Chemistry 1005 Applied Environmental Chemistry

Instructor: Nicholas H. Snow
McNulty Hall Room 113


  1. Experiments for Chemistry in Context, American Chemical Society, 1997. (lab manual)
  2. Baird, Environmental Chemistry, W.H. Freeman, 1995.
  3. Extensive use of the library and the internet will also be required.

Course Description.
This course is designed to support and extend the concepts developed in CHEM 1001, with laboratory and research work. Emphasis will include studies of atmospheric, water and soil chemistry, chemical synthesis and analysis, with an emphasis on the impact of man’s activities on the environment. This course is required for Environmental Studies minors, but is open to anyone wishing a continuation and laboratory complement to CHEM 1001. This course does not fulfill any requirements for students majoring in the sciences or health professions.

Combination of weekly 1-2 page laboratory reports (40%), 3 term papers (40%) and a final exam (20%).

Lecture Topics

  1. Introduction to Environmental Chemistry
  2. Stratospheric Chemistry: The Ozone Layer
  3. Ground Level Chemistry and Air Pollution
  4. The Greenhouse Effect and Global Warming
  5. Introduction to Organic Chemistry
  6. Toxic Organic Chemicals
  7. Natural Waters: Contamination and Purification
  8. Natural Waters: Acid-Base Chemistry
  9. Soil Chemistry
  10. Energy Production and its Consequences

Laboratory Schedule

Week Activity

  1.     Introduction
  2.     Internet exercise - environmental and scientific WWW sites
  3.     Chemical bonds and Molecular Models
  4.     Chemical Moles
  5.     Introductory Acid-Base Exercises
  6.     Reactions of Acids
  7.     Analysis of Acid Rain
  8.     Determination of Water Hardness
  9.     Synthesis of Aspirin
  10.     Fat, Sugar and Salt
  11.     Vitamin C Content in Foods
  12.     Conclusion and Check-out

Most of the experiments are obviously environmental in nature, but some that relate to synthesis and other areas are included, as these processes also impact the environment, sometimes in very subtle ways.

Term Papers:
Three term papers will be required during the semester. These will be 5-7 page, double spaced papers on student-selected topics from current events. Students will be asked to critically evaluate the popular views of environmental issues, as they are expressed in the print and internet media.

Laboratory Reports:
Laboratory reports are due weekly. These will be 2-page single spaced papers describing the experiment that the student has completed in the laboratory.

Attendance at all laboratories is mandatory. For the safety of all students, if more than two laboratories are missed for any reason, you may be asked to withdraw from the course.

Additional Bibliography

  1. D.N. Boehnke, R.D. Delumyea, Laboratory Experiments in Environmental Chemistry, Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice-Hall, 2000.
  2. N.J. Bunce, Introduction to Environmental Chemistry, Winnipeg, Canada: Wuertz Publishing, 1993.
  3. N.J. Bunce, Environmental Chemistry, 2nd. Edition, Winnipeg, Canada: Wuertz Publishing, 1994.
  4. M.G. Ondrus, Laboratory Experiments in Environmental Chemistry, Winnipeg, Canada: Wuertz Publishing, 1993.
  5. S.E. Manahan, Environmental Chemistry, 6th. Edition, Boca Raton, FL: Lewis Publishers, 1994.
  6. T.F. Yen, Environmental Chemistry: Essentials of Chemistry for Engineering Practice, Upper Saddle River, NJ, NJ: Prentice-Hall, 1999.
  7. T.G. Spiro, W.M. Stigliani, Chemistry of the Environment, Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice-Hall, 1996.