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Working for a greener world

Our Centre for Sustainable and Circular Technologies is home to research that could change lives.

A CSCT researcher
CSCT research includes eco-friendly plastics, water purification and biofuels.

With your support we’re striving to improve people’s lives and safeguard the planet for future generations.

“They might come up with something that could save the world.’’

These were the words of alumnus Roger Whorrod OBE, when he and his wife Sue made an extraordinary £1 million gift to the University in 2010. Theirs was an investment towards our new Centre for Sustainable and Circular Technologies (CSCT), where researchers from different disciplines work together to find practical solutions to some of the world’s biggest problems.

Our CSCT researchers are rising to these challenges with some truly visionary thinking. Like cars fuelled by coffee. Paper with the power to test for polluted water. And even plastic made from sugar and carbon dioxide.

Dr Chris Chuck, one of the first Whorrod Research Fellows, is working on a forest-friendly alternative to palm oil, using yeast. In 2015, Chris won a multi-million-pound Government grant, which has enabled him to grow his research team to develop the technology that will, in turn, grow the yeast on an industrial scale.

On joining Chris’s research group, PhD student Rob Hicks was inspired to dig deeper into the politics behind palm oil, the world’s most widely produced oil crop. It led him to an internship at the Rainforest Foundation NGO in Norway, thanks to a Santander Postgraduate Mobility Award. These awards help students develop the international research links that are vital in finding solutions to global problems.

“I have to give a big tusen takk (thousand thanks) to the CSCT and Santander for funding me for this internship. It was an incredibly unique opportunity for me – it wouldn’t have been possible without them.”

Read more about our research into climate change and sustainability in BA2 magazine.

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