Women can play a key role in the conservation of the environment by helping address the challenges arising due to climate change effects, experts said at a conference organised by the Women Empowerment Committee of the Indo-American Chamber of Commerce (IACC) on Friday.
The conference “Nurture the Nature: Role of Women in potential solutions of environmental problems & emerging business opportunities” saw the participation of top experts from the field of environmental conservation, industry, and academia. Industrialist and environmental crusader ShaileshPatwari was the chief guest at the inaugural session of the conference. MLA Amul Bhatt and Anagh Singh, Lead Tech Strategy at InvestIndia, were the guests of honour.
“Women have a great role in environmental conservation. Women are blessed with the natural ability to nurture. Women are shaping the conservation of nature and environment and their participation is critical to tackling the challenge of climate change, which poses an existential threat to the planet,” said MsRajyalakshmi Rao, Chairperson, Women Empowerment Committee, IACC.
In his address, industrialist ShaileshPatwari, said, “Conservation of resources by not wasting anything has been a part of our culture and upbringing since ever. There are many small things which can have a big impact on the environment. For instance, turning off the water tap while brushing teeth, using the washing machine only when there is a full load, switching off electrical products when not in use, etc. Being the primary caregivers, women can inculcate these habits in the next generation.”
MrPatwari also said that measures such as treating and reusing wastewater, preventing soil degradation, developing green zones, tackling plastic menace, and rainwater harvesting could also help in mitigating the impacts of climate change.
MLA Amul Bhatt cited the growing use of fossil fuels as a big challenge but noted that the government is focusing on promoting the adoption of electric vehicles, shifting to renewable energy sources, etc. to address it.
Speaking on the occasion, Anagh Singh, Lead Tech Strategy at InvestIndia, said “Climate change is happening and climate emergency has kicked in. We need to deliberate and come up with ideas to mitigate the impacts of climate change and save the environment. Women have a central role in this and we need to focus on how to make their ideas more visible.”
Earlier, PankajBohra, Executive Vice-President, IACC, gave a brief background about IACC and its activities. He said that the US is India’s largest trading partner and there is still scope for further growth in bilateral trade.
Kshitij Patel, Chairman, IACC Gujarat Branch, welcomed the guests and said that it was a privilege for the IACC Gujarat Branch to the most the national conference on a very relevant and important topic.
KussumKaullVyass, Vice-Chairperson, Gujarat Branch and Member, Women Empowerment Committee, IACC, said that climate change has taken its effects and the future will depend on what we do today.
“Mahatma Gandhi had said that if you want peace, the reins should be in the hands of women. We have to take charge. Women are affected more by climate change and we must lead the battle against it,” she said.
Kavita Parikh, Member, Women Empowerment Committee, delivered the vote of thanks.
Sessions on Happiness index and our Environment and New Business Opportunities in Climate Change were organised as a part of the conference. Wildlife and technical expert Dr. Aeshita Mukherjee-Wilske gave a presentation about the role of women in wildlife and forest conservation. Biplabketan Paul, Director of Naireeta Services spoke about water management and women.
The participants also shared their thoughts on emerging and potential business opportunities, especially for women, that can help in addressing environmental challenges. They also deliberated how women’s involvement in tree plantations, nurturing crops, agroforestry, and similar activities that help in environmental conservation can also be a tool to empower them.
The participants at the conference included government agencies, policymakers, small & medium enterprises, businesses, NGOs, women business associations, women entrepreneurs, financial service organisations, educational institutions, and more.