IIChE President

President’s Message

The year 2022 - 75 th year of IIChE – the Platinum Jubilee year – celebrations along with AZADI KA AMRIT MAHOTSAV across Regional Centres and Student Chapters speak about how we feel as proud chemical engineers and contribution of our profession to India’s growth story. Devotion, Out of Box Thinking, Determination and Commitment towards profession have yielded results to Industrial output and GDP of the country.

The issues of steady raw material supply, spiralling energy cost, availability of skilled manpower, resource efficiency, climate change, sustainability, the world scenario particularly Russia – Ukraine war etc., are crucial for Indian Chemical Process Industry. The 3 ‘R’s of circular economy – Reduce / Reuse / Recycle are of vital importance in the present scenario of sustainability.

As we celebrate Platinum Jubilee of IIChE, I feel proud that as Chemical Engineers we are committed to inclusive growth to meet societal needs and community at large. Of course, we are on threshold of driving our efforts for sustainable future. It is the prime requirement of 21 st century. We, as “Chemineers”, have to tighten belts to transit from consumer industry to sustainable consumption industry - a big challenge associated with ATMA NIRBHAR BHARAT. I firmly believe “Chemistry & Chemical Engineering” are going to play important role in achieving the transition to a sustainable Growth & Environment on Earth.

Chemical Process Industry will become more dominant & will be the driver of sustainability and growth. I look forward to responsive Chemical Process Industry for sustainability and process safety. With a focus on process safety, IIChE has established Process Safety, Energy & Environmental Group to learn from past major incidents and to plan for process safety, energy & environment sustainability. My endeavour is that IIChE will engage with leaders from industry, policy makers, statutory regulators and other professional bodies to improve process safety and drive sustainability culture to deliver improvements in health, safety and environmental performance benefitting to all. Formation of National Chemical Safety Board (NCSB) is being worked out and I am hopeful to establish NCSB by year end with involvement of Industry ministry and Labour ministry.

Plastic waste is a major issue. Ban on plastic usage or usage of alternative packing materials needs a holistic view. Reduce, recycle and reuse of plastics waste is need of hour. To achieve this, facilities for plastic waste sorting along with human behaviour towards waste segregation will support plastic waste management. The movement for usage of alternative materials should also consider other impacts like energy use, resource depletion, air and water emissions, solid waste generation, biodiversity loss, human and ecological toxicity in production of this alternate materials.

The ever increasing application of Artificial Intelligence (AI) has made our profession more robust and autonomous, covering process design, process control, preventive maintenance, risk assessment, inspection, residual health assessment, etc. Drones are used to inspect closed confined hazardous area, pressure vessels, reactors, nuclear reactor, boiler, large storage tanks for defects or damage. The application of such advanced robotics will go a long way to make Chemical Process Industry inherently safer.

Today chemical engineers are contributing to multiple and cross-functional domains ranging from Biomedical, Biomaterial, Biochemical, Genetic engineering, Genomics, and Tissue Engineering to Molecular Information Engineering.This brings me immense joy that chemical engineers can transform lives by contributing to a plethora of allied and applied sciences.

The first half of 2022 had great significance from Platinum Jubilee Year Celebrations aspects. The ACMS - 2022 conference organised by HQ was a great success from presentation of technical papers from India and abroad with a clear message that Chemical Engineering with advances in material sciences is going to play an important role in sustainability. ACMS 2022, also, gave veracious opportunity to acknowledge the contributions of those who have been part of IIChE’s 75 years journey as well office staff of HQ. Another feature of Platinum Jubilee was two days seminar on 'Production and Use of Green Hydrogen and Green Ammonia in Process Industry' by NRC (Delhi) fitting to the current requirements of green technology. Various RCs and Student Chapters also conducted programs as part of Platinum Jubilee Celebrations. It is heartening to note that other RCs and Student Chapters are in process of organising such programs as a part of Platinum Jubilee Celebrations.

The inauguration of Srinagar Regional Centre along with 5 days conference on Trends in Sustainability and Green Production made IIChE a Pan India presence, fitting to 75 th year of IIChE celebrations.

I have initiated starting of two dedicated portals on IIChE web page for ‘Industrial Polyclinic’ and ‘ASK the EXPERT’ for benefits of CPI, particularly SME sector, and for students. With support of web service provider, these portals are expected to be active by mid-September. That is all to the pen and I look forward to ongoing second half of 2022 with more vibrancy from all members associated with their respective Centres.

D M Butala

President 2022