With the aim to make India green, Japan-based research firm Leave A Nest, along with Indian venture capitalist firm Arc Ventures, has planned to set up startup hub in India and invest an initial amount of INR 50 Cr to tackle environmental issues like air and water pollution and solid waste management problems in India.
The collaboration is called ArcNest, which, according to reports, has been designed to balance out the industrial solutions and societal changes to keep the environment safe. The duo plans to build a healthy ecosystem for startups by helping upscale their operations from the prototyping stage to the operational stage.
Yukihiro Maru, founder and CEO of Leave A Nest, said that the company will bring intellectual properties (IPs) and technology to support Indian startups. In addition, ArcNest will also invest in the company, he added.
Leave A Nest has also helped various Japanese businesses — Mitsubishi Motors, Nippon Steel and manufacturer of environmental and industrial machinery Ebara Corporation, among others — to tackle such environmental issues.
India is home to 24 out of 50 of the world’s most polluted cities. Even Indian national capital had declared a health emergency due to deteriorating air quality around Diwali. The poor air quality results in major health threats, like asthma and emphysema among other cardiovascular diseases.
According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), 90% of the world’s population lives in places where air quality is poor or exceeds WHO guideline limits of PM2.5. Every year, while more than four million people die due to exposure to outside air pollution, at least three million deaths take place as a result of household exposure. In India alone, more than a million people lost their lives in 2017 because of air pollution.
Similarly, water pollution and solid waste management are also a major problem in India. A report by Down To Earth states that over 377 million urban people live in 7,935 towns and cities in India. The populations generate 62 million tonnes of municipal solid waste every year, and only 43 Mn tonnes of waste is collected. Out of the collected waste, only11.9 Mn tonne is treated and 31 MT is dumped in landfill sites.
Thankfully, the Indian pollution reduction industry is a $15 Tn opportunity and tech startups are trying their best to leverage it. Various Indian startups have taken it upon themselves to tackle pollution and waste management issues to become the game-changers.