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Questions tagged [environmental-chemistry]

For questions regarding chemicals and chemical processes that act on and interact within environmental systems.

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1answer
81 views

How can methane absorb infrared light within wide range of frequency but CO2 can't?

Methane is one of the most potent greenhouse gases in Earth's atmosphere.I saw a lot of answers related to it but lacks de facto exegesis to it.
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0answers
15 views

Removing or hiding (white) magnesium carbonate residues on natural rock surfaces

As noted in this question, magnesium carbonate is often used by rock climbers to help mitigate the effect of sweating whilst climbing. While this is not a major issue on artificial walls, the residue ...
1
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1answer
67 views

Removing PTFE marks on glass bottles after using magnetic stir bars

I am using magnetic stir bars to agitate solutions for 4 weeks at a time. I have noticed at the bottom of the glass bottles that white marks have accumulated where the stir bar spins. Even with ...
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1answer
126 views

What chemicals cause the softer, less-raw taste of purified water sold in bottles?

I've seen the post, "What defines an element's taste?", but it doesn't answer my question. I took water that is supplied by the municipality corporation and put it through a gravity based water ...
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2answers
43 views

Why doesn't natural gas combustion release only one-sixth as much carbon dioxide as coal burning?

Burning hydrogen releases a little more energy than burning carbon, correct? And methane is CH4, but coal is mostly C, correct? So shouldn't burning pure carbon release five times the CO2 (Assuming ...
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1answer
21 views

Solvents and Enzymes

I was reading recently about environmental remediation being done, using an esterase to break down / neutralize cocaine that had contaminated waterways in Europe. Are there similar enzymes that can be ...
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1answer
208 views

The science behind fertilizers

Do you know some books or articles that elaborate on the chemistry behind fertilizers? I have taken organic chemistry so far, and inorganic chemistry as well. I am also familiar with the Haber-Bosch ...
7
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1answer
165 views

Amending soil pH to change the color of hydrangea flowers

I would like to ensure that my hydrangeas are blue. I am told that adding ammonium sulfate or aluminium sulfate will cause the soil to be more acidic. I am also told that adding elemental sulfur will ...
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0answers
46 views

How will a NPK 15-0-15 fertilizer affect this soil?

If the soil we have has pH 7,2 and we want to add this fertilizer which has 15-0-15 (NPK). What should the fertilizer contain in order for the pH to get reduced? I believe that $\ce{K+}$ ions should ...
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0answers
16 views

Problem in terms of pC-pH plotting

I recently confronted a mission to plot a pC-pH graph('p' stands for the p-value notation, and 'C' stands for the concentration of a species), which meets the conditions below: Plot the pC-pH graph ...
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2answers
365 views

DIY Brass Etching methods (safer etchants, waste, and disposal of)

I want to etch brass for making name plates etc. (Also for copper PCBs but brass is probably more complicated given the other metals). Several etchants commonly used, and I'm sure many more are ...
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2answers
3k views

What makes pentane, hexane, heptane, and octane dangerous, while butane and nonane aren't?

In particular, how do a methylene more (in the case of the pentane) and a methylene less (in the case of the octane) make the difference in harmfulness to the environment in comparison with, ...
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2answers
108 views

How to determine source of air pollution

It should be determined by some metal markers (meaning originating from traffic etc.) but I cannot find any source which would describe it. Thanks.
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5answers
3k views

How 'heavy' should an element be, to be a “Heavy Metal”?

I've come across the term "Heavy metals" innumerable times in articles, mostly pertaining to environmental issues. Is there a weight range (of sorts) against which an element (metal) is classified as ...
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2answers
7k views

Is there an easy way to test for the amount of iron (Fe) in water?

I have a rusty metal rainwater tank, and I'd like to find the amount of iron in the water. (The water I've collected is perfectly clear.) How would chemists in the 1800's have gone about this? What ...
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2answers
261 views

Calculate the concentration in milimoles per litre (mM) of a solution that is 20% H2SO4 by mass and that has a density of 1.198 g/L

Calculate the concentration in milimoles per litre ($\pu{mM}$) of a solution that is $\pu{20\%} \ce{H2SO4}$ by mass and that has a density of $\pu{1.198 g/L}$. For the answer, please provide two ...
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0answers
39 views

Mobility of Cations in the Environment

I have recently performed an experiment in which I tested the affects of phytotoxic cations on the rate of germination of the common navy bean. I did this out of curiosity, as I have recently been ...
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1answer
7k views

Why does ozone, being heavier than air, not settle down? [duplicate]

Is this because of some equilibrium between diffusion and gravity ? What exactly is responsible?
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1answer
1k views

What is K2O-nSiO2-xH2O?

In need of $\ce{K2SiO3}$ for my cucumber plants, I purchased a bag of potassium silicate. The molecular formula is $\ce{K2O-nSiO2-xH2O}$. Normally, my bags of fertilizer are easy to figure out. For ...
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1answer
76 views

How dangerous is an industrial scale styrene spill?

A few years ago a cisterna truck full of styrene crushed on the road near a small town nearby, spilling 4 tons of the chemical. It apparently has caused a small ecological catastrophe killing fish in ...
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0answers
44 views

Is it environmental to throw ordinary keys in the regular household trash?

I have several keys on my chain that I do not need any more, so I'm thinking about throwing them away, but I'm not sure if it is okay to throw away in the regular household trash. I looked it up to ...
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0answers
51 views

Can hydrogen plasma reduce carbon dioxide?

There are several studies describing usage of hydrogen plasma to reduce metal oxides. This is not yet widely adopted in industry, but it is of interest for environmental reasons (such as desrcibed in ...
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1answer
11k views

Difference in pH of water and rainwater

In my textbook (Olmsted and Williams 4th ed) it is given that pH of pure water is 7, pH of unpolluted rain water is between 5-6 and pH of acid rain is between 4-5. It is obvious that pH for acid ...
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1answer
165 views

Disposing of hazardous waste indicated by numbers on chemicals

I'm doing a book for the African market and the syllabus asks for discussions on proper disposal of chemicals and waste products, particularly in the classroom setting The authors said something ...
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0answers
29 views

Reaction of electromagnetic radiations with the air pollutants [closed]

My friends, who are working on an IoT based technology project, explained their idea to me which is roughly like reducing air pollution by converting pollutants to oxygen ($\ce{O2}$) in any reaction, ...
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1answer
103 views

Effect of rain on water and soil samples contaminated by petroleum [closed]

I am about to perform research on the impact of petroleum fire disaster on the soil and water sources within the region of disaster, using heavy metals and total petroleum hydrocarbons as impact ...
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1answer
252 views

Can Cl(g) cause quick rusting? [closed]

I'm actually digging in something that comes from Syria... How does Chlorine cause metal to get rusted? It's full of pictures of rockets (allegedly filled with chlorine gas) that are all rusted. In my ...
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1answer
220 views

how to control relative of Fe2+ and Fe3+ [closed]

hi how can I control relative of Fe2+ andFe3+ when we adding raw iron to acid solution To get the ratio 2:1
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1answer
118 views

First Order Degradation Constant (λ)(d^-1)

Can you please tell me the First Order Degradation Constant (λ)($d^{-1}$) for 1,3,5-Trimethylbenzene (mesitylene)? If you don't have this value, can you please tell me which VOC in 35 Illinois ...
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2answers
124 views

Why NOx will break the ozone sphere

I've found that a reason for people to oppose supersonic aeroplanes was the $\ce{NO_{$x$}}$ gases it released would do harm to the ozone layer. So what is the mechanism of this?
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2answers
916 views

What causes methane to have 25 times higher global warming potential than CO2

What causes methane to have 25 times higher global warming potential than $\ce{CO2}$? I think it has to do with $\ce{CH4}$ being a less massive molecule, but I'm not sure.
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1answer
224 views

Release of sulfur dioxide from odored fuel gases

Often, fuel gases such as butane and natural gas (methane) are mixed with some foul-smelling impurities such as thiols (mercaptans) and hydrogen sulfide. Presumably, anything containing sulfur would ...
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0answers
34 views

(Why) is it difficult to liquidize the polluting exhaust of a vehicle? [closed]

Considering the hazardous effects of car and other vehicle exhaust when released into the atmosphere, I began wondering why we are not dominantly preventing the exhaust from entering into the ...
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1answer
103 views

Finding out the composition of seawater/brine?

As part of a project, I am working on precipitating salts from seawater and brine. I have a sample of seawater and I need to measure the concentrations of $\ce{Mg^2+, Ca^2+ and Li+}$ present in the ...
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2answers
664 views

Environmental effects of terephthalic acid [closed]

What are the effects of terephthalic acid on the environment? Especially oceans What would happen if the levels of terephthalic acid increased in the ocean? What would be a way to reduce the impact ...
1
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1answer
79 views

Why might PM2.5 concentration increase or stay the same when SO2 is reduced?

The question is in the title. I've made some research, but in every paper I found the correlation between $\ce{SO2}$ and $\mathrm{PM_{2.5}}$ is described as positive. Thus if $\ce{SO2}$ is reduced, $\...
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1answer
902 views

How to calculate the solubility of lead (II) carbonate in water, given that bicarbonate will also form?

Calculate the solubility of lead (II) carbonate, $\ce{PbCO3}$, ($K_{\mathrm{sp}} = 1.5 \times 10^{-15}$) in water, given that carbonate is a stronger base than water, so will also form bicarbonate. ...
3
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1answer
2k views

How does pH level change the concentration of dissolved oxygen (DO) in sea water?

I am planning to investigate the relationship between $\mathrm{pH}$ and dissolved oxygen. I would like to have a reason without taking in account the plants, animals and decomposer roles. I want to ...
3
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1answer
452 views

Coagulation with Ferric Chloride

I'm having a hard time understanding the use of coagulation wastewater treatment. I have read in literature that ferric chloride is used as a coagulant to remove COD, TSS and Ammonia from landfill ...
3
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1answer
141 views

Is there any reason to fear personal exposure to rain with a pH of 3.1?

Where I live now there can be significantly acidic rain. The government posts measurements for many cities and there can be stretches for days or longer with reported pH of 3.2 or 3.1. I even saw 2.9 ...
3
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1answer
132 views

Breaking Down PCB's in lakes

I was wondering if there is any natural process which breaks down PCBs (Polychlorinated biphenyl). This is an extremely harmful contaminant that was pumped into various lakes by chemical plants up ...
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0answers
380 views

Does iron in water become visible when being heated?

I'm using ground water to provide my daily needs: Laundry, bath, toilet, ... I don't use it as drinking water, but I do cook with it. What I noticed is that when using the water cold it appears as ...
8
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2answers
269 views

How is this mystery chemical reducing carbon emissions?

My chemistry is not good enough to solve this problem, and it's driving me crazy. At my job, a sales agent approached me to be their representative in my area for their product. It's a product that ...
5
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1answer
118 views

Degradation of sulfuryl fluoride SO2F2

Recently, the houses next to us were fumigated with "Vikane", which apparently is $\ce{SO2F2}$. To my surprise, the gas was just pumped out in the atmosphere without further ado at the end of the ...
3
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4answers
118 views

Why is atmospheric composition compared by volume?

The composition of the Earth's atmosphere by its constituent gases (nitrogen, oxygen, argon...), is often given by percent volume. (See this Wikipedia page, for example). Why are these compositions ...
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4answers
6k views

How much CO2 could you remove from the atmosphere with 2 trillion USD?

I know it's possible to capture $\ce{CO2}$ with various chemical reactions. For example NASA's space shuttle had some kind of regenerative $\ce{CO2}$ scrubber. But how expensive is it? Could a huge ...
7
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2answers
2k views

What chemicals could absorb/adsorb ambient atmospheric methane?

From an article in the New Scientist in 2010, Since pre-industrial times, methane levels in the atmosphere have risen from around 715 parts per billion to nearly 1800 ppb, claims Folberth. "If ...
4
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1answer
166 views

Is there a chemical treatment for pipes to reduce or eliminate leaching of lead into tap water?

Given events in Flint, Michigan, where a switch to acidic river water in the city water supply resulted in leaching of lead into tap water from the insides of pipes, I wonder -- has anyone has heard ...
4
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1answer
95 views

Measurement of Water Clarity

Turbidity is essentially the clarity of water. Turbidity can be measured in many ways such as a turbidimeter, secci disk or a turbidity tube (which incorporates a secci disk at the bottom). If you had ...
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0answers
41 views

Ozone depletion distribution [closed]

I am working with ozone measurements from two different sites (one rural and one urban). I am looking at the distribution of hourly averaged concentrations in air. The first figure shows the ozone ...