Assignments


Assignment 1:      

  1. Using the information available in on-line reports from the U.S. Geological Survey (available at http://minerals.usgs.gov/minerals/pubs/mcs/), develop a material flow analysis for mercury in the United States.

  1. Determine all sources of inputs

  2. Identify the relative fractions of mercury use that are employed in durable products and that are released into the environment

  3. Determine if the masses into and out of the system are in balance

  4. What policy strategies might most effectively reduce mercury concentrations?

  1. Using the information available in on-line reports from the U.S. Geological Survey (available at http://minerals.usgs.gov/minerals/pubs/mcs/), develop a material flow analysis for arsenic in the United States.

  1. Determine all sources of inputs

  2. Identify the relative fractions of arsenic use that are employed in durable products and that are released into the environment; estimate the lifetime of durable products and estimate the stocks of arsenic present in these products.

  3. Determine if the masses into and out of the system are in balance

  4. What policy strategies might most effectively be used to reclaim the arsenic in durable products, preventing their release into the environment?

  1. Using the information available in on-line reports from the U.S. Geological Survey (available at http://minerals.usgs.gov/minerals/pubs/mcs/), develop a material flow analysis for cadmium in the United States.

  1. Determine all sources of inputs. Is cadmium mined directly or is it a byproduct of other mining operations?

  2. Identify the relative fractions of cadmium use that are employed in durable products and that are released into the environment; estimate the lifetime of durable products and estimate the stocks of cadmium present in these products. Does cadmium enter the environment through use in products in which it is not intentionally added?

  3. Determine if the masses into and out of the system are in balance

  4. What impact would reducing the use of cadmium in durable goods likely have on cadmium flows? (Recall your answer to Part a.)

  5. What policy strategies might most effectively be used to reduce the release of cadmium into the environment?

  1. (background in chemistry required) Identify chemical processes that produce and consume hydrochloric acid or chlorine. Identify possible reprocessing and reuse networks for industrial uses of HCl.


Assignment 2:      

  1. Using the information available in on-line reports from the U.S. Geological Survey (available at http://minerals.usgs.gov/minerals/pubs/mcs/), develop a material flow analysis for a material of your choice in the United States. 

  1. Determine all Sources of inputs

  2. Identify the relative fractions of the material that are employed in durable products and that are released into the environment 

  3. Determine if the masses into and out of the system are in balance 

  1. Using the information available in on-line reports from the Toxic Release Inventory and other sources of data about wastes (available at  http://www.epa.gov/tri/ ), estimate releases to the environment in the United States.

  1. Determine releases by environmental medium

  2. Determine the sectors that have the largest releases and compare release rates to use rates

  3. Determine if the masses into and out of the system are in balance