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Vol. 30 No. 4
July-August 2008

The Project Place | Information about new, current, and complete IUPAC projects and related initiatives
See also www.iupac.org/projects

Biophysico-Chemical Processes of Anthropogenic Organic Compounds in Environmental Systems

Anthropogenic organic compounds (AOCs) are synthetically made organic chemicals. They range from gasoline components (e.g., benzene, toluene, xylene) to emerging contaminants such as endocrine disrupting chemicals and personal care products. Due to their wide use and disposal, AOCs are commonly found in our environment, such as in water we drink, air we breathe, and soil from which we get our food. These compounds are often toxic and can severely deteriorate an ecosystem. They can also bioaccumulate through food chains and cause various diseases (and even death) to organisms including humans. AOCs behave differently in various environmental media which differ in their different physical, chemical, and biological components and processes. Therefore, an in-depth and more complete understanding of the biophysico-chemical processes of AOCs in environmental systems is essential for the development of innovative management strategies for sustaining the environment and ecosystem integrity.

Physical, chemical, and biological, interfacial interactions and processes govern the fate, transport, availability, exposure, and risk of AOCs. However, the fundamentals of many physicochemical and biological interfacial reactions of AOCs and their impacts on ecosystems largely remain unknown. As a result, predictive models for their fate, transport, and risk in different media are often off target. To advance the frontiers of knowledge on the subject matter, it would require a concerted effort of scientists in relevant physical and life sciences such as chemistry, mineralogy, geochemistry, microbiology, ecology, and soil, atmospheric, and aquatic sciences.

In contrast to the classical books which largely focus on separate, individual physicochemical and biological aspects, this proposed book aims to integrate the frontiers of knowledge on the fundamentals and the impact of physicochemical and biological interactions and processes of AOCs in soil, sediment, water, and air. The specific objectives of this proposed book are to address: (1) fundamental biophysico-chemical processes of AOCs in the environment, (2) occurrence and distribution of AOCs in air, water, and soil, and their global cycling, (3) the state-of-the-art analytical techniques of AOCs, and (4) the restoration of natural environments contaminated by AOCs. The proposed book will also identify the gaps in knowledge on the subject matter and as such provide future directions to stimulate scientific research to advance the chemical science on biophysico-chemical interfacial reactions in natural habitats.

This book would achieve this goal by bringing together world-renowned international scientists on the subject matter to integrate the current state-of-the-art, especially the latest discoveries, development, and future prospects on the research of AOCs in the environment. Thus, this book will be an important addition to the scientific literature and a valuable source of reference for students, professors, scientists, and engineers. The book will be co-edited by Baoshan Xing, Nicola Senesi, and P. Ming Huang, and published as volume 3 in the IUPAC book series titled Biophysico-Chemical Processes in Environmental Systems.

For more information, contact Task Group Chair Baoshan Xing <bx@pssci.umass.edu>.

www.iupac.org/web/ins/2008-001-1-600


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