Sustainability is key


Who knows whether the life we live now will last until we are older? Who knows what tomorrow holds? Even with this uncertainty, we should do what we must today, so we can prosper tomorrow.

The world is full of possibilities, the carbon dioxide emissions could spike next week and global warming could accelerate.

On the other hand, we can also come up with a breakthrough in science that dissolves our reliance on these non-renewable resources, or we can come up with something which reduces the emissions of carbon dioxide by converting it into something which isn’t harmful for the environment.

As future engineers, we should all be forward-looking, constantly trying to think of solutions for the world’s problems and being able to anticipate them.

Currently, the biggest problem we are facing is matching with sustainability development goals. Over time the non-renewable energy sources are being depleted, so we must develop our current forms of renewable energy to compensate for the loss of non-renewable energy sources which makes up the majority of our energy consumption.

The use of non-renewable energy sources also releases greenhouse gasses which destroy the ozone layer, so we also need to look into how to limit the amount of these gasses we release.

Naturally, we all want to know how we can help out and do our part in this battle to save the planet. Well, I was also wondering what I could do in the future, i.e. when I get my degree I could start doing a research or join a team. However, as mentioned before, you never know what the future holds and more so in this time of uncertainty.

Therefore, in December 2019, I decided to make my first step towards trying to make a brighter future and joined the student team Renew CO2. I had joined a bit late and better late than never, but as a result I wasn’t in the team picture (since it had been taken before my arrival), so I hope others can learn from my mistake!

Renew CO2

The goal of Renew CO2 is to create a device where, in a nutshell, we are converting carbon dioxide into formic acid. Which in my opinion is amazing, because we are an interdisciplinary team that comes together every week and shoots ideas around, and you can see that everyone on the team is so passionate about getting this done.

Usually, the atmosphere in the team in the meetings is amazing (just as the planet’s atmosphere when we’re done). Being a part of the team also helps me while I’m at home because I tend to forget what day it is, but the meetings give me something to look forward to which is both productive and fun.

I would definitely recommend joining a student team with a core ideal being sustainability, because then not only do we, as future engineers, gain experience for the future, but you will also become highly motivated due to a sense of responsibility for the planet.

There is also an initiative that I’ve recently noticed on Instagram ‘Sustainability Network Eindhoven’ whose goal is to engage, channel and support collaborations between student teams that work towards sustainable development. There you will be able to see more options as well, maybe a team which is better suited for you.

Ultimately the more people involved, the more ideas and perspectives there are, and this can assist the teams into achieving their goal. For this reason all the student teams are consistently recruiting new members, so you can definitely message one of them on Instagram and request to join (or message me to join Renew CO2)! I hope I have gotten more people aware of these student teams, and I’ve gotten some of you interested in joining!

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