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Rebuilding Ukraine: University of Warwick Chemical Engineering Professor receives £750k grant to support Ukrainian biochar research.

The University of Warwick has been awarded a £750,000 grant to provide vital support to Ukrainian partners in their biochar research efforts. Professor Sai Gu, Deputy Pro-Vice Chancellor (China) and professor of Chemical Engineering will be leading the research.

The grant, allocated to the Warwick School of Engineering and its partners - Queens University of Belfast and SUPERGEN Bioenergy Hub - represents the latest development in the ongoing commitment from the University of Warwick to support those affected by the ongoing conflict in Ukraine. The funding will contribute to the establishment of a Network for Negative Emissions, aimed at bolstering th Ukrainian biochar production research.

Biochar, a novel form of charcoal derived from biomass, has significant potential to combat climate change and act as a carbon sink.. Produced through the process of pyrolysis, which involves the controlled decomposition of organic waste in an oxygen-limited environment, biochar is a carbon-rich material. Using biochar as a soil amendment or carbon sequestration tool offers the possibility of enhancing soil fertility, sequestering carbon dioxide, and reducing greenhouse gas emissions all at the same time.

As a Professor of Chemical Engineering, Sai Gu is dedicated to advancing biochar research and its practical applications.
He said: "We are excited about the opportunity to support Ukrainian partners in their biochar research endeavours. This grant will enable us to build a strong collaborative network fostering knowledge exchange and innovation in sustainable land management practices. By harnessing the potential of biochar, we can contribute to mitigating climate change and supporting the recovery and development of those impacted by the ongoing conflict in Ukraine.”

Professor Michael Scott, the incoming pro-vice chancellor (International) at the University of Warwick said: "I am honoured to take on the role of Pro-Vice Chancellor (International) at the University of Warwick, and I am committed to further strengthening our support for the Ukrainian community.

“This grant, along with our ongoing efforts, is representative of our dedication to fostering collaboration, advancing research, and aiding those affected by the ongoing conflict. Through international partnerships and knowledge exchange, we can make a meaningful impact in addressing global challenges and driving positive change for Ukraine and beyond."

The project aims to build an extensive network in Ukraine to support the country’s capacity in this area. The opening ceremony for this project will take place in October in London and will have government officials in attendance as well as academics and industrial representatives from Ukraine and the UK.


For more information, please contact the Warwick Press Office

Bron Mills 
Communications Officer | Press & Media Relations |

About Deputy Pro-Vice Chancellor, Professor Sai Gu, He has rich experience in international collaborations including coordinating EU projects: ECOFUEL for Liquid Fuels from Biomass Pyrolysis and iComFluid for Clean Energy Technologies and the PI for EPSRC Pyrolysis Challenge research with South Africa and manufacturing collaboration with India. His collaboration with Indian Institute of Petroleum (IIP) on biomass fast pyrolysis has been published as a Case Study for Royal Academy of Engineering.

Thu 29 Jun 2023, 10:20 | Tags: Ukraine, Chemical Engineering, BioChar