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ENVIRO RX, NOVEMBER 2018

The development and evolution of the chemical industry is directly responsible for many of the technical advancements that have emerged since the late 19th century. However, it was not until the 1980s that the environment became a priority for the chemical industry. This was prompted largely by stricter environmental regulations and a need to address the sector’s poor reputation, particularly due to pollution. The good news is the industry is now rapidly improving, and this changing mindset has provided the backdrop for the emergence of green chemistry. Green chemistry aims to minimise the environmental impact of the chemical industry. Green chemistry also prioritises safety, improving energy efficiency and, most importantly, minimising (and ideally) eliminating toxic waste from the very beginning. One example is the phasing out the use of chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) in refrigerants, which have played a role in creating the ozone layer.

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