"the utilization of a set of principles that reduces or eliminates the use or generation of hazardous substances in the design, manufacture and application of chemical products."
-Anastas and Warner, Green Chemistry Theory and Practice, Oxford University Press, 1998.
About Green Chemistry
Green chemistry is a pro-active approach to addressing pollution and hazards in the design phase of a product life cycle. It empowers chemists to use the skills of their trade to bring sustainability into their practice. The 12 Principles of Green Chemistry serve as guidelines for practicing chemists to implement best practices (link to 12 principles).
As a scientific movement, green chemistry touches upon each sub-discipline of chemistry and is framed around a paradigm shift of placing the chemist at the center of solving sustainability challenges. As an upstream approach to addressing pollution and hazards, green chemistry has tremendous opportunity to minimize impacts and maximize efficiencies.
From an industry perspective, there is a growing demand for scientists with green chemistry training as the green chemicals market continues to grow. There is projected growth in green chemistry jobs and companies are aiming to achieve their sustainability goals through chemistry research and development.
Integrating green chemistry into global education systems is essential in preparing the next generation of scientists and citizens who are ready to design, select, and support sustainable chemistry.
Additional Reading and Resources
- Beyond Benign - "What is Green Chemistry?"
- ACS Green Chemistry Institute - "What is Green Chemistry?"
- Where the Green Jobs Grow, U.S. Department of Labor, April 21, 2021.
- Why Greener Chemistry Education Matters—and How to Support It, Dr. Amy Cannon and Jeffrey Whitford, GCI Nexus Blog, May 22, 2023.