How to format your references using the ACS Sustainable Chemistry & Engineering citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for ACS Sustainable Chemistry & Engineering. For a complete guide how to prepare your manuscript refer to the journal's instructions to authors.

Using reference management software

Typically you don't format your citations and bibliography by hand. The easiest way is to use a reference manager:

PaperpileThe citation style is built in and you can choose it in Settings > Citation Style or Paperpile > Citation Style in Google Docs.
EndNoteFind the style here: output styles overview
Mendeley, Zotero, Papers, and othersThe style is either built in or you can download a CSL file that is supported by most references management programs.
BibTeXBibTeX syles are usually part of a LaTeX template. Check the instructions to authors if the publisher offers a LaTeX template for this journal.

Journal articles

Those examples are references to articles in scholarly journals and how they are supposed to appear in your bibliography.

Not all journals organize their published articles in volumes and issues, so these fields are optional. Some electronic journals do not provide a page range, but instead list an article identifier. In a case like this it's safe to use the article identifier instead of the page range.

A journal article with 1 author
Shastri, N. Cell Biology. Peptides, Scrambled and Stitched. Science 2006, 313 (5792), 1398–1399.
A journal article with 2 authors
Gompel, N.; Carroll, S. B. Genetic Mechanisms and Constraints Governing the Evolution of Correlated Traits in Drosophilid Flies. Nature 2003, 424 (6951), 931–935.
A journal article with 3 authors
De Pontieu, B.; Erdélyi, R.; James, S. P. Solar Chromospheric Spicules from the Leakage of Photospheric Oscillations and Flows. Nature 2004, 430 (6999), 536–539.
A journal article with 11 or more authors
Shankaran, V.; Ikeda, H.; Bruce, A. T.; White, J. M.; Swanson, P. E.; Old, L. J.; Schreiber, R. D. IFNgamma and Lymphocytes Prevent Primary Tumour Development and Shape Tumour Immunogenicity. Nature 2001, 410 (6832), 1107–1111.

Books and book chapters

Here are examples of references for authored and edited books as well as book chapters.

An authored book
Barron, R. F.; Barron, B. R. Design for Thermal Stresses; John Wiley & Sons, Inc.: Hoboken, NJ, 2011.
An edited book
Annual Update in Intensive Care and Emergency Medicine 2015, 1st ed.; Vincent, J.-L., Ed.; Annual Update in Intensive Care and Emergency Medicine 2015; Springer International Publishing: Cham, 2015; Vol. 2015.
A chapter in an edited book
Zbierski, M. Iwazaru: The Byzantine Sequencer. In Architecture of Computing Systems – ARCS 2013: 26th International Conference, Prague, Czech Republic, February 19-22, 2013. Proceedings; Kubátová, H., Hochberger, C., Daněk, M., Sick, B., Eds.; Hutchison, D., Kanade, T., Kittler, J., Kleinberg, J. M., Mattern, F., Mitchell, J. C., Naor, M., Nierstrasz, O., Pandu Rangan, C., Steffen, B., Sudan, M., Terzopoulos, D., Tygar, D., Vardi, M. Y., Weikum, G., Series Eds.; Lecture Notes in Computer Science; Springer: Berlin, Heidelberg, 2013; pp 38–49.

Web sites

Sometimes references to web sites should appear directly in the text rather than in the bibliography. Refer to the Instructions to authors for ACS Sustainable Chemistry & Engineering.

Blog post
Hale, T. Skunk Performs A Handstand Dance In Front Of A Wildlife Camera (accessed Oct 30, 2018).


This example shows the general structure used for government reports, technical reports, and scientific reports. If you can't locate the report number then it might be better to cite the report as a book. For reports it is usually not individual people that are credited as authors, but a governmental department or agency like "U. S. Food and Drug Administration" or "National Cancer Institute".

Government report
Government Accountability Office. Year 2000 Computing Crisis: Success Depends Upon Strong Management and Structured Approach; T-AIMD-97-173; U.S. Government Printing Office: Washington, DC, 1997.

Theses and dissertations

Theses including Ph.D. dissertations, Master's theses or Bachelor theses follow the basic format outlined below.

Doctoral dissertation
Gullett, D. L. Lived Experience of Suffering through the 2010 Earthquake in Haiti. Doctoral dissertation, Florida Atlantic University, Boca Raton, FL, 2017.

News paper articles

Unlike scholarly journals, news papers do not usually have a volume and issue number. Instead, the full date and page number is required for a correct reference.

New York Times article
Higgins, A. Trump’s Putin: Strength Seen as Top Virtue. New York Times. September 10, 2016, p A1.

In-text citations

References should be cited in the text by sequential numbers in superscript:

This sentence cites one reference 1.
This sentence cites two references 1,2.
This sentence cites four references 1–4.

About the journal

Full journal titleACS Sustainable Chemistry & Engineering
AbbreviationACS Sustain. Chem. Eng.
ISSN (online)2168-0485

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