Yale-UNIDO Global Green Chemistry Initiative has completed another successful 5-Day Train-the-Facilitators (TTF) Workshop where international green chemistry experts train and empower stakeholders to become catalysts of green chemistry in their countries and to disseminate green chemistry to their communities. The third workshop in the series was held in Colombo, Sri Lanka and was hosted by National Cleaner Production Centre, Sri Lanka. It was led by Mr. Samantha Kumarasena (CEO) and Mr. Gamini Gunasekera (Chairman). The event was supported by the entire NCPC-SL team.
30 participants attended the workshop and represented academia (University of Jaffna, University of Colombo, Sabaragamuwa University of Sri Lanka, Sri Jayawardenapura University), industry (Hirdaramani Group, AHRAD, NERD, Asian Paints (Lanka) Ltd, Union Chemical Lanka PLC, INSEE Ecocycle Lanka Private Ltd, Maliban Biscuite Manufactories Pvt Ltd.), government (Ministry of Environment and Mahaweli Development, Ministry of Industry and Commerce, Central Environmental Authority), Institute of Chemistry Ceylon and Gujarat Cleaner Production Centre in India.
During the 5-day workshop participants were instructed on a wide range of topics to equip them with tools to become green chemistry facilitators. These topics included green chemistry and economic advantage, green chemistry and its role in sustainability, and benefits of green chemistry in different sectors: feedstocks, solvents, energy, catalysis, waste, and new molecules with reduced hazard. The workshop was delivered by Mr. Nitesh Mehta, Co-Founder & Director of the Green ChemisTree Foundation who was assisted by Dr. Karolina Mellor from the Center for Green Chemistry & Green Engineering at Yale. The workshop allowed participants to discuss green chemistry as a group and participate in several hands-on exercises that focus on green chemistry tools and practices.
The workshop ended with the presentation of green chemistry initiatives and technologies which are currently developed in Sri Lanka. Inspirational talks and experiences were shared by Professor Ajith de Alwis from University of Moratuwa, Union Chemicals, and DynaWash. The entire 5-day event encouraged interactive engagement and networking among the participants and resulted in vigorous exchange of experiences and ideas among researchers.
“Many great ideas came during the discussion from participants: one is to develop a national network on Green Chemistry among interested parties under National Cleaner Production Centre” said Lakmini Edirisinghe, project manager of NCPC. She also added that the knowledge presented at the workshop will be included in the university curriculum.