Professor John Crittenden and President Emeritus G. Wayne Clough have helped chart the course for the future of environmental engineering in a new report from the National Academy of Engineering. Environmental Engineering for the 21st Century: Address Grand Challenges lays out five grand challenges facing society that environmental engineers are uniquely positioned to address — but answering these challenges will require an evolution in environmental engineering education, research and practice, according to the report.
As demand for meat and dairy products increases across the world, much attention has landed on how livestock impact the environment, from land usage to greenhouse gas emissions. Now researchers at Georgia Institute of Technology and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are highlighting another effect from animals raised for food and the humans who eat them: the waste they all leave behind.
Water and land for growing crops are hard to come by in urban areas. Finding more sustainable methods for growing produce in urban areas would have enormous benefits. A pilot project by Georgia Tech’s Yongsheng Chen, a professor in the School of Civil and Environmental Engineering, aims to use wastewater from the campus to do just that.
Ph.D. student Victoria Dean became an engineer to, in her words, “save the world.” Now she’s one of a small group of young leaders who’ve earned the support of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to collaborate and use their influence to make communities healthier and more equitable.
By analyzing genomic sequences from more than 400 strains of the bacterium that causes anthrax, researchers have provided the first evidence that the severity — technically known as virulence — of specific strains may be related to the number of copies of certain plasmids they carry. Plasmids are genetic structures of the cell that can reproduce independently, and are responsible for producing the anthrax toxin and other virulence factors.
Environmental engineering senior Megan Haynes believes in the power of relationships. Maybe that explains why a challenge from her thermodynamics instructor in the fall has turned into a fruitful partnership with a mechanical engineering mentor and led her to reconsider where the future may lead.