Research | Climate

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The concept of sustainability is quickly being infused within engineering and science disciplines.  Journals are devoted to the topic, governmental frameworks are established around the relevant issues and businesses are developing related practices. Major institutions such as the U.S. National Science Foundation have established programs including their Environmental Sustainability and Energy Sustainability programs.

All of this is occurring at a time when in the first time of planet, society is predominantly urban. More than half of the planet’s population now lives in cities, up 30% from 50 years ago. Urban areas are gaining an estimated 67 million people per year—about 1.3 million every week.  By 2030, approximately 5 billion people are expected to live in urban areas—60% of the projected global population of 8.3 billion.  The grand challenge of sustainability requires engineers and scientists to examine and understand the implications of complex systems such as urban systems in relation to broad and aggregate impacts. This challenge is even more difficult in rapidly urbanizing regions, where globalization and the pace of change itself becomes part of what has to be considered in engineering designs, modeling, planning, and policy development .

At the National Center of Excellence we are working with governments and industry in developing programs and technologies to reduce climate change impacts both at the urban and global scales.  To learn more of our work, please review some of our exciting projects.