Utilizing India as A Catalyst for Sustainable Development
Earth has reached the brink when it comes to consumption of energy or non-renewable resources today. Added to that is the fact that India lists as the third-largest emitter of carbon dioxide emissions in the world. With a growing population and awareness resting with only a few, the situation demands innovations and technology that not only offer a solution today but can be utilized for the future.
With constantly growing demands for natural and renewable sources of energy, the Earth is unable to regenerate all the amount of resources utilized in a year within the same period, setting an irreversible trend of resource deficit in motion. Along with an unprecedented amount of consumption of these resources comes the unprecedented emission of billions of tons of CO2. In fact, in just the past two years, humanity has generated more than 80 billion tons of carbon emissions.
Showing its commitment towards sustainability, in December 2020, India set the foundation of what is deemed to be the world’s largest hybrid renewable energy park across 72,000 hectares, set to generate a humongous 30 giga-watts of electricity to help in reduction of carbon dioxide emissions by up to 50 million tons every year. These emerging projects and initiatives portray how India is an eminent figure in planning and developing technologies and strategies for eco-friendly developments.
The humans, since the start of the Industrial Revolution till this day have managed to generate more than half of humanity’s total carbon footprint so far. Today, we consume renewable resources equivalent to that of 1.6 Earths. This makes it difficult to foresee the restoration of these sources. There is a need to set out immediately to correct this ecological imbalance between the supply and demand for renewable resources.
There is a need to set out immediately to correct this ecological imbalance between the supply and demand for renewable resources
One of the first essential steps in this direction would be to improve the balance between Earth’s resources and the carbon footprint. As it is already established that the industrial sector is the major contributor, the journey starts there. The best chance to address the impact of climate change would be to rethink new ways to rebuild the cities.
Sustainability Science and engineering could be the saviour for the Earth in addition to rescuing humanity. This new meta-discipline looks to integrate industry with the environment & society, in a global milieu, and work towards achieving a desired balance of objectives on all three fronts. Integrated projects in the domain of sustainability strive to reduce the carbon footprint, as a thumb rule. The fact that the world is now turning towards sustainability science and engineering is proof alone that we’ve moved past just preventing pollution and there is a need to strike harder when it comes to improving the industrial sector’s impact on the environment.
India leads the way with emerging technologies and solutions developed by various institutions and departments. The Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur (IIT-K) announced in December 2020 that it was going to set up a Department of Sustainable Energy Engineering, to help India create the clean, renewable energy sector faster. Another idea, discusses the collaboration between Innovation Centre Denmark in India and the Danish Academy of Technical Sciences, signed, again in December 2020. This initiative will contribute to the country’s transition to green energy through sustainable means. Speaking about India’s commitment to sustainable development, India is currently engaged in a large number of efforts regarding health, agriculture and ecosystem sustainability that comprise government and non-government entities at all scales. What is needed is to enhance the dialogue between these entities, and to align strategies in both goals and actions. Therefore it is a remarkable sight to witness so many organizations and other countries join Indian agencies, companies, institutes, and NGOs, in this unique effort to embed and engage sustainability science in society.
Infrastructure development is the basis of nation-building for India, as for the rest of the world. Adopting proactive strategies to reduce the environmental impact of industrial and infrastructural development over a period of time is the most sensible thing to do and India is already on the right path and will not only meet its climate commitments but will, in fact, overachieve the targets set.
The future looks sustainable and green for India!