Message on Earth Day, 2020
“It’s true that the future just ain’t what it used to be!Fifty years used to be a long timeline. It isn’t anymore. After all, the Club of Rome was set up to address humanity’s “problematic” 52 years ago. And here we are now in 2020, having heeded very few lessons from that conversation, and maybe headed for even more problematic issues than were envisioned then! Climate change is at the top of that list, even though the pandemic is at the front of our consciousness right now. We cannot afford to let carbon and climate recede to the back of the agenda, once the pandemic passes.
In 2070, according to current projections, India will be at peak population of 1.7 billion. But what kind of a people and a country will it be? I hope that the next generations will be smarter than mine has been, when it comes to issues of the environment and climate, and the pursuit of human well-being. Let’s imagine a country that will recognise prosperity beyond mere GDP, to include regenerative natural capital, and indicators for human health. Let’s plan for a post consumption generation that has a less material and more spiritual understanding of happiness. Let’s create a culture in the arts and the sciences so that, in 50 years, we can UPEND the future – and discover Unlimited Potential for Environment Nourishing Development.”