Green tech. For decades, we’ve been discussing the merits of sustainable technology for a cleaner environment. Unfortunately, much progress in this field has been stalled by a lack of economical green options.
But green technology has the power to invigorate economies. With the right investments and innovations, sustainability can be a saving grace in the modern world as we look to recover from the declines of the pandemic landscape.
Green tech can bring with it a slew of economic benefits. First, however, we must address the relationship between sustainable technology and unsustainable growth before we can truly experience the impact of green tech.
Green tech and unsustainable growth
At the present rate of resource use and production, one-and-a-half Earths would be needed to continuously and safely absorb our carbon output. This is of course, not the case. We have one Earth we can rely on for resources, one Earth on which we can live. This necessitates innovations for sustainability to redefine growth and the ways we utilize our goods.
That’s where green technology comes in. By producing new products and materials that can be sustainably regenerated, we can create new growth industries that do not feed into the current system of unsustainable production. Growth, then, can be redirected rather than expanded on top of an already overburdened system.
But like all red tape, green technology commitments can be a mixed bag of positives and negatives for businesses attempting to replace their processes with sustainable ones. The goal of most businesses is to achieve constant growth. Sustainability does not expressly allow for indefinite expansion. It can, however, help businesses innovate and explore new fields, creating a system of growth that can work safely long-term.
Implementing such a system isn’t easy, but the implications are great.
The effects of green tech on the economy
In the modern era, ideas like the Green New Deal are debated all the time, with some believing a mass investment of public funds could generate a more sustainable future, and others believing such an endeavor would tank the economy. Regardless of specific government policy, supplementing business growth with green growth has consequences, each in their own way influencing global trade and the world economy.
While it would be impossible to predict the complete picture of a world committed to green technology growth, some of the economic effects might include:
Fossil fuels are not safe for the environment, nor are they safe investments in the modern world. With the value of fossil fuel investments having fallen steadily for the last five years, investors can look to a safer track in the rising green tech economy.
The demands of green technology on modern infrastructure is one frequently-cited argument against its wide-spread integration. To properly create sustainable systems, everything from power plants, roads, and charging stations will need to be altered or constructed, an endeavor that would take time and billions of dollars.
However, such a wide-spread effort to convert to sustainable technology like electric vehicles would undoubtedly create jobs. Whether industry growth is aided by government spending or private sector opportunity, adapting infrastructure for new tech can bolster the economy as an investment source, since green tech saves money in the long-run.
It might go without saying that green technology offers environmental benefits. However, it will take mass efforts and wide-spread commitments to reducing waste and carbon.
In turn, the environment receives benefits while new tech flourishes. This can pave the way for greater economic developments with big implications.
As a growing industry, green technology is a valuable investment opportunity. Investors getting in the green game can promote an environment of clean innovation, where everything from materials to practices is enhanced for better products.
This is evident in the emergence of 3D printing, which can take a variety of sustainable materials and additively build them into more efficient products. Development models like that proposed by Divergent 3D can cut manufacturing costs in the automobile industry to a tenth of their current costs while outperforming competitors in fuel efficiency.
This leads to a more consumer-friendly approach to business, greater growth, and cleaner practices. As innovations like 3D printing align with sustainable crops like hemp, the future of clean products means economic growth in all new industries.
Green tech can mean a world of difference to the world’s economy. Coming out of the value dips of fossil fuels during the pandemic, clean energy innovations are more cost-effective than ever and have more growth value. Resetting our infrastructure to coordinate with this tech can bring jobs to new industries, potentially revitalizing economics across the nation.
With the need to shift to a sustainable system of growth, green tech offers economic benefits that are hard to overlook. Consider the ways you can implement green technology in your own work or personal space to speed this change along.