Chemical and electrochemical reduction methods allow the dispersion, processing, and/or functionalization of discrete sp 2 - hybridised nanocarbons, including fullerenes, nanotubes and graphenes. Electron transfer to the nanocarbon raises the Fermi energy creating nanocar bon anions, thereby activating an array of possible covalent reactions. The Fermi level may then be partially or fully lowered by intended functionalization reactions, but in general, techniques are required to remove excess charge without inadvertent cova lent reactions that potentially degrade the nanocarbon properties of interest. Here, simple and effective chemical discharging routes are demonstrated for graphenide polyelectrolytes and are expected to apply to other systems, particularly nanotubides. The discharging process is inherently linked to the reduction potentials of such chemical discharging agents and the unusual fundamental chemistry of charged nanocarbons.