Saturday, April 13, 2024

Fostering a greener tomorrow

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India is emerging as a global leader across various sectors, setting ambitious goals to address environmental challenges.  Key among them is a focus on dealing with environmental issues, deforestation and climate change. It is now crucial to implement sustainable practices to address urgent issues, such as air and water pollution, deforestation and climate change.
Sustainability is the prudent use of resources to secure the needs of both present and future generations. To achieve this, we need to carefully balance social advancement, economic growth and environmental preservation.  In India, where the population is huge and cities are growing rapidly, sustainability matters now more than ever.

Women’s Role in Shaping India’s Green Future
Women are taking the lead in various fields, from environmental conservation and sustainable agriculture, to renewable energy and waste management. Their engagement is pivotal as they bring diverse perspectives, experiences and skills to the forefront, offering holistic solutions to India’s challenges encompassing environmental, social and economic sustainability.
Women in the sustainability sector face various challenges that restrict their advancement. A significant challenge is the lack of equal opportunities and recognition. Women often find themselves struggling to break the glass ceiling and experience gender bias when it comes to career advancement and leadership roles. Women entrepreneurs in the sustainability industry face additional challenges due to the lack of access to financing and resources, primarily due to systemic biases and unequal access to networks and opportunities compared to their male counterparts. Moreover, they frequently juggle multiple responsibilities, such as housework and caregiving, limiting their time and energy for professional development. These problems lead to women’s underrepresentation in decision-making processes, impeding the sector’s overall success and growth.
Increasing opportunities
for women in the sustainability sector
The growing awareness and demand for sustainable practices have created opportunities for women to create a big impact. Government policies, corporate social responsibility efforts and social entrepreneurship have provided opportunities for women to demonstrate their abilities and innovative ideas. Women-led start-ups focussed on sustainable solutions are gaining traction and garnering investment. There is a rising acknowledgment of the importance of diversity and inclusivity in the sustainability sector, which has resulted in more opportunities for women to contribute and attain leadership positions.
Several resources and networks have been established to help empower women in the sustainability sector. Women-centric groups and non-governmental organisations (NGOs) provide training, mentorship and financial
support to women in their sustainability efforts. These groups also promote networking opportunities, enabling women to meet like-
minded people, share expertise and work together on initiatives. Internet platforms and networks provide essential tools, such as information, best practices and inspiring success stories for women working in sustainability. These resources and networks are critical in closing the gender gap and creating a supportive environment for women in India’s sustainability industry.
Across a wide range of industries, women possess an unparalleled ability to effect positive change and mould sustainable practices. It is imperative that we address the
issues that women confront and give them assistance, acknowledgment and equal opportunity. India can hasten its transition to a more sustainable and inclusive future by harnessing the potential of women and promoting gender equality in sustainability.

(The author, Rajesh Khosla, is the CEO of AGI Glaspac.)

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