This is a matter of burning shame for every Indian. That India is home to seven of the 10 most polluted cities on Planet Earth. And worse, India ranks third on the list of most polluted countries in the world.
These ignominious distinctions on India come from Greenpeace International, a global organization that strives to combat pollution worldwide.
At the same time, the Indian government is promoting its ‘Make in India’ initiative encouraging foreign firms to manufacture goods in this country. And the government is also encouraging startup by new entrepreneurs.
Given this scenario, it is imperative for every investor to go green and start an environment friendly business idea. In simplest terms, it translates as opening a business that generates near zero pollution and helps preservation of our environment.
This might seem a tough call. But not really. In fact, here are top 10 environment friendly business ideas for the green investor.
Environment Friendly Business Ideas
Nowadays, it’s mandatory under law for every business to get environment friendly certification from the Indian government.
Hence, it makes good sense to start a business is not only environment friendly but also reduces or eliminates pollution from non-related sources. These are some business ideas you may consider as green investor.
India wastes whopping Rs.2.4 billion worth of raw, expired and cooked food daily, even as over 180 million people in this country go hungry. This wasted food ends up in large landfills located across the country.
Here, the food begins rotting and process lets of methane, a greenhouse gas that contributes significantly to global warming.
As green investor, you can consider opening a food processing business in India. This means, you can process fruits, vegetables and grains into various products that have much longer shelf life.
A huge demand for such products exists but current manufacturers do not have adequate facilities to stem the entire food wastage chain. Absence of cold chain logistics also impedes their efforts.
Cold Chain Logistics
As I mentioned earlier, absence of adequate cold chain logistics is a major cause of food wastage in India and keeping food prices higher.
Therefore, a green investor can also consider opening a cold chain logistics business that consists of refrigerated warehouses and fleet of reefers.
This cold chain logistics would definitely provide the much needed impetus to food processing and curb food waste.
Understandably, cold chain logistics would involve refrigerant gases and use of vehicles that run on fossil fuel- namely diesel.
Yet, modern refrigerants are green. And as green investor, you can take ample care to ensure your fleet gets certification as non-polluting vehicles.
Indian consumers are getting increasingly health conscious. Part of this consciousness also arises from the fact that medical inflation in India stands over 35 percent compared over last decade.
People are now aware that healthy eating is key to healthy living. Hence, there’s a huge demand for organic produce such as food grains, fruits and vegetables.
In such a situation, an organic farm would prove a very profitable, environment friendly business for the green investor. It is well known that organic farming reduces and almost eliminates chances of air, soil and water pollution.
Organically grown grains, fruits and vegetables have a huge market but people worry about their high prices. Opening organic farms would help lower prices, reach more consumers and protect environment.
Organic Meat Products
And Indian consumers are not hungry only for organic food grains, fruits and vegetables. They also want organic meat from animals that are fed naturally on free range farms. This is an emerging business in India.
Because organic meat till date is available only in rural areas, where farmers breed livestock that graze freely. In densely populated concrete jungles of cities, this is simply not possible.
Therefore, a green investor can also consider organic livestock farming and meat processing as an environment friendly business.
In fact, the Indian government and its various departments are encouraging such organic livestock breeding and farming through several initiatives.
You can avail of concessions and loans under these schemes. You would also be able to market organic milk from such livestock.
Restaurant Waste Management
There are countless restaurants in India. These include Quick Service Restaurants franchised by foreign chains to small, roadside eateries that flourish in rural parts of the country.
These restaurants waste a lot of food themselves in the form of leftovers. Also, they account for thousands of tons of scrapings and shavings from vegetables, meat, poultry and dairy products.
This waste from restaurants lands in dumpsters and garbage cans and causes air, soil and water pollution. Left unattended, it breeds microbes that are potentially harmful to human health.
In certain foreign countries, it is compulsory for restaurants to have a waste management company to handle their trash. In India, there are few such businesses. Therefore, this is yet another excellent eco-friendly business idea to start on small scale.
Electronic Waste Recycling
Now let’s move away from food-related green businesses and look at other options. Electronic waste or e-waste is a major source of pollution.
E-waste means discarded mobile phones, electronics and home appliances, computers and peripherals and other devices.
These discarded electronics are a major threat to the world. Volume of e-waste continues to grow as newer models of phones, electronics and home appliances continue to flood the market and outdated ones are thrown away.
There are ample opportunities in India to open a business that recycles e-waste. It is also a very lucrative business since everyone from electronics and component manufacturers to consumers look at disposing off e-waste safely.
Ecotourism in India
Ecotourism means taking tourists to places of natural beauty and heritage in India, without causing any damage to the environment. India is a land full of natural reserves and national parks.
Some of these provide sanctuary and breeding grounds to critically endangered species of flora and fauna that appear on the Red List of International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and whose trade is banned under Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Flora & Fauna (CITES).
There are countless amazing things to do in India to promote ecotourism. These initiatives also have backing from the Indian government. Hence, lots of subsidies, loans and other benefits are available for the green investor. Ecotourism in India is also superb environment friendly business idea for the green investor.
Hospital Waste Management
You’d definitely have been to a medical clinic and hospital. And seen loads of waste such as discarded syringes, catheters, cotton swabs and bandages and pathological samples given for testing. These are extremely harmful for the environment.
Worse, these materials are also bio-hazardous. Meaning, they can cause illness if anyone comes in touch with them accidentally.
As Indian healthcare industry grows, there are ample opportunities to start an eco-friendly business that manages hospital waste.
It involves collection of such waste from medical clinics and hospitals and disposing them off in a safe, environment friendly manner while ensuring there’s no human contact with such stuff.
India ranks among countries that receives the highest rainfall in the world. Unfortunately, most rainwater gets wasted even as parts of the country go parched due to draught.
Also, rainwater can find several excellent uses in India. However, there are no major businesses that provide rainwater harvesting.
Rainwater harvesting is a superb way to use natural resources, eliminate pollution and provide jobs. This is almost virgin territory for investors.
If you are a green investor looking at environment friendly business ideas, add rainwater harvesting to your list. It would prove very profitable.
Bio Diesel Production
And finally, bio-diesel production. McDonald’s chain of restaurants in the US came up with this innovative idea of converting used cooking oil into bio-diesel to run its trucks. The experiment was a runaway success.
There are attempts to emulate this example worldwide. Nowadays, McDonald’s actually recycles its cooking oil that would otherwise be poured down the drain and makes bio-diesel.
This idea is yet to gain momentum in India. Consequently, millions of tons of cooking oil ends up in drains and clogs up sanitation systems.
With some investment and expertise, you can consider a green business for converting waste cooking oil into bio-diesel for vehicles.
You would be actually helping India reduce its carbon footprint and pollution, reducing dependence on imported crude oil while reducing transportation costs.
We’re all victims of global warming and environment pollution. And something needs to be done desperately to save the planet. Therefore, starting an environment friendly business is the best idea for any green investor.
Also, opening an environment friendly business means you would be attracting more clients, especially those that are aware about global warming and its hazards.
Additionally, getting clearances, permits, subsidies and government loans for starting an environment friendly business in India is much easier than other ventures.
India wants to get rid of its shameful tag as the third most polluting nation on this planet. With your efforts to set up an environment friendly business, this can become a reality.