World citizens are, indeed, expressing greater keenness in sustainable development. However, it is not enough. In fact, businesses have to contribute more towards reducing the carbon footprint. It helps that consumers are showing an inclination to favor producers who care about the environment. Therefore, barring some issues that require resolving, the sustainability scenario seems to be heading on the right track. Outlined below are the biggest enemies of sustainability and some viable solutions to defeating them.
This is the mindset of many businesses, specifically manufacturers of hardware components and electronic goods. They influence consumers to think in a similar way. Hardly anyone cares to have damaged devices/gadgets repaired. It seems to be a sheer waste of money. Instead, a replacement with improved features appears to be the better option.
As a result, the pile of thrown-away recyclables and hardware waste seems to be growing bigger year after year. Since only a few waste management companies are around to take charge of the matter, disposal of tons and tons of waste remains a serious concern. Considering that the digital world is all set to expand more and more in the future, we may expect the throwaway culture to persist for some more time.
No, it is not difficult for there is a solution to every problem. For instance, businesses must come together to have a waste management and recycling program in place. This fix-up should sustain for generations. Thus far, businesses have taken recourse to the binning of discarded or unwanted devices/gadgets. This has to stop. Instead, they must work out a low-cost strategy for effective management of the lifecycles of IT devices. It would be good to maximize the recycling or reuse of hardware components. This would lessen wastage. It is equally imperative to educate consumers so that they make informed decisions while shopping for gadgets/devices. Additionally, they must also comprehend the dangers that inappropriate waste management cause to the environment.
World leaders are well aware that industries are responsible for producing loads of waste materials and recyclables. Factories and manufacturing units utilize the maximum amount of electricity, regardless of wherever they are located.
Similarly, people are excessively fond of everything ‘plastic’. They fail to realize that plastics are specifically responsible for destroying terrestrial and aquatic habitats and can be non-recyclable. Therefore, world leaders are not taking things lightly. They do keep a keen eye on existing regulations and ensure that suitable modifications come into place at the right times. These regulations concentrate majorly on the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and the appropriate disposal of plastic waste.
Apart from forming rules and regulations, local and national governments are also striving to get businesses to contribute towards reducing the carbon footprint. Since not everyone may be willing to listen, nations may find themselves having to set voluntary, as well as mandatory guidelines.
Businesses are at risk of having to pay hefty fines if they refuse to comply with local or national regulations. They must also keep themselves updated about existing and new laws. However, it is equally imperative that the authorities grant them sufficient time to prepare and change their methods of operating, prior to actually enforcing any kind of environmental regulation. This will encourage every company to remain ahead of the curve and set into effect a sustainable model for handling organizational objectives.
At the same time, commercial enterprises should strive to offer solutions to environmental issues that technological advancements cause. After all, they have a better acquaintance with the IT world than others do. For instance, blockchain, artificial intelligence, etc., may come into play for encouraging sustainable development.
Whatever they do, businesses must remember to play the role of leaders in the sustainability game. For one thing, their commercial operations will benefit. Secondly, they will earn the respect of consumers and the public. Such displays of corporate social responsibility do not fail to impress!
While all this is fine, there is a snag too. Sustainable development does not always yield healthy monetary benefits. Therefore, top executives and the chief financial officers of various business ventures may exhibit reluctance to promote it. Fortunately, the IT world can provide a solution in the form of Big Data Analytics. It provides new insights, enhances the efficaciousness of logistics, and reveals the importance of planning. In fact, the financial department and sustainability team can collaborate to design cost-effective action plans.
True, it is not always easy for businesses, especially small and medium-sized ones, to depend upon data-driven metrics. However, there is no harm in trying. Finally, businesses should prepare regular reports on sustainable practices. They will help in taking care of inconsistencies, even while reducing the carbon footprint. Above all, they will create a wonderfully positive effect on employee and consumer mindsets.