A Necessary Step: Bridging the Gap Between Business and the Environment
One cannot contemplate the future of the environment without considering the state of the economy – the two are inextricably linked. Which is why commercially-viable options that work within existing systems will be a crucial part of the way forward.
Some environmental advocates may be hesitant to accept CO2 emitters’ continued role in tomorrow’s economy, yet despite these concerns the fact remains: carbon-based energy isn’t going anywhere anytime soon.
The Paris Climate Change Agreement, for example, has China committing to reach peak carbon emissions around 2030. Meaning that the world’s second largest economy and largest polluter will likely continue its emissions growth for at least another decade.
India, currently producing greenhouse gases at a rate well-below developed nations’ per capita output, has a vast population waiting to enter the currently fossil-fueled middle class. Some estimates have India’s CO2 output doubling by 2030. Furthermore, despite valiant efforts by some leading governments, a major study recently showed worldwide carbon emissions reaching an all-time high in 2018.
The need for solutions that work with carbon-based emitters is, for now, a reality of existing infrastructure. Sustainable energy alternatives simply aren’t ready yet, not at the scale required.
The Chinese example illustrates this well. China is currently leading the world in clean-energy development, with massive investments in solar and wind. Yet despite this impressive shift towards renewables, their national CO2 emissions keep rising. China’s need for energy is growing faster than their ability to produce it sustainably.
While environmental concerns and moral imperatives can and should be the ethical drivers setting the course, an economy and its industries are slow-moving vessels that require a well-rounded argument to risk change. Corporations have a duty to maximize shareholder value, therefore commercial incentives must align or at least track in a similar direction. If not, untreated emissions will continue to play a perilous role in our global energy portfolio.
Pond Tech’s two-sided model not only combats climate change, but derives value from emissions by producing a valuable planet-friendly byproduct. If the sustainable economies of the future will indeed be built by a series of collaborative steps – a structural evolution that blends old and new – then circular solutions like Pond’s are crucial elements of tomorrow’s low-carbon economy.