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Green chemistry

from end-of-pipe to clean production

Traditional solution: end-of-pipe techniques

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'end-of-pipe' techniques are methods used to remove already formed contaminants from a stream of air, water, waste, product or similar. These are normally implemented as a last stage of a process before the stream is disposed of or delivered. Abatement of pollutants
Transformation into harmless products Transfer from one medium to another

Removal of VOCs from offgas by combustion SO2 CaSO4 re-uses or landfill Wasterwater treatment sludge

Why produce waste when alternatives are possible?

Laws of environmental sanitation: Once you get something dirty, the only way to get it clean is to make something else dirty. The best way to keep the world clean is to avoid getting it dirty to begin with. and a new approach is born GREEN CHEMISTRY

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What is green chemistry ?

The design, commercialization and use of technically and economically feasible chemical processes and products targeting the minimization of: - the generation of pollution - the risk for environment and health Complete re-thinking of current processes and products

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Important targets to prevention

Economical reduce costs of treatment lower environmental taxes saving energy and water more efficient use of feedstocks reduced production of (unwanted) by-products continued responsibility (even for yet unknown effects) more stringent standards how do pollutants behave ? eco-friendly production is appreciated by public and customers

Higher efficiency Legal responsibility


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Fundamental principles
Prevent pollution Develop safe chemicals Develop clean methods of synthesis Use sustainable (re-usable) raw materials Improve catalysts to direct the reaction, thus reducing side-products Maximize the economy of atoms Use less solvents and improve conditions of the reaction Enhance energy-efficiency Develop chemicals and products which degrade after use Real-time analysis and process control Minimize risks of incidents

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Prevent pollution
Better prevent from the start than clean afterwards! How? Economy of atoms Avoid by-products Improve catalysts (biocatalysis ?) Real-time analysis and control

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Economy of atoms
Atom economy describes the conversion efficiency of a chemical process in terms of all atoms involved; In an ideal chemical process the amount of starting materials or reactants equals the amount of all products generated and no atom is wasted; Use all raw materials in the final product.

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Economy of atoms
Molecular weight of desired product % atom economy = 100% Molecular weight of all reactans
Simple example: CH4 + 1.5 O2 CO2 + 2 H2O

If H2O = desired product, then the atom-economy (efficiency) is:

2 (2 + 16 ) atom efficiency = 100 = 56% 12 + 4 + 48

44% of material is wasted!

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How much waste is produced in reality ?

Industry Annual Product Tons Kg waste / Kg product

Oil refining Bulk Chemicals Fine Chemicals Pharmaceuticals

106-108 104-106 102-104 10-103

0.1 <1-5 5-50 25-100


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Production of ibuprofen
Traditional vs. Green


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Molecular weight of Total reagent used = 514.5 Molecular weight utilized in Ibuprofen = 206 Molecular weight non utilized in Ibuprofen = 308.5

FW ibuprofen 206 % atom economy = 100 = 100 = 40% FW all reactants 514.5


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Molecular weight of Total reagent used = 266 Molecular weight utilized in Ibuprofen = 206 Molecular weight non utilized in Ibuprofen = 60

FW ibuprofen 206 % atom economy = 100 = 100 = 77% FW all reactants 266

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Just for fun..

Feedstock for producing Viagra


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A complex chemical process


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An alternative simplification
Reactive distillation of methylacetate
Acetic Acid Methanol Catalyst Methyl Acetate

Methyl Acetate
Methanol Recovery Solvent Recovery


Acetic Acid

Sulfuric Acid

Splitter Extractive Distillaton

Methanol Reactor Column

Decanter Extractor

Impurity Removal Columns


Color Column Flash Column


Azeo Column


Flash Column Water Water


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Sustainable Process Design


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Sustainable Process Design

INFLUENCE % 70% Who Casts The Biggest Shadow ? 20% 5% 5%

30% Overhead 15% Labour 50% Material 5% Product design COST %

The design stages of product development have a direct influence over about 70% of the final product this brings with it responsibility Designers play an important role because they are the industrys connection with the marketplace, interacting between people and products.


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The Resource Cycle

materials materials

natural resource reuse primary material


End-oflife goods residuals

product waste extraction and processing waste 19

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Why focus on design

Environmental impact occurs at every stage of the life cycle Different products have different impacts at different stages E.g. furniture = raw materials E.g. household appliances = use; energy consumption Impacts are often locked in at the design stage when decisions about materials, function, performance, energy source, aesthetic, purpose etc. are made Only careful consideration at these early stages can make sure that negative effects excluded and positive features are included. Trying to retro fit solutions is often very costly involving additional equipment, rather than solving the problem from first principles.


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Good design will ensure that...

a product contains a rationalised number of materials and components consumer health and safety issues are considered a product functions appropriately and effectively and communicates this function clearly a product is styled appropriately a product is ergonomically correct environmental legislation requirements are addressed


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Green design of products

What is Green Design: can be considered to be design which takes into consideration only one element of environmental design; for example a product which uses recycled material, can be considered to be green design.

Dunlop recycled Wellington boots


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Ecodesign looks further...

addresses all environmental impacts of a product throughout the complete lifecycle whilst maintaining other criteria (such as cost, quality and appearance):

Materials amount and type (appropriateness) Energy source and requirements Length of life Waste issues End of life issues Packaging issues

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Key Ecodesign considerations

Use less material Use materials with less environmental impact Use fewer resources Produce less pollution and waste Reduce the impacts of distribution Optimise functionality and service life Make re-use and recycling easier Reduce the environmental impact of disposal


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Examples of ecodesign products Kodak single use camera

Materials Fewer material types Plastics labelled for recycling End of Life Collection system for old products to feed into remanufacture Testing and reuse of components Testing and reuse of batteries, or donated Plastic cases reground and fed into manufacture


Kambrooks AXIS kettle Energy reduction during use

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1996, the Australian company, Kambrook, worked with the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology to reduce the energy of the kettle. Their observations revealed that the kettle was often overfilled and reboiled as the user left the room to do something else. By designing around this behaviour the energy efficiency of the product was increased dramatically:
Clear indicators to stop overfilling Double insulation layer to minimise need for reboiling Temperature gauge to indicate the suitability of the water for making tea or coffee and to minimise need for reboiling


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Moving to Sustainable Design

Green design is limited to tackling one element of the lifecycle or environmental problem. Ecodesign, design for the environment or lifecycle design aims to reduce environmental burdens across the entire lifecycle. Sustainable (product) Design favours the lifecycle, just as ecodesign does, but places considerable emphasis on the additional inclusion of social and ethical considerations necessary to achieve sustainable development. Sustainable Design also has a highly prominent long- term time component, in line with the concept of inter-generational equity inherent in sustainable development.


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From Green Design to Sustainable Design

Green design and ecodesign have no manifest time dimension. Sustainable design is systems focused, where green and ecodesign have a product focus.
product focus systems focus single issue focus lifecycle approach sustainability constraints time component

Green Design Ecodesign Sustainable Design


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Sustainable Design
Think about elements of good design PLUS Add in elements of Ecodesign Think about eco-efficiency principles (doing more with less) PLUS Add in Social considerations Long term effects


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Social Side of Sustainable Design

What needs does it meet What impact does it have on society Does it have a long-term impact on future generations Does making and using this product create jobs/opportunities Is it fairly traded Etc, etc


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The system approach and system boundary assumed in conventional process design
INPUTS Materials Energy System (process operation) OUTPUTS Products Emissions wastes

System boundary Traditionally, the system boundary is drawn around the process itself, usually without considering any upstream or downstream activities; It optimizes the performance inside the system boundary but is not optimal outside.

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Process design for sustainability:

the extended system boundary encompassing the life cycles of process and product
SYSTEM Extraction and manufacture of raw materials Extraction of fuels and energy generation

Plant construction

Plant operation

Plant decommissioning

Product use

Emissions and waste management


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Criteria considered in process design for sustainability

Technical criteria Process design for Sustainability Economic criteria

Environmental criteria

Social criteria


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Process design for sustainability

Approaches to design vary and no two designers will design a complex process following exactly the same steps. Regardless of the approach, design usually involves:
1. 2. 3. 4. Project initiation Preliminary design Detailed design; and Final design

Each of these four stages consists of a number of steps.


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Stages in process design for sustainability

1. Process initiation 1. Identifying the need 2. Initial identification of stakeholders and sustainability design criteria 3. Identifying the alternatives


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1.Project initiation
1. Identifying the need All engineering projects are initiated as a result of an identified need or economic opportunity. In the context of sustainable development, this need must be fulfilled in a socially and environmentally responsible way while providing economic benefits. The designer is confronted with the sustainability challenge at the outset of the project and success will depend on:
external factors such as: physical and thermodynamic laws limiting the process efficiencies and hence the level of sustainability. other internal factors such as the choice of process and operating conditions will be instead under the control of the designer.

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1.Project initiation
2. Initial identification of stakeholders
Designers have to be aware of the relevant groups of stakeholders associated with the development and the sustainability issues that will be important for them. Typically, the stakeholders will include: Employees of the company Investors Neighbouring communities and citizens Non Governmental Organizations (NGOs) Government


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Why engage with stakeholders?

Sustainable economic development cannot be achieved without it The community has a right to be involved in decisions that affect them Helps to avoid conflict and direct action Secure the development without excessive cost and time delay Local authorities/Government expect it


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The nature of consultation

Consultation is not just about telling people what you are doing It has become engrained in the political process It is about winning or losing support

Winning hearts and changing minds:

the business of: communicating complex and sensitive messages to a diverse stakeholder mix

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A brief history of consultation

15 years ago only the enlightened bothered Seen as an unnecessary expense Planning & Compulsory Purchase Act 2004 Proper stakeholder consultation is close to being compulsory Organised opposition groups - anti-Tesco; Roadblock etc (internet and speed of news flow) Major schemes have been delayed Poor consultation and abuse of data/manipulation of research is not tolerated anymore

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You are dealing with fear

Property prices Disruption Noise Traffic Smell Health Loss of visual amenity Nimbyism

This can all add up to a very big...



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What are the positives

Explain the benefits Counter the myth and inaccuracy Put it into local context Demonstrate best practice Pledges of responsible delivery

This can all add up to:

I need to think about this


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Keys to effective communication with the stakeholders

Understand that the community are not experts Set clear objectives/vision, Map the stakeholders Create success measures Get in early: Earlier planning starts the better, earlier education on the process starts the better Set the rules: clearly map Terms of Reference from the start to the end of responsibilities; have processes in place for dealing with disputes Create Internal Communications Protocols that include the Community Group and other Stakeholders Provide data and evidence Work with the local media

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1.Project initiation
2. Sustainability design criteria, in addition to technical variables:
Economic Criteria Micro-economic: Environmental Social criteria criteria
Provision of employment Employee health and safety Customer health and safety Nuisance (odour, noise, visual impact and transport) Public acceptability

Energy use Water use Capital costs Water discharge Operating costs Solid waste Profitability Global warming Decommissioning Ozone depletion Macro-economic Acidification Value-added Green taxes (e.g. carbon tax) Summer smog Eutrophication Investment (e.g. pollution Human toxicity prevention; health and safety; decommissioning) Eco-toxicity Potential costs of environmental liability


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1.Project initiation
3. Identifying the Alternatives There will be a number of alternative solutions to the design problem. These will include alternative processing routes, technologies, raw materials, energy sources, etc. The sustainable criteria are then used to evaluate the alternatives by identifying their advantages and disadvantages. At this stage, the initial screening is done on a qualitative basis and with discussions with the interested stakeholders.

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Stages in process design for sustainability

1. Process initiation 1. Identifying the need 2. Initial identification of stakeholders and sustainability design criteria 3. Identifying the alternatives

2. Preliminary design 1. Process selection and description 2. Site selection 3. Flowsheet preparation - specification of equipment - material and energy balances 4. Preliminary cost estimates 5. Preliminary assessment of sustainability criteria

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2.Preliminary Design
5. Preliminary Assessment of Sustainability and Further Identification of Sustainability Criteria Assessing economic sustainability of a process Economic evaluation based on micro-indicators for the whole life of the plant (25-30 years), (Conventional design). Sustainable design includes economic macro-indicators plus environmental and social considerations.


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2.Preliminary Design
5. Preliminary Assessment of Sustainability and Further Identification of Sustainability Criteria Assessing environmental sustainability of a process Via two quantitative indicators: Environmental burdens:
Materials and energy Emissions to air and water Amount of solid waste

Environmental impacts:
Life Cycle Assessment (LCA)

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2.Preliminary Design
5. Preliminary Assessment of Sustainability and Further Identification of Sustainability Criteria Assessing social sustainability of a process Via quantitative and qualitative indicators:
Provision of employment (number of employees) Heath and safety issues (number of injuries) Occupational exposure Limits (OEL), fire explosions Visual impact of the plant Public acceptability


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Stages in process design for sustainability

3. Detailed Design 1. Detailed equipment design 2. Detailed economic analysis - Capital costs
- Manufacturing costs - Profitability analysis

3. Energy integration 4. Process control and instrumentation 5. Safety, loss prevention and hazard and operability (HAZOP) 6. Full assessment of sustainability 7. Optimization of economic, environmental and social sustainability


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3.Detailed Design
6. Full Assessment of sustainability

Review of the sustainability criteria, normally not much more work involved from preliminary assessment
7. Optimization of economic, environmental and social

sustainability In conventional design this would focus on optimizing costs and maximise profit; In design for sustainability it is also about minimizing environmental burdens and impacts;
mathematical challenging involving development of procedures for solving multi-objective optimization problems.

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Stages in process design for sustainability

4. Final design 1. Equipment drawing and layout 2. Piping instrumentation 3. Civil and electrical work, etc. Planning application