Category Archives: Pollution

Case Study: Ducktown, Tennessee

One of my favorite environmental stories centers on Ducktown, Tennessee, where native copper was discovered in 1843, and where since 1854 metal sulfides mined from the Copper Basin were smelted in ovens to separate the copper [1], [2]. Trees from … Continue reading

Posted in Acid Rain, Air Pollution, Mining, Pollution, Science, Sustainability | Leave a comment

Change Your Transportation

Transportation has a huge environmental impact, so society must focus on reducing that impact. Consider the environmental impact of a single automobile that travels an average of 100,000 miles in its lifetime. There is the damage that results from the … Continue reading

Posted in Energy, Environment, Fossil fuels, Future, Global warming, Peak Oil, Pollution, Risk, Science, Sustainability | Leave a comment

Reduce Your Waste

In 1990 U.S. citizens generated over 4 pounds of solid waste per day, or over 1500 pounds per year. Individuals in most other developed countries generate only half that amount. Over 39% of municipal solid waste is paper, something we … Continue reading

Posted in Environment, Pollution, Sustainability, Waste | Leave a comment

Case study: DuPont Plant, New Johnsonville, TN

For a number of years I took students in my graduate course Aqueous Geochemistry to tour the DuPont Plant in New Johnsonville, TN, about two hours west of Nashville. The plant manufactures Titanium Dioxide TiO2 by mining the mineral ilmenite … Continue reading

Posted in Economics, Environment, Pollution, Resources, Risk, Science, Sustainability, Water | Leave a comment

The Behavior of Water Pollutants

In their textbook "Ecological Economics" (2004), Herman Daly and Joshua Farley say that the limits to human population growth may lie not in resource depletion, but in the waste absorption capacity of the environment. This can be understood with the … Continue reading

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Water Pollution Case Study: Lake Erie

I grew up in Buffalo, New York in the 1960’s and 1970’s, when pollution was reaching its peak in the rust belt and the environmental movement was beginning. One of the watershed moments in the environmental movement was the discovery … Continue reading

Posted in Environment, Pollution, Sustainability, Water | 3 Comments