In this chapter, we have endeavored to survey the main principles that underlie the chemical behavior of "natural" and "unnatural" (i.e., human-influenced) environmental processes ocurring in aqueous media. Some of these principles provide a basis for quantitative predictions, although in reality the complexity of many environmental systems makes calculations that work in laboratory situations difficult to apply with great certainty to the real world. In any event, they show the factors that must be included in an understanding of the aqueous environment.

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