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Environmental Chemistry

Links and Bookmarks

The following is an annotated list of links to accompany Dr. Richard Foust's Environmental Chemistry course (ENV 440). There is also a downloadable bookmark file (env440bk.html) which should be made available to students who wish to keep a file on floppy disk (or hard drive) of these links.


The Department of Energy Home Page

About The Department of Energy
Departmental Department of Energy News and Hot Topics
What's New on the Department's Network
OpenNet (References to the Department's declassified information.)
Electronic Exchange Initiative (Electronic exchange of scientific and technical documents.)

The Environmental Protection Agency Home Page

EPA News
Offices, Labs and Regions
Contracts, Grants, and Environmental Financing
Programs and Initiatives
PublicationsAbout EPA
Data Systems and Software
Information Services

U.S.G.S. Earth and Environment Home Page

The U.S. Geological Survey maintains this registry of Earth and Environmental Science Internet resources as a service to the research community.

U.S. Department of Energy Office of Environmental Management

OEM Public Information
Regulatory Information
Waste Management

Global Change Data and Information System (GCDIS)

GCDIS is a collection of distributed information systems operated by government agencies involved in global change research. GCDIS provides global change data to scientists and researchers, policy makers, educators, industry, and the public at large. GCDIS includes multidisciplinary data from atmospheric science, ecology, oceanography, as well as economics and sociology. GCDIS is a cooperative activity of agencies participating in the U.S. Global Change Research Program (USGCRP).

Links to other Environmental Science sites (Environmental Science Program, Ashland University)

Industry and other miscellaneous sites

The Environmental Professional's Guide to the Net

The Environmental Professional's Guide to the Net (formerly the Environmental Professional's Homepage) is for environmental professionals worldwide who are interested in locating technical sites on the Internet. The PGN provides brief descriptions of each site to assist the user in evaluating a site prior to visiting it.

Duquesne University Environmental Chemistry ESM 552

This course provides students with an appreciation and understanding of the fundamental and theoretical background and concepts in environmental chemistry. Students will learn environmental testing methods and gain the knowledge necessary for critical evaluation of fundamental aspects of testing procedures and data derived from environmental testing.

Included in this page are course notes based on the principle lecture text: Environmental Chemistry, by Stanley E. Manahan, Stanley E. Lewis Publishers; MI, sixth edition: 1994.

Preparing for the 21st Century: Challenges Facing A Changing Society

Environmental awareness among the public and policymakers has been growing since the 1960s, when it became widely recognized that human activities were having harmful and large-scale effects on the environment. Scientific and engineering research is also playing an increasing role in both understanding and protecting the environment. Research has demonstrated the importance of the environment to human health and well-being as well as the economic, social, and aesthetic harm that can stem from poor environmental practices. Research has suggested ways to curb harmful practices without incurring excessive costs. For example, scientific and engineering research has provided cost-effective ways to reduce the pollution in air and water in the United States; has demonstrated the importance of areas, such as wetlands, that were once considered of little value to human societies; and has helped to preserve natural ecosystems and the species that inhabit them….

The Johns Hopkins Environmental Network

Employment and Internship Opportunities
Government Agencies and Programs
Environmental Networks and News Sources
Professional Organizations for Environmental Scientists and Engineers
Institutes and Centers
Environmental Engineering Industry Products and Services
Environmental Engineering and Science Academic Departments
Usenet Newsgroups
Book Publishers

The CIA World Factbook 1995

Publication Information
Notes, Definitions, and Abbreviations
Reference Maps

John Wiley & Sons, Inc. Publishers

Oxford University Press



Fast Start Version of Understanding our Planet Through Chemistry

This U.S.Geological Survey site shows how chemists and geologists use analytical chemistry to: determine the age of the Earth; show an extraterrestrial body collided with the Earth; predict volcanic eruptions; observe atmospheric change over millions of years; and document damage by acid rain and pollution of the Earth's surface…

Plain English Guide to the Clean Air Act <>

Why should you be concerned about air pollution?
Features of the 1990 Clean Air Act
Mobile sources
Acid rain
Repairing the ozone layer
Consumer products
Home woodstoves
How do you know the Clean Air Act is working?
The Common Air Pollutants

Clean Air Act Amendments

The passage of the Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990, signed into law as P.L. 101-549 on November 15, 1990, represents the most significant development in environmental legislation in years. Only two prior clean air legislative efforts are comparable in magnitude--the Clean Air Act of 1970 and the 1977 Clean Air Act Amendments…

Background Information on the Clean Water Act

In 1972, Congress enacted the Clean Water Act "to restore and maintain the chemical, physical, and biological integrity of the Nation's waters." It is the national goal of the Clean Water Act that all of our waters should be safe for fishing and swimming. To date, only 66% of our waters meet this goal. To achieve such an ambitious goal, Congress understood that a variety of programs would be necessary to attack the many types of pollution entering our waters…

Safe Water Drinking Act: 1996 Amendment and Reauthorization

On August 6, 1996, President Clinton signed legislation amending and reauthorizing the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) through 2003. The amended SDW Amendment, 142 U.S.C. 300f et seq., 104 P.L. 162, grants the EPA more flexibility to set risk-based standards for contaminants in drinking water, and directs it to focus on preventing and treating the most harmful pollutants. The Amendment also requires most local water authorities to disclose annually what chemicals and bacteria are in drinking water, to report non-compliance events in monthly billing statements to consumers, and to give public notice within 24 hours of discovering dangerous contaminants in the water system…

CERCLA Authority

Response under CERCLA may be necessary from DOE when all of the following four thresholds are crossed:
1. a hazardous substance
2. is released or there is a substantial threat of a release
3. into the environment, and
4. response is necessary to protect public health, welfare, or the environment.

Explanation of Major Steps of the CERCLA Process <>

Preliminary Assessment
Site inspection
Remedial investigation
Feasibility study
Proposed Plan
Record of Decision
Remedial design
Remedial action

Resource Conservation and Recovery Act <>

Congress passed the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) in 1976. RCRA substantially revamped federal regulation of solid waste disposal and created the first comprehensive federal regulatory program for the systematic control of hazardous waste. RCRA originally amended the Solid Waste Disposal Act (1965). RCRA was reauthorized in 1984 with the Hazardous and Solid Waste Amendments and was amended in 1988 to include the management of infectious waste…



Introduction to Cosmology Web Site

This web site introduces basic concepts in modern cosmology and describes the MAP mission at a general level:
What is the Big Bang?
How old is the universe?
How fast is the universe expanding?
Is the universe infinite?
What is the universe made of?
What is the cosmological constant?
What is the theory of Inflation? How does it extend the Big Bang theory?
How did the chemical elements form?
How did galaxies and large scale structure form in the early universe?
What is the cosmic microwave background radiation?
What are cosmic microwave background fluctuations?
What is the Milky Way?
The formation of the first stars and quasars
The life and death of stars



How Fusion Reactions Work

Fusion of light elements releases energy, as does fission of heavy elements. The relation E = mc^2 states the equivalence of mass and energy. In a fusion reaction, some reactant mass energy is converted to kinetic energy of the products. Binding energy is the energy equivalent of the mass difference between a nucleus and its individual constituent protons and neutrons. For energy release in fusion or fission, the products need to have a higher binding energy per nucleon (proton or neutron) than the reactants. As the graph above shows, fusion only releases energy for light elements and fission only releases energy for heavy elements…

Radiation and Health Physics Home Page`radinfo/

This Page contains information and links related to Radiation. It has been written for three distinct groups: the General Public, Students and the Health Physics community at large.

General Information (Basic terms, Radiation info and Short essays)
Regulatory Information (DOE, NRC, EPA, etc)
Professional Information (Organizations, E-mail, Areas of Interest, Archives)
Radiation Specialties and Related Fields (Waste, Space, Shielding, etc.)
Radiation and Health Physics Research Information (Labs, Data Bases, Listings)
Educational Information (Student, Training and Other Related Information)
Miscellaneous Information (Help and Other Information)
New Items on Our Site
Quick Links (Short cuts to the most used links on this site)
Key Word Search on Our Site
Original Site - On
What You Need to Know About Radiation (By Lauriston S. Taylor)
NRC Technical Issues Papers and Fact Sheets

The Particle Adventure

The Particle Adventure introduces the theory of fundamental particles and forces, called the Standard Model. It explores the experimental evidence and the reasons physicists want to go beyond this theory. In addition, it provides information on particle decay and a brief history section.



Nuclear Waste Storage Locations

Hanford, Washington
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratories
Nevada Test Site
Rocky Flats Environmental Technology Site
Idaho National Engineering Laboratories (Waste Drums-500K.JPG)
Los Alamos National Laboratories
Argonne National Laboratories
Mound, Ohio
Oak Ridge National Laboratories
Savannah River Site
US DOE Site locations with links (graphic browsers only)

Yucca Mountain

Yucca Mountain is the candidate site for a HLW repository. Under the Nuclear Waste Policy Act (NWPA), Congress found that a national problem had been created by the accumulation of Spent Nuclear Fuel (SNF) from commercial reactors and HLW. The NWPA assigned to DOE the responsibility for managing the disposal of this spent fuel and waste, specified the siting process and authorized the construction of one geologic repository. Under the NWPA Amendments Act of 1987, the process for selecting this repository was streamlined and the Yucca Mountain site in Nevada was selected for detailed study as the candidate site for the United State's first geologic repository…

The Yucca Mountain Site Characterization Project

Many scientists think that Yucca Mountain has features that may make it suitable for a nuclear waste repository. By suitable, scientists mean the rock will keep the waste sufficiently isolated for 10,000 years so that the radioactive material will pose about the same risk or less risk of health effects to the public as that of unmined uranium ore. There also are scientists who question the suitability of the Yucca Mountain site, or whether it can ever be shown to be suitable. These scientists are studying:

The movement of water
The movement of rock and earthquakes
Volcanoes and Yucca Mountain…

Mound Plant

Site Treatment Plan
Activity Highlights
Projection of Activity Over the Next 12 Months



Earth's atmosphere

The atmosphere is the mixture of gases that surrounds the Earth. The atmosphere is held to the surface of the Earth by gravity. Only very light gas molecules that are moving at high speeds can escape Earth's gravitational attraction. The atmosphere has no definite outer boundary. As it extends outward from Earth, it becomes thinner and blends with particles of interplanetary space. At a height of about 6000 miles (10000 km) above Earth's surface, the density of hydrogen atoms in the upper atmosphere becomes equal to that of interplanetary space…

WWW Servers With Atmosphere and Climate Information

NASA's Global Change Master Directory (GCMD) is a comprehensive source of information about satellite and in situ Earth science data, with broad coverage of the atmosphere, hydrosphere, oceans, solid earth, and biosphere. This Page has a large list of links to other servers with atmosphere and climate information.

Atmospheric Chemistry Division Home Page

This is the home page for the Atmospheric Chemistry division of the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colorado. ACD's objectives include studying the causes, processes concerning, and effects of gasses in the atmosphere. Satellite and field experiments bring in new data on natural and man-made processes. Laboratory experiments examine controlled and limited chemical environments. And computer models interpret this data in an effort to evaluate and predict small and large-scale chemical changes in the atmosphere…

Stanley Miller Homepage

The objectives of my research are to demonstrate the prebiotic synthesis of various purines and pyrimidines as well as alternative backbones to ribose phosphate in the first genetic material of the pre-RNA world…

Evolution of Life Through the Metazoa

The origin of life and its evolution through the metazoa was not a simple process. It began with the Big Bang, followed by the formation of the universe and solar system. When the earth formed 4.6 billion years ago, the earth's was reducing in nature devoid of oxygen which created favorable conditions for the abiotic synthesis of the first organic compounds. From these organic molecules, the first primitive cells or prokaryotes arose…



Bio-Geochemical Cycles

Bio-geochemical cycles influence the development of our climate. At the centre of public awareness is the CO2-cycle. Carbon dioxide is emitted into the atmosphere when fossil fuels are burnt. About half of the CO2 emissions are retained in the atmosphere, the rest enters the terrestrial biosphere or is absorbed by the oceans and carried down into the deep water flow where it is ultimately deposited as sediments. Other chemicals that affect our environment are methane, sulphur and nitrogen as well as man made chemicals like CFC and other chlorine compounds. The study of the cycles of these materials in the atmosphere, ocean and land-surfaces is the topic of the investigation of bio-geochemical cycles. In order to model these cycles the relevant, often very complex chemical interaction need to be represented as well as the transports by the atmosphere and ocean circulation…

Bio-Geochemical Dynamics

Biogeochemical dynamics refers to changes in the chemical makeup of the Earth's environment. These changes are influenced by interactions among organisms and the physical and chemical components of their surroundings such as water, air, rock, soils, and sediments. Biogeochemical dynamics are commonly thought of as cycles of material, such as the hydrologic cycle or nutrient cycles, wherein material flows from one component to another, sometimes changing forms and usually coupled with energy flows.

The Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) Distributed Active Archive Center (DAAC) maintains data that characterize these interactions and cycles within ecosystems over time and space…



Properties of Water: Hi - Tech Detergents Ltd

Before discussing surfactants and water-soluble products, a brief review of some of the properties of water might be advisable. From a practical consideration, water is used in chemical processing and in product formulations because it is abundant and cheap. Several of the important properties of water can be summarized as follows:…

Basic Ground Water Hydrology

This overview of the science necessary to understand groundwater issues is taken from Chapter 2 of the Washington State, Department of Ecology, Ground Water Resource Protection Handbook, Published December 1986.

The Hydrologic Cycle I

The Hydrologic Cycle (also called the Water Cycle) is the process that moves water around the earth. The Water Cycle can change the form of water from liquid to water vapor to ice, and even clean it along the way, but it can't make more water. The water you drink today may have been lapped up by dinosaurs millions of years ago!

The Water Cycle is powered by the sun which evaporates water from oceans, rivers, lakes, and even from trees. As the water vapor rises, it cools, condensing into clouds. Winds blow some of the clouds over land. The water falls to earth as precipitation. Runoff flows on the earth's surface into streams, rivers, or ponds. Water that sinks into the soil flows through underground reservoirs, or aquifers, as groundwater. Water passes through many different aquatic habitats before gravity pulls it to earth's lowest point, the ocean.

The Hydrologic Cycle II

Evaporation: As water is heated by the sun, its surface molecules become sufficiently energized to break free of the attractive force binding them together, and then evaporate and rise as invisible vapour in the atmosphere.

Transpiration: Water vapor is also emitted from plant leaves by a process called transpiration. Every day an actively growing plant transpires 5 to 10 times as much water as it can hold at once.

Condensation: As water vapor rises, it cools and eventually condenses, usually on tiny particles of dust in the air. When it condenses it becomes a liquid again or turns directly into a solid (ice, hail or snow). These water particles then collect and form clouds…

U.S. Geological Survey in Missouri Hydrology Primer

Water and People
What is Hydrology?
What Hydrologists Do
Surface Water
Careers in Hydrology

USGS -- Water Resources of the United States

USGS Water Resources Sites of Regional and State Offices
Current Hydrologic Conditions "From the stream to your screen" -- Hammer Award Winner!
National Water Information System (NWIS) Includes Daily Values and Peak Flows
NAWDEX...National Water Data Exchange
Spatial Data ...USGS Node of National Geospatial Data Clearinghouse
Water-Use Data Maps and tables
Acid Rain ...National Atmospheric Deposition Program/National Trends Network (NADP/NTN)
USGS Water Resources Applications Software
USGS Fact Sheets State & Special Topic
Water Education Posters For Grades K-12
National Water Conditions Report (monthly)
Water Resources Abstracts
On-line Reports
National and International Programs for Water Resources: -- including
National Water Quality Assessment (NAWQA) Program
Water Information Coordination Program
Toxic Substances Hydrology Program
National Research Program
Water Resources Projects Search for information.
USGS State Representatives Points of contact
USGS Employee Search
USGS Press Releases

Environmental Protection Agency's Water Protection Homepage

America's Water Resources: Information on the value and quality of our Nation's water resources.
Water Topics: EPA programs and partnerships at work to protect and restore America's water resources.
Regulations: Information on Federal regulations that affect America's water resources.
Policy Guidance
You And Clean Water: Information to raise public awareness and encourage involvement in water quality issues.
Water Events: A listing of national Water Conferences in your area
Volunteer Monitoring: Take part in Monitoring the Health of America's Waters
Information: Hotlines, periodicals, bulletin boards, and workshop training opportunities.
Data & Tools



Review of Basic Chemical Equilibrium

Chemical Equilibrium
Weak/Moderate Acids Bases
Factors That Affect the Position of an Equilibrium
Common Ion Effect
The Effect of Competing Equilibria
The Effect of Temperature and Solvent
The Effect of Electrolyte Concentration
The Activity Coefficient
Redox Reactions and Electrochemistry
The Driving Force: The Cell Potential
The Nernst Equation
The Electrochemical Cell


Nernst Equation Background

Determining whether and how much of some material moves into or out of a cell depends solely on the free energy of the material inside the cell (Gin) compared to its free energy outside the cell (G out) at equilibrium (i.e. when there is no net change in amounts). Or, in other words, movement across the membrane depends on (out-in)…



Fernald Environmental Management Project

The Fernald Environmental Management Project is located on 1,050 acres approximately 18 miles northwest of Cincinnati, Ohio. The site produced uranium metals and compounds for nuclear reactor fuel as part of the Nation's defense program from 1953 until 1989, when all production operations stopped. In 1991, production was permanently halted, and the Fernald Environmental Management Project began. The project has one major mission: cleanup of the site and any offsite contamination as soon as possible in a manner that is safe and cost-effective…

Independent Oversight Evaluation at Fernald

Basis for Evaluation
Overview of the Fernald Site
Evaluation Scope
Conceptual Basis for Evaluation
Evaluation Rating System
Guiding Principle #1 - Line managers are responsible and accountable for safety
Guiding Principle #2 - Comprehensive requirements exist, are appropriate, and are executed
Guiding Principle #3 - Competence is commensurate with responsibilities
Conclusions and Ratings



Aerosols and colloids

Aerosols and colloids encompass a large body of scientific and technological problems that share a common theme of the important role interfacial properties play in determining structure and behavior. Examples such as the nucleation and growth of a new phase, whether it be small aerosol or catalyst particles or larger single crystal semiconductor components, or the kinetic aggregation of particles to form ceramic precursor materials, readily come to mind. Problems of this type cut across traditional divisions of research, requiring a combination of chemistry, statistical mechanics, and transport phenomena for successful study and analysis…

Henry's Law Constants (Solubilities)

Calculations in atmospheric chemistry depend strongly on the availability of kinetic and thermodynamic data. For gas-phase chemistry, evaluations such as the JPL data set greatly facilitate obtaining reliable values. However, no such comprehensive compilation exists for Henry's law constants (solubilities) for tropospheric modeling of clouds and aerosol particles. Waste water treatment is another research area where Henry's law constants are needed since solubility affects volatilization of toxic compounds into the air…

Introductory University Chemistry I. Henry's Law and the Solubility of Gases

Concentration of solutions was taken up as part of molar stoichiometry in earlier sectionsof introductory university chemistry. The concentrations used in this section will all be molar concentrations, because in homogeneous solutions active mass is the ratio of amount of substance to unit volume. Molar concentration will be indicated by c, with the solute in parenthesis following the symbol, or by placing the solute molecule or ion symbol in square brackets. Other concentration units, such as molality, are less commonly usedin aqueous equilibrium calculations…



USGS Toxic Substances Hydrology Program

The occurrence of toxic substances in surface and ground waters is a threat to human health and aquatic life. Contaminants from gasoline, pesticides, sewage, cleaning solvents, and trace metals are harmful to humans in very low concentrations. For example, 1 gallon of trichloroethylene (a cleaning solvent) can contaminate 290 million gallons of water beyond safe drinking-water limits. The General Accounting Office has stated, "the dimensions and potential costs of cleaning up our environment are so great that, without innovative technologies, we may find the solution cost prohibitive and impacting on our ability to address other national needs."…

Water Pollution: GAO Reports, Jan 1970 - Feb 1996

This bibliography includes 112 items issued since January 1970. It was compiled February 6, 1996. Items are arranged in alphabetical order by title.

NWF - Troubled Waters - Types of Pollutants

When disease causing organisms such as bacteria and viruses get into surface water, they can spread dysentery, hepatitis, and other diseases. One of the major sources of these organisms is untreated human waste. In most areas of the U.S., water carrying human waste passes through sewage treatment plants which treat the wastewater to kill disease causing organisms before being released into surface water. But during heavy storms, the wastewater coming into the plants may back up and overflow directly into surface water without being treated. Untreated waste can also wash directly into surface water if a treatment plant isn't working properly…


Toxic Pollutants and the Clean Water Act: Current Issues

Controlling the discharge of toxic pollutants into the Nation's waters is once again an issue as Congress considers reauthorizing the Clean Water Act. This report describes the evolution of programs and policies in the Act concerning toxic pollutants, discusses current problems with implementation of some of these programs and policies, and outlines a number of issues that are on the legislative agenda…



Chemicals in the Environment: OPPT Chemical Fact Sheets

Chemical Fact Sheets Available in ASCII text format
Acetaldehyde (CAS 75-07-0)
Fact Sheet
Chemical Summary
Acetonitrile (CAS 75-05-8)
Fact Sheet
Chemical Summary
Acrylamide (CAS 79-06-1)
Fact Sheet
Chemical Summary
Acrylonitrile (CAS 107-13-1)
Fact Sheet
Chemical Summary

EPA Office of Prevention, Pesticides and Toxic Substances

Toxic Substances
Rules, Regulations, and Legislation
OPPTS Test Methods and Guidelines

EXTOXNET Global Search

Pesticide Information Profiles
Toxicology Information Briefs
Toxicology Issues of Concern
News about Toxicology Issues
Resources for Toxicology Information
Technical Information

ATSDR - ToxFAQs - Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCBs)

Exposure to polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) happens mostly from eating contaminated foods or breathing contaminated workplace air. High exposures to PCBs can damage the skin, eyes, and lungs. PCBs have been found in at least 349 of 1,300 National Priorities List sites identified by the Environmental Protection Agency.

Toxic Contaminants in the Environment – Persistent{979,0,0,0}?

The dramatic growth in the number and variety of chemical products since the Second World War has led to concern for the health of both wildlife and humans. More than 35 000 chemicals are reported to be in use in Canada today. Just how many of these are toxic is unclear, but particular concern has focussed on groups of contaminants that are associated with adverse effects on wildlife. One notable group is persistent organochlorines…



Concept Map on Carbon Cycle

Ocean Color From Space - The Global Carbon Cycle

Among the most important research initiatives of the 1990s is the study of global change, including the relationship between the biogeochemical cycles and the Earth's climate. Of particular interest is the global carbon cycle and its alteration by human activities. The burning of fossil fuel releases carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. As a result, carbon dioxide has been steadily increasing in the atmosphere and oceans since the beginning of the Industrial Revolution. Over the same period of time, deforestation has

eliminated a significant fraction of the terrestrial plant life, affecting the rate at which land vegetation can remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. Current climate models predict that the increasing concentrations of carbon dioxide and other "greenhouse gasses" in the Earth's atmosphere will produce an increase in average global temperature of some 1-5 degrees Celsius in the next half-century…

Carbon Cycle Information

Carbon dioxide ("oxidized" carbon) in earth's atmosphere escaped from molten rock when it erupted and cooled on theearth surface. Photosynthesis in plants and algae converts atmospheric carbon dioxide and water into living tissue (biomass is aform of "reduced" carbon) releasing oxygen. Microbes and other organisms decompose biomass, thereby producing humus(another "reduced" form of carbon). Soil humus accounts for three times more "reduced" carbon than biomass...



Flagstaff Wastewater Treatment

reats over half of Flagstaff's raw sewage. The plant, although not fully automated, is for the most part computer controlled. Much of the processes taking place are covered to control odor and to control temperatures throughout the year. Sewage flows into the plant from eastern Flagstaff. Treated water leaving the plant is used to irrigate golf courses and landscaped areas. The final product is not intended for drinking. It is categorized as partial body contact by Arizona Department of Environmental Quality. The wastewater treatment process at Wildcat Hill Wastewater Treatment Plant is made up of Pretreatment, Primary Sedimentation, Biofilters, Secondary Sedimentation, Chlorine Disinfection, Sand filters, and Sludge Treatment.


Introduction to Atmospheric Chemistry

Atmospheric chemists are interested in understanding the chemical composition of the natural atmosphere, the way gases, liquids, and solids in the atmosphere interact with each other and with the earth's surface and associated biota, and how human activities may be changing the chemical and physical characteristics of the atmosphere. This latter question is currently a driving force behind the growing need for atmospheric chemists in Canada. There are a number of critical environmental issues associated with a changing atmosphere, including photochemical smog, global climate change, toxic air pollutants, acidic deposition, and stratospheric ozone depletion…

Atmospheric emissions inventories

An air pollution emissions inventory is a schedule of the sources of an air pollutant or pollutants within a particular geographical area. The inventory usually includes information on the amount of the pollutant released from major industrial plants, road transport and other sources, and average figures for the emissions from smaller sources throughout the area. Emission inventories are a tools which can used in the management of air quality nationally and locally. Whilst monitoring, such as that carried out through the UK Automatic Monitoring Networks shows the concentration of air pollution in the UK, emission inventories identify the sources and help in preparing abatement strategies…

AIRS Home Page

AIRS is a computer-based repository of information about airborne pollution in the United States and various World Health Organization (WHO) member countries. AIRS is administered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and runs on the IBM mainframe computer system at the EPA National Computer Center in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina. The AIRS General Information page has additional information concerning the organization and purpose of AIRS…



OAQPS Air Toxics Page

Air toxics are generally defined as those pollutants that are known or suspected of causing cancer or other serious health effects, such as birth defects or developmental effects. The Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990 require EPA to regulate emissions of 189 toxic air pollutants, including benzene, chromium, cadmium, and vinyl chloride, from large industrial facilities…



Visibility and Air Pollution

Visibility impairment is caused by the presence of particles in the air. It is most simply described as the haze which obscures the clarity, color, texture, and form of what we see, and is actually a complex problem that relates to several pollutants. Visibility impairment is primarily a result of tiny particles in the air, just a few micrometers in diameter. These particles cause light to be scattered or absorbed, thereby reducing visibility…


Sulfur Emissions to the Atmosphere from Natural Sources

Estimates of Natural Emissions Terrestrial Biogenic Volcanic Other Natural Sources

Atmospheric emissions inventories This link does not currently work.

An air pollution emissions inventory is a schedule of the sources of an air pollutant or pollutants within a particular geographical area. The inventory usually includes information on the amount of the pollutant released from major industrial plants, road transport and other sources, and average figures for the emissions from smaller sources throughout the area. Emission inventories are a tools which can used in the management of air quality nationally and locally.

Chemical & Engineering News

Text of an article from November 27, 1995: "Climate Observations Substantiate Global Warming Models" by Bette Hileman, C&EN Washington.

Title: "Rising atmospheric carbon dioxide levels and receding alpine glaciers support projected global temperature increase."

Text: Many people believe that a great deal of controversy surrounds the science of global warming. In reality, however, scientists in the field do agree on many aspects of global warming. For example, on the basis of a variety of evidence a consensus is emerging among researchers that human beings, primarily through their burning of fossil fuels, are already perturbing Earth's climate - defined as weather averaged across years and large regions. This consensus, and the evidence that supports it, are documented in the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's (IPCC) latest report on the science of global warming.

The USGS World Energy Program

The world has recently experienced rapid change to market-driven economies and increasing reliance on petroleum supplies from areas of political instability. The interplay of unprecedented growth of the global population, increasing worldwide energy demand, and political instability in two major petroleum exporting regions (the former Soviet Union and the Middle East) requires that the United States maintains a current, reliable, objective assessment of the world's energy resources. The need is compounded by the environmental implications of rapid increases in coal use in the Far East and international pressure on consumption of fossil fuels.

World energy statistics

This page provides basic information and statistics about world energy use together with links to further information. It contains sections on sources of world energy statistics, current energy use by region, main fuel forecasts of world fuel use to 2010 by region, main fuel links to useful Web sites, and links to relevant EnergyInfo pages.


Halons and Pollution Prevention

For many years, halons, also called bromofluorocar-bons, have been used for fire fighting due to their many beneficial characteristics. Halons can be used to fight any type of fire, are non-conductive of electricity, and non-destructive of property. They disperse quickly around objects, leave no residue, and are safe for human exposure at low concentrations. Halons are often used in fire extinguishers, airplanes, art galleries, museums, and computer facilities, where avoiding damage to expensive goods or risk to human health is particularly important. These qualities have made halons ideal fire suppressants. However, halons are also potent and long-lasting ozone destroyers. Some types of halons have the potential to destroy ten times as much ozone in the ozone layer (see Figure 1) as an equivalent amount of chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs).

Questions and Answers on Halons and their Substitutes

This fact sheet provides an overview of regulations governing the production and use of halon and the development of substitute agents for fire suppression and explosion protection. If you have questions beyond those in this fact sheet, please call the Stratospheric Ozone Protection: Ozone Protection Hotline toll-free (800) 296-1996…



Ozone Depletion Glossary

In order to understand information about ozone depletion, it is important to know several terms and acronyms. We've listed them below…

EPA & Ozone Depletion

This web site contains information about the science of ozone depletion, regulations in the US designed to protect the ozone layer, information on methyl bromide, flyers about the UV index, information for the general public, and other topics. This site also contains many links to other sites…

Ozone Depletion2

Like an infection that grows more and more virulent, the continent-size hole in Earth's ozone layer keeps getting bigger and bigger.

Each year since the late 1970s, much of the protective layer of stratospheric ozone above Antarctica has disappeared during September, creating what is popularly known as the ozone hole. The Antarctic hole now measures about 9 million square miles, nearly the size of North America. Less dramatic, but still significant, depletion of ozone levels has been recorded around the globe. With less ozone in the atmosphere, more ultraviolet radiation strikes Earth, causing more skin cancer, eye damage, and possible harm to crops…

Substitutes for Ozone-Depleting Substances

Under section 612 of the Clean Air Act, EPA established the Significant New Alternatives Policy (SNAP) Program. SNAP's mandate is to identify alternatives to ozone-depleting substances and to publish lists of acceptable and unacceptable substitutes. Several rules and notices have expanded these lists, and they are available for online reading or for downloading. In addition, fact sheets cover more fully the eight industrial use sectors included within SNAP. Call the ozone protection hotline at 1-800-296-1996 for more information…

Nobel Prize in Chemistry 1995 - Press Release

The ozone layer - the Achilles heel of the biosphere

The atmosphere surrounding the earth contains small quantities of ozone - a gas with molecules consisting of three oxygen atoms (O3). If all the ozone in the atmosphere were compressed to a pressure corresponding to that at the earth's surface, the layer would be only 3 mm thick. But even though ozone occurs in such small quantities, it plays an exceptionally fundamental part in life on earth. This is because ozone, together with ordinary molecular oxygen (O2), is able to absorb the major part of the sun's ultraviolet radiation and therefore prevent this dangerous radiation from reaching the surface. Without a protective ozone layer in the atmosphere, animals and plants could not exist, at least upon land. It is therefore of the greatest importance to understand the processes that regulate the atmosphere's ozone content.

Paul Crutzen, Mario Molina and Sherwood Rowland have all made pioneering contributions to explaining how ozone is formed and decomposes through chemical processes in the atmosphere. Most importantly, they have in this way showed how sensitive the ozone layer is to the influence of anthropogenic emissions of certain compounds…

Mitch's PCB and Dioxin Info


All About Smog

Smog Kills: An estimated 1,600 people die prematurely each year in this region due to smog, thousands more suffer temporary or long-term health effects, millions are inconvenienced. Check out smog levels in various areas on our interactive display of real-time measurements from monitoring stations throughout the region.

Smog & Health - An Introduction
Tomorrow's Forecast ( updated on Mon, Feb 10, 1997 at 12:24 PM PST )
Today's Interactive Smog Levels
Current Hourly Reading (clickable map)
Current Hourly Reading (text)
Historic Ozone Air Quality Trends (1976-1996)
1995 Air Quality Data
1994 Air Quality Data
Air Quality in Prior Years


Environment Canada: Water and Climate

Water - vulnerable to climate change
What makes climate?
Climate change
How do scientists figure out how climate will change?
Predicting change with Global Climate Models
How might the climate change?
How will these changes affect our water supply in general?
The greenhouse effect
Global warming

Tropospheric chemical cycles

A graphic depicting tropospheric life cycles of climatically important species.

International Global Atmospheric Chemistry (IGAC) Home Page

IGAC's purposes are to understand how the chemistry of the global atmosphere is regulated and what the role of biological processes is in producing and consuming trace gases.

Introduction and Rationale
Project Structure: IGAC Activities and Their Leaders
Some Major IGAC Field Efforts
Benefits to Society: Features from the IGACtivities NewsLetter
The IGAC Scientific Steering Committee
Contact points for getting involved in IGAC
Links to other IGBP Program Elements
***Fourth IGAC Scientific Conference***

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Environmental Chemistry -- ENV 440
Last Updated:  09/02/99