Environmental Engineering

Hello everyone!

This week is SO long! I had three quizzes and one test tomorrow. I also have an interview Friday morning and going to a conference at Lancaster Friday afternoon. Even better news – two more interviews for next week. Hopefully I can land an internship or a co-op for the summer or fall semester!

If anyone has any tips about interviewing for KCI, Remington and Vernick Engineers, or any governmental organizations, please leave a comment!

Like last time, I’m currently taking a study break to write this – so it’s going to be a little bit shorter than I would like. I’ll see if I can add more to the topic next time. This post is going to be a continuation of the “Sub-disciplines in Civil Engineering” piece I did about a week ago. Like the one before, I’ll be covering the history, current projects.

History of Environmental Engineering

Currently in my Introduction to Environmental Engineering class at Lehigh University, the topics in our syllabus includes energy fundamentals, environmental chemistry, water usage & pollution, oxygen demand, drinking water treatment, groundwater, air pollution, atmospheric change, and soil waste management. These are just a few fields within environmental engineering. If you wanted a more accurate description of Environmental Engineering – according to Wikipedia, “environmental engineering is the integration of science and engineering principles to improve the natural environment, to provide healthy water, air, and land for human habitation and for other organisms, and to remediate pollution sites” (Wikipedia).

Environmental engineering has been around for a while – which is surprising to me, since I never really thought that

I don't know if I can believe how badly the air is in Beijing.

I don’t know if I can believe how badly the air is in Beijing.

environmental conservation had been a concern. But if you think about it, environmental engineering doesn’t strictly concern the well-being of the ecosystem environmental, but also the human environment. For examples, the ancient Harappan civilization in India developed early sewers and the Romans had aqueducts to create a supply of clean water to Rome.

I suppose the more traditional type of environmental engineering really developed in the 20th century when industrial revolutions around the world started to take its toll on the planet. However, the roots can be traced back to 19th century England when the first major sewage system was built in London.

Current Projects

Of course, environmental engineering is a broad field and it covers a large variety of projects and infrastructure. Of the many, these few are the most prevalent:

1)      Solid waste management – Produced by direct or indirect human activity, solid waste can have a negative impact on the environment. Imagine if your trash was never collected, or if it was collected it was just dumped onto the side of the road, the effects on the environment can be devastating.

2)      Water supply and treatment – It is a big job to secure the water supply for America. Whether if it is for agriculture, industrial,sewage treatment plant or domestic, it is very difficult to keep all the water used in the US clean and safe. Engineers must keep a steady water supply and to keep it safe at the same time!

3)      Wastewater treatment – Dirty sewage is usually treated one way or another. Engineers are also the designers for wastewater treatment plants.

4)      Air pollution management – As our atmosphere become more and more polluted, the concerns of engineers to keep our air safe increases.

Although I’m not an environmental engineering major myself, I find the procession to be invaluable. Oil spills, declining water tables, and increasing air pollution (especially in Beijing!) are huge concerns to me. Since human pollution isn’t going to decline anytime soon, we better get more environmental engineers!

I’m really hoping to write more on this topic if I have the time, but like I said, I am currently in the middle of exams and interviews right now! Please leave a comment regarding whether you liked this post or if there are any way I can improve! If you enjoyed this post, please press the LIKE button!

Sam

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