Environmental Chemistry 100 Hours Certificate Course
I would like to be clearer about USB mode of course delivery. What is it? Does that mean that the course materials are saved on a pendrive or any USB connectable medium? How about online, do I have to attend the course in real time? Do I have to be on the Internet for the duratio of the lectures? Correspondence I understand must be a distance learning mode via hard copy material or recorded on a magnetic medium. Right? Regards Simeao Cambaco
Thank you for getting in touch.
You are correct in saying that USB means you get the course materials on a memory stick that can be used on any computer with a usb port. Online merely means that you get online access to the materials via our learning platform. The lessons and assignments are all in a pdf. format that can be printed off for offline studying. Correspondence means that the learning materials are sent to you in book form, which is prepared by our printers.
Lessons for each course (or module when longer courses are taken), begin with a set aim and reading of the notes that provide a foundation for each lesson. After the reading, learners undertake a set task which may include further research, networking or problem solving. This allows the course to be targeted at each person's own location in the world. After this thee is a written assignment, which is marked and graded by your tutor and then sent back with any helpful and relevant comments. Finally, students' have completed all the lessons and assignments, there will be one final exam. This is taken under the supervision of an adjudicator at a pre-approved time and place. The adjudicator must be a professional and not a member of your family, or household. Once the whole course has been finished, you will receive a Certificate and transcript.
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Environmental Chemistry 100 Hours Certificate Course
This online course in Environmental Chemistry will be of value to you, if you are concerned about the world around you and work or would like to work tn global warming, climate change or other environmentally related areas. This could be as an enthusiastic amateur involved in the environmental movement, or as a professional environmentalist concerned with the ecological balance of the world. It should also be of benefit to private firms, individuals plus public servants, involved in town planning and even bureaucrats and politicians needing an in-depth appreciation of environmental science, when considering new policies. Scientists proficient in other areas of environmental studies, wanting to expand their knowledge into understanding the chemistry behind the impact of human activities on the world, or the environmental illness caused by potentially harmful factors, will also find this program of benefit to them.
Human activity and the pollution it is responsible for, needs to be tackled and so this online Environmental Chemistry course, delivered via distance learning will help you to understand:
- which chemicals are contaminating our environment
- how our environment is being contaminated by chemicals
- how these chemicals can change the world around us
- the facts on how chemicals impact and change the ecosystem
- how this impact affects every living thing
Environmental chemistry has an impact globally in a number of beneficial and detrimental ways, on both a microscopic and macroscopic scale. On the microscopic level, Mankind uses chemicals to tackle diseases in crops caused by fungal microorganisms such as mildews, rots and wilts. However some of the fungicides used are also bad for the environment at the macroscopic level. Chemicals have also made our drinking water safer to drink due to the use of chlorine, which kills a great deal of water-borne pathogens that cause often fatal diseases like cholera, typhoid and salmonella. Detrimentally the use of chlorine when mixed with organic matter in the water, leads to toxic by-products associated with cancer.
Globally, changes in the chemical makeup of greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere, are widely believed (if not actually proved) to be contributing to global warming. This has long term ramifications for people already living in drought areas or in places prone to flooding, plus the whole world, which will experience some degree of climate change as a consequence.
There is a real need for more work to be done in protecting our environment and so are you:
- an Environmental Manager or Assessor?
- a Resource Manager?
- a Manufacturer or Supplier of chemical products?
- a Student of Science and Chemistry?
- a Chemist who has not specifically studied environmental chemistry?
- an Analytical laboratory member of staff?
- a Factory Manager, Automotive Manager, Mechanic or someone working with machinery?
- a Town Planner, Architect, Engineer, Builder, or Landscaper?
- a Politician or bureaucrat involved in the implementation of environmental policy?
Lesson Goals: Environmental Chemistry
- Describe the nature, importance and scope of environmental chemistry and advance an understanding of basic chemistry including atoms and their components, elements, compounds and chemical reactions.
- Outline different types of air pollutants and their causes and describe appropriate responses to contain, reduce. eliminate or otherwise deal with such problems.
- Distinguish between various water pollutants and discuss appropriate alternative responses to contain, reduce. eliminate or otherwise respond to such problems.
- Describe soil pollutants and compare appropriate alternative responses to contain, reduce. eliminate or otherwise respond to such problems.
- Explain a range of ways that better management of environmental chemicals can contribute toward improved human health.
- Explain different techniques that can be utilised for sampling and testing chemicals in the environment.
- Explain the two broad goals of green chemistry and describe examples of green chemistry used in homes, vehicles; industry and the environment.
Lesson Structure: Environmental Chemistry
There are 8 lessons in this course:
1 Introduction to Environmental Chemistry and Chemistry Concepts
- Environmental chemistry through time
- Global warming, greenhouse gases and carbon sequestering
- Basic chemistry concepts
- Charges on Atoms and Bonds
- Organic and Inorganic Compounds and Biochemistry
- Used in Environmental Chemistry
- Organic, inorganic and biological contaminants in the environment
2 Ecological Concepts in the Environment
- Pollutants in the environment
- Degradation of pollutants
- Pricing measures implemented by government policy makers
- Types of pollutants
- Contaminants in the world's natural environments (biomes)
- Water pollution and treatment
3 Air and Environmental Chemistry
- Composition of the Atmosphere
- Vertical structure of the atmosphere
- Purpose of the atmosphere
- Air pollution and its source
- Effects of air pollution
- Climate change
- Reducing carbon and greenhouse gas emissions
4 Water and Environmental Chemistry
- Hydrological Cycles
- Marine (Ocean) Environments
- Coastal Environments
- Continental and Inland Water Environments
- Water chemistry – important reactions
- Water categories and classifications
- Water and impurities and pollutants
- Water quality standards
- Water pollution management
- Methods of water treatment
5 Soil and Environmental Chemistry
- The nature of soil
- Soil properties
- Important soil chemical reactions
- Soil chemistry and its importance in management
- Soil pollution
- Methods of soil remediation
6 Environmental Chemistry and Health
- Health as policy
- Specific health risks
- Environmental health levels
- Indoor and Outdoor air pollution
- Water pollutants and health
- Chemicals in households
- Biological controls, pitfalls and positives
- Creating green areas and raising public awareness
7 Testing for Environmental Chemistry
- Introduction to sampling and testing
- Sampling design
- Sampling equipment
- Gas/air, soil and water sampling
- Agricultural produce/plant tissue sampling
- Using the correct sample container
- Chain of custody
- Chemical analysis in the field
- Simple colorimetric tests and simple meters
- Chemical analysis in the laboratory
8 Applications for Environmental Chemistry
- Environmental assessment and management
- Principles of sustainable environmental management
- Green chemistry in environmental management
- Green chemistry is the future of environmental protection
- Environmental building practices
- Treating contamination or pollution sustain-ably
- Urban planning concerns and considerations
- Sustainable transport
- Barriers to sustainability and green design
Each lesson culminates in an assignment which is submitted to the school, marked by the school's tutors and returned to you with any relevant suggestions, comments, and if necessary, extra reading.
The water or hydrological cycle describes the way water moves around the globe—in the air, on the surface and underground. Surface water is present in the sea, lakes, rivers and reservoirs and on the land. This can evaporate with energy from the sun. Water present in the soil is also evaporated or lost as plants transpiration to the atmosphere. Water in the atmosphere condenses into clouds that produce rain (precipitation). Rain replenishes the land (infiltration) and water reservoirs (sea, rivers, lakes, groundwater and soil water) through runoff, thus closing the hydrological cycle.
There is strong interaction between the hydrological cycle and the soil, air and biological cycles. For example, substances found in air (e.g. pollutants) can fall onto surface waters as dry deposits or in rainfall/snow (wet deposition) and affect water quality and biological activity in that water.
Distribution of water on Earth
Of the world’s total water resources, ~97.5% comprises salty water (mainly in the sea). Freshwater is only ~2.5% of the world water resources (a total volume of 35.2 million km3). Most freshwater is stored in glaciers and icecaps (68.7% of the total freshwater resources =1.7% of total water resources) and in permafrost, leaving only a small fraction that is useable in the form of surface and groundwater. Freshwater sources vary widely in availability with little available at the surface in arid regions.
Table showing distribution of the World’s water resources
Percent in each type
Subdivisions and their percentages
Sea water ~96.5%
Saline water and other ~ 1%
Surface and other freshwaterwater 0.03%
(Lakes, wetlands, rivers, plants and animals, atmosphere, permafrost )
Glaciers and icecaps 1.7 %
MARINE (OCEAN) ENVIRONMENTS – OVERVIEW
The surface temperature of the oceans is varying all the time. Water in the tropical oceans may have a temperature of 28oC, or higher at the height of summer. In polar regions, sea temperatures of -2oC are common. Unlike freshwater that freezes at 0oC, seawater freezes at an even lower temperature, dependent upon the salt content of the water.
The average salinity of sea water is approximately 3.5%, or 35 000 mg/L (ppm). In the open ocean, away from major rivers, melting ice and in areas such as the bottom of the Red Sea, salinities will be higher than coastal areas. There are a few reasons for variations in the salinity of sea water. Evaporation and freezing: both processes result in an increase in the salinity of the remaining or underlying water.
• High rainfall – reduces salinity
• River runoff – reduces salinity
• Melting of ice – reduces salinity
The density of the sea surface is normally 1,025 grams per cubic centimetre (=1025 kg/m3). It is normal for cold water to be denser than warm water. In the sea, temperature decreases with depth (due to high pressures and the lack of sun penetration). The lighter water floats on the denser water. Fresh water reaches its maximum density at 4oC, but sea water is most dense just before it reaches its freezing point at -2 oC.
Oceans are home to a huge array of aquatic species ranging from micro plankton to blue whales. The impact of human-induced pollution has reached all oceans in the world. This ranges from over-fishing to greenhouse gases and global warming to the introduction of toxins and plastics into the water. Marine mammals are at the top of their food chains and toxins accumulate in their fatty tissues and breast milk. This affects their digestive, nervous, respiratory, endocrine systems etc. Nine of the ten species with the highest polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) levels are marine mammals including dolphins, seals, orca and polar bears.
COASTAL ENVIRONMENTS - OVERVIEW
Continental shelfs are shallow areas surrounding continents. In effect, the land tapers away into the ocean at a gradual rate until a point is reached where it drops away sharply. Sediment (sand, soil and other organic content) is washed into the ocean via river mouths. It is then shaped by the currents into banks that form on the Continental shelves which become highly significant ecological regions due to their organic richness from the sediment and the relatively warm water temperatures making them ideal marine environments. Species diversity is high in these regions with many complex and symbiotic relationships. It is therefore also quite fragile and subject to impacts from outside pressures such as over fishing of a species, oil spills, or other human induced occurrences, urban or tourist development. These suffer the most severe effects of marine pollutants such as boat effluents, and nutrients and heavy metals from the discharge of storm water and sewage.
An estuary is a tidal area where one or more rivers meet the sea. There are different types of estuaries and they can be classified by their geology or water circulation patterns. Some examples of the latter include salt-wedge, fjord, slightly stratified, vertically mixed, and freshwater as per the United States Environmental Protection Agency. Estuaries often contain areas of tidal mudflats and/or sea marshes.
Water movements in estuaries transport organisms, circulate nutrients and oxygen, and transport sediments and wastes. Once or twice a day, high tides create saltwater currents that move seawater up into the estuary, whereas the low tides reverse these currents leading to a mixing of fresh water from the river/s and saltwater from the sea. This mixing leads to variable salinities and oxidation/reduction conditions. Salinities can range from 0.05 to 3.5% (500 to 35 000 mg/L) with the lower salinities in the river and high salinities in the sea end. Some organisms live in small niches in the estuary biome whereas others can cope with a variety of salinity and other conditions. There are a huge range of organisms found in estuaries including microorganisms such as algae; plants such as mangroves and seagrass; assorted molluscs; crabs; fish such as catfish, barramundi, grouper and salmon (for part of their life cycle); as well as birds, such as egrets and herons.
When fresh river water and saltwater meet, they do not always mix very readily. The fresh water flowing into the estuary is less salty and less dense than water from the ocean, so it can float on top of the heavier seawater. The amount of mixing between fresh water and seawater depends on the shape of the estuary, locals wind conditions, the tidal range, and the volume/flow rate of the river water entering the estuary.
Water quality in the estuary is important as it affects all the organisms in the estuary and adjacent marine areas. Quality can be affected by pollution from the river or in the sea itself. Parameters such as nutrient content (nitrogen and phosphorous compounds), pH, turbidity (clarity of the water), presence of metals and dissolved oxygen among others are important.
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