Currently we have wasteful energy policies, an overuse of natural resources, water supply shortages, man-made global climate change, and deforestation on massive scales are just some of the current issues experts say that we need to be address for humans as a species to achieve sustainable living on this planet. By the year 2025, an estimated addition of 2.9 billion people will strain already strained water supplies, and the world’s energy needs will go up by as much as 60 percent by 2030, according to the United Nations so environmental technology will play a crucial role in our maintaining a sustainable balance.
As far as education in this field, universities and other schools have courses aimed at developing graduates with specific skills in environmental systems or environmental technology are becoming more commonplace and are classified into three separate categories:
- Environmental Engineering or Environmental Systems courses oriented towards a civil engineering approach in which structures and the landscape are constructed to blend with or protect the environment.
- Environmental chemistry, sustainable chemistry or environmental chemical engineering courses oriented towards understanding the effects (good and bad) of chemicals in the environment. Such awards can focus on mining processes, pollutants and commonly also cover biochemical processes.
- Environmental technology courses oriented towards producing electronic, electrical or electrotechnology graduates capable of developing devices and artefacts able to monitor, measure, model and control environmental impact, including monitoring and managing energy generation from renewable sources, and developing novel energy generation technologies.
The following list gives some current examples of these types of technology:
|* Biofiltration||* Bioreactor||* Biosphere Techonolgy|
|* Bioremediation||* Composting Toilet||* Desalinization|
|* Doubly fed electric machine||* Electric Vehicles||* Energy conservation|
|* Energy Saving Modules||* Green Computing||* Hydroelectricity|
|* Hydrogen Fuel Cells||* Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion||* Photovoltaic|
|* Solar Power||* Thermal De-polymerization||* Wave Energy|
|* Wind Power||* Wind Turbine|
- Air Purification
- Air Purification: basic and common green plants can be grown indoors to keep air fresh because all plants remove CO2 and convert it into oxygen. The best examples are: Dypsis lutescens, or more commonly referred to as the golden cane palm, areca palm, or butterfly palm, Sansevieria trifasciata, or “Snake Plant”, and the Epipremnum aureum, or more commonly referred to as the Pothos, Money Plant, Golden Pothos, Silver Vine, Centipede tongavine, Devil
s Ivy, and Solomon Island’s Ivy.[
- Alternative and Clean Energy
- With the consensus about climate change agreeing, scientists are continuing the search for clean energy alternatives to our current fossil fueled energy production methods. The reduction of man-made greenhouse gas emissions is currently entirely dependent on the adoption and implementation of energy policies that utilize conservation technologies at the industrial level as well as an increase in alternative and clean energy generation. That includes but is not limited to using unleaded gasoline, solar energy and alternative fuel vehicles, including plug-in hybrid and hybrid electric vehicles.
- Energy Conservation
- This is a biggie, as it is estimated that in the United States alone, we waste more than half of our energy. Energy conservation includes but is not limited to the utilization of devices that require smaller amounts of energy in order to reduce the consumption of electricity. Reducing the use of electricity causes less fossil fuels to be burned to provide that electricity. Other forms of energy conservation include energy saving ideas like low energy light bulbs, turning off lights when not needed, turning down the thermostat, improving home insulation, energy audits, sustainability and much more.
- Environmental Remediation
- Environmental remediation is the removal of pollutants or contaminants for the general protection of the environment and humans alike. This is accomplished by various chemical, biological, and bulk movement methods, in conjunction with environmental monitoring.
- eGain Forecasting
- Egain forecasting is a method using forecasting technology to predict the future weather’s impact on a building. By adjusting the heat based on the weather forecast, the system eliminates redundant use of heat, thus reducing the energy consumption and the emission of greenhouse gases.[
- Recycling is processing used materials (waste) into new products to prevent waste of potentially useful materials, reduce the consumption of fresh raw materials, reduce energy usage, reduce air pollution (from incineration) and water pollution (from landfilling) by reducing the need for “conventional” waste disposal, and lower greenhouse gas emissions as compared to virgin production.[
- Renewable Energy
- Renewable energy is self explanatory, as it is energy that can be renewed or replenished easily. For years we have been using sources like wood, sun, water, etc. for means for producing energy. Energy that can be produced by natural objects that are not finite like oil. Examples of renewable energy sources are wood, sun, wind, etc. and are considered to be renewable.
- Sewage Treatment
- Sewage treatment is conceptually similar to water purification. Sewage treatments are very important as they purify water per levels of its pollution. The more polluted water is not used for anything, and the least polluted water is supplied to places where water is used affluently. It may lead to various other concepts of environmental protection, sustainability etc.
- Solid Waste Management
- Solid waste management is the purification, consumption, reuse, disposal and treatment of solid waste that undertaken by the milk government or the ruling bodies of a city/town.
- Water Purification
- Water purification: The whole idea/concept of having dirt/germ/pollution free water flowing throughout the environment. Many other phenomena lead from this concept of purification of water. Water pollution is the main enemy of this concept, and various campaigns and activists have been organized around the world to help purify water. Considering the amount of water usage that is under current consumptions, this Concept is of utter Importance.
Resources & Related Articles:
- European Commission Environment: Eco-innovation for a Sustainable Future
- E MNagazine: The Environmental Magazine
- Web Urbanist: 7 Modern Wonders of Green Technology: Conceptual and Actual Ecological Designs of the Future
- Biobased News
- Live Science: Top 10 Emerging Environmental Technologies
- Energy Saving Tips
- How to Conserve Energy at Home
- Sustainable Development
- Biomass Energy
With all that can be at stake for us with climate change and dwindling resources, the use of environmental technology is paramount to our moving forward in a sensible, sustainable manner. Peace my friends!