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Green chemistry is a branch of chemistry that deals with the design, development and application of chemical products and processes to reduce or completely eliminate the use and production of substances hazardous to human health and the environment.
Green chemistry is also known as sustainable chemistry.Its philosophy is based on chemical research and engineering to encourage the development of products and processes that minimize the use and generation of dangerous substances.However, it differs from the so called environmental chemistry, as it aims to reduce and prevent pollution from its very source.Beginning of all of this is in 1990, when the United States adopted the Law on Prevention of Pollution.Its main goals are focused on dealing with pollution in an original and innovative way, i.e. to avoid problems before they happen.
As a chemical philosophy, green chemistry applies knowledge of organic chemistry, inorganic chemistry, biochemistry, analytical chemistry, and physical chemistry.The focus is on reducing dangers and increases the effectiveness of each choice of a chemical process.It is different from the chemistry of the environmental chemistry, which is focused on the chemical phenomena in the environment.
In 2005 Ryōji Noyori identified three key developments in green chemistry: use of supercritical carbon dioxide as a green solvent, aqueous hydrogen peroxide to clean oxidizer and the use of hydrogen in asymmetric synthesis.Examples of concrete use of green chemistry are oxidation in supercritical water, water reactions and in a dry environment (including microwave effects).
Bioengineering is regarded as a promising technique to achieve the "green" chemistry. A number of important chemical processes can be synthesized in microorganisms such as "shikimate”, a predecessor of Tamiflu, which is produced by fermentation of different bacteria.
There is some debate whether green chemistry involves economic effects, but by definition, if green chemistry is not developed, we cannot reduce "the use or generation of hazardous substances."