Last weekend I was invited by BITS Goa Campus ( Birla Institute of Technology ) to give a talk on innovative business strategy in Clean Tech. It was organized by the students with their campus fest aptly named – Quark. G-Con as the green conference to which I was called is being held for the first time by the students. That this event was to be taken seriously impacted me almost immediately upon being introduced to my co-panelists. Personalties, each with a body of work so profound, Ms Rishu Nigam -TERI, moderator Ms. Juhi Chaudhry of CNN-IBN, reporter on everything related to environment; and then the stars Mr.Ravi Kuchimanchi ; Dr. Ritesh Arya; D.T. Barki; Mr. Atul Gurtu; people who have placed India on the world map with their thoughts and deeds.
Sitting among them, I was inspired and awed. And what inspired me more were the young and brilliant students of BITS, the future of India. This inspiration led me to ask both the students and the eminent personalities to devise a model to propagate the clean tech ideas which came into my mind, while listening to fellow panelists.
Self powered Lap-top. An inventor like Mr. Barki could devise surely a solar jacket for the Lap-tops which all the students carry. Imagine if a continuous power could be fed into a lap-top, unplugged and at 90% battery, via Photo voltaic cells pasted on to the surface therefore unfettered, sensitive as a Casio calculators power panel, so even the ambient light within a room is sufficient? Even if it would be generating power say just 30% in total, it would still increase the battery driven operation time and at the same time reduce the need to plug it to a grid source. Scale it to a Billion laptops in use every hour which can produce 30% power, it is a respectable number in terms of GHG reduction. And when it comes to R&D surely another fellow panelist Mr. Raghvan, GM of Mahindra Solar; a branch of the blue chip Green Company Mahindra; with international presence and owner of Satyam would like to do a dekho ( hindi; for -look ).
The same could be the fate of the future cell phones, why need a separate charger if one could integrate a semi-circular disk which winds a spring, which in turn applies pressure and excites a quartz ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Piezoelectricity ) and thus produces a small amount of charge, every time one moves? Remember the old Swiss wrist watches – the automatic ones ? One never needed to wind it up. This was before cells were born into this world – small made of steel and having a cadmium heart; to be discarded without thought while the Earth is torn open to find more iron ore and methods sought to stop rivers to be poisoned by cadmium. Coming back to a greener thought – could this be incorporated within the “hostler” that holds the mobile phone? Adding that small amount of charge that keeps the battery from going dead just when you need it most. Perhaps can be even a life-saver; all that a lost trekker needs to do is keep shaking it while making the S.O.S call. Will it save the Earth, count the number of chargers charging the phones around you, as you are reading this and multiply that with infinity – you can bet it would ! And yes perhaps the makers of the next Green Laptop / Cell phone could integrate this piezoelectric right into the keyboards . Is Samsung /Sony / HP / Dell listening ?
Megalopolis like Mumbai has the perpetual problem of sewerage and power. Dr. Ritesh Arya could solve both with his path breaking solution to use the slush to produce steam and run a turbine. And this can be done anywhere as Lava is just under your feet! Mumbai has its own at Ganeshpuri, then there is Surajkund and many others, powering India could become limitless. And as the energy needs come form an infinite limitless source called – magma, the World is invited to dip there steel straws into the Earth core and drink aplenty. GHG can be contained. And very much before 2020. Will UNFCCC at the Rio+20 advocate this for the GCF ?
Simple ideas are most profound and that came from Ravi Kuchimanchi in form of a hay box ( click on this link to see it ). Now, that led me to think. This can lead to reduction of LGP gas use in the cities. How ? Simple. Ask the insulated hot box manufacturers to design the same and market it. India today loses millions due to subsidy on domestic LPG and other fuel. If even 5% of the overall LPG use can be reduced, the figure would be large. (An amount which can perhaps be pumped back on rural development.) And it is always seen that once you give an innovation which is popular, the people innovate uses which could not have been thought by the inventor.
And speaking of India, a country of – jugaard ( loosely translated – rustic innovation ) one never knows what the next best thing could be.
Note: this article are for all those young minds, who need to understand that for a better world, one does not have to invent the wheel. Just add the wheel to the cart you make.
A special thanks to the G-con team, especially – Soumaya, Madhuri, Ananaya, Gaurav, Sahil who helped me think this article.
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