Gaurav Burman, VP & APAC President, 75F, India

Gaurav Burman, in his previous position was with Schneider Electric, as their Director – Marketing where he was also a part of the Management Team of Schneider Electric, South Asia. Gaurav has handled diverse portfolios in his career including product management, alliances, channel sales, and enterprise sales. Prior to Marketing, Gaurav spent 20 years of his life in Sales and worked with companies like PCL, IBM, L&T, APC, and Schneider Electric. He was recently recognized as one of the 50 Most Talented CMOs in India in 2013, and one of the 100 Most Talented CMOs in the World by the US-based CMO Council.

 

22nd April is World Earth Day, the anniversary of the modern environmental movement as it began in the USA in the 1970s. It’s also a day when we reflect on the choices we need to make for the betterment of the planet and all life on it, including our own. With the drastic increase in consumption and the consequent global pollution, the very future of the natural world is at stake. Yet, according to UNEP’s Emissions Gap Report 2021, the global rise in temperature this century can be significantly reduced if countries pledge to net-zero emissions by 2050. This may sound like a big goal, but the truth is that we already have the tools in place to execute it. Let us dive a little deeper.

It is superfluous to mention that human activity over the last few centuries has taken a significant toll on the earth’s resources, to the point where its ability to self-renew has been compromised. Just as humanity is responsible for climate change and its adverse consequences, we are capable of mitigating those consequences too. The last decade or so has witnessed an increased interest in sustainable technology. This refers to technology that has been designed specifically to avoid or alleviate environmental problems. Energy efficiency has become one of the hottest trends in vehicle, appliance and equipment design, with customers now expecting that the products they buy will have minimal carbon footprints and use as little energy as possible. While many still think of energy efficiency as something expensive and unwieldy, the truth is that the cost savings on energy usage add up faster than one can imagine. Moreover, customers are likelier to trust and buy from a brand that shows environmental commitment, which means that businesses can make back what they invest. As it happens, the theme for this year’s Earth Day is ‘Investing in the Planet’. The focus, therefore, is on building structures and systems that protect and preserve natural resources while still meeting human needs.

Green building design emphasises low energy usage and as much reliance on natural light and ambient conditions as possible. Traditionally, humans would build houses with materials that naturally insulated against cold, protected from the sun and ensured maximum indoor ventilation. Many modern building practices take inspiration from these age-old guidelines and use materials that are environment-friendly, cheap and have ambient properties. In addition, technology can enable micro-precision control over every aspect of heating, lighting, cooling, air and maintenance. There are several building management solutions in India that leverage such technologies to help businesses maintain a balance between profit, people and planet when constructing new spaces.

The key feature of green building design is that it employs sensors and AI-based systems that automatically detect room usage and outside conditions and minutely adjust heating, lighting and ventilation to optimal levels. Moreover, it automatically schedules maintenances as needed and switches off power when the building is not in use. This ensures that only as much energy as is necessary is used at any given time, which reduces carbon emissions and also saves on energy costs. And with adjustable indoor settings and increased fresh air and natural light, employees can feel more relaxed and thus be more productive. Finally, systems like this are run from a central dashboard that is intuitively designed, can be run remotely and is built on advanced AI that can offer predictive solutions for energy usage and room design planning in the future.

There is still time to protect the earth and its treasures. What it requires from us is a commitment to sustainability and environmental consciousness that reflects in our actions. With green construction and design, economies can make significant headway in creating a world where competitive advantage exists side by side with planetary conservation. Moreover, contrary to popular belief, such technologies are highly cost-effective and easily understood by all. Going forward, we can expect to see many more businesses – large and small – make the right decision for the earth and invest in sustainable building technologies that promote both planetary and employee wellbeing. Let’s pledge to ‘Save Planet, Save Lives’.

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