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India needs to find unique solutions to address climate change and take forward the sustainability agenda: Environment Secretary

Mar 05, 2018


New Delhi, 5 March 2018: Ministry of Environment Forest and Climate Change (MoEFCC) Secretary Mr. C K Mishra said today that Indian industry needs to cease the opportunities present upfront, be it for providing energy access, reducing emissions, developing greener technology. He was addressing the 5th edition of India Sustainability Conclave (ISC), organised by FICCI with the support of Ministry of Environment Forest and Climate Change.


He highlighted that there has been a transition from the MDGs to SDGS and everyone is hopeful that this change will complete the unfinished agenda and  also emphasized that India is a unique country and we need to find unique solutions to address climate change issues and take forward the sustainability agenda.


Indian government is there to support India industry in helping take industry its green sustainability agenda forward by providing technological support and required resources, added Mr. Mishra.


"Sooner we adapt to greener and cleaner technology, better it is going to be for us," he said.


Dr. Mukund Rajan, Chair, FICCI Environment Committee and Chief Ethics Officer & Chairman, Tata Global Sustainability Council emphasised that the attitude towards sustainability investment is not merely defined by compliance requirements, but by the pressing demands of climate change and expectations of corporate environmental stewardship.


In the current scenario, sustainability has ceased to be an optional topic in the strategy harvesting process, and has become a medium to filter risks and optimise opportunities for growth. The mainstreaming of sustainability thinking will require an integrated approach, innovative strategies and collective commitment of all stakeholders, Dr. Rajan added.


Mr. Yuri Afanasiev, UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative in India said that it is important to have a deep and abiding commitment in engaging corporate sectors in the discussions on Sustainability. In India, major part of the progress is driven by private sector, therefore, there is need to capacitate the business on build on the existing agenda.  


He pointed out that there is need to promote business models that are economically viable and profitable, integrate the informal sector in India in a way in which sustainability agenda makes sense to them and educate millions of people involved across the supply chain so that scalable development solution can be replicated and propagated.


FICCI believes that corporate sector's engagement will help to derive efficiencies in the achievement of goals and targets that governments set out, in every sphere. The SDGs though overarching and macro as they may sound, would impinge upon and be influenced by micro level action, said Mr. Dilip Chenoy, Director General, FICCI.


FICCI also released a thought leadership report on "Sustainable Development Goals: Linkages with Corporate Actions in India" in collaboration with Thinkthrough Consulting (TTC), to highlight the perspective of Indian corporates on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs - the 'Global Goals'), as well as the role they play in supporting the goals.

The report provides answers of key corporates on questions related to engaging in the Global Goals, including the need for business for such engagement, drivers for business to support the SDGs, business opportunities arising from engaging in the agenda for Global Goals, and some of the current trends in India demonstrated through examples of leading practices and resulting impacts from some of the FICCI member companies.

The Report consists of -

  • An extensive analysis on corporate perceptions and actions on the Global Goals in India, the preparedness level of Indian corporates for the quest for Global Goals, strategies and steps that companies intend to take going forward, and some of the key barriers. From the FICCI member companies the feedback received, 85% of them are working towards the SDGs that are directly linked to their business.
  • India has framed its development roadmap focussing on the priority issues of employment, economic growth, food, water and energy security, disaster resilience and poverty alleviation. The SDG agenda is an excellent opportunity to further integrate the issues like climate change, natural resource scarcity and inequality into the Country's development plan.
  • At this point, it is critical for leading Indian businesses to serve as change agents and encourage their peers to adopt and internalize the SDGs, and leverage on the opportunities through appropriate corporate strategy.
  • Valuable insights to key stakeholders on matters related to involvement of business in the Global Goals.

India Sustainability Conclave is an annual platform to highlight the sustainability imperative of corporates and showcase corporate trendsetters who are embracing sustainability as an integral component of long term business strategies to highlight the direction that corporates have taken to reach their sustainability goals. FICCI believes that it is significant to have sustainable business with responsible and inclusive growth. 

The India Sustainability Conclave 2018 is also a World Environment Day 2018 event, for which India is the global host this year. With "Beat Plastic Pollution" as the theme for this year's World Environment Day edition, the world is coming together to combat single-use plastic pollution. The theme also urges governments, industry, communities and individuals to come together and explore sustainable alternatives and urgently reduce the production and excessive use of single-use plastic polluting our oceans, damaging marine life and threatening human health.

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