Related Topics: Environment, Government policies
Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change has proposed a draft National Resource Efficiency Policy 2019 which aims to streamline the efficient use of the resources with minimum negative impact on environment driven by serious sustainability concern.
Need for the Policy
- Natural resources form the backbone of any economic development.
- India, as one of the fastest growing economies with GDP at 2.6 trillion USD, has increased its material consumption to six times, from 1.18 billion tonnes (BT) in 1970 to 7 BT in 2015.
- The material consumption is expected to increase further to provide for an increasing population, rapid urbanization and growing aspirations.
- Enhancing resource efficiency and promoting the use of secondary raw materials has emerged as a strategy for ensuring that the potential trade-off between growth, resource constraints and environmental well-being can be minimized.
- The Policy provides an overarching collaborative framework for resource efficiency across all sectors in the country, covering both biotic and abiotic resources and life cycle stages and aspires for cross-sectoral stakeholder partnerships for the cause of resource efficiency for sustainable development.
- It intends to minimize the inherent cost of economic growth on the natural environment by setting up a National Resource Efficiency Authority (NREA) with a core working group housed in the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change and a members group with representations from different ministries, state/union territory, and other stakeholders.
- The authority would be supported by an Inter-Ministerial National Resource Efficiency Board to guide on the aspects critical to its implementation.
- Reuse and Recycle is at the core of the draft policy, which lays focus on adequate waste management practices.
- It also plans to offer tax benefits on recycled materials, green loans to small and medium Enterprises (SMEs) and soft loans to construct waste disposal facilities, apart from setting up Material Recovery Facilities (MRF).
Guiding Principles of the Policy
- Reduction in primary resource consumption to ‘sustainable’ levels, in keeping with achieving the Sustainable Development Goals and staying within the planetary boundaries
- Creation of higher value with less material through resource efficient and circular approaches
- Waste minimization
- Material security, and creation of employment opportunities and business models beneficial to the cause of environment protection and restoration
[Sources: Livemint, PIB]