3 September 2021

Responsible Consumption: Who Is Responsible?


Humanity is beginning to understand the consequences of global climate change

 “If you draw a graph of CO2 content now and include previous millennia, millions of years, you can draw a periodic curve. At present, however, we have shot up and far ahead. This is obviously the result of human influence. We have overloaded the Earth. We have to learn to behave properly in relation to nature, to our minerals, to the energy that we extract. We need to work on our relationship with nature so that it has time to adapt to the rather speedy development we have,” President of the Russian Academy of Sciences Alexander Sergeev.

 “The consumer always wants something new. Consumption culture has developed this way. I have had my phone for a year now, and it’s already old: I have to buy a new one and throw this one away. But now the situation is changing. Polls conducted by our international colleagues have shown that fast fashion – when you have to constantly update what you are wearing – is going out of fashion. Lean consumption really is turning into a trend of sorts,” Russian Quality System (Roskachestvo) Head Maxim Protasov.

“It’s hard for us to change at our age. We’ve always thrown away garbage, and we don’t understand why or how to do it differently. It's easier for young people; they get used to it right away. And they will go on like this and consume considerably fewer natural resources”, Creative Production General Director Yulia Morozova.



Inefficient production and the financial burden on businesses inhibit environmental initiatives

“The main burden for reducing emissions falls on the shoulders of business, and this needs to be understood. We very often miss the opportunity to discuss the importance of consumption from this point of view. I want to emphasize one of the most important things about responsible consumption – it’s very essence. The most important thing is a willingness to pay for the expenditure and consumption of the environment,” Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Rae Kwon Chung.

“We have very low labour productivity. We expend more electricity and material than foreign countries for the very same product. The material and energy intensity of the Russian GDP is very low, many times lower than in leading industrial nations. One need not speak only about industry; take housing and communal services, where energy consumption for heat supply, water supply, and so on, is also excessive,” Russian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs (RSPP) President Alexander Shokhin.



Raising a Responsible Consumer

“Roskachestvo is a state institution that was created specifically to shape public consumption, but we work in two directions. As regards consumption and the consumer, we work in the same way as similar organizations created by the governments of more than 80 countries and seek to create a society of ‘prosumers’, or professional consumers. That is to say, smart and conscientious consumers”, Russian Quality System (Roskachestvo) Head Maxim Protasov.

“The main point now is that we must in fact move on to a circular economy. A circular economy is a responsible economy that means we really care about the entire production cycle. This is both green chemistry and green energy,” President of the Russian Academy of Sciences Alexander Sergeev.

“We are witnessing growth in the demographic that makes up the Roskachestvo community. There are a lot of young folks who are interested themselves and are getting their parents interested in clean consumption and waste separation,” Russian Quality System (Roskachestvo) Head Maxim Protasov.


The search for new technological solutions and their implementation

“Over the last 20 years, we’ve invested more than RUB 160 billion in a large-scale restructuring of all our production facilities. Approximately RUB 19 billion of this has been for purely environmental measures. And today we believe that we have been successful in breaking down the prevailing image of a metallurgical enterprise as a dirty industrial facility, ever-present in the landscapes of the 1930–1950s with lots of pipes and lots of smoke. The picture now is completely different – it is of an enterprise that is entirely clean and green, that is pleasant to pass by and pleasant to take a stroll through,” Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board of Tube Metallurgical Company (TMK) Igor Korytko.

“As a major global producer, we rely on hydrogen. We started dealing with hydrogen back in 1998 and had already sold approximately 10,000 vehicles that run on fuel cells and hydrogen. In 2020, we introduced the first heavy-duty fuel cell truck to the public,” Hyundai Motor Company / CIS LLC Managing Director Aleksey Kalitsev.

“We are ready for an energy transition now. We understand that it’s coming. And since we are the largest major supplier of pipe solutions for the fuel and energy sector, we understand that the fuel and energy sector is not only about oil and gas. The future is hydrogen and renewable energy. And we realize that the production, transportation, and consumption of hydrogen also involve tubulars, only in a slightly different way,” Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board of Tube Metallurgical Company (TMK) Igor Korytko.

“I remember how popular the topic of energy-saving light bulbs was. Everyone switched over to them, and then it turned out that energy-saving bulbs were harmful for the environment because they are almost impossible to dispose of. We switched to LED. With this example, I wanted to show you how you have to keep moving all the time. There are no simple formulas out there,” President of the Russian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs (RSPP) Alexander Shokhin.


For more, see the Roscongress Foundation’s Information and Analytical System roscongress.org

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