Archive for the ‘News’ Category

Outstanding Reviewers for Green Chemistry in 2016

Following the success of Peer Review Week in September 2016 (dedicated to reviewer recognition) during which we published a list of our top reviewers, we are delighted to announce that we will continue to recognise the contribution that our reviewers make to the journal by announcing our Outstanding Reviewers each year.

We would like to highlight the Outstanding Reviewers for Green Chemistry in 2016, as selected by the editorial team, for their significant contribution to the journal. The reviewers have been chosen based on the number, timeliness and quality of the reports completed over the last 12 months.

We would like to say a big thank you to those individuals listed here as well as to all of the reviewers that have supported the journal. Each Outstanding Reviewer will receive a certificate to give recognition for their significant contribution.

Dr Mark A Harmer, DuPont
Professor Toshiyuki Itoh, Tottori University
Professor Rafael Luque, Universidad de Cordoba
Professor Yoshinao Nakagawa, Tohoku University
Dr Jinliang Song, Beijing National Laboratory for Molecular Sciences

We would also like to thank the Green Chemistry board and the Green Chemistry community for their continued support of the journal, as authors, reviewers and readers.

If you would like to become a reviewer for our journal, just email us with details of your research interests and an up-to-date CV or résumé.  You can find more details in our author and reviewer resource centre

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Top 10 Reviewers for Green Chemistry

In celebration of Peer Review Week, with the theme of Recognition for Review – we would like to highlight the top 10 reviewers for Green Chemistry in 2016. They have been selected by the editor for their significant contribution to the journal.

Top 10 reviewers for Green Chemistry
Dr Feng Lu, University of Utah
Dr Yasuyuki Kita, Ritsumeikan University
Dr Jean Jacques Vanden Eynde, University of Mons-UMONS
Dr Nicholas E. Leadbeater, University of Connecticut
Dr Mark A. Harmer, SAC Tech Innovations
Dr Francois Jerome, Universite de Poitiers
Dr Zhijie Wu, China University of Petroleum
Professor Robin D. Rogers, McGill University
Dr Alistair King, University of Helsinki
Professor Luigi Vaccaro, Universita di Perugia

We would like to say a massive thank you to these reviewers as well as the Green Chemistry board and all of the community for their continued support of the journal, as authors, reviewers and readers.

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Advisory board member Professor Sir Martyn Poliakoff wins Lord Lewis Prize

A picture of Martyn PoliakoffMartyn Poliakoff is well-known both for his academic work and for his incredibly popular series of Periodic Videos. His research bridges the interface of chemistry and engineering, making chemical processes more environmentally friendly, by replacing the solvents used in reactions with greener alternatives. This work will provide society with more sustainable ways to produce the chemicals that we need. His major contribution has been in the use of supercritical fluids (gases compressed until they are as dense as liquids), particularly supercritical carbon dioxide or steam, as solvents for chemical reactions involving hydrogen or oxygen with organic compounds. The Lord Lewis Prize, which is awarded every two years, is given for distinctive and distinguished chemical or scientific achievements, together with significant contributions to the development of science policy.

To read more about Professor Sir Martyn Poliakoff and the 2016 Lord Lewis Prize please click-through to the website.

Related content:
All 2016 Royal Society of Chemistry prize and award winners: http://rsc.li/awards-prizes-2016
Collection of articles published by prize and award winners: http://rsc.li/rscwinners2016-collection

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Editorial board member Paul Anastas wins prestigious Green Chemistry award

A picture of Paul AnastasProfessor Anastas is widely regarded as the ‘father of green chemistry’ and holds the Teresa and H. John Heinz III Chair in Chemistry for the Environment at Yale University. His talents have brought him to positions in service of four U.S. Presidents including working in the White House in the Clinton and Bush Administration and was named by President Obama to the Senate-confirmed position as Assistant Administrator for Research and Development at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. In 2007, he founded the Center for Green Chemistry and Green Engineering at Yale that is engaged in basic research, development, commercialization, curriculum development, and policy initiatives.

To read more about Professor Anastas and the 2016 Green Chemistry Award please click-through to the website.

Related content:
All 2016 Royal Society of Chemistry prize and award winners: http://rsc.li/awards-prizes-2016
Collection of articles published by prize and award winners: http://rsc.li/rscwinners2016-collection

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“Happy Silver Anniversary”: Green Chemistry at 25

2016 is the Silver Anniversary for the field of Green Chemistry being 25 years since the term “Green Chemistry” was coined and defined in 1991. To mark this occasion, the 2016 Issue 1 of Green Chemistry features an Editorial looking at the journey of the field to date and introducing an initiative designed to stimulate discussion on the vision for the field. You can read the Editorial by Paul Anastas, Buxing Han, Walter Leitner and Martyn Poliakoff here.

We have asked colleagues from the Editorial and Advisory Board of Green Chemistry to comment on individual Principles that relate to their specific area of expertise and to share their personal views with our community.

Every month of 2016, Green Chemistry will feature one such perspective Editorial (collated online: rsc.li/gc-25years) hopefully initiating a lively exchange of views and ideas here on the Green Chemistry blog. We encourage you to use the comments facility below to share your views on each principle.

The Editorials are not meant to provide answers, but to stimulate questions on how the Principles have influenced research agendas, how they connect to challenges and opportunities that may not have been visible twenty five years ago, why they are still valid or what needs to be adjusted, etc..

Most importantly, the aim is to not primarily to look back in praise of the undisputable achievements, but to provide a vision towards celebrating the Golden Anniversary of the field in 2041 and beyond.

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A photochemical method for separating rare earth metals

Rare earth metals are notoriously hard to separate from one another, due to the similarity of their chemical properties. At present, the complex series of solvent extraction steps to extract rare earths from their ores are only carried out in China. With their increasing utilisation in modern technologies, scientists have been collaborating to develop cleaner less intensive methods of rare earth separation.

Tom Van Gerven and Koen Binnemans of the University of Leuven in Belgium have worked together to combine their expertise and develop a photochemical method for extracting the europium and yttrium from an ionic liquid solution. Both elements are present in their trivalent state, but if europium absorbs light of the correct wavelength (provided by a low pressure mercury lamp) it will reduce to the divalent state and be precipitated out.

Want to know more?

Read the full article in Chemistry World by Jonathan Midgley.

Or, take a look at the original article which is free to access until 8th July 2015:

Photochemical recycling of europium from Eu/Y mixtures in red lamp phosphor waste streams” by B Van den Bogaert et al., DOI:10.1039/c4gc02140a

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Recent HOT articles in Green Chemistry

Check out the following HOT articles, these have all been made free to access for a limited time:

Graphical Abstract
Life Cycle Inventory improvement in the pharmaceutical sector: assessment of the sustainability combining PMI and LCA tools

Daniele Cespi, Evan S. Beach, Thomas E. Swarr, Fabrizio Passarini, I. Vassura, Peter J. Dunn and Paul T. Anastas
Green Chem., 2015, Advance Article
DOI: 10.1039/C5GC00424A

Conventional and microwave assisted hydrolysis of urban biowastes to added value lignin-like products
Daniele Rosso, Jiajun Fan, Enzo Montoneri, Michele Negre, James Clark and Davide Mainero
Green Chem., 2015, Advance Article
DOI: 10.1039/C5GC00357A

Efficient Bromination of Olefins, Alkynes, and Ketones with Dimethyl Sulfoxide and Hydrobromic Acid

Song Song, Xinwei Li, Xiang Sun, Yizhi Yuan and Ning Jiao
Green Chem., 2015, Advance Article
DOI: 10.1039/C5GC00528K

Nanoclusters of Cu (II) Supported on Nanocrystalline W (VI) Oxide: A Potential Catalyst for Single-Step Conversion of Cyclohexane to Adipic Acid
Shankha S. Acharyya, Shilpi Ghosh and Rajaram Bal
Green Chem., 2015, Advance Article
DOI: 10.1039/C5GC00379B

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Richard P. Wool

Professor Richard P. Wool, a leading figure in the green chemistry community, sadly died on 24th March 2015. Richard Wool was Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at the University of Delaware in the United States, and headed the Affordable Composites from Renewable Sources (ACRES), which carried out work to develop uses for bio-materials such as chicken feathers and soybeans to create a diversity of products from tractors to circuit boards to a synthetic fabric named Eco-Leather.

After completing his Bachelors degree in Chemistry in his hometown of Cork, Professor Wool moved to Utah in the United States where he completed his Masters degree and Ph.D.. This is also where he started to build his illustrious career that focussed on improving materials synthesis in order to reduce the impact this may have on the environment and on human health. He received a number of accolades for his contribution to green chemistry, including the ACS Award for Affordable Green Chemistry, the U.S.A EPA’s Presidential Green Chemistry Challenge Award for his work in Sustainable Polymers and Composites and he became a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry in January 2015.

Professor Wool was also a member of the Green Chemistry Advisory Board and his contribution to the journal and the community will be sincerely missed. Green Chemistry would like to send our deepest condolences to Richard Wool’s family and friends.

Credit: University of Delaware

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Recent publication in Green Chemistry on fracking – Open Forum

Green Chemistry has recently published an article on the topic of fracking entitled ‘Stimuli-responsive/rheoreversible hydraulic fracturing fluids as a greener alternative to support geothermal and fossil energy production’. This manuscript caused some debate at the Editorial Office in Cambridge due to the controversial nature of fracking and, more specifically, the validity of publishing an article on this topic in Green Chemistry.

After examination by a number of reviewers, the Editorial Office and the Chair of the Editorial Board, Professor Walter Leitner, it was decided that the manuscript was suitable for publication in Green Chemistry. However, given the controversy surrounding this topic we felt the article should be accompanied by an Editorial explaining to the community why we chose to publish and offering an avenue for debate and discussion via the online comments section on this blog.

Professor Leitner has prepared an Editorial that can be viewed below and we invite an open discussion via the comments thread of this blog. We welcome any comments to be made or opinions voiced.

If you would like to contact the Editorial Office directly you can do so by emailing green-rsc@rsc.org.

The subject of ‘fracking’ in Green Chemistry

Chair of the Editorial Board Walter Leitner discusses the subject of ‘fracking’ in Green Chemistry.

Dear Readers,

On 2nd October 2014, we received a manuscript entitled “Stimuli-Responsive/Rheoreversible Hydraulic Fracturing Fluids as an Alternative to Support Geothermal and Fossil Energy Production” at the Cambridge office. Upon careful examination of its content, we had a very serious discussion at the Editorial Office on whether the paper would fall within the scope of Green Chemistry and should be sent out for review. In the end, we came to the conclusion that we wanted to have the scientific quality examined through the review process and to gather the opinions of those reviewers on whether the work was in keeping with the Principles of Green Chemistry. Three referees suggested acceptance with some revisions, and you can find the final result published in this issue (DOI: 10.1039/C4GC01917B).

It is highly unusual to comment on a single paper and in particular on the reviewing process in an Editorial. Let me try to explain the reasons for this, which are closely related to our initial (and still existing) dilemma. Fracking is a very controversial technique for which a number of potential hazards to the environment are discussed. Most significantly, one may raise the fundamental question of whether an increased exploitation of fossil resources is inherently incompatible with the Principles of Green Chemistry. To be honest, we were unable to find a consensus and a final answer to this question ourselves. Thus, we turned to the classical maxim “in dubio pro reo” (Lat.: when in doubt, for the accused) and decided to evaluate primarily the scientific and technological aspects of the work.

When asked about the relationship between Sustainable Development and Green Chemistry, I have often used the phrase “If Sustainability is your goal, Green Chemistry is the way”. Is unconventional oil and gas recovery a sustainable technology? Certainly not in the long term – but it is and will be for quite some time influencing the basis of our raw material and energetic value chain, having an enormous impact on many aspects of our environment today. “That’s a fact. It’s a thing we can’t deny” (Katie Melua, Nine Million Bicycles). Thus, we cannot close our eyes and ignore the environmental problems that are associated with this technology. One of them is the use of the fracking fluid and all reviewers agreed that the authors of the study have carried out a sound and in depth study and presented data that might help to lower the impact of this particular aspect of the fracking industry. They have addressed this important issue following a molecular design approach in line with green chemistry principles.

Does this mean that we will now all at a sudden encourage the green chemistry community to focus on improvements of existing technologies, even if they are only incremental steps aside into the right direction on otherwise clearly unsustainable paths? Certainly not: we need to continue our efforts to contribute with fundamentally new approaches to a sustainable chemical industry and lay the basis for disruptive green technologies. However, we also recognize that things are not always black or white and there are more than 50 shades of green. In this particular case, we have decided to bring the topic on the table and to shed some light on the chemistry that is involved in fracking from the green chemistry perspective. We would be very much interested to get your feedback on this decision and have opened a discussion forum on the Green Chemistry blog.

I wish you a stimulating reading, not just with this article, but of course also with the many other fascinating examples of scientific creativity and dedicated research efforts in the issues of the Green Chemistry journal.

Walter Leitner

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Professor Martyn Poliakoff knighted in the New Year’s Honours list

Professor Martyn Poliakoff

Green Chemistry is delighted to announce that Professor Martyn Poliakoff has been awarded a Knighthood in the New Year’s Honours list.

Professor Poliakoff is closely associated with Green Chemistry and was Chair of the Editorial Board from 2006–2012. He says, “I have been associated with Green Chemistry almost from the outset, and I continue to regard it as the leading journal in the field. Long may it continue!”

Professor Poliakoff is an inorganic chemist, whose work has been taken up by industry, notably in the construction of the world’s first multi-reaction supercritical fluid plant. He is a global leader in the field of green and sustainable chemistry and his work in engaging the public with chemistry has been recognised internationally, including through the Periodic Table of Videos on YouTube. Make sure to take a look at the special video made recently to announce the knighthood for Professor Polaikoff online here. Shortly before Christmas he was also elected an Honorary Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry.

Professor Poliakoff said “I feel both honoured and somewhat overwhelmed.  I see the award very much as recognition of all the work being done in green and sustainable chemistry in the School of Chemistry by my colleagues, by my research team and by our technical staff whose efforts underpin so much of our research.”

Professor Sir David Greenaway, Vice-Chancellor of The University of Nottingham, said: “What a richly deserved accolade. Sir Martyn contributes so much as a research leader, educator and communicator of science to the wider public. He will receive this honour with his customary modesty, but will be surprised at how widely applauded it is. We are very proud to have him as a colleague.”

Professor Kenneth Seddon

Professor Kenneth Seddon, Green Chemistry Advisory Board member, has also been honoured in the New Year’s Honours list with an OBE for services to Chemistry.

In addition to his ground-breaking research into ionic liquids Professor Seddon has also been very busy recently, having been involved with a featured exhibit at the Royal Society Summer Exhibition, presenting the Inaugural Lecture of the “Frontiers of Knowledge Lecture Series”, House of Commons, receiving four IChemE awards, the Nicklin medal, and the RSC Teamwork award.

The New Year Honours lists recognise the achievements of a wide range of extraordinary people across the UK, you can read more about them here.

Take a look at some recent contributions to Green Chemistry from Martyn Poliakoff and Kenneth Seddon. These are all free to access until the end of February.

15 years of Green Chemistry
James Clark, Roger Sheldon, Colin Raston, Martyn Poliakoff and Walter Leitner
DOI: 10.1039/C3GC90047A, Editorial

Synthesis of metal–organic frameworks by continuous flow
Peter A. Bayliss, Ilich A. Ibarra, Eduardo Pérez, Sihai Yang, Chiu C. Tang, Martyn Poliakoff and Martin Schröder
DOI: 10.1039/C4GC00313F, Paper

Synthesis of antimalarial trioxanes via continuous photo-oxidation with 1O2 in supercritical CO2
Jessica F. B. Hall, Richard A. Bourne, Xue Han, James H. Earley, Martyn Poliakoff and Michael W. George
DOI: 10.1039/C2GC36711D, Paper

Enhanced laccase stability through mediator partitioning into hydrophobic ionic liquids
Lars Rehmann, Ekaterina Ivanova, H. Q. Nimal Gunaratne, Kenneth R. Seddon and Gill Stephens
DOI: 10.1039/C3GC42189A, Paper

Tailoring ionic liquid catalysts: structure, acidity and catalytic activity of protonic ionic liquids based on anionic clusters, [(HSO4)(H2SO4)x] (x = 0, 1, or 2)
Karolina Matuszek, Anna Chrobok, Fergal Coleman, Kenneth R. Seddon and Małgorzata Swadźba-Kwaśny
DOI: 10.1039/C4GC00415A, Paper

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