The sustainability edge: Smriti Irani, Bhupendra Yadav to grace The Economic Times SDGs Summit 2022 that aims to change ideas to solutions

The sustainability edge: Smriti Irani, Bhupendra Yadav to grace The Economic Times SDGs Summit 2022 that aims to change ideas to solutions
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As we near the 27th United Nations Climate Change Conference (aka COP 27), scheduled for November 2022, feelings of anxious anticipation, dread, and hope prevail worldwide. However, if you want to entertain a tantalising appetiser before our world leaders announce our planet's face, The Economic Times has returned with the 4th edition of its SDGs Summit. The event aims to gauge and influence the private and public discourses towards advancing sustainable development, focusing particularly on the climate behemoth, with representation from 20+ countries, 100+ companies, 200+ speakers, and 5000+ delegates.

Several major business, government, and institutional leaders are expected to gather at the Hyatt Regency in New Delhi on Wednesday, September 28, for the Global Sustainability Alliance SDG Summit 2022, organised by the ET Edge. The summit will feature discussions around specific strategies to help businesses reduce emissions and steer closer to the Net Zero goal. The sessions will also focus on initiating and accelerating entrepreneurial solutions to tackle climate change.

The lineup for the summit is as star-studded as they come, with Women and Child Development Minister Smt. Smriti Irani; Environment, Forest and Climate Change Minister Shri Bhupendra Yadav; and Minister of Jal Shakti, Shri Gajendra Shekhawat, set to appear as Chief Guests.

With a key emphasis on the expansion of clean and renewable energy systems to achieve 2030 targets, some business areas that will be under scrutiny and discussion at the summit include recycling, water and waste management, green infrastructure, circular economy, business resilience, decarbonisation, carbon credits, energy, and plastic pollution. The business statement is based on an estimate from the Business & Sustainable Development Commission that sustainable business models related to the SDGs could open economic opportunities worth up to $12 trillion and increase employment by up to 380 million jobs by 2030.

Many climate activists and researchers would agree that this focus on business objectives remains a key priority for a sustainable future. According to Futurescape, the knowledge partner at the summit, 80% of the top 100 Indian companies aspire to incorporate some Sustainable Developmental Goals (SDG) into their business goals, but this is rarely reflected realistically.

For example, while an impressive 88% of companies map the 13th SDG of 'climate action' into their responsible business decisions, Futurescape estimates that the proportion lies actually just over 50% at best. Such a major discrepancy in commitment and action can spell drastic consequences for the planet and people.

Therefore, an index that properly calculates company alignment with the best SDG practices becomes paramount, and The Economic Times has partnered with Futurescape to establish such an indicator at the summit. This system will hopefully drive greater accountability and sincerity in future business practices.

In addition, registrants can expect roundtable discussions and workshops focused on specific SDGs that will strive to derive definitive action, as well as inter-country dialogue where nations can exchange best practices and ideas to help serve the one planet we all dwell on.

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