94278 - Global Concerns

Course Unit Page

SDGs

This teaching activity contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.

Sustainable cities Responsible consumption and production Climate Action

Academic Year 2022/2023

Learning outcomes

At the end of the course the student will become familiar the concept of global environmental changes, with a special focus on climatic changes. The student will be aware of the threat posed by global changes to menking and the environment. He/she will be aware of the international agreements for protaction of the global environment and reduction of the impact of global changes (Montreal, Rio de Janeiro, Kyoto, Paris and others). The full comprehension of global changes is inherently linked to the transformation of chemical substance in the environment (atmosphere, waterbodies, sediments and soil); the student will become aware of all these aspects. The student will be able to: 1. comprehend and foresee the effect of antropogenic emissions on global changes; 2. compare the guidelines and recommendation of the international agreements with the local and global trends; 3. predict the effects on global pollution of the process of environmental transformations and compartimentation of pollutants.

Course contents

The UC Environmental sustainability consists of three modules, with the following contents:

(1) Environmental fate of organic pollutants

Information on the environmental partition of main organic pollutants and their key descriptors. Main degradation pathways and environmental fate of organic pollutants. Estimation of the expected sinks and persistence of unknown organic compounds on the basis of molecular structure.

(2) Environmental risk of plastic materials

Detection of plastic materials. Assessment of the threat posed by persistent polluting plastics. Effect of the presence of plastics in different environments.

(3) Chemical pollution remediation

Importance of (organic) chemical properties of the substances on their behaviour and fate in the environment. Approaches and processes involved in site investigation and environmental chemical (contaminant) analysis. Introduction to key contaminated land, waste and remediation regulation. Financial, regulatory/legal and technical aspects affect remediation techniques selection when dealing with chemical contaminants in soil and groundwater environments

The UC Global concerns consists of three modules, with the following contents:

(1) Global changes

The Earth system: land, oceans, atmosphere, polar regions, life, the planet's natural cycles and deep Earth processes. Human population, consumption and pollution as driving forces of global change. How global changes impact ecological systems and human societies.

(2) International agreements and regulations on environmental protection

Importance of the international agreements for the global environment protection and reduction of global changes impact:

• Montreal Agreement

• Rio de Janeiro agreement

• Kyoto Agreement

• Paris Agreement

Most relevant legislation for environmental protection

(3) Environmental fate of organic pollutants

Information on the environmental partition of main organic pollutants and their key descriptors. Main degradation pathways and environmental fate of organic pollutants. Estimation of the expected sinks and persistence of unknown organic compounds on the basis of molecular structure.

Readings/Bibliography

Lecture slide handouts will be available for students

Reading lists will be provided as appropriate to support lectures

Teaching methods

The course unit is divided in three modules. Each module is organized in theoretical classes where main concepts are explained, as well as tutorial classes with discussion of case-study examples.

Assessment methods

Each module is assessed through a written assignment, including a report on literature research.

Teaching tools

power point slides

Office hours

See the website of Paola Galletti

See the website of Alessandra Bonoli

See the website of Silvia Bagni