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Environmental geochemistry

The course provides students with knowledge of how basic chemical theory can be applied on different types of soil and water systems, e.g. in environmental risk assessments, environmental monitoring or providing advice on plant nutrition issues. Teaching takes the form of lectures, calculation, computer exercises, laboratory practicals and seminars, where computer exercises, laboratory practicals and seminars are mandatory. The course deals with the following topics:

• characterisation of solid soil components,

• processes in the water phase, and equilibrium with various mineral phases,

• sorption of ions and organic contaminants to soil and sediment materials,

• redox processes and their importance for the solubility of different elements in the soil and water systems,

• acidifying and acid-neutralising processes in soil and water systems,

• geochemical modelling,

• methods for risk assessment of soils contaminated with metals and organic pollutants,

• overview of remediation methods for contaminated soils,

• applications of soil and water chemistry theory within agriculture, forestry and environmental research.

Information from the course leader

Welcome to the course MV0218 Environmental Geochemistry

We will start with a practical intro on 31 october 10:00 am in the "Arenader" room in the library.

Some practical things.

For most of the exercises, including the exam, you will need to bring a calculator.

You will be evaluated on the following:

- Laboratory work, report and seminar
- Assignments, in particular the assignments on Fugacity and PFAS
- The literature seminar
- The written exam

The following course moments are obligatory and only in exceptional circumstances can we allow your absence:

- Lab introduction (As this concerns safety aspects for the laboratory exercises)
- Laboratory days
- Exercises fugacity
- Risk assessment exercises
- Exercises PFAS
- Laboratory seminar
- Literature seminar

The first written exam is booked on 12 january 2024 (08:00 - 13:00)

See you soon!

Geert Cornelis
Course Leader

Course evaluation

The course evaluation is now closed

MV0218-20205 - Course evaluation report

Once the evaluation is closed, the course coordinator and student representative have 1 month to draft their comments. The comments will be published in the evaluation report.

Additional course evaluations for MV0218

Academic year 2022/2023

Environmental geochemistry (MV0218-20050)

2022-11-01 - 2023-01-15

Academic year 2021/2022

Environmental geochemistry (MV0218-20092)

2021-11-02 - 2022-01-16

Academic year 2020/2021

Environmental geochemistry (MV0218-20156)

2020-11-02 - 2021-01-17

Academic year 2019/2020

Environmental geochemistry (MV0218-20103)

2019-11-01 - 2020-01-19

Academic year 2018/2019

Environmental geochemistry (MV0218-20083)

2018-11-05 - 2019-01-20

Syllabus and other information

Litterature list

The main textbook we use is:

"Soil and Water Chemistry: An integrative Approach" (Michael E. Essington).

We use paper versions of the second edition, but the first edition is available for free online and differences with the first edition are insignificant.

Other important literature:

Gustafsson, J.P., Jacks, G., Simonsson, M. Nilsson, I. 2005. Soil and water chemistry. Compendium. 119 pp.

• Report 4639. Swedish Environmental Protection Agency (Naturvårdsverket), 1997. Development of generic guideline values. Model and data used for generic guideline values for contaminated soils in Sweden.


• Schwartzenbach, R.P., Escher, B.I., Fenner, K., Hofstetter, T.B., Johnson, C.A., von Gunten, U., Wehrli, B. 2006. The challenge of micropollutants in aquatic systems. Science, 310, 1072-1077.

• Campos Pereira, H., Ullberg, M., Kleja, D.B., Gustafsson, J.P., Ahrens, L. 2018. Sorption of perfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs) to an organic soil horizon - Effect of cation composition and pH. Chemosphere 207: 183-191.

• UNIDO. Survey of Soil Remediation Technology.

• Dermont et al. 2008. Metal-Contaminated Soils: Remediation Practices and Treatment Technologies. Practice Periodical of Hazardous, Toxic, and Radioactive Waste Management, 12:188-209.

• Dermont et al. 2008. Soil washing for metal removal: A review of physical/chemical technologies and field applications. Journal of Hazardous Materials 152: 1–31.

Course facts

The course is offered as an independent course: Yes The course is offered as a programme course: EnvEuro - European Master in Environmental Science Soil, Water and Environment - Master's Programme Agriculture Programme - Soil/Plant Tuition fee: Tuition fee only for non-EU/EEA/Switzerland citizens: 38060 SEK Cycle: Master’s level (A1N)
Subject: Environmental Science Soil Science Soil science Environmental science
Course code: MV0218 Application code: SLU-20205 Location: Uppsala Distance course: No Language: English Responsible department: Department of Soil and Environment Pace: 100%