Environmental chemistry is the study of chemical processes occurring in the environment which are impacted by humankind's activities. These impacts may be felt on a local scale, for example through the presence of contaminants arising from an industrial waste site, or on a global scale, for example through depletion of stratospheric ozone. We study the environment from a molecular perspective.
The field of environmental chemistry is both very broad and highly interdisciplinary. Within the Department of Chemistry we have a core group of faculty whose research interests include atmospheric and aquatic chemistry, photochemistry, environmental toxicology, and the chemistry and transport of long-lived pollutants. We interact with other chemists in the Department, with numerous other researchers at the University who have related interests, and with nearby government agencies.
Our graduate program consists of courses and seminars that emphasize the fundamental photochemical, kinetic, thermodynamic and transport aspects of environmental phenomena, and the development of environmental analysis techniques, and the application of this knowledge to contemporary environmental issues. Our students and faculty benefit from close interactions between the different research groups. The field of environmental chemistry is rapidly expanding, and excellent employment opportunities exist in the academic, government, industrial and public policy sectors.