Prakash Acharya on How Green Entrepreneurs Can Save the World
Emily Wilkinson, a social entrepreneur I highly appreciate,became aware of increasing environmental threat of plastic bottles and decided to bring out some solution to the world.As a result she invented a portable water filter which can help reducing use of bottled water.It is called botlfilter™ which can deliver fresh tasting water anywhere good tap is available.
Like Emily, there are thousands of individuals and teams who are dedicating their lives in changing the world. Some are working on the creation of disposable diapers, creation of sanitation in slum areas,whilst others work with organic agriculture and green energy but they all have one thing in common, they are working for a better world.
Is the situation in the world getting worse?
I am not sure if the world will one day come to an end, the environmental situation is certainly getting worse with every passing day. Nature is losing its green which is consequently causing so many miseries. So many things are going on wrong and it is urgent to make them right. I was totally shocked to know,
- One in eight die of air pollution .OR, 7 million people die of air pollution
- annually (WHO)
- 768 Million people have no improved source of drinking water. (unwater.org)
- One in three in world do not have access to improved sanitation (unwater.org)
- 1.4 billion people are still without access to electricity
- 300,000 people die because of pesticides and greater numbers are dying because of cancer caused by pesticides.
- 11 million ton trash per day is dumped in earth, which greatly consist carcinogenic materials like of plastic, glass, mercury, lead etc
Isn’t it horrible out here?
Green entrepreneurship starts with the self
It is not always environment alone which specifies green. Green has become symbol of “right things to be”. It indicates the state of earth in absence of poverty, pollution, disease, epidemic, adulteration and all the miseries that we are facing in our life and those things which future generation is not ready to welcome. So, turning green can mean reduction of poverty, eradication of diseases, mitigation of energy crisis, and emphasis on education and so on. On my personal definition I simply prefer to call everyone who is putting their effort to build a better world is green entrepreneur.
Constantly having just business ideas does not qualify one to be a green entrepreneur; it starts with self and from home too. For example, if someone is collecting plastic bags from kitchen and returning it to the grocery vendors to reuse them, then that guy is an awesome green entrepreneur. But it is in individual state while a business or venture takes a person from an individual to people or the market. While entering into the market, offering product or services by considering benefit for people, planet and self can make a green entrepreneur.
Business firms will have no choice other than greener products
Green movement have already started, less noticed but growing in incredible rate. Even noodle companies are coming up with the fat free product and more vitamins. Herbal FMCG like toothpaste,soap and shampoos have remarkable sales which has become threat to some giant multinationals, so they are shifting to greener or herbal product. From a Nepalese context, the herbal products from Okhati has proven itself as unbelievable and unnoticed competitor to the multinational FMCGs, so they are looking forward to introduce herbal soaps and shampoos. Almost all of the established electronics companies are introducing energy efficient products and making energy efficiency a market strategy to compete.
Young entrepreneurs are coming up with innovative ideas in each business sectors. Earlier, price and promotion used to be two among four marketing elements but the scene has changed today, startups in each business platform are considering people and planet two main market elements to overtake existing market. Gdiapers by Jason Graham is an outstanding illustration to see how green offers are overtaking conventional products.
Who, What, Why and How?
Politicians are hopeless because they never take time to think about what’s going wrong, they are more concerned about their personal benefits. This leaves the youth as the only hope for change. Every business sector provides an opportunity for innovation and there is a possibility to have green products in every market. These are the few products I have seen urgent to provide greener solution.
- Urban lifestyle has deprived school children from nutrition, so Nutritional Lunch Box to school children help kids develop well physically and mentally.
- Cancer and tumor have been the terribly common disease of our time because of synthetic fertilizer and pesticides that enters into our body with vegetables and fruits so, Organic vegetables and fruits can be greatest life saver.
- Solar PV for rural households can gift life to many rural housewife and children, while indirectly it improves education, health status, and communication.
- Tourism industry can be best area to turn green, people will love to stay on eco resorts, home-stays where people can harvest fresh vegetables, and stay fresh.
- Recycled Paper greeting Cards, an amazing idea to care people.
- Urban roof top gardening service will keep city clean, on the other hand reduce 40 % of urban waste to be dumped.
- Portable water filters for far rural areas can save people from acute cholera.
- Heating tool for pregnant women can save life of mother and child.
- Health centers in rural areas.
- School or quality education can develop good citizens.
Much more and everywhere green entrepreneurs can innovate and act for better world.