This Special Topic Issue of Pure and Applied Chemistry on "Electrochemistry
and Interfacial Chemistry for the Environment "derives from a workshop
"Electrochemistry and Interfacial Chemistry in Environmental Clean-Up
and Green Chemical Processes "which was held on 6 7 April 2001
in Coimbra, Portugal within the framework of a project in IUPAC 's Physical
and Biophysical Chemistry Division, jointly funded by IUPAC and by the
International Council for Science (ICSU).
The objective of the project has been to increase awareness within
the worldwide industrial and academic chemical community of the importance
of electrochemistry and surface chemistry in environmental clean-up
and in environmentally friendly industrial chemical processes. The negative
impact on the environment of industrial chemical processes and other
fabrication procedures is well known, and significant efforts have been
made to reduce this impact through less-polluting and more energy-efficient
processes with appropriate recycling and effluent treatment. Treatment
of stored solid or liquid waste and remediation of contaminated land
resulting from pollution are other problematic areas which deserve attention.
Electrochemistry and interfacial chemistry have an important role to
play in all these areas involving solid and liquid pollutants. There
is a need to demonstrate and clarify what can be achieved using presently
available technology and to point out future tendencies in technological
The workshop was directed toward three types of participant who have
particular interest in the combination of electro-or interfacial chemistry
and the environment:specialists of international standing, scientists
from developing countries describing the specific problems their countries
face, and researchers and students concerned with environmental problems.
This project was developed in the Physical and Biophysical Chemistry
Division and particularly in Commission on Electrochemistry (I.3)and
Commission on Colloid and Interfacial Chemistry (I.6). The organizing
committee, C.M.A. Brett (Chairman), J.F. Rusling, L.Koopal, and J. Gregory
arranged a program of invited lectures to reflect the contributions
that can be made by electrochemistry and interfacial chemistry to solving
and preventing some of the present environmental pollution problems.
The workshop comprised 16 invited lectures and 40 poster contributions,
with 77 participants from 18 countries all over the world, with ample
time for fruitful discussion of the advantages and limitations of the
electrochemical and interfacial chemistry approaches at the small-scale
level up to large-scale facilities.
The organizers are grateful to all who sponsored the workshop. Besides
the main sponsors, IUPAC and ICSU, support was obtained from the Ministry
of Science and Technology of Portugal, the Portuguese Chemical Society,
the University of Coimbra and its Faculty of Science and Technology,
the Luso-American Development Foundation, Instituto Pedro Nunes (Coimbra)and
Instituto do Ambiente e Vida (Coimbra).
This issue results from the invitation to participants to submit articles
based on their presentations for publication. It reflects well the panorama
of subjects covered in the workshop with respect to fundamental aspects
and the importance of current and new applications of electrochemistry
and interfacial electrochemistry to environmental clean-up and green
chemical processes. Topics covered vary from electrochemical reactors,
electrosynthesis, electrochemical sensors, corrosion, photoelectrochemical
degradation of pollutants, colloids for waste treatment, and industrial
applications. All authors, and reviewers of the articles, are thanked
for their efforts in making this a successful issue.
Chairman, Organizing Committee
Department of Chemistry, University of Coimbra, Portugal
* An issue of reviews and research papers based on
presentations made at the IUPAC/ICSU Workshop on
Electrochemistry and Interfacial Chemistry in Environmental Clean-up
and Green Chemical Processes, Coimbra, Portugal, 6-7 April, 2001.