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The General Assembly of the United Nations has adopted a resolution proclaimed 2011 as International Year of Chemistry, with UNESCO and the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC) at the helm of the event. (See UN declares 2011 as International Year of Chemistry.)

2011 is the 100th anniversary of the Nobel Prize in Chemistry awarded to Marie Curie. So the IYC will provide an opportunity to celebrate contributions of women scientists. The general goals are:

“to increase public appreciation of chemistry in meeting world needs, to encourage interest in chemistry among young people, and to generate enthusiasm for the creative future of chemistry.”

There will be  IYC year will be divided into four thematic quarters to the year. The first quarter is “Water in the Environment” with activities highlighting the nature and importance of water, and the role of chemists in securing water quality and purity.

The second quarter will focus on the importance of viable alternative energy sources with special celebrations are planned for Earth Day, April 22, 2011.

“Materials,” including recycling and nanomaterials will be the focus of the third quarter.

Finally “health” will be emphasised by the fourth quarter with coverage of the chemical sciences related to nutrition, hygiene, and medicine. National Chemistry Week (Oct. 17-23, 2011) will be the highlight of the fourth quarter.

Teachers, students and scientists all over the world are encouraged to participate in IYC-inspired activities in their local schools and communities.

The Royal Society of New Zealand “are planning heaps of events for the public” but have yet to put their programme on line.

Sources:
International Year of Chemistry, “Celebrate Chemistry.”
ACS, Chemistry for Life, “ACS Celebrates IYC 2011.”
The Official Website of the Nobel Prize, “Biography: Marie Curie.”
ACS, Chemistry for Life, “IYC 2011, Activities and Resources for Your Celebration” (vid of webinar held on December 7, 2010).
ACS, Chemistry for Life, “Chemistry Education Resources.”
Chemistry for Life, “Meg A. Mole Future Chemist.”
YouTube, “terrificsciencestaff’s channel.”
Facebook, “Chemists Celebrate Earth Day, Sponsored by the American Chemical Society.”
Facebook, “IYC 2011.”

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