reprint from CI
1997, Vol. 19, No. 3 (July), pp. 127-128
World Conference on the Role of Advanced Materials in Sustainable
Seoul, Korea, 1-6 September 1996
The UN Conference on Environment and Development held in Rio de Janeiro
in 1992 alerted world-wide attention to the effective and wasteless
use of materials and energy, zero emission and zero-waste production,
and systematic recycling for sustainable development. These strategies
are now having a significant impact on the environmental policies of
governments and are bringing about change in industrial and economic
structure as well as to international trade.
In Korea, the need for reconsideration of mass production at any price
and for sustainable development to preserve the environment has been
widely felt. CHEMRAWN IX was organized to offer a chance to examine
industrial and economic activities of the present day world and to search
for effective ways of achieving zero emission and zero waste production.
The CHEMRAWN IX World Conference was held at the Sheraton Walker Hill
Hotel, Seoul, Korea, 1-6 September 1996. The Conference consisted of
four sessions: Communication, Transportation, Construction and Energy.
Academics, scientists and industrialists came to examine and analyze
current production technologies and their impacts on the environment.
Recycling methods, development of ecologically friendly materials, improving
production processes, exchanging information and policy making were
Organizing Committee Chairman Dr Min Che Chon gave the opening address,
which was followed by congratulatory speeches by Dr A. Hayes, Chairman
of the IUPAC CHEMRAWN Committee, and Prof. Saburo Nagakura, President
of the Kanagawa Academy of Science & Technology, welcoming remarks
by Prof. Sang Chul Shim, President of the Korean Chemical Society, and
a Future Actions Committee report by Prof. Young Bok Chae, Chairman
of the CHEMRAWN IX Future Actions Committee.
Among the distinguished lecturers were Sir John Meurig Thomas of the
Royal Institute of Great Britain and Peterhouse, University of Cambridge,
UK, who lectured on 'The Crucial Role of Catalysis in Sustainable Development';
President Junichi Nishizawa of Tohoku University, Japan, who lectured
on 'Needs and Seeds for Revolutionary Technology Towards Sustainable
Society; the former IUPAC President Prof. C.N.R. Rao of the Advanced
Scientific Research & Indian Institute of Science, who lectured
on 'The Impact of New Emerging Areas of Solid State Science on the Development
of Advanced Materials: Three Case Studies'; and President Charles O.
Holliday of DuPont Asia Pacific, who talked about 'Policy and Practical
Issues in Sustainable Development: an Industrial Perspective on Opportunities
Among speakers from Korea, President Chung Wook Suh of Korea Mobile
Telecommunication talked about 'Wireless Telecommunications in Korea';
Vice-President Sang Bok Hong of Pohang Steel Corporation spoke about
'The Korean Steel Industry and Development'; Dr Han Jung Kim, Director
of the Research Institute, Korea Electricity Corporation, talked about
'Issues in Materials Research for Electric Power Generation and DistributionPerspective
of Korea Electric Power Research Institute'; Vice-President Chong Gil
Lee of Samsung Electronics talked about 'The Present and Future of the
Korean Semiconductor Industry'; and Dr Dae Un Lee, Director of the Research
Institute, Hyundai Automobile Corporation, spoke about 'The Automobile
Industry of Korea and Sustainable Development'. Perspectives and Recommendations,
a report produced by the Future Actions Committee (FAC) in conjunction
with all CHEMRAWN conferences, is distributed to all leaders and policy
makers in world politics, economics, science and industry, for their
use and reference. The CHEMRAWN IX Perspectives and Recommendations,
now available from the IUPAC Secretariat at Oxford, identifies seven
key findings and makes six recommendations for future actions, as outlined
on Dr Min Che Chon
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Seven key findings
1. There is a need for increased understanding and use of life-cycle
assessments in making decisions on materials and technologies supporting
the objectives of sustainable development.
2. Ways to recycle complex manufactured goods containing advanced materials
need to be developed. Designing such goods for recycling may be a top
3. The importance of conservation of and development of adequate water
supplies for agriculture and human consumption cannot be underestimated.
Shortages will be the source of major conflicts in the future.
4. There are opportunities in the upgrading of locally available materials
with small amounts of other materials or processing technologies from
outside the region.
5. The opportunities to improve many traditional materials (steel,
cement...) are consistent with the goals of sustainable development.
6. A number of advances in energy production can contribute to sustainable
7. Catalysis research offers the potential for routes to sustainable
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Six key recommendations for future action
The Future Actions Committee (FAC) made the following six key recommendations
for future action:
1. We should create a 'materials for sustainable development' research
and development agenda to guide national funding agencies.
Action: A team from the FAC will develop a special message
and background details from the President of IUPAC to National Adhering
Organizations urging that the local organizations approach funding
agencies with these priorities. The FAC team will also seek other
ways to communicate this message (for example, develop a research
agenda to take to a funding agency; develop a research partnership
between organizations in developed and developing countries; discuss
with the Carter Center, Atlanta, Georgia, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNDP and
the International Center for Evaluation of Technology. FAC team 1:
C.N.R. Rao, P.M. Norling, J. Nishizawa, S.J. Park, A. Hayes, Y.B.
Chae and F. Kuznetsov.
2. The FAC supports the need to contribute to the ready transfer of
environmental technologies across industries, across nations and across
public/private sectors; to increase the focus from control and remediation
technologies to avoidance and resource conservation.
Action: To include urging from the IUPAC President as in Recommendation
1. FAC team 1.
3. We urge the protection of Intellectual Property Rights in a way
that acts as an important driver for the introduction of advanced material
and process technologies that can further sustainable development rather
than as a hindrance to increased collaboration for sustainable development.
Action: FAC Team 1 will include this issue in the letter to
be developed under Recommendation 1.
4. We plan to develop a programme of technical education related to
sustainable development that can be included in future CHEMRAWN conferences.
Action: Follow up in CHEMRAWN X and propose supporting educational
efforts of material societies, UNESCO and UNIDO. FAC team 2: The CHEMRAWN
X Organizing Committee and selected members of the CHEMRAWN Committee:
R. Pariser, P. Moyna and R. Hamelin.
5. We should urge experts to define (in writing) the needs and opportunities
in advanced materials to build a better awareness amongst the public
of the contributions of chemistry and advanced materials to our society
and to sustainable development.
Action: An FAC team will explore a series of IUPAC monographs
'Chemistry in the 21st Century' using materials from papers presented
at CHEMRAWN IX. There is also the possibility of a column or articles
in selected magazines or periodicals. FAC team 3: Y.B. Chae, Y.S.
Sohn, J.M. Thomas, F.A. Kuznetsov and M.C. Chon.
6. We will urge that where awards are given, special recognition be
given to advances in developing materials that contribute to sustainable
Action: The FAC will develop a plan to: (i) approach existing
award groups and make nominations; (ii) propose that organizations
establish such awards; (iii) raise awareness within IUPAC (and other
groups) of the existence of such awards. FAC team 4: K. Taylor, J.
Economy and A. Tcheknavorian-Asenbauer.
Min Che Chon
Chairman of the Organizing Committee
IUPAC CHEMRAWN IX
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Copies of the CHEMRAWN IX: Technical Proceedings may
be ordered from the Korean Chemical Society, 703 Korea Science &
Technology Center, 635-4 Yeogsam-Dong, Kangnam-Gu, Seoul 135-703, Korea.