Author explains how sustainability can work in society today
March 18, 2021
We talked with Hitendra Chaturvedi, the Author of “Sense and Sustainability.” Professor Chaturvedi is a Supply Chain expert at the WP Carey school of business at Arizona State University. He has written a book that looks at sustainability through the eyes of a green entrepreneur. This book brings a unique perspective on the existential challenges our environment faces today. This is not pontification by a professor at a university but he brings to life some very powerful sustainability lessons like fake news and myths misleading common people, lack of standards, sustainability actors sabotaging each other, lack of proper education, and conflicting roles of technology. It also takes the reader through his life journey. Chaturvedi started his company in India that was quite successful before he came to ASU.
Chaturvedi defines sustainability as how we sustain all the resources that we have been given on this planet, that we have borrowed from past generations, in whatever condition it is, and leave it in the same condition or better. he said we do it every day but we do not do it with our natural resources. He talks about going back to India as an adult and growing up there as a kid. He said when he went back to India and saw what had happened to his backyard, which was the Himalayas, it was “savaged”. This is when the wake-up call came.
He talks about what we can do about this. We ask him if we are doing the right things. He said much of what we think is going to be recycled ends up in the landfill, but many of us don’t realize that. He said the whole idea is to make sustainability simple for the common people. We talk about the five R’s: reduce, repair, resell, reuse, and recycle. He explains how to make this work in today’s society. He also said that if we are going to talk about sustainability, we have to integrate sustainability with everything we do in a company. He goes through the ways that we can make the funnel get smaller and smaller. Lastly, we ask him if he’s optimistic. He said he is!