Illinois Sustainable Technology Center’s research portfolio is diverse. We investigate areas impacting water, energy, and the sustainability of their production and use. The boundaries between these categories are not neat due to the interconnected nature of water needed for energy production and energy needed for water production. In addition, food also has an energy and water demand.

This web of interconnectedness is called the water, food, and energy nexus. ISTC research is geared towards reducing demand and increasing efficiency for all categories by conducting integrated research. For example, biochar, a byproduct of biomass to energy, could serve as a type of carbon filter to reduce agriculture nutrient pollution and recycle nutrients back to the fields. Carbon capture serves to reduce our energy carbon foot print while also providing a needed starting component for the chemical industry.

Our research is interested in promoting cleaner energy, cleaner water, and wasting nothing that can be reused or repurposed in order to increase sustainability in Illinois and beyond.

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