WE Empower UN SDG Challenge Finalist, Radhika Chaudhary - CFO and Co-Founder, Deeya Panel Products Private Limited, India
2020 WE Empower Finalist, Asia Pacific
Plastic waste is leading to significant environmental and humanitarian challenges across the world. Radhika Chaudhary is addressing these issues in India through her company, Deeya Panel Products Private Limited, which is paving the way for a future that is better equipped to handle the unprecedented effects that plastic waste is having on ecosystems and society. WE Empower intern, Sidney McKee, interviewed Chaudhary and explains how Deeya Panel Products Private Limited is leading to innovative uses of plastic waste that also hold great importance in creating a better future.
Chaudhary’s Deeya Panel Products Private Limited prides itself on utilizing plastic waste and converting it into useful building materials. Since deforestation for the use of plywood in construction is a leading cause of environmental degradation throughout the world, Chaudhary takes a particular focus on mitigating the challenges associated with deforestation while also addressing the challenges derived from plastic waste. As she explains, “We are an innovation-based company that recycles waste nuisance plastics and converts them into useful building materials”.
Innovative and responsible production
Chaudhary understands that a fundamental transition must take place so that more sustainable construction methods are implemented. One way that this change is taking place is through the use of >Ricron Panels. These panels are cost-effective, are manufactured from recycled plastics, can be further recycled when no longer needed, and are leading to a circular economy. Chaudhary explained, “Our philosophy is that we don’t want to leave any waste behind”. This technology has a number of advantages over conventional building materials as Ricron Panels are more durable, avoid deforestation, and utilize a product that would otherwise be a burden on society and the environment. Through bold and revolutionary innovation, Chaudhary is supporting SDG 9 Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure as well as SDG 12 Responsible Consumption and Production.
Environmental and societal stewardship
In addition to serving as a useful building material, Chaudhary’s Ricron Panels are resulting in less land degradation due to the reduced demand for timber in construction. This leads to a responsible strategy that focuses on the preservation of carbon-sequestering forests and supports SDG 13 Climate Action. The production of Ricron Panels also alleviates the negative health impacts that conventional multilayer plastic waste processing entails. In India, some multilayer plastics are melted down so that the aluminum can be repurposed, which leads to troubling health effects particularly on women and children, who represent the majority of workers in this field. As Chaudhary highlighted, “This is not just an environmental problem, it’s a humanitarian problem as well. The people that are doing this (processing multilayer plastic waste) are women and children, and they’re being exposed to poisonous fumes”. By producing Ricron Panels, Chaudhary is fostering both SDG 3 Good Health and Well-Being and SDG 11 Sustainable Cities and Communities.
Through Deeya Panel Products Private Limited, Radhika Chaudhary is pioneering the way towards a more sustainable future with Ricron Panels. The environmental and societal health effects of responsibly recycling plastic for a useful purpose are proving to be tremendous. When reflecting upon her businesses and thinking of others who would like to make a difference, Chaudhary offers words of inspiration. “Be confident of who you are… you don’t have to look at yourself from the eyes of another. You have to be confident of who you are and be comfortable with yourself”.