Living Better Through (Green) Chemistry
Truly sustainable development can best be achieved by universities embracing the full spectrum of scientific progress—from discovery and fundamental understanding to technological development.
Green chemistry, meanwhile, focuses on the design and implementation of processes and products that reduce or eliminate—in a manner both feasible and economically viable—the use and generation of hazardous substances, leading to new business opportunities.
Taken together, these two principles provide a framework for conducting high-quality fundamental research leveraging the potential scientific and technological impact of the resulting insights. Non-regulatory research and development approaches to cleaner, more sustainable chemical products and processes will lead to new, innovative technologies, themselves the basis for economic growth through new businesses, jobs and a skilled technical workforce.
As Canada Excellence Research Chair in Green Chemistry and Green Chemicals at McGill University, Robin Rogers is leading efforts to produce and support innovative and evolutionary, environmentally-aware research and development efforts. His research focuses on the design and development of next-generation sustainable biomaterials for use in polymeric materials, fuels and commodity chemicals. Rogers will also design and develop revolutionary, biologically active ionic liquids for the pharmaceutical and agrochemical industries, leading to increased efficacy, new treatment options and a reduced environmental burden.
Rogers aims to discover and develop a molecular-level understanding of ‘ionic liquids.’ A new class of liquid salts, these ionic liquids have the potential to transform chemical and materials science, and industrial manufacturing and to lead towards more energy-efficient, low-pollution technologies. By targeting positive environmental and economic advances, rather than imposed regulatory and statutory limits, Rogers hopes to identify new and better industrial processes.