This post was most recently updated on August 20th, 2019
“Crop residue burning emissions responsible for Delhi air pollution” – Business Standard
“Farm fires set to pollute NCR again” – Times of India
“Stubble burning: Delhi at risk of another smog attack as Punjab farmers have little alternative but burn straw” – Firstpost
Delhi was suffering. And it was suffering bad.
It was in 2017 when two impact entrepreneurs, Aayushi and Aru Mangla, realised the extent of the problem of air pollution and the consequent deteriorating air quality which had made them and their near ones suffering.
But the two firmly believed, “Inside of every problem lies an opportunity.”
The two economics and management graduates from Delhi University thus determined to understand the problem and came up with the solution. They were already executing energy access projects for rural households making their energy purchases affordable and green in villages of Ghaziabad, Gautam Buddha Nagar, etc. which had given them significant experience and understanding of operating in rural areas.
Upon their thorough research, several field visits and discussion with stakeholders, they concluded that one of the major reasons for Delhi’s air pollution is the open burning of crop residue by farmers in neighbouring states, who burn it because it has no useful value for them.
Though there exist industries which have the required technology to convert this residue into a useful product, but they are unable to utilise it owing to lack of a reliable supply mechanism to source the biomass and that too from highly fragmented and small farms.
So, they created a one-of-its-kind entity named ReneYou Greentech (www.ReneYou.in) which provides professional biomass supply chain services to create a win-win solution for farmers, environment and biomass-based power plants & industries by sourcing crop residue, like paddy straw, from farms and processing it into standardised and rich quality biomass resource, which is supplied to be used as a fuel or raw material in power plants & industries, thereby preventing open burning of crop residue and reducing harmful greenhouse gases’ emissions.
Thus, enabling a clean environment, increasing farmers’ income and providing convenience to power plants in procuring standardised and rich quality biomass fuel.
They currently process paddy straw and sugarcane trash in Punjab, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh.
ReneYou is being supported by the Delhi Government and its incubation centre, SIIF, and have launched their field operations in October 2018 and are already operationally profitable along with creating a large number of entrepreneurial and employment opportunities in the rural areas which shows the immense commercial as well as social impact potential their innovative model has.
Given their focus on a reliable supply of rich quality biomass, they are receiving a lot of interest from upcoming BioCNG and bio-ethanol plants. Their other target customers happen to be biomass power plants, cogeneration plants, commercial mushroom growers, paper and pulp board manufacturers, briquetting and pelleting units, etc.
The advice they give to young entrepreneurs from their experience is that instead of relying upon investors or angels for running your venture, make your consumers your financier. Selling your product to the customer will give your idea the better and faster validation, instead of selling your entity to the investor, says Aru Mangla Co-Founder of ReneYou.
They are themselves practising what they preach, as ReneYou is bootstrapped and is operationally profitable by serving its clients.
They also provide solar energy solutions to industrial, institutional and residential sectors, thus enabling them to reduce their electricity expenses and go green!
ReneYou aims, and has already started that journey, to become the leading renewable energy player of India in next 5 years.
Indeed, with impact entrepreneurs like Aayushi and Aru, and companies like ReneYou coming into the foray, India will soon become the Green Capital of the World.
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