Thursday, 12 September 2013

Back to basics - sustainability and its practice, Questions answered.

Back 2 Basics 

What is sustainability?

the intersection of finding social benefit, the practice of environmental conservation with focus on economic benefit is the definition of sustainability. The governance of the above is the practice of sustainability.

How does one govern sustainability?
By managing the influence of the 5 elements, air, earth, water, fire and ether and their assignment to tangible factors are.
  1. Fire - Managing fire means managing energy by way of controlling input and consumption;
  2. Water - Managing water is managing the water by way of controlling source, consumption and discharge;
  3. Earth - Managing earth is managing waste by way of adapting process that reduce the generation of waste all through cradle to grave;
  4. Air - Managing air is managing pollution;
  5. Ether - Managing ether is adapting a appropriate communication strategy to increase overall sustainability awareness.  
What are the various functions that gain advantage due to the use of sustainability?
  • policy for/ or corporate affairs
  • Vision is accomplished for corporate affairs/ CEO's office
  • Brand gets a new attribute for marketing
  • Social benefit is delivered for csr
  • Money saved and earned
  • Environment is conserved
What are the various consulting services within sustainability?
  • evaluation of the compliance needs and an environmental law audit.
  • Defining a sustainability strategy and vision
  • Creation of a corporate sustainability policy
  • Audit for Leed certification and other ecolabeling services
  • Energy audit, modelling and management
  • Waste audit, modelling and management
  • Carbon audit, modelling and management by way of carbon foot printing and life cycle analysis etc
  • Water audit, modelling and management
  • Stakeholder communication strategy and management, training etc

Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Beware people that practice sustainability in corporates, your masters need a fall guy.

Beware people, your masters need a fall guy. 
12th september 2013

Adani power recently got fined $40 Million for flouting environmental regulations at their Mundra thermal power plant. This did not come out of the blue from the MoEF is the rule making, governing and the fining body. They have been waving rules at Adani both as a warning from its inception. I was unfortunate to experience the wrath of this project from its inception as I was volunteering with a NGO which is located amidst the Adani and TATA plant. This NGO did not come to existence after these projects but had been there before the licenses were given out and isolated as these companies that negotiated together did not want to pay the rightful price that the NGO requested. One can make many strange inferences and these get sinister as the election year closes in. How did TATA’s plant that shares many services with Adani not get fined. Is the MoEF being partisan and sending a message to the Modi campaign?. The PMO meanwhile has ordered the MoEF to start doling out licenses that are withheld for abstract reasons like environment so that our fledgling economy will get a boost. Just in time for the elections? The Hon. Minister at the MoEF has in many interviews alluded that the primary challenge that she faces is that of lack of funds to monitor the rules and regulations that the corporates pretend to follow and pretend to implement. The argument she pushed was in the direction that the MOEF is losing the battle with PMO and her ministry will have to start the dole fest. The dole fest, just in time for the elections? Meanwhile, the Vedanta story is creating white noise like a good natured diversion and the respected DTE has increased its decibel on the story of limited governance and broke a cover story on LAVASA raising questions primarily in the corridor of continuing governance seeking to create a platform of doubt and to question. The need for election funds and corporate support cannot be understated and I am afraid all the noise we hear is meant to be misunderstood as justice when they are mere warnings meant to tame, meanwhile the sensitive and righteous share holder needs a fall guy. The bargaining chip is out Dear, Vedanta, SesaGoa, TATA, Adani, LAVASA and the many other miners and developers. Your masters are your curse and boon.

Voices of Sustainability Experts across the World

After the positive feedback of the previous post, time for a reality check.  A selection of tweets from the Sustainability experts that shows how close we are to the climate tipping point:
  • Gil Friend : Humans have used up Earth's one year's supply of resources in just 8 months. (source)
  • Sunita Narain : Lavasa Corporation is rushing to complete its township in Western Ghats. No one knows if the promoter is complying with conditions on which it was allowed to resume work. (source)
  • Gil Friend : A leaked copy of the draft Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's 2013 Summary for Policymakers report states----95 percent certain—that humans are behind much of the global warming seen over the last six decades + global warming is going to be irreversibility, of scale…and, of direness. (source)
  • Susan McPherson : Tourism is main source of foreign exchange, employment and cash for many. On the other hand mass tourism is unsustainable leading to adverse effects on the environment. (source)
  • Julie Urlaub : Environmental pressure and extreme weather are leading to a 20-40% rse in food prices in near future. Be ready to shell out much more for grocery bills. (source)
  • Bill Mckibben  : 341st consecutive month with global temperatures warmer than the 20th century average. There are extraordinary heat waves in Russia’s Arctic region and in eastern China. Article also states the weather disasters in July. (source)
  • Bill Mckibben :  Big Wildfire a new normal with climate change. The massive fire in California is the 7th largest fire in state history, and largest fire on record in the California Sierra Mountains. The state experienced a driest year that led to the fire. Thanks to "Climate Change". (source)
  • Julie Urlaub : The extreme weather like drought, heavy rains and heat is expected to bring more mosquitoes. Thanks to climate change, our nights and even days have become itchy. (source)