Adoption Of Cleaner Technologies For A Foreseeable Sustainable Future
From diamonds to cars, from buildings to clothes, the world is keen to move closer to sustainability in every aspect of life. Whether it is the social or ethical assurance attached to a sustainable business model or the guarantee that it will have zero negative impact on the environment, the consumers today are aware enough to ask some really uncomfortable questions before picking up a product. While in some industries, the environmental impact may not be as long-lasting as it is in the case of industries like energy, transportation, construction, and manufacturing. Therefore, it is hugely imperative for these industries to ensure that their activities have a minimal environmental cost.
In December 2020, the world's largest and India's first Renewable Energy Park was inaugurated in Khavda, Gujarat. The Park, spread over a whopping 72,000+ hectares of wasteland, is expected to generate about 30,000 MW of electricity from solar and wind energy resources. Being constructed with an investment of about INR1.5 trillion (EURO16.668 billion), it is hoped that the park will benefit the common man, including the farmers, as well as the industries while reducing pollution and sustaining the environment at a large-scale.
The commitment shown by the GOI towards renewable energy is not a standalone development. The world today recognizes that our sustainable future is based on the three main pillars solar energy, electric transportation, and eco-friendly cement. Futuristic manufacturers and visionary entrepreneurs are already miles ahead of their competition in this direction. Their products are already past the research stage and ready to be manufactured for a foreseeable sustainable future. Here is a round-up of leading technology changes that are taking birth around the world, for a better environment for our future generations.
Solar Energy Technology - The future looks bright for solar energy. In the past decade, the amount of attention that it has attracted has led to lowering of cost and improvement in its efficiency. Experts claim that soon enough solar energy would be the top source of energy for the world, in comparison to fossil fuels. In January 2020, the world installed close to 115 gigawatts of solar, which is more than all other technologies combined.
E-Bikes & E-Buses for Traveling - Whether it is the GMC Hummer EV or Audi's RS e-Tron GT sports car, electric transportation is closer to reality today. Within India and abroad, electric buses are being inducted into the public as well as private transportation sectors. These vehicles are not just energy efficient (some of these can run for 10-15 hours after being charged for merely a couple of hours) but their impact on the environment is also minimal.
Eco friendly Cement & Eco-friendly construction material - A few days back, on Jan 11, 2021, one of the biggest manufacturers of traditional Portland cement in the world, LafargeHolcim, agreed in principle to buy Firestone Building Products company for $3.4 billion. FSBP specializes in manufacturing insulated, solar, and green roofs to prevent energy loss. This move indicates the shifting priorities of the manufacturing sector, which is looking for sustainable diversification for the future.
The onset of COVID-19 and its aftermath in the past year has highlighted the urgency for sustainable solutions in every sphere. The World Health Organisation was forced to state that "to meet the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) targets by 2030, countries need to safeguard the gains already attained and accelerate efforts to achieve affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all."
Though the UN clearly mentioned sustainable energy, visionaries among us are already looking for sustainability everywhere else. Consumers today are willing to spend extra bucks to buy or use products and services that have a lesser environmental footprint. Businesses are looking for solutions that place them among the environmentally woke minority, rather than in the majority, that is still unaware of where we are headed.
The cities of the world are either already facing or will be facing major challenges vis-à-vis the growing world population and dwindling public resources. With global warming and climate change a past reality now, solutions are fast needed to not just address the exacerbating effect of COVID-19, but also to ensure that the world is ready to meet any other such eventuality in the future. Therefore, eco friendly cement, E-buses, and E-bikes as well as solar energy could hold the key to a sustainable future for everyone in the world.
Experts have enlisted six megatrends that businesses and govts all over the world must keep an eye on health, energy, urbanization, water & climate management, and globalization. Some of the more pressing environmental challenges of our times could be addressed well in time if industries related to these six megatrends pull up their socks in time and get down to infuse change.