Pollution in the environment is one of major threats facing society whether in the form of gases (e.g. air pollution), dissolved substances (e.g. mine drainage and water), liquids (e.g. oils) or particles (e.g. airborne particles). This module will introduce the main environmental pollutants and consider how they are transferred within and between various media and how they interact with biota to constitute an environmental risk. We will use the source pathway receptor model to explore how the form and transport of pollutants contributes to their importance in an environmental context. We will also consider how the extent of pollution can be assessed within different environmental media. These key concepts will be considered in relation to current environmental issues including air, water, soil pollution and chemical use and oil spills.
Lectures will be supported by workshops and laboratory and computer practicals to allow students to put in practice theoretical concepts.