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UC Santa Barbara Awarded Nearly $5 million for Chemical Research

Release Date: 04/10/2014
Contact Information: Nahal Mogharabi, 213-244-1815, mogharabi.nahal@epa.gov

SAN FRANCISCO – Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced a $4.9 million research grant to the University of California, Santa Barbara to better understand the impacts of chemicals throughout their life cycle—from design, manufacture, use and disposal.

“EPA is supporting efforts that will lead to the design of safer chemicals, helping minimize risks to human health and the environment,” said Jared Blumenfeld, EPA’s Regional Administrator for the Pacific Southwest. “UC Santa Barbara’s research has the potential to influence scientists and decision makers as they consider the costs and the benefits of chemicals.”

UC Santa Barbara will use the funds to develop an open-access, online tool, the Chemical Life-Cycle Builder (CLB), to evaluate life-cycle impacts for chemicals and materials at an early stage of the chemical product development process when the precise manufacturing routes and fates of the products are still uncertain. An international network of academic, industry and government partners will collaborate to develop the tool.

Arizona State University received $5 million to evaluate the trade-offs between using nanomaterials to improve the functionality of consumer products and the potential risks to humans and the environment.

In September 2012, EPA partnered with the National Science Foundation (NSF) to encourage collaboration in applying principles of sustainability to chemical management issues, including design, manufacture, use, and disposal. In 2013, NSF awarded more than $16 million in grants to Yale University, University of Kansas, University of Arizona and Colorado State University for research on sustainable molecular design of chemical alternatives. These grant awards further EPA’s and NSF’s commitment to increase knowledge of chemical life cycles and sustainable chemistry.

For more information on the chemical life cycle grants issued by EPA visit: http://epa.gov/ncer/ncclcs

For more information on the sustainable molecular design awards issued by NSF visit: http://www.nsf.gov/news/news_summ.jsp?cntn_id=129235&org=NSF&from=news