Development of green, sustainable chemistry in the coming two decades


Member of Chimica Oggi/Chemistry Today’s Scientifi c advisory board

Consideration of societal needs and looking at the almost countlessnumber of initiatives in green, “sustainable” chemistry leads us tothe conclusion that chemistry in the next decade(s) will be evenmore challenging, interesting and relevant than ever before. The IYC 2011helped make this more visible to large audiences. However, the number ofinitiatives is so huge that it might be bewildering for the individual scientistand thus unclear how he or she can contribute and where his or hercontribution fi ts in the grand scheme of things. In this editorial we concentrateon the green, sustainable elements of the “making of molecules”. Thiseditorial tries to sketch - for scientists in this fi eld - a bird’s eye perspectiveon how green, sustainable chemistry could develop over the next, say, 2-3decades. Activities of scientists that fi t into the 8 fi elds described below willcontribute to this joint journey. The challenges ahead are divided in 3 levelsof increasing complexity: level A activities are a condition sine qua non. Level B activities can and should use level A results wheneverpossible. Total integration will be reached when level A and B results are ...