Frost & Sullivan and The Energy and Resources Institute recently concluded the annual India Sustainability Leadership Summit 2017 and Sustainability 4.0 Awards on 26th May, 2017 in Mumbai. The event was marked by the presence of distinguished personalities, representatives of forward thinking organisations, thought leaders and innovators who constitute the agents of change that this millennia needs to see.
The day began with the India Sustainability Leadership Summit hosted jointly by Frost & Sullivan and TERI. There were thought provoking plenary sessions on of ‘Circular Economies’ and on ‘Integrating Sustainability into Commercial Normality’, followed by actual examples of companies that are making headway in their journey towards sustainability and some upcoming and innovative technologies on green energy, microgrids and innovative solar heating.
The distinguished panellists represented policy makers, doyens in the field of sustainability and business leaders from renowned organisations like UNDP India, Ministry of Railways, Yes Bank, Ingersoll Rand, SIDBI, Reliance India Limited, Jain Irrigation, CLP Power, and Megawatt Solutions.
The plenary session chaired by Ajay Shankar, Former Secretary, DIPP, Ministry of Commerce & Industry threw light on aspects of responsible financing, and novel agricultural methodologies to enable water stewardship among farmers. G S Gill, Distinguished Advisor to TERI, elaborated on various aspects that are considered while embedding SDGs as an integral part of the fabric of the organisation.
The summit culminated in the awards night in the company of business leaders representing the manufacturing and service sectors. The grand awards night marked the celebration of the winners of this year’s Sustainability 4.0 awards with Ashok Chawla, Chairman, TERI welcoming all the delegates to the event. Raghavendra Rao, Sr. Vice President, Frost & Sullivan, noted that the last few years have witnessed a positive rapid change toward adopting sustainability.
The banquet witnessed highly interactive and engaging participants from organisations that aim at adopting sustainable development practices at the core of their business strategy.
On the occasion, Dr. Ajay Mathur, Director General of TERI, pointed out, “The growth of resource efficiency depends on both technologies and markets. In the last few years we have seen how these new markets have exploded.” Congratulating the Award winners, he called upon Indian corporate leadership - “Many of you have pioneered converting what was yesterday’s waste, into what are today’s inputs into new products. This will lay the foundation for a healthy India and a healthy world.”
Discussing this year’s assessments, companies and increasing level of participation year-on-year, Y. S. Shashidhar, Managing Director and Partner – South Asia, Middle East & North Africa, Frost & Sullivan, said, “India’s share in the global CO2 emission is just around 6% but the emission per capita has risen by almost 150% in last two and half decades. The challenge at hand is to manage our environment footprint while the Indian economic growth story continues. We are witnessing a spurt in investment and development of cleaner technologies over the last decade which is expected to drive the vision of a carbon neutral economy. We have also seen the evolution of new business segments as a result of climate change. Waste management industry in India itself, which was insignificant about a decade ago, is expected to be a $13 billion industry by 2025 as per research reports”.
The awards assessment framework has four major parameters and 13 sub-parameters, recognizing the efforts of front runners via a thorough benchmarking process. The model also takes into consideration global sustainability frameworks and future requirements of reporting. This year’s Sustainability 4.0 Awards were presented to companies in three major categories: Leaders, Challengers and Believers. Reliance Industries Limited received the highest recognition of - The Sustainable Corporate of the Year Award. Under the “Safety Excellence Assessments”, Tata Motors Ltd received the highest honour of Safety Excellence Award - Overall Winner.
The event was attended by more than 150 industry leaders.