Understanding the History of Green Chemistry

history of green chemistryThis blog will provide insight on the history of green chemistry, helping the reading understand and follow the beginning of green chemistry, and track its progression to present day initiatives and successes:

The inception of green chemistry can be tracked all the way back to the early 1960s, when people began writing books, which were backed by scientific evidence and went mainstream, outlining the devastation that some chemicals had on local ecosystems. These books and factual findings served as a wake-up call for both scientists and the public, and inspired an environmental movement that has grown to an unbelievable modern day awareness entity that inspires millions, and pushes them to act. Congress recognized the importance of green chemistry and passed the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), with the goal being to create and maintain conditions under which both people and the environment can exist in productive harmony. In 1970, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) – a federal regulatory agency devoted to protecting the health of both humans and the environment – was established. The EPA’s first major mandate banned the use of DDT and other chemical pesticides deemed hazardous. Several regulatory laws were born in this decade because of the environmental impact of pollution, including the Safe Drinking Water Act in 1974.

More regulations and awareness involving green chemistry and the indictment of pollution and chemical waste persisted throughout the 1980s and 1990s, as both the government and our own country’s citizens became more insistent that industrial companies be held more accountable and to a higher standard regarding its use and expulsion of waste. This was due in part to more research, information, and evidence sprung by scientists who continued to have more resources available to them, providing improved methods of recognizing when companies were using unethical procedures of dealing with chemical waste. And, in 2001– at the start of a new millennium – the Green Chemistry Institute became a part of the American Chemical Society, which, at the time, and still is the largest professional scientific society and membership organization for chemists in the world.

Today, Many successful entrepreneurial companies, whose products are based on the application of green chemistry and engineering, have been established. You can now find numerous eco friendly, green alternative chemicals, as well as industrial products, materials, and components that make for a much safer work habitat, and protects the environment. Each and every industrial business now has a means to significantly reduce, and, in some instances, eliminate its carbon footprint on our shared planet. Scientific research and development has provided countless solutions to chemical waste, making the development of green chemistry one of the most important and significant creations our world has ever had.