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Queen's University

Gary W. vanLoon

Emeritus Professor

  Gary vanLoon

Contact Information

Office: Chernoff 405
Phone: 613.533.2633
Fax: 613.533.6669

Mailing Address:
School of Environmental Studies
Queen's University
Kingston, Ontario, Canada,
K7L 3N6

Department & Associations

Chemistry and Environmental Studies


Students in Environmental Studies

Academic Training

BSc (Geology and Chemistry) McMaster U., PhD (Chemistry) U of Toronto 

Current Research & Academic Interests

The focus of my work is on sustainability in its broadest sense, and I am particularly interested in how one can assess (measure) it. Along with several colleagues I have proposed and developed methodology that can be used for this purpose and we have applied it in a number of situations, particularly agricultural situations. Like all methods, it has limitations and there is room to do much more work to make it applicable in various different cases. Lately, we have tried to bring health issues more closely into the assessment procedures. Much of our testing has been done in low-income countries, particularly India and now Bangladesh.



Publications since 2000:

Authored books

G.W. vanLoon and S.J. Duffy, Environmental Chemistry – in a Global Perspective, 3nd edition,Oxford University Press, 545 pp, (2010).

G.W. vanLoon and S.J. Duffy, Kimia Al Bi’a, [Arabic Translation of Environmental Chemistry] King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology (KACST), 2011.

G.W. vanLoon and S. J. Duffy, Chemia Srodowiska, [Polish translation of Environmental Chemistry], Wydawnictwo Naukowe PWN SA, Warszawa, 2007.

G.W. vanLoon and S.J. Duffy,Environmental Chemistry – a Global Perspective. Solutions Manual: Oxford University Press, Sept 2010 – published electronically.

G. W. vanLoon, S.G. Patil and L. B. Hugar, Agricultural sustainability: Strategies for assessment Sage Publications, 281 pp, (2005).

Chapters in Books

S.G. Patil and G.W. vanLoon, Sustainability of Agro-ecosystems with Reference to the Deccan Plateau. In Sustainable Agriculture for Drylands on the Deccan Plateau: Knowledge for Application, ed. M.A. Singlachar, AME foundation, Bangalore, India (2005), pp 28-40.

S. Shirin, E. Buncel and G.W. vanLoon, Enhanced solubilization of organic pollutants (TCE and PCE) through complexation by cyclodextrins. InLichtfouse E, Schwarzbauer J, Robert D (eds) Environmental Chemistry. Springer-Verlag, Berlin Heidelberg, 780 pp, (2005).

Research Articles

Atanu Sarkar and G.W. vanLoon, Modern agriculture and food and nutrition insecurity: Paradox in India. Public Health, in press, 3 pp (2015).

Byomkesh Talukder, Md. Saifuzzaman, G.W. vanLoon, Sustainability of agricultural systems in the coastal zone of Bangladesh. Renewable Agriculture and Food Systems, in press, 18 pp (2015).

Mohammad Rais, Shatroopa Acharya and Gary W. vanLoon, Food processing industry: Opportunities in the North-Eastern region of India.The NEHU Journal, XII (1), 37-52 (2014)

Atanu Sarkar, Shantagouda Patil, Lingappa Hugar and Gary vanLoon, Modern agricultural practices and associated health risks: an Indian study.Journal of the Indian Society of Agricultural Statistics, 67(2), 279-285 (2013)

Bernd O. Keller, Abdelhamid Esbata, Erwin Buncel and Gary vanLoon, Rapidly formed quinalphos complexes with transition metal ions characterized by electrospray ionization mass spectrometry. Rapid Communication in Mass Spectrometry, 27, 1319-1328 (2013).

Atanu Sarkar, Kristan Aronson, Shantagouda Patil, Lingappa Hugar; Gary vanLoon, Emerging Health Risks Associated with Modern Agriculture Practices: a Comprehensive Study in India. Environmental Research 115, 37-50 (2012). This paper was highlighted in the environmental bimonthly magazine Down to Earth, (Biplab Das, Green Revolution’s Hidden Toll, June 1-15, 2012)

P. Ralevic, S.G. Patil and G.W. vanLoon (2012). Achieving Household Food Security: How Much Land is Required?, in Food Production - Approaches, Challenges and Tasks, Anna Aladjadjiyan (ed.), ISBN: 978-953-307-887-8, InTech,  Available from:

Atanu Sarkar, Shantagouda Patil, Lingappa Hugar and Gary vanLoon, Sustainability of Current Agriculture Practices, Community Perception and Implications for Ecosystem Health: an Indian Study. EcoHealth, 8 (4),14 pp,  2011

P. Ralevic, S.G. Patil SG and G.W. vanLoon, Integrated Agriculture Production Systems for Meeting Household Food, Fodder and Fuel Security . Journal of Sustainable Agriculture 34, 878-906, (2010).

Sun Koo, Dildar Ali, Kiyull Yang, Yong Park, Abdelhamid Esbata, Gary vanLoon and Erwin Buncel, Theoretical and Experimental P-31 NMR and ESI-MS Study of Hg2+ Binding to Fenitrothion .Bulletin of the Korean Chemical Society 30, 1257-1261 (2009)

Sun Koo, Dildar Ali, Kiyull Yang, Yong Park, Abdelhamid Esbata, Gary vanLoon and Erwin Buncel, 31P NMR and ESI-MS studies of metal ion phosphorus pesticide residue complexes.Canadian Journal of Chemistry, 87, 433-437 (2009)

Mohammad Rais, Bohumir Pazderka and Gary vanLoon, Agriculture in Uttarakhand, India - Biodiversity, nutrition and livelihoods.Journal of Sustainable Agriculture 33, 319-335 (2009)

D. Churchill, J. C.F. Cheung, Y.S. Park, V.H. Smith, G. vanLoon and E. Buncel.  Complexation of diazinon, an organophosphorus pesticide, with a-, β-, and у-cyclodextrin – NMR and computational studies.  Canadian Journal of Chemistry, 84, 702-708 (2006).

X-M.  Han, V. K. Balakrishnan, G. W. vanLoon, E. Buncel, Degradation of the pesticide Fenitrothion as mediated by Cationic Surfactants and -Nucleophilic Reagents.  Langmuir; 22(21), 9009-9017 (2006)

M.K.Mandal, N. Khandekar, M.K. Mandape, P. Khandekar and G.W. vanLoon, An index to measure sustainability of Rural Poultry Farming.Environment and Ecology. 24(1),110-115 (2006) .

J. A. Ramsay, K. Robertson, G.W. vanLoon, N. Acay, and B.A. Ramsay, Enhancement of PAH biomineralization rates under Fe(III)-reducing conditions. Chemosphere 61, 733-740 (2005).

V.K. Balakrishnan, E. Buncel and G.W. vanLoon, Micellar catalyzed degradation of Fenitrothion, an organophosphorus pesticide, in solution and soils. Environ. Sci. Technol. 39(15), 5824-5830, (2005)

Salma Shirin and Gary vanLoon. Dechlorination of cyclodextrin-complexed trichloroethylene by zero-valent iron: a proposed mechanism,Canadian Journal of Chemistry 82 (12), 1674 to 1685 (2004)

Vimal K. Balakrishnan, Xiumei Han, Gary W. vanLoon, Julian M. Dust, JeanToullec and Erwin Buncel. Acceleration of nucleophilic attack on an organophosphorothioate neurotoxin, fenitrothion by reactive counterion cationic micelles. Langmuir, 20, 6586 to 6593 (2004).

Salma Shirin, Erwin Buncel and Gary W. vanLoon, The use of β-cyclodextrins to enhance the aqueous solubility of trichloroethylene and perchloroethylene and their removal from soil organic matter: Effect of substituents. Canadian Journal of Chemistry, 81(1), 45-52, (2003).

Salma Shirin, Erwin Buncel and Gary W. vanLoon, The use of β-cyclodextrins to enhance the aqueous solubility of trichloroethylene and perchloroethylene and their removal from soil organic matter: Effect of substituents. Canadian Journal of Chemistry, 81(1), 45-52 (2003).

David I. Kreller, Graham Gibson, William Novak, Gary W. vanLoon and J. Hugh Horton, Competitive adsorption of phosphate and carboxylate with natural organic matter on hydrous iron oxides as investigated by chemical force microscopy. Colloids and Surfaces A, 212 (2-3), 249-264 (2003).

Kirsten N. Exall and Gary W. vanLoon, The speciation of aluminum in prehydrolyzed coagulants and its importance in organic matter removal.  Water Research, 37, 3341 - 3350 (2003)

D.I. Kreller, G. Gibson, G.W. vanLoon and J.H. Horton, Chemical force microscopy investigation of phosphate adsorption on the surfaces of hydrous ferric oxide particles.Journal of Colloid and Interface Science 254, 205-213 (2002)

I.S. Eneji, E. Buncel, G.W. vanLoon, Degradation and uptake of pirimiphos-methyl in two Nigerian soils. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry 50(20), 5634 - 5639 (2002).

Ikenna Onyido, John E. Omakor, Gary W. vanLoon and Erwin Buncel, Competing pathways in the reaction of the pesticide fenitrothion [O,O-Dimethyl O-(3-methyl-4-nitrophenyl) phosphorothioate] with some nitrogen nucleophiles in aqueous solution. Arkivoc, 2(ix), 131-142 (2001),

J.E. Omakor, I. Onyido, G.W. vanLoon and E. Buncel,  Mechanisms of abiotic degradation and soil-water interactions of pesticides and other hydrophobic organic compounds. Part 3. Nucleophilic displacement at the phosphorus center of the pesticide fenitrothion [o,o-dimethyl o-(3-methyl-4-nitrophenyl) phosphorothioate] by oxygen nucleophiles in aqueous solution: -effect and mechanism.Journal of the Chemical Society, Perkin Transactions 2, 324 – 330 (2001)

V.K. Balakrishnan, J.M. Dust, G.W. vanLoon, and E. Buncel.  Catalytic pathways  in the ethanolysis of fenitrothion, an organophosphorothioate pesticide. A dichotomy in the behaviour of crown/cryptand cation complexing agents, Canadian Journal of Chemistry, 79, 157 – 173 (2001)

K. N. Exall, J. Deutschman, G. Lever, J. Mayo and G. vanLoon, An emerging technology may achieve D/DBP compliance and cost savings.  Opflow, 27, 8 – 12 (2001)

R. Sha’ato, D.S. Gamble, E. Buncel, and G.W. vanLoon, Kinetics and equilibria of metribuzin sorption on model soil components.  Canadian Journal of Soil Science, 80 (2), 301 to 307, 2000

K. N. Exall and GW vanLoon, Using coagulants to remove organic matter. Journal of the American Water Works Association, 92 (11), 93 – 102 (2000).


    Current Environmental Studies Teachings at Queen's & Courses Taught at Queen's 

    Besides teaching many chemistry courses over a long career at Queen's, I have also taught in the School of Environmental Studies - most recently ENSC 390 (Sustainability) and (currently) ENSC 315 (Food Security) 

    Areas of Potential Thesis/Project Supervision

    General areas of sustainability – particularly related to agriculture and with a focus on holistic methods of assessment of sustainability. The focus is substantially but not exclusively on issues in low-income countries.

    Return to the Adjunct Faculty page.

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