CE 305 Life Cycle Sustainability Assessment

Engineers face growing pressure to incorporate sustainability objectives into their practice. In comparing two (2) products/ designs it is often not apparent which one (1) is more sustainable. The course introduces concepts and method for determining the net environmental, economic, and social impacts of an engineering technology or process. Specific topics include life cycle assessment, cost/benefits analysis, energy auditing, materials accounting, and environmental assessment. These methods are examined and applied to current engineering issues such as global climate change, alternative-fueled vehicles, water and wastewater treatment, urban development, renewable energy (solar, wind, and biomass), and waste mitigation. Each student will be required to apply tools learned to assess the sustainability of a specific engineering system. This is a research-based course and is suitable for students interested in researching in-depth a particular topic. By the end of the course, students will have an awareness of analytical tools/resources for evaluating sustainability employing a systems perspective.