Home / Opinion / Columns /  Effective use of limited natural resources: a tale of two generations
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In an increasingly interconnected world, all generations need to come to an understanding of shared resources and how to optimally use them. Whereas this might seem an obvious observation, its importance cannot be overstated, especially in a situation fraught with limited natural capital, which countries fight to lay claim to and guard zealously.

In a new world order marked by polarization and increasing eco-political uncertainty, it is significant to understand the importance of intergenerational solidarity, harness all generations’ strengths and knowledge, to work towards sustainable development. Keeping this in mind, let us look at achieving this goal in a manner where no one is left behind.

Effective Resource Allocation

Allocation of natural resources remains a challenge and however any government chooses to navigate this, some stakeholder is going to be unhappy with the outcome. A good way of getting this done could be to engage all stakeholders in discussions and dialogue, as and when organisations and companies assess and review their short- and long-term goals.

Environmental economics provides many theories, one being where the polluting entity has to pay for the damage done to the environment. However, this is easier said than done and needs the collaborative efforts of corporates and individuals to work towards goals that ensure growth without compromising natural resources. Companies can work towards measurable goals to reduce the harmful impact to the environment.

At an inter-governmental level, policy design and implementation can be done in a manner that does not result in wasteful expenditure of resources and ensures transparency.

Working Towards Sustainable Solutions Focused on Problem Solving

With young and old generations getting more mindful of the environment today, corporates can take this opportunity to work towards time-based goals for sustainability, and some examples towards this are following principles of circular economy and following the science-based targets initiative to ensure that businesses are aligned with this goal.

This can serve as a reminder to use resources judiciously, and even innovatively. The future belongs to the generations to come hence we all need to work together to leave behind a better, equitable and sustainable world for them.

Now would be a good time to act in cohesion to reuse and replenish our scarce natural capital without impending economic growth.

(Rackanchath Nanda, Chief of Human Resources and CSR, Tata Chemicals)

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