Canada
"In this ambitious and informative book, Seth Klein intelligently connects past mobilization for war to the sweeping state measures now required to counter global warming." — Peter Neary, Professor Emeritus, Department of History, University of Western Ontario
“A call to action to protect our very existence on this planet — exactly the book we need right now. This book should be on the curriculum in every school across the country and required reading for every aspiring and current politician. Seth brilliantly challenges us to embrace the possible, while rejecting the current politics of ho-hum incrementalism. The threat posed by catastrophic climate change will eclipse everything we've faced to date, and our response will be the defining task of our era.” — Paul M. Taylor, anti-poverty activist and executive director of FoodShare Toronto
“A magnificent job. A climate emergency manifesto that brings it all together: history, politics, economics, humanity, mobilization, and science, with a wisdom of the actions we must undertake to win this good war.” — Libby Davies, former NDP MP
“One of the great privileges of my life is having Seth Klein as a brother. Here you will see why. This is the roadmap out of climate crisis that Canadians have been waiting for. Serious, specific and madly inspiring, A Good War will fill you with the confidence and courage required to fight like hell for the future we all deserve.” — Naomi Klein, activist, journalist and author of This Changes Everything and The Shock Doctrine
“This is an important book, exactly what we need right now. Seth does more than set out the urgency of our climate challenge, he draws a careful study of Canada’s extraordinary and rapid transformation during WW2 to give us a battle plan to address it. Big change is possible, he reminds us. We have done it before. Seth’s book combines urgency and optimism, ambition and clear-eyed understanding of the obstacles to change. It should become an essential resource for policy makers but also for all of us who want to be part of the solution. It is also an excellent and inspiring read.” — Alex Himelfarb, former clerk of the Privy Council and professor of sociology
“This is a truly great book. Few people have thought as deeply or with as much precision about the climate crisis as Seth Klein. Drawing on the lessons that history provides, he has provided a roadmap for how Canada should respond. We do need to fight the climate crisis as if it was a war, but how lucky we are: we need neither to kill or be killed, merely to do the hard but satisfying work of building a working planet.” — Bill McKibben, author and founder of 350.org
“In his examination of Canada’s climate action landscape, Seth Klein recognizes the deeply rooted social inequality in Canada that continues to be an obstacle for mobilizing a unified front against climate change. Highlighting the power and authority of Indigenous-led climate activism, he makes the striking case for recognizing and building upon the intersections between the fight for climate action and the fight for Indigenous Title and Rights.” — Grand Chief Stewart Phillip, president of the Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs
“This is the blueprint for rapid societal transformation that we’ve all been waiting for. Klein’s book is not just about thinking big, it’s about doing BIG. During the Second World War, Canada was nimble and consistently hit above its weight: mobilizing media, industry and the citizenry to face the biggest challenge of its time. Today, armed with science and far greater technological capacity, we can do it again. A Good War is a fascinating, timely and strategic guide to creating a better world.” — Ziya Tong, author of The Reality Bubble and science broadcaster (former co-host of Discovery Channel's Daily Planet)