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Carving Out A Sustainable Future: My Message To The Leaders Of Tomorrow
As future leaders, the youth should collaborate with stakeholders to develop inclusive, resilient, and sustainable models to streamline the waste supply chain from source to end and focus on recyclable and reusable packaging toward a plastic-neutral future
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Climate change is a critical global challenge, moving at an astonishing speed, that requires bold and swift intervention from one and all. There is a need to accelerate our efforts to find smarter solutions to climate change and biodiversity loss. A commitment across generations is important. The youth constitute a large part of the workforce and are the leaders of tomorrow who will need to shoulder the responsibility for the generations to come.
As future business leaders, the role of the youth is pivotal. By learning from the wisdom and mistakes of the current generation, they would be better disposed to minimise the detrimental effect on the environment while optimising production measures, through sustainable operations, plastic waste management, water stewardship and sustainable sourcing.
Striving for sustainable operations
As leaders of tomorrow, they should focus on reducing GHG emissions, using more renewable energy, improving environmental operations, and using fewer natural resources for production. The aim should be on adopting sustainable practices like solar panels and sustainable logistics with less carbon footprint and high productivity. Food waste can also lead to the generation of GHG emissions and wastage of water and businesses must be committed to reducing this to contribute to a resource-efficient circular economy.
Managing plastic waste
As future leaders, the youth should collaborate with stakeholders to develop inclusive, resilient, and sustainable models to streamline the waste supply chain from source to end and focus on recyclable and reusable packaging towards a plastic-neutral future.
Adopting responsible sourcing
Responsible sourcing must be implemented in the supply chain, keeping a strong focus on empowering farmers and suppliers to produce raw materials sustainably. By focusing on regenerative agriculture and inculcating good agricultural practices, the youth should take steps to reduce the degradation of the environment.
Stewarding water resources
Sustainable water stewardship is the need of the hour. Farmers who can manage and conserve water can have a significant positive impact on the environment and alleviate pressure on ecosystems. Therefore, it would be essential to empowering farmers in water-stressed areas to conserve this vital resource.
The sustainable shift cannot happen in a day and requires participation across generations of people. This includes the youth who are the key drivers for a sustainable tomorrow as the agents of mobilization and change. As we progress, businesses should work in partnership with the youth to protect the health of our habitats and stitch a better future to leave behind a world worthy for future generations.
In the words of Mahatma Gandhi, ‘’The earth, the air, the land and the water are not an inheritance from our forefathers but on loan from our children. So, we have to hand it over to them at least as it was handed over to us’’.
The author is Chairman and Managing Director – Nestlé India Limited
Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house. Unless otherwise noted, the author is writing in his/her personal capacity. They are not intended and should not be thought to represent official ideas, attitudes, or policies of any agency or institution.