Sustainability is the Key!
By Sohini Ghoshal, Suneha Pant & Megha Joshi
18th September, 2023
Climate change is one of the most pressing global challenges of the 21st century, with far-reaching implications for the environment, society, and the economy. The scientific consensus is clear: the Earth’s climate is changing due to human activities. Greenhouse gas emissions from burning fossil fuels, deforestation, and industrial processes are driving this change. Temperatures are rising, and the impacts are evident in various forms, including more frequent and severe weather events. However, the Indian residents are not completely unaware of the ill-effects of climate change, which is plainly evident from the data represented in the IRIS Climate Change report. The study also points out certain steps taken by the Indian government to mitigate the climate risks.
Since the onset of industrial times in the 18th century, human activities have raised the atmospheric CO2 (carbon dioxide) by 50% globally. The human induced rise is greater than the natural increase observed at the end of the last ice age 20,000 years ago. Rapid Industrialization in India has shot up the level of CO2 emissions in the atmosphere. Although the manufacturing sector has powered the country’s economy over 2 decades but the same sector accounts for 68% of nationwide energy consumption and 84% of CO2 emissions. The challenge for India is to achieve industrial growth on low carbon path.
UNICEF Sustainable Development Goals – UNICEF and the Sustainable Development Goals | UNICEF
Amar Ujala Press release – Amar Ujala, UNICEF organize Digital Journalism Workshop for Young People on Climate Change, COVID-19 Vaccines
Climate Confidence Situation
Unprecedented times at Global juncture!
UNICEF estimates that by 2040, almost six hundred million children globally would be subjected to live in areas of extremely high-water stress. Also close to 90% of the burden of disease attributable to climate change is born by children under the age of five. WHO report says that around 90% of world’s children breathe poisonous air every day and air pollution is associated as the deadly killers in the recent times leading to diseases like Pneumonia. If similar trend continues, then WHO predicts an additional 250,000 climate related deaths per year – between 2030-2050 especially children and people with disabilities. In India, almost seventeen out of twenty people are being vulnerable to extreme conditions of disasters like floods, draughts, cyclones etc. According to IQ Air Report, 2023, India (Delhi) is at eighth most polluted country with Air quality Index of 102, considered Unhealthy for Sensitive groups like infants, children, adults with chronic ailments. Particulate Matter 2.5 concentration in Delhi is currently 7.2 times the WHO recommended annual air quality guideline value. According to WHO’s report in 2017, 25% of deaths under the age of five could be avoided by addressing environmental health risks.
IPCC Report – AR6 Synthesis Report: Climate Change 2023 — IPCC
UNICEF Climate Change 2023 – Climate Change 2023: Synthesis Report | UNEP – UN Environment Programme
Silver lining amidst the changing climate dynamics:
On a positive note, population of India is not unaware of the consequences, which can be backed by the fact that India bags first position in considering relevant immediate actions as necessity for survival and betterment of future generations
With high intent to take action against drastic climate driven hindrances, Indians have started taking small steps already in terms of:
- Minimal Plastic Usage – According to Plastic Waste Management Amendment Rules, 2021, Indian government has banned the usage of Single use plastics which includes straws, cutlery, ear buds, packaging films and cigarette packets. However, we have not seen any significant reduction in plastic usage. Infact, onset of COVID-19 has increased the plastic footprint by 45%, which includes masks, PPE kits, sanitizer bottles etc.
- Reduce energy consumption – The share of diesel cars in India is just 18.6% as recorded in April 2023. The share has reduced drastically by 40% in the last 10 years.
- Inclination towards biodegradable products – Introduction of products in the market like Bamboo toothbrushes, Clay bottles, Cutlery, sanitary napkins etc. shows that India is rapidly moving towards Sustainable future.
Plastic waste footprint in the context of COVID-19: Reduction challenges and policy recommendations towards sustainable development goals – PMC (nih.gov)
Going ahead: Sustainable living is the Key!
Over the past few years, India has been in trance due to the climatic disturbances within the global landscape. But there are several advanced and promising initiatives taken by Government and Non-government bodies to keep a strict check on the deteriorating climatic conditions, some of which include
Some of the National Schemes (PAN India)
- National Action Plan for Climate Change (Set up by Indian Govt. in 2008)
- PM KUSUM (Launched in 2019)
Some of the National Schemes (State Wise Schemes)
- Ek Bharat Shresth Bharat Program by Govt. of Haryana (Published in 2021)
- Green Skill Development Program by Govt. of Haryana (Published in 2021)
One of the essential and critically discussed topics of currently wrapped G20 summit in India was on sustainable living for brighter future.
About the Survey
In 2023, Q&Q Research Insights along with 26 corporate members of IRIS across Asia, Europe, America, and North America did a tracking study focusing on the topics of economic confidence, climate change and health system. All fieldwork was undertaken online between February – June 2023. In total, over 18,000 people were surveyed. In India the study was conducted with a total of 500 respondents across the country.
About Q&Q Research Insights
Q&Q Research Insights is an award-winning boutique market research firm offering ad-hoc customized research and tracking studies to our clients. Our core business areas include Consumer Research, Agriculture, Healthcare, Automobile, and Retail Services. Q&Q Research Insights now cover all major Asian countries like Thailand, Vietnam, Philippines, Indonesia, Japan, Pakistan. We are the exclusive representative from India on ESOMAR and IRIS Global network.
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