The Future with Sustainable Engineering
Increasingly, businesses of all sizes and sectors are growing more aware of the need for improved sustainability and environmental awareness. The civil engineering sector has not been exempt from this awareness. So-called ‘green engineering’ has been a trending phrase in the industry in recent years, and the real-world response to the pressures of environmental responsibility has resulted in clear, positive changes.
This has been driven, in part, by the UN’s global growth strategy: Sustainable Development Goals (SDG). That plan is intended to transform the planet into somewhere where every single inhabitant has a better, more prosperous, and healthy life. With such dynamic goals, the construction and infrastructure sector is playing a big part in building the world of tomorrow.
Sustainable Engineering: Implications of Civil Engineers
Civil engineers cover a lot of areas, but at a fundamental level, the design and build where we live and work, as well as the infrastructure needed to make those builds easily accessible to energy, water, and transport systems.
That means that the work of a qualified civil engineer has a heavy social, economic, and environmental impact. When you consider that the work of a civil engineer can last hundreds of years, environmental inaction in the present could result in long-term consequences for the planet.
Sustainability in Construction and Civil Engineering
Sustainability and sustainable engineering can be tricky goals to achieve. It means being able to perform an activity without depleting any resources and without causing harm to the environment around us.
The work of construction companies and engineers involves factors like:
- Using a variety of building materials;
- The use of heavy machinery leads to noise pollution and high carbon emissions;
- Demolition of existing buildings and structures, as well as the generation of waste material that can end up in water supplies, the ground, or even the atmosphere;
- Making use of green fields;
- Removing trees.
Not only that, but the field of civil engineering is one of the major parts of the economy. That makes it more vital than ever that improved sustainability is achieved. In order to grow, the civil engineering sector needs to evolve to the point where it does not create a negative impact on the living ecosystem around us. However, it needs to do this while making sure that the costs of construction do not spiral.
Industrial Pollution & How To Reduce It
Infographic created by Tunnel Vision Pipeline Services, a trenchless line company.
How Civil Engineering Is Changing
Sustainability needs to be more supported in the construction field, but steps are already being taken to address the severity of the sector on the environment. This has resulted in a number of growing areas, where new civil engineers are bringing fresh ideas and new ways to tackle traditional problems.
Civil engineers are changing the way that they view the environment, and that is having a hugely positive effect on the future of their projects. We can see the changes in:
More than ever, construction projects are being designed to prevent threats to local, national, and global environments and species. This is being done by a more careful evaluation of the environment and wildlife that is in the immediate and distant locations around a project. The goal is to ensure that the impact of natural habitats is not overlooked.
Civil engineers and sustainable engineering have always worked somewhat in isolation, but that is no longer the case. Now, they become part of local communities and seek out the real issues and aspirations of local residents that are being affected by construction and projects.
As they become more involved in making vital decisions, sustainability, and more positive urban environments continue to become more visible.
Resources like water, land, and money have traditionally been overconsumed by construction projects, but that is changing. Waste is now considered more than just bad for business, but bad for everyone. That means that not only are construction projects becoming more cost-effective, but they are also becoming easier to manage.
Through more effective use of resources, as well as increasing the use of alternate materials, the civil engineer of the modern age is one of the leading figures in the global shift to improved sustainability.
Steps to make it easier for fresh blood to enter the civil engineering field have been having a marked effect on the goals of the individuals that make up the workforce. By making it easier to gain access to civil engineering training, the workforce is becoming more diverse, and the newest generation of engineers has a stronger focus on the need for sustainability.
Through the rise of easier-to-access qualifications, it is now possible to complete a Masters in Civil Engineering online. By making it easier for career changes or more focused career goals, the civil engineering sector is seeing a rise in numbers, and the results are proving only positive.
Here are the reasons why people consider a career in civil engineering.
Reduction of Pollution
Civil engineers are now encouraged to have much less dependence on pollution-causing work methods. That is shown in the changing uses of products, materials, and modes of transportation.
In the average year, billions of tonnes of demolition waste are generated by construction sites. By reducing this and embracing new methods for waste disposal, civil engineers are saving both brands and countries from higher costs and a bigger carbon footprint. This is being achieved by:
- Eradication of excess construction waste;
- Improved reuse of construction waste;
- Recycling of both composting and energy;
- Responsibly disposing of waste.
More durable and eco-friendly materials being used in the construction sector can only have a more positive effect on the environment.
Nowadays, no construction project is complete without an assessment of how the build will affect the lives, leisure, and working environments of those that live and work in the finished project. Greener buildings are proving to be the key area of focus for engineers and the techniques that they recommend for construction projects.
Even simple changes, such as making use of transparent concrete, can have a dramatic effect on lighting costs in a building. There’s no escaping the fact that the role of a modern-day civil engineer is vital for the future of the planet. While traditionally the sector has been a big contributor to the overuse of resources, technology, and social advances are having a dramatic effect.
From advances in design, materials, and engineering, to an increased awareness of the dangers of carbon emissions, the civil engineering career is evolving. For engineers and businesses alike, it pays to be greener.