Small businesses need access to tech like big ones: India at COP27

Discussions must focus on bridging the gap between what we want to achieve and how to achieve it, the environment minister told a panel hosted by the Ministry of Science and Technology

COP27 Egypt
India is set to unveil its long-term low-emissions and development strategy at COP27 on Monday

Stressing that climate change is not just an issue for emitters, Environment Minister Leena Nandan told a COP27 panel discussion on Friday that MSMEs and start-ups need access to technology as much as big business.

Nandan was speaking at the panel discussion on “Technology Needs Assessment for Sustainable Living” at the Indian Pavilion at COP 27. India’s Department of Science and Technology (DST) moderated discussions to identify technology needs and their assessment for sustainable development as future global citizens.

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“Climate change is not just a problem for those seen as emitters. There is now a broad and unified understanding that climate change cannot go away as it pleases. It is knocking on our doors, “she says.


“Lifestyle has to change”

Nandan pointed out that climate change has led to an increase in natural disasters. “The way we live needs to change to meet the challenges we face… our discussions now need to focus on bridging the gap between what we want to achieve and how to get there.”

To bridge the gap, “Technology cannot continue to be limited to big companies because of access to financing. Financing needs to be made accessible to MSMEs and start-ups to use technology optimally,” Nandan said.

She said existing science has many solutions, but has to deal with how to apply that science to our advantage. She gave the example of road construction, where a one-size-fits-all policy cannot be applied due to India’s enormous diversity. “Technology needs assessments vary from state to state. The diversity of terrain forces states to find their own solutions,” she explained.

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“Reduce, reuse, recycle, restore and refurbish. All ‘R’s require T, which is technology,” she added, urging DST to work with the state government to come up with innovative solutions.

India is set to launch its Long Term Low Emissions and Development Strategy (LTLEDS) at COP27 on Monday. Environment Minister Bhupendra Yadav will release the document, officials said.

(with institutional input)

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