Sustainable production of chemicals – an educational perspective
Sustainability is a very general term and the question arises how to specify it within daily laboratory work. In this regard, appropriate metrics could support a socially acceptable, ecological and economic product development. The application of metrics for sustainability should be strengthened in education, because they do not belong to standard considerations in synthesis design so far. This article describes educational material (online resource) designated to students and chemists who are willing to quantify the benefits of green chemistry in the lab and to search for an optimization potential. As an example, bromination reactions are compared by considering mass balance, raw material costs and qualitative aspects such as, e.g., toxicology and combustibility. While keeping in mind the three dimensions of sustainability – economy, environment and social affairs – the idea of the concept of sustainable chemistry, i.e., green chemistry, takes shape in daily laboratory work.