Green benefits: UBC is not just a leader in research for smart cities, it’s leading by example

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More than just an institution of higher learning, the University of British Columbia empowers its students and faculty in ground breaking research that endeavours to make an impact on real world issues. In part 2 of a series, we look at UBC's world-leading sustainability efforts and the potential for the university's initiatives to have an impact across the globe.

Burning wood has been a primary energy source for humankind since time immemorial. Even today, it remains an essential means to cook food and heat homes in many parts of the developing world.

Just ask University of British Columbia engineering professor Walter Mérida. “I come from a place where energy is carbon intensive,” says the university’s director of its Clean Energy Research Centre (CERC), a hub dedicated to the science of environmentally friendly sources. The soot and smog caused by fossil fuels in Guatemala City — where he grew up — serves as a constant reminder of the goals of the centre.