HSG tackle IPCC's Code Red for Humanity
Date posted: 31.08.2021
Simon Rice, Founder and MD of HSG UK, specialists in water conservation and washroom services, was interviewed last week about the IPCC report: Code Red for Humanity.
Q: Thanks for joining us, Simon. We’re here today to discuss the IPCC Report, Code Red for Humanity. The report was a warning shot to the world to say that climate catastrophe can be averted if we take action quickly. A subsequent report from Deloitte highlighted 5 key areas of concern and, today, you’re here to talk about the first one: the scarcity and costs of resources such as food, water and energy. Starting with the obvious question, Simon, why is scarcity of resources so important?
Simon: If we look at water specifically, Paul, only 3% of the world’s water is freshwater – and only a quarter (25%) of that is accessible from rivers, lakes or the ground. The rest is locked into inaccessible stores such as glaciers. Water is essential for all living creatures and, without an adequate continuous source of water, life as we know it would not exist on earth. Not only do we need water for the essential functions of life but we also need water to produce the products of modern life – a simple one is to water crops to grow food.
It is predicted that many countries could experience water scarcity as soon as 2025.
The 2030 Water Resources Group believes that by 2030 global demand for water will be 40% higher than it is today. They also said that if action is not taken to curb the worst effects of climate change, water supplies will diminish even further.
In short, it’s essential we protect all of our resources as the results could be catastrophic to the world if we don’t.
Q: What could happen if we get this wrong and don’t take the next steps quickly enough?
Simon: I think the first point to note is that this isn’t ‘game over’ for the planet. If there is quick and decisive action, we can stabilise rising temperatures – but only quick and decisive action will work.
Since 1970, global surface temperatures have risen faster than in any other 50-year period during the last 2000 years. The past 5 years have been the hottest on record since 1850.
Almost every nation on Earth signed up to the goals of the Paris climate agreement in 2015 and this pact aims to keep the rise in global temperatures well below 2C this century and also try hard to keep it under 1.5C.
This new IPCC report says that under all the emissions scenarios considered by the scientists, both targets will be broken this century unless huge cuts in carbon take place.
The authors of the report believe that the 1.5C will actually be reached by 2040. If emissions aren't slashed in the next few years, this will happen even earlier.
Q: Moving to the more positive view I understand you have, what will happen if companies and people are able to make the changes?
Simon: Humans have caused major climate changes to happen already, and we have also set other things in motion. If we stopped emitting greenhouse gases today, the rise in global temperatures would begin to flatten within a few years. Temperatures would then plateau but would still remain high for many, many centuries – which again makes it imperative that we act now.
The benefits beyond the obvious ones we have already mentioned would be new jobs and 'green' jobs, economic growth, cleaner air and more efficient public transport systems in cities, energy-efficient homes and offices with intelligent heating and cooling systems.
Above all, we would be protecting the planet for our children and our children’s children.
Q: How could or, rather, how do HSG help with this problem of water conservation?
Simon: We specialise in water conservation within washrooms – specifically urinals.
The majority of wasted water that goes through a commercial building goes through the urinals so addressing this wasted water goes a long way towards protecting water. The water that is used to flush urinals is also fresh drinking water too.
Some urinals flush 4 times per hour, so every 15 minutes – throughout the night too when the building is empty. This means 96 flushes per day.
HSG can reduce this to 4 times per day by installing the Ureco and Uretech water management system.
To give you some idea of what this means: on a 9 litre cistern, this means reducing the water from over 315,000 litres per annum to just over 13,000 litres – potentially saving over £750 too in the process.
In addition to the water saving and the cost saving, you will also stop smells and blockages which in turn prevents the need for harsh chemicals being poured in the drainage system.
Even if you only have 1 cistern in your building, it is well worth addressing the waste water issue and doing your bit to help with Code Red for Humanity.
Simon Rice was interviewed by Paul Owen, best-selling business author, podcast host and specialist in business growth.
Watch the interview in full below:
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