The Berkeley Center for Green Chemistry (linked to the University of California at Berkeley) studies green (and feasible) alternatives to chemical products trying to reach the sustainable development and to help the development of a green economy.
They define “green chemistry as the design, production and use of chemical products that:
- Use raw materials in a sustainable, complete and efficient way
- Reduce waste and energy consumption for production
- Are useful and have a long life
- Are benign to the environment during both recycling and natural degradation.”
They also support that “sustainability is reached by chemical efficiency throughout a chemical product life cycle, from inception to discard”.
They work on the following areas of green chemistry:
- Business: green chemistry evolution, analysis, research and strategic alignment
- Science: accidents prevention, collaboration and projects transformation
- Health and environment: chemical products design, new methodologies and safety assessments
- New chemicals: research, training, education (curriculums revisions) and responsible innovation
- Policies and legislation: future preparation, reduction of legal loopholes, carbon emissions reduction and global policies unification
Another American institution that works towards green chemistry development is the Warner Babcock Institute for Green Chemistry and they estimate that only 10% of current technologies are benign to the environment. Another statistic says that 65% of green technologies need to be invented, while 35% can become benign easily. A great opportunity to new business development and cost reduction projects (which usually occurs due to the elimination of toxic and dangerous chemicals use, according to the Institute).
“Through green chemistry, benign alternatives for current materials and technologies can be introduced into manufacture processes promoting a sustainable future”, Warner Babcock Institute for Green Chemistry
To learn more, identify courses and other opportunities, visit the following websites: