CHBE Professors Win 2023 UBC Campus as a Living Lab Grand Challenge Award

This past February, CHBE professors Dr. Naoko Ellis, Dr. Sergio Berretta, and Dr. Xiaotao (Tony) Bi won one of two $250,000 prizes from the 2023 UBC Campus as a Living Lab (CLL) Grand Challenge Awards.

CLL is collaborative framework for researchers, students, staff, and external partners to use UBC’s campus to explore, develop, and test new ideas related to global sustainability challenges. CLL projects address urgent climate issues in the local context and in alignment with UBC’s Strategic Plan: Creating vibrant, sustainable environments that enhance wellbeing and excellence for people…at UBC and beyond.

In 2023, CLL’s ‘Grand Challenge’ called for innovative approaches to how British Columbia and Canada can effectively respond and adapt to the ongoing climate emergency. This year’s competition attracted faculty and staff from over than 22 departments and operational units across UBC Vancouver and Okanagan, showcasing a wide variety of innovative proposals. Prizes included two $250,000 awards for UBC Vancouver campus teams, and one $100,000 award for a UBC Okanagan campus team.

Dr. Ellis, Dr. Berretta, and Dr. Bi collaborated on a project exploring the potential of utilizing aerobically treated organic waste from municipal green bin programs as a sustainable biomass source for UBC’s Bioenergy Research Demonstration Facility (BRDF). The project addresses the challenges of efficient waste management and sustainable energy production, and demonstrates a practical solution to enhance UBC’s operational sustainability.

Congratulations to Dr. Ellis, Dr. Berretta, and Dr. Bi on this remarkable achievement!