LANXESS kicked off the 8th “Clean Water for Better Life” University Students Research Competition (hereinafter referred to as “Water Competition”). Ming Cheng Chien, President LANXESS Asia-Pacific Region, Zhihong Yu, President and Editor-in-chief of China Sustainability Tribune, Ulf Dressler, Head of COM APAC, Taiga Harigai, Head of BU LPT APAC, and student representatives from 22 participating teams witnessed the launch of the event.
Small trickles converge into a mighty river. Water is the mother of everything, the foundation of life, and the origin of civilization. The protection of water resources is the top priority of ecological protection, and using Yellow River water resources as its capacity permits has become an important means to take the road of green, sustainable and high-quality development. To encourage university students to take an active part in water protection actions and give full play to their professionalism and creativity in water protection and utilization, China Sustainability Tribune (formerly China WTO Tribune) and LANXESS Chemical (China) Co., Ltd. officially launched the Water Competition in May 2015 as the “Water Ten Plan” was issued, aiming to encourage more young Chinese people to shoulder the mission of the times and contribute their wisdom and strength to water protection.
So far, a total of seven editions have been held, and the number of participating universities has increased from 5 to 66, with the universities distributed throughout the country, attracting 270 projects and nearly one thousand students. Participating teams can carry out practical projects either under their own propositions or around four designated propositions including 1. Removal of PFAS pollutants (perfluorinated and polyfluoroalkyl compounds) in the environment; 2. Selective adsorption of lithium ions in solution; 3. Recycling of battery metals (nickel, cobalt, etc.) in wastewater solution; 4. Removal of arsenic and other heavy metals in drinking water.
Since the start of solicitation for projects this year, a total of 34 projects submitted by representative teams from 29 universities including Peking University, Central South University, Tongji University, Shandong University, Wuhan University, and Northeast Agricultural University have been received, covering 15 provinces, municipalities and autonomous regions, and 22 teams have been shortlisted.
“Sustainable development is the core element of LANXESS' corporate strategy, and the Water Competition is a typical program demonstrating our corporate responsibility. I'm delighted to see that new students join every year to energize this program. This year’s research theme is closely related to our lives, and I hope our students to accumulate more experience during research and apply what they have learned to bring a positive impact to water protection and society,” Ming Cheng Chien, President Asia-Pacific Region, said in his speech.
“Faced with challenges such as global warming and COVID-19, sustainable development has not only become a global consensus, but also is leading the transformation of companies in the new era. As the influence depth and breadth of the Water Competition continues to expand, the achievements of the projects keep releasing enormous energy, and here the most important strength comes from our young teams. We expect that all of them will, with water as a medium, keep improving their quality and capabilities that satisfy era development and career requirements, and jointly contribute to solving water problems and more environmental challenges with their innovative ideas and vigorous youth,” Zhihong Yu, President and Editor-in-chief of China Sustainability Tribune, said.
Ulf Dressler, Head of COM APAC, introduced the basic information of the Water Competition to the students. Taiga Harigai, Head of BU LPT APAC and Yuxi Wang, representative of BU LPT shared the liquid purification technology of LANXESS and its practical applications, hoping to provide inspiration to the research projects of the students.
The evaluation meeting is expected to be held in September. LANXESS will also arrange volunteer tutors from LPT for each team, providing guidance and support for the students' practical activities. In the coming months, the students will, with their passion, innovative thinking and unremitting efforts, go deep into issues closely related to environmental protection and water protection, and propose innovative solutions, exploring a clearer future with their youthful vitality in their colorful life.