Learn the basics about the atom economy principle of Green Chemistry, as a part of environmental chemistry.
A reaction with a high atom economy is one where all of the atoms in the reactants are included in the final, desired product. Such a reaction would have little, if any, waste produced.
According to the Law of Conservation of Mass, no atoms are created or destroyed in a reaction. The atoms from the reactants are simply rearranged to form products, so why not maximise a certain reaction so that no atoms are wasted as side products.
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