Chemical mechanical planarization (CMP), which can globally planarize both silicon dioxide (the prevalent interlayer dielectric), and copper films, has become the key process in the damascene method used for producing integrated circuit (IC) devices with multilevel copper interconnects. Cu CMP is typically carried out with slurries containing oxidizing agents, complexing agents, and corrosion inhibitors as the principal chemical components. In such slurries, complexing agents enhance the solubility of copper and increase the dissolution rate of the abraded material in Cu CMP. They also assist achieving high copper removal rates during dynamic polishing conditions. The nature of the complexing agent used, the pH and the redox potential of the slurry system are among the main factors controlling the dissolution and passivation behaviors of copper during CMP. Consequently, these factors are intimately related to the key CMP performance metrics such as removal rate and planarity. In this paper, potential-pH diagrams of copper in aqueous systems containing a number of organic complexing agents including ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid (EDTA), nitrilotriacetic acid (NTA), oxalic acid and malonic acid are presented. The predominance regions of copper complexes under different copper and ligand activities and their implications on copper removal during CMP are discussed.