At the 15th CII Sustainability Summit 2020, during a special session on Circular Economy for Self-Reliant India, Piyush Goyal, Minister of Railways, Commerce and Industry emphasized the importance of incorporating sustainable practices to create a Circular Economy, which he defined as a “profit economy”. Spotlighting the 3Rs of Reduce, Reuse and Recycle and the Zero Effect and Zero Defect idea enunciated by the Prime Minister of India, Goyal talked about the importance of adopting sustainability as a way of life and focussing on sustainability for all endeavours. These, he underscored, will not only help the environment but make India more globally competitive as well. He cited many examples where efficient waste management and the 3Rs have led to significant savings of resources such as water, while also curbing pollution and other deleterious effects of economic activity.
“There is a strong need to educate the common man to get the best benefits out of a Circular Economy,” he said, and urged CII to prepare a Compendium of 101 ideas to spread the message of sustainability and Circular Economy since “small changes can lead to spectacular transformation”. A holistic approach and incentivising people, the Minister said, can play a significant role in creating a Circular Economy. As we look at reviving economic growth against the backdrop of the pandemic, a circular model of growth is best suited to revive sustainable growth and could also create 1.4 crore jobs in the next 5-7 years as estimated by NITI Aayog, he elaborated.
Appreciating the Minister’s emphasis on sustainability and Circular Economy, Sanjiv Puri, Chairman, Advisory Council of CII-ITC Centre of Excellence for Sustainable Development Chairman and Managing Director, ITC Limited said that a Circular Economy is good for business and society and is critical for India’s competitiveness. R Mukundan, Managing Director and CEO, TATA Chemicals spoke about the need for everyone to promote sustainability and implement the 3Rs to create inclusive, sustainable growth.
Chandrajit Banerjee, Director General, Confederation of Indian Industry, said that a Circular Economy calls for deep and widespread collaboration among all stakeholders such as industry, government and consumers. Today the global economy is only 8.6 percent circular. A transition towards Circular Economy is a prerequisite for fulfilling India’s economic growth ambitions and competitiveness of Indian businesses, he said, adding that adopting the principles of Circular Economy can cushion enterprises from shocks like the present one due to the pandemic. (Source: CII)