The need for sustainable solutions has never been greater. Climate change is now a reality and the global community needs to take action. While there are many sustainable technologies available, technology can also be used as an enabler of sustainable development. In this blog post we will explore how sustainable technology solutions can help us mitigate climate risk and achieve sustainable development goals by 2030.
What is climate risk and how does it affect the environment
One of the major environmental concerns is climate change. Climate risk refers to anticipated changes in future weather patterns, which can lead to increased frequency and intensity of extreme conditions including flooding, drought, heatwaves etc. These events have severe economic impact on GDP growth rates with recent studies showing an increase in financial losses due to extreme weather events.
The importance of reducing carbon emissions now for future generations
As sustainable technology experts, we believe that sustainable development goals are important for all countries and industries. Sustainable technologies enable us to reduce environmental impacts while growing our business. In fact, sustainable practices can even help your bottom line by increasing revenue from new products and services as well as improving profit margins through sustainable technologies like smart grids and energy efficient equipment.
How to manage climate risk with technology
There are many sustainable technology solutions available for mitigating environmental impacts of your company’s business practices. The first step is to start measuring the impact you have on the environment through a carbon footprint assessment. Once we understand how much greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions we produce, sustainable technology solutions can help us identify areas of improvement and cost savings. For example, a carbon calculator identifies the amount of GHGs produced by your company and helps you determine how much it would cost to offset those emissions through sustainable technologies like carbon credits.
Technologies are available to develop information and raise awareness, to plan and design adaptation strategies, to select adaptation technologies and implement them, and to monitor and evaluate their performance.
Let’s explain each of the four stages in brief now!
Develop information and raise awareness – sustainable technology solutions can help you gather better information and raise awareness about sustainable development goals. For example, IoT technologies like smart meters provide reliable energy consumption data that helps utilities understand where they should invest to reduce GHG emissions and improve their environmental impact reporting.
Plan and design adaptation strategies – sustainable technology solutions enable planners to make decisions based on accurate climate projections and sustainable development goals. For example, sustainable technology solutions can help planners design sustainable and energy efficient buildings.
Select adaptation technologies and implement them – sustainable technology solution providers usually provide a wide range of sustainable technologies to choose from including water management systems, renewable power sources, smart grid networking etc.
Monitor and evaluate their performance – sustainable technology solutions enable us to track sustainable development goals and reduce environmental impacts by integrating sustainable technology solutions to achieve those goals. For example, sustainable technologies like smart grids provide accurate energy consumption data that helps utilities understand how much carbon dioxide they should be emitting.
Examples of sustainable technologies that can help you reduce environmental impacts on your company’s bottom line
Other sustainable technologies available include smart grids, energy efficient equipment and building controls. Smart grids are advanced electricity distribution networks that optimize the use of distributed generation sources such as solar or wind power. These sustainable technology solutions enable you to integrate renewables into your current grid infrastructure while improving operational efficiencies by controlling consumption through tools like demand response programs.
Integrating sustainable practices into your operations and what you should do first to get started
Sustainable technologies are available for many applications. To find sustainable solutions that match your organization’s needs, look at all the sustainable technology options regardless of whether they’re new or established. Once you have found a list of sustainable technologies, take time to research each one to determine how it can address your organizational sustainable development goals. Doing this will help you prioritize which sustainable technologies to implement first and what the return on investment for each sustainable technology solution is likely to be.
The biggest step you can take towards integrating sustainable practices into your organization’s operations is by committing to them through policies, procedures, stakeholder engagement and sustainable development goals.