“Climate Change is a realty and must we change for the Sake of Future generations,” – Former Vice President of United States of America, Al Gore
Speaking at the Special Plenary on Climate change organized on the occasion of CII Northern Region Annual Regional Meet for 2015-16 in New Delhi on Saturday, Al Gore, Former Vice President of United States of America, made an impressive presentation on how climate change is the biggest challenge facing humanity and how this challenge has also the potential of being the biggest ever business opportunity as well.
Describing the challenge of climate change, Al Gore, said, “We put 100 million man-made global heat-trapping warming pollution every 24 hours into our atmosphere. This is equivalent to the energy released by 400,000 Hiroshima bombs every day. 93 percent of this energy goes back into the earth’s oceans.”
Al Gore said “climate change is a systemic cause and effect leading to rising temperatures, increasing humidity, which in turn leads to harsher storms, frequent floods and mud slides, and also droughts, which are becoming deeper and longer. The food and water shortages and pandemic diseases caused by climate change can cause socio-political upheavals.”
The heart of the problem is that we rely on dirty carbon based fuel for meeting 85 percent of our energy needs. Technology in renewable energy holds the key to mitigate climate change. It has also opened up a plethora of business opportunities in the Green technology sector,” he said.
“In 2000, we had projected harnessing of 30 GWH of wind energy by 2010, however, by 2015 we achieved 14.5 times over. Similarly, in 2002 we projected solar energy will grow by 1 GW per year by 2010. By 2015 we exceeded that goal 56 times over. With India being blessed with 300 days of sunshine, the country has a huge opportunity in solar energy. Solar energy can reach people without access to electricity.
Earlier in his opening remarks, Chandrajit Banerjee, Director General, CII, briefed the house on how CII has been actively partnering ministries, NGO’s, Academicians – both in India & globally to work out solutions and strategies for limiting emissions leading to global warming. While highlighting CII’s endeavours on Renewable and Clean energy, Banerjee said, “we work with our industry members to bring in climate change discussions to boardrooms through awareness advocacy, advisory services & research offered by its Centres of Excellence.”
Highlighting the current trends of Green House emissions in India, Sumit Mazumder, President CII said, “India accounts for 5.3 percent of green house gas emissions globally and is the third largest emitter. Therefore its role in mitigating the threat of Climate Change is imperative. The roadmap to achieve the same for India would be different as we have to balance our socio economic development goals with the need for climate change mitigation measures.”
The CII Conference, themed on ‘Building North for a Better Tomorrow’ focused on the critical reforms to accelerate the growth of the Northern States. This conference also included three sessions focusing on ‘North – Sustaining the Competitive Edge’, ‘Governance in Corporate Sector’ and ‘Challenges to Climate Change.’