CHEMSTRY HELP!!! PLEASE HELP OUT!! I HAVE NO CLUE FOR THIS QUESTION!!!          A train has derailed and there has been a chemical spill. You are the environment chemist...

CHEMSTRY HELP!!! PLEASE HELP OUT!!

I HAVE NO CLUE FOR THIS QUESTION!!!

 

 

 

 

 

A train has derailed and there has been a chemical spill. You are the environment chemist leading an emergency response team to area where this spill has occurred. Outline the steps that you would take to handle this situation. Use any material that may be available to you and be specific in what you might use.

Expert Answers
hnystrom eNotes educator| Certified Educator

As an environmental engineer what is your first task?  To clean up the spill with minimal impact on the environment.

What are your options? 1. contain the spill; 2. neutralize the chemical so that its impact on the environment is reduced; 3. clean up and restore the environment if possible.

Think about the "chemical spill" of oil in the Gulf by BP.  First task has been to try to stop the leak and to gather up or t control where the oil goes using barriers in the water. Neither have been very successful so far.

The second task is to try to reduce the impace of the oil.  It was hoped that the oil would evaporate but that hasn't happened.  Next they tried to use "dispersants" which are chemicals that change the properties of the oil.  It sinks rather than floats but this only moves the pollution to a different part of the ocean.

Third task is to try to clean up the land, plants, and animals where the oil has come to the beach.  People are donating dish soap to try to wash the animals.

I hope that yo can see from my example what techniques and materials an environmental engineer might need in order to clean up a chemical spill.