For a sustainable future

Entrepreneur and bestselling Belgian author Gunter Pauli spends most of his time in the implementation of a wide range of projects that blends scientific solutions with nature .

His bestselling book, The Blue Economy: 10 years, 100 innovations, 100 million jobs talked about innovations to shift society from scarcity to abundance by tackling issues that cause environmental and related problems in new ways. He was in Bengaluru for a conference organised by Atree. Pauli says, "It is very important to transform society in a way that allows you to meet the basic needs of all participants. In the green economy model, the custodians of the Earth - the farmers, fishermen do not gain much. That must change."

He says, "For instance, the coffee that you drink every morning is only a small proportion of the actual produce by the farmer. Most of it is wasted. Our model envisages using this waste to grow mushrooms and subsequently using the mushroom waste as fodder. It is just a matter of using the resources we already have. Presently, we have 5,000 farms across the world that use this model.”

That is Blue Economy - how to make much more with what we have, how to increase purchasing power, how to have more products derived from available resources, and how to make these more competitive, generating better overall revenue, creating jobs while making the individual products cheaper, he elaborated. The toughest part, is convincing people that these systems work. “The first time I talk about such innovations, people do not believe it. I tell them to visit the farms and understand it better. Ignorance is the biggest issue. Once that is tackled, I am sure innovative solutions will be welcomed."

He adds, "It is very important to create techniques that will be more sustainable in the long term. We must addresses the problems of resource scarcity and waste disposal, while focusing on sustainable development in a holistic manner. A lot has been written about climate change and sustainable living. It is now important that people take action. If we are not able to innovate, it may result in destruction."

The entrepreneur is not very concerned about the outcome of the American election on climate change. "America was never in all these years, even under the Clinton and Obama administrations in the climate change initiatives. I don't think much will change in this respect with the presidency of Donald Trump."

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Printable version | Jun 20, 2021 1:58:52 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/entertainment/For-a-sustainable-future/article17116533.ece

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