UTM-UNNES-UNS Webinar on Glass for World Sustainability

Prepared by: Dr. Nurhafizah Hasim, Dr. Nur Hidayah Ahmad, Dr. Faizani Mohd Noor & Dr. Siti Pauliena Mohd Bohari

A webinar on Glass for World Sustainability was successfully conducted on 16 August 2021 via a live stream on the Faculty of Science, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM) Facebook and Webex platform. This Webinar was organized by the Advanced Optical Materials Research Group (AOMRG), UTM MASS Chapter Southern Region and in-collaboration with Universitas Negeri Semarang (UNNES), Indonesia and Universitas Sebelas Maret (UNS), Indonesia.

The Director of the program, Dr. Nurhafizah Hasim, together with all AOMRG members, organized a wonderful and successful webinar between UTM, UNNES and UNS. Moreover, this collaborative activity marked the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) sealed between UNNES and UTM.

This webinar was conducted to share ideas, knowledge and benefits between lecturers and students in the field of material applications, specifically in glass as a sustainable material. The webinar was organized by the Frontier Materials Research Alliance and co-organized by the Faculty of Science, UTM for Online Global Classroom (OGC).

The OGC managed to attract 129 participants from 19 different universities from five countries, Malaysia, Indonesia, India, Nigeria, Iraq where 77 were undergraduate students and postgraduate students and 52 were the university staff. Apart from that, a total of 25 UTM alumni and 27 MASS Member also gave their support to this program.

The speakers from each university took part in sharing inputs related to the theme “Glass for World Sustainability”, Prof. Dr. Md Rahim Sahar, Adjunct Professor, (UTM), Dr. Agus Yulianto (UNNES) and Dr. Ahmad Marzuki (UNS).

The webinar talks were mostly about glass as a sustainable material. Nowadays, the question of sustainability has been heard across the world. Sustainability is a broad term used to describe the myriad ways in which a product or process can affect the environment, society, and economy. Therefore, the question “if GLASS can be a sustainable material” had been asked among researchers.

The glass itself is a fully recyclable material that provides excellent environmental benefits such as contributing to mitigating climate change and saving precious natural resources. In many applications, it is also highly appreciated for its inert nature and its contributions to safeguarding people’s health and well-being.

The composition of a package is another way to measure its sustainability, and glass is made from three abundant and NATURAL ingredients, which are sand, limestone and soda ash. When glass breaks down, it remains safe and stable and releases no harmful chemicals into the soil. So even when glass isn’t recycled, it does minimal harm to the environment. The Five (5) reasons glass will be your next sustainable friend are:

  • Glass is 100% endlessly recyclable, which means that recycled glass is always part of the recipe for glass.
  • Glass has the best barrier protection vs any alternative packaging materials.
  • The more recycled glass used, the less energy is wasted to create new glass.
  • Glass can reflect and absorb solar energy.
  • Every tonne of recycled glass saves 670 kg of CO2.

Based on this classification and the discussion during the webinar, it gives a better understanding of glass as a sustainable material that can improve lives on earth in the future. All three (3) speakers successfully discussed the theme with lecturers, researchers and students as a new idea for world sustainability was pointed out.