Vidarbha Industries Association and Clean Air Asia jointly organized a webinar on “Reducing Emissions by Sustainable Production: An opportunity for MSMEs to Clean Air Post COVID-19 Lockdown”.
Sanjay Dube, CEO, International Institute for Energy Conservation (IIEC) deliberated on procurement and transition of resources in production activities such as reliable green power and energy. He said the whole world is suffering from COVID 19. If we are talking about industries, rigorous data collection to be done and this collected information should be shared with industries for their ready reference. Industries must see what measures can be taken such as Energy Audit; it is an essential aspect to be studied in industry and observations found in audit to be implemented. Such small changes of around 10 to 15 percent may give some tangible outcomes and if it is not sufficient then it is the right time to adopt the changes. The government has offered many schemes for MSMEs, first units must look inside rather than outside and it will be helpful for the MSMEs.
Debajit Das, National Project Coordinator – UNIDO highlighted pathways towards the revival of MSMEs post-COVID-19. He also shared insightful views on various financial aspects that could help MSMEs to cope up with the post-pandemic challenges. Further, he stressed the economic scenario of the country. He said in this situation, companies’ profitability has been affected by 30%. Cash flow, Payments, and salaries are still the challenges. Companies will have to follow a system of restart and recover by developing capacities within them. It can be done through developing new skills, sustaining customers and better organizational management will help companies recover. Companies should focus on the line of procurement, Suppliers, Supply chain management, etc. also by optimizing the production process and adopting new technologies. It may not need big investment but will give better results.
Sapna Shrivastava, Regional Officer, Uttar Pradesh Pollution Control Board, shared updates related to pollution control board; She said there are no changes in regulations before and after COVID-19 Pandemic and no relaxations have been granted in adoption and usage of instruments and devices. She agreed that having industrial clusters with similar business services will not face any issue in running their units with a focus on sustainability.
Dr. R. Gopichandran – Prof. Sustainability at the NTPC School of Business Noida, He stressed on some vital issues of industries related to sustainable productivity and ways of environmental benchmarking and eco-industrial development. He said having a clear vision is very important for every industry. Industries must invest their resources in energy-efficient production and emission reduction. Industries should develop a COVID action platform. Industries should look for processes, energy-saving and waste management to achieve sustainability, etc at the industry level or industrial area level. The second point is very important for the industry is waste mining, waste produced by some industries might be useful for others, this could be a good way to gain financial sustainability.
Anand Shukla, Senior Thematic Advisor, Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) shared various practical experiences on how energy efficiency and productivity could be scaled to reduce air pollution. He demonstrated various cases from the cement industries and how cost and environment effective technologies are available in cement and glass industries. He also talked about the importance of capacity building and training of professionals operating the energy-efficient technologies like Zig Zag technologies in Brick kilns.
Earlier Dr Suhas Buddhe, Vice President – VIA welcomed the expert speakers and said VIA has been continuously discussing with members to understand the challenges faced by them. He further said we have members from different sectors and some of them have green operations and some have brown, such industries have their own carbon footprints. We should make a tool for industries through which they can sustain greener productivity.
Prarthana Borah, India Director and Ruchi Tomar, Environment Researcher of Clean Air Asia moderated the programme. Owner, Technical Head, Head Engineering, Head ETP, Head Environment & Engineering representatives from the organizations participated in the discussion to explore the issues and pathways to bring sustainability in production activities of MSMEs.