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Need for society to focus on minimising the demand for materials and energy

By Shankar Sharma* 

"Overconsumption by the rich must be tackled,.." says acting UN biodiversity chief, as in an article.
Whereas this issue of overconsumption by the rich has always been there, certainly in modern society, what is of serious concern in 2023 is that the country governments also are consciously indulging in such overconsumption in many forms. 
Such overconsumption by the governments is epitomised by the high GDP growth rate paradigm, which invariably involves much more travel and tourism focus, huge number of vehicles being added every month, continuous increase in air travels, air condition facilities, 24 hour shopping malls, continuous addition of air ports, express highways, fancy tours such as luxury cruisers, increase in night time sports etc. 
 It is easily questionable as to how each of these economic or non-economic activities are essential to lift the masses from the clutches of poverty, whereas all of them are intricately linked to the degradation of critical elements of nature, and in exacerbating the Climate Change phenomenon.
So, there is a need for the entire society to have a steady focus on minimising the demand for materials and energy in each and every one of our daily activities. Since our bureaucrats and political leaders do not seem to care of the consequences of overconsumption for which the pursuit of a high GDP growth rate paradigm is the root cause, civil society groups have the onus to try and do all that is feasible to arrest this mad rush towards calamity.
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*Power & Climate Policy Analyst

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