chemistry is the use of
chemistry for pollution prevention. More specifically, green chemistry
is the design of chemical products and processes that reduce or
eliminate the use and generation of hazardous substances.
chemistry is a highly effective approach to pollution prevention
because it applies innovative scientific solutions to real-world
environmental situations. The 12
principles of green chemistry,
originally developed by Paul Anastas and John Warner in Green
Chemistry: Theory and Practice, provide a road map for chemists to
implement green chemistry.
12 Principles of Green Chemistry
after the passage of the Pollution Prevention Act of 1990, the Office
of Pollution Prevention and Toxics (OPPT) explored the idea of
developing new or improving existing chemical products and processes to
make them less hazardous to human health and the environment. In 1991,
OPPT launched a model research grants program called "Alternative Synthetic Pathways for
Pollution Prevention". This program provided unprecedented
grants for research projects that include pollution prevention in the
design and synthesis of chemicals. Since then, the Green Chemistry
Program has built many collaborations with academia, industry, other
government agencies, and non-government organizations to promote the
use of chemistry for pollution prevention through completely voluntary,
12 Principles of
- It is better
to prevent waste than to treat or clean up waste after it is formed.
- Synthetic methods
should be designed to maximize the incorporation of all materials used
in the process into the final product.
- Whenever praticable,
synthetic methodologies should be designed to use and generate
substances that possess little or no toxicity to human health and the
- Chemical products
should be designed to preserve efficacy of function while reducing
- The use of auxiliary
substances (e.g. solvents, separation agents, etc.) should be made
unnecessary whenever possible and innocuous when used.
requirements should be recognized for their environmental and economic
impact and should be minimized. Synthetic methods should be conducted
at ambient temperature and pressure.
- A raw material
feedstock should be renewable rather than depleting whenever
technically and economically practical.
derivatization (blocking group, protection/deprotection, temporary
modification of physical/chemical processes) should be avoided whenever
reagents (as selective as possible) are superior to stoichiometric
products should be designed so that at the end of their function they
do no persist in the environment and break down into innocuous
methodologies need to be further developed to allow for real-time
in-process monitoring and control prior to the formation of hazardous
- Substances and
the form of a substance used in a chemical process should be chosen so
as to minimize the potential for chemical accidents, including
releases, explosions, and fires.