1
Overview

A hot new topic in both chemistry and chemical engineering is green. Green chemistry is the design of chemical products and processes that reduce or eliminate the use and generation of hazardous substances.1 Green engineering is the development and commercialization of industrial processes that are economically feasible and reduce the risk to human health and the environment. At the forefront of the green chemistry and engineering movement is Dr. Paul Anastas, director of the American Chemical Society (ACS) Green Chemistry Institute (GCI). According to the GCI, the overall goal of green chemistry and green engineering is to unleash “the creativity and innovation of our scientists and engineers in designing and discovering the next generation of chemicals and materials so that the chemicals and materials provide increased performance and value while meeting all goals to protect and enhance human health and the environment.”

In this workshop, widespread implementation of green chemistry into undergraduate and graduate education was explored.2 This workshop focused on the integration of green chemistry and engineering into the established and developing chemistry and chemical engineering curricula. Leading educators and industry managers showcased exemplary programs and provided a forum for discussion and critical thinking about the development, evaluation, and dissemination of promising educational activities in green chemistry. Speakers at the workshop:

  • Provided an overview and current status of green chemistry education. They addressed how green chemistry and engineering bring value to the chemistry curriculum and why some educators in other disciplines choose to incorporate green chemistry and engineering educational principles into their teaching.

  • Highlighted the most effective green chemistry educational practices to date, including government-industry collaborations and assessment activities in green chemistry.

  • Discussed the most promising educational materials and software tools in green chemistry and engineering, including compelling industry examples that can be used as green chemistry and engineering teaching tools.

This summary is a compilation of the three main speaker sessions and the six breakout session discussions that allowed the participants to explore how to make green chemistry and engineering an integral part of curricula at all educational levels. The three main speaker session topics were (1) Current status; (2) Tools and materials; and (3) Where do we go from here?

The topics of the six breakout session discussions were:

  1. Green chemistry and green engineering in future curricula;

  2. What materials, programs, and tools are needed?

  3. What is needed to achieve interdisciplinary approaches?

  4. Green chemistry and green engineering industry and education;

  5. Green chemistry and green engineering and the new faculty; and

  6. Creating incentives, removing impediments.

The overall purpose of this summary is to be a resource for any educator who is interested in green science and technology education.

1

ACS Green Chemistry Institute. Available at http://www.chemistry.org/portal/a/c/s/1/acsdisplay.html?DOC=greenchemistryinstitute\index.html.

2

The views and opinions expressed in this the Green Chemistry and Engineering Education workshop and this workshop summary is not representative of the view of the Chemical Sciences Roundtable.



The National Academies | 500 Fifth St. N.W. | Washington, D.C. 20001
Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.
Terms of Use and Privacy Statement



Below are the first 10 and last 10 pages of uncorrected machine-read text (when available) of this chapter, followed by the top 30 algorithmically extracted key phrases from the chapter as a whole.
Intended to provide our own search engines and external engines with highly rich, chapter-representative searchable text on the opening pages of each chapter. Because it is UNCORRECTED material, please consider the following text as a useful but insufficient proxy for the authoritative book pages.

Do not use for reproduction, copying, pasting, or reading; exclusively for search engines.

OCR for page 1
1 Overview A hot new topic in both chemistry and chemical engineer- and engineering bring value to the chemistry curriculum and ing is green. Green chemistry is the design of chemical products why some educators in other disciplines choose to incorpo- and processes that reduce or eliminate the use and generation of rate green chemistry and engineering educational principles hazardous substances.1 Green engineering is the development into their teaching. and commercialization of industrial processes that are economi- • Highlighted the most effective green chemistry edu- cally feasible and reduce the risk to human health and the envi- cational practices to date, including government-industry ronment. At the forefront of the green chemistry and engineer- collaborations and assessment activities in green chemistry. ing movement is Dr. Paul Anastas, director of the American • Discussed the most promising educational materi- Chemical Society (ACS) Green Chemistry Institute (GCI). Ac- als and software tools in green chemistry and engineering, cording to the GCI, the overall goal of green chemistry and including compelling industry examples that can be used as green engineering is to unleash “the creativity and innovation green chemistry and engineering teaching tools. of our scientists and engineers in designing and discovering the next generation of chemicals and materials so that the chemi- This summary is a compilation of the three main speaker cals and materials provide increased performance and value sessions and the six breakout session discussions that al- while meeting all goals to protect and enhance human health lowed the participants to explore how to make green chemis- and the environment.” try and engineering an integral part of curricula at all educa- In this workshop, widespread implementation of green tional levels. The three main speaker session topics were (1) chemistry into undergraduate and graduate education was Current status; (2) Tools and materials; and (3) Where do we explored.2 This workshop focused on the integration of go from here? green chemistry and engineering into the established and The topics of the six breakout session discussions were: developing chemistry and chemical engineering curricula. Leading educators and industry managers showcased exem- 1. Green chemistry and green engineering in future plary programs and provided a forum for discussion and criti- curricula; cal thinking about the development, evaluation, and dissemi- 2. What materials, programs, and tools are needed? nation of promising educational activities in green chemistry. 3. What is needed to achieve interdisciplinary ap- Speakers at the workshop: proaches? 4. Green chemistry and green engineering industry • Provided an overview and current status of green and education; chemistry education. They addressed how green chemistry 5. Green chemistry and green engineering and the new faculty; and 6. Creating incentives, removing impediments. 1ACS Green Chemistry Institute. Available at http://www.chemistry.org/ portal/a/c/s/1/acsdisplay.html?DOC=greenchemistryinstitute\index.html. The overall purpose of this summary is to be a resource 2The views and opinions expressed in this the Green Chemistry and for any educator who is interested in green science and tech- Engineering Education workshop and this workshop summary is not repre- nology education. sentative of the view of the Chemical Sciences Roundtable. 1

OCR for page 1
2 EXPLORING OPPORTUNITIES IN GREEN CHEMISTRY SETTING THE WORKSHOP STAGE: PRE-WORKSHOP Anastas explained that the time is right for leaders in PARTICIPANT SURVEY green chemistry and engineering to push green concepts be- cause the ideas of green chemistry and engineering are As a precursor to the workshop, Dr. Anastas captured slowly being accepted within the broader scientific commu- constructive ideas on how to address green education issues nity. One example of the emerging interest in green ap- through an informal 10-question pre-workshop survey3 of proaches cited was the awarding of the 2005 Nobel Prize in the workshop participants. Forty-three of the workshop par- Chemistry to Robert Grubbs, Richard Schrock, and Yves ticipants—people from academe, industry, government, and Chauvin “for the development of the metathesis method in nonprofit organizations—answered a mix of multiple- organic synthesis” provided an excellent example of green choice, yes-no, and open-ended questions. The questions chemistry and engineering. A second example he gave was covered many topics in green education, including who was the movement of the Green Chemistry Research and Devel- interested, how it should be taught, who would benefit, and opment Act through both the U.S. House and Senate after what mechanisms existed for funding. According to the sur- passing the first hurdle of the House in April 2004.4 A third vey results, in addition to helping teach technical issues, the example provided by Anastas was the placement of green main benefits of teaching green chemistry and green engi- chemistry education on the Carnegie Groups’ agenda (e.g., neering were enthusiasm, continued interest, and increased Center for Sustainable Engineering).5 job opportunities. The majority of participants also felt that Anastas closed his remarks by discussing impediments integrating green chemistry and engineering throughout the to innovation. He explained that change can come much four years of an undergraduate curriculum, is a more effec- more slowly than anyone would expect because people do tive method for teaching green chemistry and engineering not like to do things differently from the way they have done than having a single undergraduate course or waiting until them before. New ideas and new perspectives often face the graduate level. In addition to the basic issue of funding harsh opposition. He led the audience in considering some mechanisms, other barriers for teaching green chemistry and amusing historical examples of mistakes made by a few of engineering identified by the respondents included lack of our greatest scientific leaders: tools and resources, already crowded curricula, and collegial resistance. The results of the pre-workshop survey were used • Lord Kelvin, discoverer of the temperature scale by the workshop leaders to guide the discussions of what is named for him, denied his date for the age of the earth (24 being done at all levels of education and what can be done in million years old) was wrong even after radioisotope dating the future to further green chemistry and green engineering had demonstrated his value to be false; education. • Mendeleev, inventor of the periodic table, denied the existence of radiation and the electron; and OPENING REMARKS • J. J. Thompson, discoverer of the electron, adhered to the belief in the existence of the “ether,” which “is as Workshop organizers Anastas and Wood-Black warmly essential to our lives as the air we breathe,” long after this welcomed the 75 attendees to the two-day discussion of concept was disproved. green chemistry and engineering education. They explained the purpose and organization of the workshop. 4Green Chemistry Research and Development Act of 2005. Available at http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/z?c109:h.r.1215. 3A list of the 10 questions and tabulated answers are listed in Appendix A. 5http://www.csengin.org/.