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Mechanical and Civil Engineering Seminar

Thursday, April 9, 2020
11:00am to 12:00pm
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Online Event
Water at the Inflection Point: Solutions for the Coming Water Crises
David Sedlak, Professor, Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering, University of California at Berkeley,

*Connection details for this online presentation will be posted when available.

As the cumulative effects of population pressure, increasing wealth and a changing climate intersect with policies and investments that fail to consider impacts on human health and the natural environment, the world will experience more severe water crises. To provide transformative solutions that are likely to be adopted despite the institutional momentum associated with existing water systems, research and development is needed that employs the latest technological developments, embraces systems-level thinking and considers the way in which new technologies diffuse into practice. Examples of innovations that could greatly reduce the impacts of the coming water crises include: desalination systems that produce water for less than half of the cost of currently available models; sensor-enabled modular water treatment systems that can operate without supervision; and, nature-based treatment systems that can simultaneously address multiple problems like water quality, coastal flooding and habitat loss. The successful development and deployment of such approaches will require collaborations among scientists, engineers and policy experts on research targeted at demonstrating new ways of obtaining, treating and using water.

For more information, please contact Carolina Oseguera by phone at (626) 395-4271 or by email at susta@caltech.edu.