Syed Tasnem Mahmood
Whenever we discuss about any environmental activity it is often said that it is against industrialisation. This theme has been established not only in our country but also in different countries around the world. Experts agree that industrialization is the cause which has resulted into the present situation but now we have to stop blaming others and start to use a sustainable systematic way of living by which our development and environment both could be enriched and continued unhindered.
Let us see the situation of an American citizen named Alexxyndria Topazio Cotege who introduced ‘Green Utility’, an advanced technology, which is harsh to industrialists like Trump as they are accusing that it will stop the industry businesses all around the world. The real concept is we can run them both simultaneously and this process is known as ‘sustainable development’ and so the chaos we are observing in our environment, as in Buriganga or in Turag river or air pollution of Dhaka, is directly related with industrialisation and development.
Our problem is we try to find the solution to the problems in our books and if we try we can easily find a solution by working together but most people fail to do so, rather we should look to the Chinese for ideas as to how we can counter this dire problem. Since we are not maintaining the proper rules about environment friendly we have been suffering. We should not mess up the core rules of combining industry and environment. We are moving our industry because it is producing a lot of waste both solid and liquid. We are depositing them rather than recycling to repurpose these wastes in a more productive way. Therefore the main focus is we have to find a sustainable system while we are implementing CETP. Though there are CETP in many places of Bangladesh, they don’t see much action anywhere.
To prevent this Government should take proper steps to update the rules and regulations and policies. The environmental rule which Bangladesh follows was established in 1997. Though already it has been said that new rules will be included but it has not been realised yet. As we are developing industrially we have to change and upgrade the rules quickly according to the new era. Now there is a management guide (still in the implementation stage) but it was not here even four years before. Another problem is we have a gap between the academics and the people who work on technical sectors. In academic sector, we cannot bring them in our industries. Moreover there are lackings in industrial zone too.
As a result, no matter how many new rules are made in the market, we cannot cope with the rules. For example: Bangladesh Government’s environment department has introduced their new concept ‘zero discharge plan’. If any industry now wants to renew their license, they will have to submit plans for zero discharge. This means they have to submit a guideline about how they are going to function till 2021 and make their trash to zero level. However, at present, in the market the technology that they have to transform the trash to zero level liquid discharge which is not economically feasible.
Now, the government is trying to implement procedures one after the other gradually but they do not know if the market is ready for it yet. Solution providers or environmental initiatives cannot restore the previous environment. The process we can do now is to take control over the affects of global warming within next 12 years that means reducing the waste of this era.
Moreover, we have to use energy efficient machineries and have to increase the chances of renewable energy in electricity consumption and electricity production sectors. We works in two sectors. First about the present 12 years time frame, we provide solution to stop the adverse of global warming or climate change and second showing the way to survive. First we have to stop and think of another way then our environment will recover by its own. As it is already proven by the recovery of river Thames. Therefore, stop! Think for another way by reducing the damage of environment and it will soon be as like as before.
There are some organizations who are doing a wonderful job. We really appreciate their work as they are raising awareness among the people. However, is it a strong procedure? You are cleaning the river for only one day but people are depositing their waste daily. Therefore the best part of their work is creating awareness. Do this task daily. If mass become aware of their surroundings than it never be become like present time.
As an example let us have a look on Colombo city. It was as dirty as Dhaka 15 years ago but when the started to clean it daily the mass get aware about this and now look at it. Therefore we need to change the hearts of our masses but it is not the responsibility of “BD Clean” rather it is the responsibility of City Corporation. City Corporation must work seriously and it will help both as active procedure and changing the heart.
Therefore, all cleaning organization and government should work unitedly and if the system works properly all will be fantastic.
There are many new factories which have started recently. For them I want to say that they have to keep this in mind that they must build a sustainable factory despite the fact that they have certification or not. The funny thing is the technology that we use in industries in build in such a way that if you do not make sustainable factory, you will get losses from your business.
Generally, we think about individual material cost but at the end of the day, cost of energy, gas and water will increase. If you invest your money in sustainable development now, you might have to invest more money now, but it will come back to you within next few years as a profit. Your money will be saved for the next 10 to 15 years. This will be ultimately profitable in a short or long run which will be supporting both financially and environmentally.
Syed Tasnem Mahmood is CEO of GREENBUD, an Environmental testing, inspection, consultancy and service initiative, who is specialized in Civil and Environmental Engineering