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Energy and the Environment

The future of life as we know it is dependent on our collective ability to effectively meet society's growing need for sustainable energy and water resources.

As the human population grows and urbanizes, the desire to manage water and other natural resources more sustainably requires the development of new insights into how people, infrastructure, and ecosystems interact at a variety of scales. At Drexel, our research community seeks to better understand and predict the interactions between the water system and land use, the built environment, and ecosystem function and services through place-based research. Our emphasis is on populated watersheds, such as those that are heavily impacted by human activity and infrastructure in regions including Asia, South America, and the Middle East as well as in the U.S. Drexel researchers are also developing new tools for assessing the impacts of decentralized green infrastructure approaches to urban water management, helping to quantify the multiple benefits of green technologies such as permeable pavements, green roofs, rainwater capture, storage, reuse, and bioinfiltration, when they are implemented at various scales in urban watersheds.

Drexel faculty, staff, and students are exploring a range of sustainable energy solutions that emphasize the importance of environmental and ecosystem stewardship. We are developing and implementing mechanisms and approaches designed to conserve energy; encouraging and implementing energy-efficient improvements through our participation in, for example, the Department of Energy’s Energy Efficient Buildings HUB; studying the ecosystem impacts of energy extraction mechanisms, including the impact on human health; identifying, developing, demonstrating, and deploying existing and emerging sustainable energy technologies in venues such as like the Drexel Smart House; and studying the effects of lifestyle and behavioral changes on energy consumption and climate. And in partnership with other universities in the region, we are accelerating innovation in sustainable energy technologies, facilitating the transfer of new Drexel inventions to the marketplace.