In my four years at the helm of this magazine, I have been continuously awed by the breadth and importance of the influence of the the chemical sciences and engineering, and this issue is a perfect illustration of that. We open the feature stories in this edition with a tale of how scientists track the path of contaminants in melting ice and snow: an engrossing example of how chemistry intersects with the environment. In our Q and A, we talked to Bradley Pierek, a young chemical engineer with an entrepreneurial drive and a desire to make the world better by helping to provide clean drinking water to the developing world. We end with a story by Anita Lahey of how a Quebec company’s painstakingly-perfected process for extracting alumina from clay stands to transform an industry and boost the economy of the impoverished Gaspé region.
As well as showcasing the impacts of this important sector of science and engineering, this issue reminds me of how fortunate I’ve been to work with such extraordinarily talented professionals in publishing: From gifted freelance storytellers like Lahey and so many others, to our own in-house writer, Tyler Irving, who consistently brings to life story after scientifically-precise-yet-colourfully-written story on the pages of this magazine and on our blog, ChemistryMatters.ca, to our oft-overlooked and always under-celebrated art director, Krista Leroux, whose combination of technical skill, production sense and artful visual eye is both rare and of exceptionally high calibre. Having such a superb team has made putting to press my 27 issues of this magazine a joy.
With this, my last issue as editor of ACCN, the Canadian Chemical News, I hope to leave you, our membership and readership with this: I implore you to continue to demand the highest quality for publishing the fascinating stories that your field generates. Your work deserves to be recognized, and the Canadian public deserves to know the value of the chemical sciences and engineering to their way of life. Hope you continue to enjoy the read!