Eco Dispatch #10

9 April 2024

Hello, and welcome to edition ten of Eco Dispatch from The Sustainability Mafia.

Exciting news alert! Our incredible mafiosos have just aced their appearances on Shark Tank, and we're absolutely thrilled! 🌟 

Arpit Dhupar of Dharaksha, Mansi from Digital Paani, Shreyansh of Canvaloop, and Anish from Ashaya – we couldn't be happier to see them shine on such a prestigious platform. Their presence on Shark Tank not only highlights their achievements but also underscores the collective impact we, as a community, are making in the realm of sustainability.

Stay tuned as we send out more details on a Mafioso-spotlight webinar where these stars talk about their Shark Tank experience. Details will be sent via email to our subscribers and will be announced on our social media channels.

In Life, As In Art

By Hasita Krishna

Graffiti on walls, the Hip-hop dance style, even Banksy’s anonymous statements on the state of the world- these are all a commentary on the world order, a form of anger channeled into something more meaningful, so more of us can see.

As the city of Bengaluru, India, runs dry, there is a palpable desire among its residents to understand.

When did we get here? What prompted it? What made it worse? And why is there inequity even in the face of a clear and present crisis?

For better or for worse, it was the pandemic period that made us, as a collective, more aware of climate change and its many, wide-reaching implications. As we saw dolphins swim in canals they had long abandoned, and witnessed the world’s logistics come to a halt because one ship stranded itself in another water body, we began to grasp, maybe even for the very first time, our impact on a fragile, fine balance.

Who are we in the grand scheme of things, and how do our actions impact the place we call home?

Bengaluru is only the first among many cities that has begun to experience the fundamental truth that resources-even those provided in such abundance by the Earth-are essentially finite.

The land we use, the water we consume, the air we breathe- what happens when they don’t come to us as naturally as we thought they would?

This is where art has the capacity to spur change.

At a school’s Annual Day function, one of our community members experienced the angst and the confusion of the next generation of humans who are now, and with urgency, being tasked with solving a problem they will most certainly inherit.

When a city of a few thousand lakes is relegated to no more than a few ten surviving ones, what do its inhabitants do?

Through song, dance, and drama, this angst was communicated to a spellbound audience, and the message was clear- we are the stakeholders, and this is our time to come together and define how we will be remembered.

Climate change can take on many forms and roles. What’s more, it may look like a life-altering situation for one person, and be no more than a pesky inconvenience for another. As monsoons hopefully arrive, the water crisis may remain a forgotten chance to learn an important lesson.

Our attention, however, needs to be on the fact that monsoon may hopefully come. That the air may potentially get cleaner. That our capacity to limit global warming to under 2 degrees Celsius may be possible.

It is that unpredictability that we are hoping to address, reverse, manage, and mitigate. We have the tools. We have the intention.

Are we ready to make the choices we need to make?

Member Milestones

In a recent Hindustan Times article, Gagan Agarwal (co-founder and CEO of Planet Electric) delved into the transformative potential of lighter electric vehicles (EVs) for future mobility solutions.

Agarwal's insights shed light on the evolving landscape of sustainable transportation, offering a glimpse into how lighter EVs could revolutionize our daily commutes. Dive into the article to explore the promising future of eco-friendly mobility. Read more here.

  1. Aalok A. Deshmukh of SuperHumanRace launched a new conversation series, 'Money, Media, & Machines,' sharing a stage with Ranjita Revi, exploring the dynamic intersections of finance, media, and technology.

    Follow him on LinkedIn to join future conversations.

  2. WATSAN Envirotech completes a Community Grant Project in Peru commissioned by the Royal Academy of Engineering, in collaboration with a Peruvian and a Columbian water startup. The project worked to implement and stress the need of water conservation and preserve nature.

  3. The Patent for the World's first Bi-directional Swapping Kiosk was granted to Ankit, Nakul Mehan, and Shikhar Sharma of Sheru.

  4. Dexler Energy was honored with the prestigious title of Solar PV EPC Company of the Year for SMEs in the Open Access category.

  5. Ankita and Nikhil Vijayvergiya of Billion Carbon received the prestigious top innovator award at Riyadh's UpLink-World Economic Forum, highlighting their pioneering efforts in sustainability. Dive into BillionCarbon's innovative solutions and their role in combating climate change.

  6. Smart Joules' feature in the Economic Times applauds its efforts to help Indian enterprises save millions in energy costs through innovative solutions. Find out more about their solutions here.

  7. Dr. Ezhil Subbian's recognition in the UN Women photo essay celebrates India's women leaders' remarkable achievements at CSW-68. Explore Dr. Subbian's inspiring journey and her contributions to advancing gender equality here.

  8. Buyofuel secures its position as one of the top climate tech startups worldwide in the SET100 list of 2024 for the second consecutive year! Discover how Buyofuels leads innovation in climate technology and explore their sustainable solutions for a cleaner future.

  9.  Shreyans Kokra and Team Canvaloop's feature on 'OMG Yeh Mera India- SuperFibreEdition' on HistoryTV18 showcases their innovative contributions to sustainable fashion. Learn about Canvaloop's eco-friendly textiles and their impact on promoting sustainable fashion practices here.

  10. The Sharks are loving our Mafiosos! After Ashaya’s resounding success in Shark Tank India, CanvaLoop, Digital Paani and Dharaksha headed to the tank soon. Tune in and support the Mafioso ecosystem that is innovating for a sustainable future.

More Inspiration

From a Netflix series that makes you think deeply about the nature of evolution to a developing nation’s president who has something important to say, here are our sources of inspiration this month.

  1. We are on the brink of the sixth mass extinction, but how exactly did the first five take place? Life On Our Planet (Netflix) shows us that while an asteroid may have gotten to the dinosaurs, the causes of other mass extinctions were a lot less doomsday and a lot more…obvious. A poignant reminder of the sensitive balance that we call life.

  2. In the era of five-second reels and five-minute trends, what does it take for a South American country’s president to go viral? A sensible message and a clear callout that responsibility in crisis can never be borne by one entity alone. What did you think of Guyana’s President Irrfan Ali’s ‘schooling’ of the BBC news reporter?

  3. What does climate change look like in your immediate neighborhood?

    From the obvious to the unexpected, show us your most immediate example of climate change. We look forward to featuring your photos, and your thoughts, in Eco Dispatch #11. Send in your photos here.

  4. We are made up of stories, and our beliefs and practices are hugely driven by the stories we grew up knowing and loving. Could cultural stimulus be vital in addressing the climate crisis and in helping us build more sustainable systems? We have for you two resources in this context:

    1. What positive relationships have humans shared with the world? That’s a question that trumps even third-year Ecology graduates, as one professor finds out, and hopes to change, in Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge And The Teachings Of Plants. Get your copy here.

    2. When did the planet get hotter? Did it happen one summer, or was it in the making? What prompted the creation of hell on earth even before it warms as it did? Author Carl Safina is an ecologist studying the interconnectedness of man and nature, and how we lost the bond over time. More here.

    3. As above, so below. Not all of us may get a peek under the hood of how the world works, but with enough curiosity and the advent of social media, we can all keep in touch with the world around us.

      paulnicklenA post shared by @paulnicklen

Perhaps our most profound relationship to build is the one we lost over several generations. Maybe, when our children think that water comes from pipes, or that milk comes in tetra-packs, it is a reminder for us to plant a seed of curiosity.

What do mosquitoes, so omnipresent in spring, vanish in a dry summer? What makes a spider one of the most resilient creatures in the insect kingdom? What is having a lizard as a guest better than most humans we can entertain? This summer, let us start a conversation with the next generation. The answers may well surprise us.

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