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Department of Chemistry College of Natural Sciences & Mathematics

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Dr. H.N. Cheng Seminar

Sustainability and Green Chemistry

Friday, October 30, 1 – 2 p.m.


With increasing public awareness of climate change, environmental pollution, and earth’s declining resources, sustainability and green chemistry have become hot topics these days. In 2015, the United Nations adopted 17 sustainable development goals (SDGs) to be achieved in 2030. As polymers are being used all around us, they play a major role in the achievement of these goals. In this talk, an overview will be provided of selected polymer research and development (R&D) areas that are related to sustainability.

The following examples will be shown to:

  1. use natural renewable raw materials (e.g., polysaccharides, proteins, and triglycerides) as source materials for new chemistry and products;
  2. exploit biocatalysts (e.g., enzymes and micro-organisms) for chemical and polymer conversions;
  3. apply green chemistry concepts to conversion and processing; and
  4. develop green methodologies to promote the development of green products.

The speaker will also discuss the sustainability initiatives at American Chemical Society (ACS) and his platforms as ACS President. In view of the relevance of sustainability and green polymer chemistry to our society, we can expect to see continued R&D and commercial activities relating to this field in the future.


Dr. H. N. Cheng was an undergraduate at Sacramento State University in the 1960s, arriving as an international student before obtaining a BS in Chemistry at UCLA and a PhD in Chemistry from University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. He has had a distinguished career as a research chemist working in industry and government laboratories, including working with Dr. Flory, who won a Noble Prize in Chemistry.

Event Info

The Chemistry Department is proudly hosting the return of Dr. Cheng through his virtual seminar and recognizing his accomplishments including his recent election to the top position at the American Chemical Society.

Zoom link:

Meeting ID: 955 3779 5909