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Climate Change - YES provides hope with science and engineering

In 2018, the world’s leading climate scientists issued a stark warning that there are only 12 years left to keep global warming to a max of 1.5ºC. Urgent changes are needed to reach this target and the scientific community is hoping that the landmark report by the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), released in October, will mobilise people and governments to act.

Carbon pollution needs to be drastically cut, by 45% by 2030 and come down to zero by 2050. The IPCC maps out four pathways to meet the 1.5ºC target. The pathways describe different combinations of land use and technological change. Reforestation is essential to all pathways, as is moving to electric transport systems and greater adoption of carbon capture technology.

Science and Engineering Empowering Sustainability

YES19 empowering sustainability

Our entrepreneurial scientists and engineers taking part in YES19 will be creating novel solutions to empower sustainability, a crucial supporter of meeting climate change targets.

During the Energy, engineering and environment workshop taking place at the GSK Carbon Neutral Laboratory for Sustainable Chemistry, Nottingham, early career researchers will team up to provide solutions for the most pressing scientific warning of our time. They will also be looking to generate ideas to address challenges in the following fields:

  • Environmental management (such as issues involving drainage, flood, pollution, waste etc.)
  • Innovative manufacturing
  • Reducing the environmental impacts of transport
  • Renewable energy technologies
  • Robotics and artificial intelligence
  • Satellites and space technologies
  • Smart energy technologies
  • Smart urban environments
  • Sustainable energy storage
Find out more about #YES19

Innovative ideas to halt climate change

Over the years, YES alumni have come up with some innovative ideas to reduce carbon emissions and create renewable energy. Here are just a few of them:

eGlaze (University of Cambridge) formulated a transparent phase change material for use in windows alleviating energy burden of buildings.

Solairtion (University of Nottingham) targeted the aviation industry to coat planes with solar cells as an alternative source of energy.

Solox (University of Oxford) invented a novel catalyst for artificial photosynthesis enabling the production of hydrocarbons using existing oil infrastructure.

Viridios Coatings (University of Nottingham) developed a hydrogel sealant capable of sustaining plant growth while protecting underlying concrete.

A new group of postgraduates and postdocs will be developing their novel ideas as part of the 2019 competition. Participants’ creativity isn’t hindered by the constraints of what may be scientifically possible right now – ideas just need to plausible in this first instance. This allows room for creativity which can lead anywhere!

We can’t wait to see what they come up with in answer to the climate change challenge.


Young Entrepreneurs Scheme

  • Haydn Green Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship
  • Nottingham University Business School
  • Jubilee Campus
  • Nottingham, NG8 1BB