CCVC Seminar by John Warner- Green Chemistry: Nature’s Mechanisms of Sustainability – Molecular Biomimicry

Monday, March 13, 2023 03:30to06:00

3:30 pm: John Warner seminar


Nature creates materials of such exquisite structural complexity and diversity that humans may never be able to completely mimic them. Nature’s elegance is even more astounding when one considers the fact that most chemistry in the biological world is carried out at ambient temperature and pressure using water, for the most part, as its reaction medium. For society to become truly sustainable, the way we manufacture, use and repurpose materials must change dramatically. This presentation will describe John Warner’s vision of “the materials metabolism” and five of nature’s mechanisms that we can learn from to create green chemistry technologies.



John is a chemistry inventor who works to design and create commercial technologies inspired by nature consistent with the principles of green chemistry. With over 300 patents, he has invented solutions for dozens of multinational corporations. His inventions have also served as the basis for several new companies.

He is one of the cofounders of the field of green chemistry, articulating the 12 principles of green chemistry with Paul Anastas. John has received prestigious awards, some of them including the Presidential Award for Excellence in Science Mentoring, the August Wilhelm von Hofmann Medal, and the Perkin Medal. Warner was named one of the most influential people impacting the global chemical industries, and one of “25 Visionaries Changing the World”. He serves as Distinguished Professor of Green Chemistry at Monash University in Australia and as strategic advisor for the Science, Engineering and Health Committee of EPA Victoria in Australia.

John received his BS in Chemistry from UMASS Boston, and his PhD in Chemistry from Princeton University. After working at the Polaroid Corporation for nearly a decade, he then served as tenured full professor at UMASS Boston and Lowell (Chemistry and Plastics Engineering). He co-founded the Warner Babcock Institute for Green Chemistry with Jim Babcock (a research organization developing green chemistry technologies), and Beyond Benign with Amy Cannon (a non-profit dedicated to sustainability and green chemistry education).


4:30 pm: Green Chemistry Commitment celebration


  • Learn about green chemistry at McGill Chemistry, including ways to get involved
  • Learn about the Green Chemistry Commitment by Beyond Benign (www.beyondbenign.org)


The McGill community is invited to celebrate Green Chemistry with John Warner. Food and drinks will be served after the formal event. Register by March 7 with the following link


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