MPŠ MP&Scaron MP&Scaron MP&Scaron Avtorji

Jožef Stefan
Postgraduate School

Jamova 39
SI-1000 Ljubljana

Phone: +386 1 477 31 00
Fax: +386 1 477 31 10


Course Description

Chemistry of Environmental Systems


Ecotechnologies, third-level study programme


prof. dr. Milena Horvat
prof. dr. Ester Heath


The main goal of the course is understanding of environmental chemistry of contaminants like biodegradation, hydrolysis, photodegradation, sorption, volatilization, and bioaccumulation. The processes are related to the physicochemical and chemical structure properties and to the characteristics of the environmental compartments (water, aquatic sediments, aquatic biota, soil, and air).


Soil chemistry:
Mass balances, distribution, fate and effects of
pollutants in soil environments.
Assessment of soil and water quality.
Basis of biogeochemistry of soils including pollutant speciation, bioavailability, degradation, transport and biological/toxicological effects in soil.

Atmospheric chemistry:
Photochemistry of the stratosphere and troposphere, both in the gas phase and on particles.
Degradation of organic compounds, formation of
aerosol precursors, ozone formation, heterogeneous chemistry, aerosol properties.
Lifetimes of chemical compounds, radicals and radical families.
Atmospheric circulation and its implications for the transport and mixing of atmospheric pollution.

Aquatic chemistry:
Advanced equilibrium chemistry.
Composition of aquatic environments (lakes, rivers, seawater).
Processes controlling the formation of the aquatic
environments (equilibria cover acid-base,
precipitation-, complex-, and redox-equilibria).

Course literature:

John H. Seinfeld, Spyros N. Pandis Atmospheric Chemistry And Physics: From Air Pollution to Climate Change, John Wiley & Sons Inc (August 2006)

Colin Baird, Michael C. Cann, Michael Cann, Environmental Chemistry, W H Freeman & Co (September 2004)

Gary W. Vanloon, Stephen J. Duffy Environmental Chemistry: A Global Perspective, Oxford Univ Pr (May 2005)

I. Williams, Environmental Chem., John Willey & Sons (2001) p. 385, ISBN 0 471 48941 7

R. Cornelis (ed.): Handbook of Elemental Speciation, Techniques and Methodology. Chichester: John Willey & Sons (2003), 657 p., ISBN 0-471-49214-0

G.I. Sunahara et al. (eds.). Environmental Analysis of Contaminated Sites. New York: John Wiley&Sons (2002), 465 p., ISBN 0-471-98669-0

Significant publications and references:

HORVAT, Milena, COVELLI, Stefano, FAGANELI, Jadran, LOGAR, Martina, FAJON, Vesna, RAJAR, Rudolf, ŠIRCA, Andrej, ŽAGAR, Dušan. Mercury in contaminated coastal environments; a case study : the Gulf of Trieste. Sci. total environ.. [Print ed.], 1999, vol. 237/238, str.43-56.

HINES, M. E., HORVAT, Milena, FAGANELI, Jadran. Mercury biogeochemistry in the Idrija river, Slovenia from above the mine into the Gulf Trieste. Environ. res. (N.Y. N.Y.), 2000, vol. 83, sec. A, str. 129-139.

HORVAT, Milena, JERAN, Zvonka, ŠPIRIĆ, Zdravko, JAĆIMOVIĆ, Radojko, MIKLAVČIČ, Vesna. Mercury and other elements in lichens near the INA Naftaplin gas treatment plant, Molve, Croatia. J. environ. monit. (Print), 2000, vol. 2, str. 139-144.

HORVAT, Milena, JEREB, Vesna, FAJON, Vesna, LOGAR, Martina, KOTNIK, Jože, FAGANELI, Jadran, HINES, M. E., BONZONGO, J.-C. Mercury distribution in water, sediment and soil in the Idrijca and Soča river systems. Geochem., explor. environ. anal., 2002, vol. 2, str. 287-296.

HORVAT, Milena, KOTNIK, Jože, LOGAR, Martina, FAJON, Vesna, ZVONARIĆ, Tomislav, PIRRONE, Nicola. Speciation of mercury in surface and deep-sea waters in the Mediterranean sea. Atmos. environ. (1994). [Print ed.], 2003, vol. 37, suppl. 1, str. S93-S108.

HORVAT, Milena, KONTIĆ, Branko, KOTNIK, Jože, OGRINC, Nives, JEREB, Vesna, LOGAR, Martina,
Tatjana. Remediation of mercury polluted sites due to mining activities. Crit. rev. anal. chem., 2003, vol. 33, str. 291-296.

HORVAT, Milena, GIBIČAR, Darija. Speciation of mercury : Environment, food, clinical, and occupational health. V: CORNELIS, Rita (ur.). Handbook of elemental speciation II : species in the environment, food, medicine & occupational health. New York; Chichester: Wiley, 2005, 2005, str. 281-304.


Seminar, oral exam.

Students obligations:

Seminar and oral exam.