Photo of measurement equipment

Environmental and water resources engineering is a broad discipline dedicated to addressing environmental issues in air, water, and soil. It includes a variety of sub-disciplines, such as water quality engineering, water resources engineering, outdoor and indoor air quality engineering, ocean engineering, and hazardous waste management. Sustainable engineering concepts are infused into these sub-disciplines and include the long-term environmental, economic, and social consequences of engineering practice.

The following is a glimpse of what environmental engineering students do at the University of Texas at Austin:

  • evaluate removal of pharmaceuticals and personal care products for direct potable reuse
  • design nanomaterials for treatment applications and assess their environmental impact
  • model the impact of extreme events such as floods and droughts
  • quantify human exposure to outdoor and indoor air pollutants
  • design efficient propulsors to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from ships
  • study judicious energy use in the distribution and treatment of water (water-energy nexus)
  • design turbines to extract the energy of ocean currents
  • quantify the impact of the flow of water and its contaminants in rivers and coastal systems
  • design stormwater control facilities to improve surface water quality
  • design passive treatment systems to improve the air we breathe indoors
  • holistically evaluate "green" technologies via life-cycle assessment
  • remediate soil and ground waters impacted by unintended pollutant releases