Journal Archive

Platinum Metals Rev., 2008, 52, (3), 132
doi: 10.1595/147106708X325169

Editorial: Platinum Metals Review and Sustainability

  • N. A. P. Carson
  • Barry W. Copping
  • Johnson Matthey PLC,
  • Orchard Road, Royston, Hertfordshire SG8 5HE, U.K.

A Johnson Matthey Initiative

Johnson Matthey has announced a major initiative on sustainability, with commitment to the principles of sustainable development and a quest for outstanding resource efficiency and carbon neutrality. The company will also encourage its suppliers and customers to embrace similar values and will work with them to exploit the opportunities presented by the development of more sustainable products. The initiative is being implemented against a background of increasing global concern about the environment and the need to make the most efficient use of natural resources, including hydrocarbons. In addition, health issues remain high on the sustainability agenda and we continue to see the progressive tightening of worldwide emissions control legislation.

Platinum Metals Review (PMR) is well placed to contribute to this initiative. Johnson Matthey began publication of the Journal in 1957, to disseminate, free of charge, knowledge of the science and technology of the platinum group metals (pgms) to a worldwide readership, to support the platinum industry and to encourage research and development. PMR has followed the growth of pgm technologies as they have moved from laboratory to industrial scale, and has always covered advances in sustainable technology.

The carbon footprint of PMR's publishing operation was significantly reduced in July 2004, when the electronic-only format superseded printed copy distribution.

I am delighted that the PMR editorial team will be actively taking Johnson Matthey's sustainability initiative forward in commissioning articles, as well as conference and book reviews. It is clear that PMR’s contributors and readers have a fundamental interest in achieving a more sustainable world, and this will have increasingly important implications for the future development of pgm science.


Coverage of Sustainability in Platinum Metals Review

One of PMR's earliest published papers, in 1957, was a conference review dealing with the importance of pgms for catalysing industrial reactions (1). Since then, many ‘classic’ articles have become landmark papers in their fields, including autocatalysts for reducing harmful vehicle emissions (2, 3), fuel cells as an alternative energy technology (4) and the use of catalysis for improving the efficiency of industrial processes (5).

Further themes have included hydrogen as an alternative fuel (6), solar energy (7), the recovery of pgms from spent catalysts (8) and the use of pgms in environmental remediation (9). Recent coverage takes many of these themes forward. Further improvements to industrial process catalysis (10, 11), chemical reactions (12) and ‘green’ chemistry (13) have all featured in the last two years. There is continuing interest in alternative fuels (14), and autocatalysts contribute crucially in the drive to reduce vehicle emissions (15).

In the current issue of PMR, we present articles on fuel cells (16), chemical catalysis (17) and emissions abatement for industrial processes (18). This proves that research and development on the use of pgms for sustainable technologies are alive and well in the 21st century.

With the Journal hosted on the dedicated website, features have been added in the PGM Science Mine to actively engage the pgm science and technology community in addressing key issues such as sustainability. Within the PGM Science Mine, a range of organisations involved in sustainability issues are now listed in the PMR Organisation Directory, including:

  1. Environment, Sustainability & Energy, Royal Society of Chemistry, U.K.

  2. Good Practice, Sustainable Development in the Mining and Metals Sector

  3. Roundtable on Sustainable Platinum Group Metals

  4. SusChem, Belgium

  5. Sustainable Development Commission (SDC), U.K.

  6. UK Government Sustainable Development

We hope that our readers and authors will continue to make use of the PMR journal and its website as valuable resources to further their work on sustainable pgm science and technology into the future.



  1.  ‘The Platinum Metals in Catalysis’, Platinum Metals Rev., 1957, 1, (1), 24 LINK
  2.  ‘Automobile Emission Control Systems’, G. J. K. Acres and B. J. Cooper, Platinum Metals Rev., 1972, 16, (3), 74 LINK
  3.  ‘Twenty-Five Years of Autocatalysts’, M. V. Twigg, Platinum Metals Rev., 1999, 43, (4), 168 LINK
  4.  ‘Fuel Cell Energy Generators’, D. S. Cameron, Platinum Metals Rev., 1978, 22, (2), 38 LINK
  5.  ‘The Cativa™ Process for the Manufacture of Acetic Acid’, J. H. Jones, Platinum Metals Rev., 2000, 44, (3), 94 LINK
  6.  ‘Progress in Hydrogen Energy Systems’, P. A. Sermon, Platinum Metals Rev., 1978, 22, (4), 130 LINK
  7.  ‘Highly Efficient Nanocrystalline Photovoltaic Devices’, M. Grätzel, Platinum Metals Rev., 1994, 38, (4), 151 LINK
  8.  ‘Precious Metal Recovery from Spent Catalysts’, P. Grumett, Platinum Metals Rev., 2003, 47, (4), 163 LINK
  9.  ‘The Dechlorination of Hydrocarbons’, N. Korte, L. Liang, R. Muftikian, C. Grittini and Q. Fernando, Platinum Metals Rev., 1997, 41, (1), 2 LINK
  10.  ‘Enhancement of Industrial Hydroformylation Processes by the Adoption of Rhodium-Based Catalyst: Part I’, R. Tudor and M. Ashley, Platinum Metals Rev., 2007, 51, (3), 116 LINK
  11.  ‘Enhancement of Industrial Hydroformylation Processes by the Adoption of Rhodium-Based Catalyst: Part II’, R. Tudor and M. Ashley, Platinum Metals Rev., 2007, 51, (4), 164 LINK
  12.  ‘Practical New Strategies for Immobilising Ruthenium Alkylidene Complexes: Part I’, I. Dragutan and V. Dragutan, Platinum Metals Rev., 2008, 52, (2), 71 LINK
  13.  ‘Green Chemistry and Catalysis’, D. Macquarrie, Platinum Metals Rev., 2008, 52, (2), 83 LINK
  14.  ‘Alcoholic Fuels’, G. Acres, Platinum Metals Rev., 2007, 51, (1), 34 LINK
  15.  ‘Diesel Engine Emissions and Their Control’, T. Johnson, Platinum Metals Rev., 2008, 52, (1), 23 LINK
  16.  ‘A New Palladium-Based Catalyst for Methanol Steam Reforming in a Miniature Fuel Cell Power Source’, O. Ilinich, Y. Liu, C. Castellano, G. Koermer, A. Moini and R. Farrauto, Platinum Metals Rev., 2008, 52, (3), 134 LINK
  17.  ‘Practical New Strategies for Immobilising Ruthenium Alkylidene Complexes: Part II’, I. Dragutan and V. Dragutan, Platinum Metals Rev., 2008, 52, (3), 157 LINK
  18.  ‘Noble Metal Catalysts for Mercury Oxidation in Utility Flue Gas’, A. A. Presto and E. J. Granite, Platinum Metals Rev., 2008, 52, (3), 144 LINK

The Principal Author

Neil Carson became the Chief Executive of Johnson Matthey PLC in July 2004. He joined Johnson Matthey in 1980, becoming Managing Director, Catalysts & Chemicals in 1999. In 2002 he assumed board level responsibility for the Precious Metals Division. He is Chairman of the U.K. Government Business Taskforce on Sustainable Consumption and Production.

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