WTERT USA , Columbia University, EarthEngineering Center

The mission of the Earth Engineering Center (EEC) is to identify and help develop the most suitable means for managing various solid wastes research, and disseminate this information by means of publications, the web, and technical meetings. The guiding principle is that responsible management of wastes must be based on science and best available technology and not on ideology and economics that exclude environmental costs.

The Earth Engineering Center (EEC) was formed in 1995. Its original mission was to direct engineering research on processes and products that balance the increasing use of materials, the finite resources of the Earth, and the need for clean air, water, and soil. EEC introduced the teaching of Industrial Ecology at Columbia University, was the first engineering unit of Columbia's Earth Institute, and co-organized the 1997 Global Warming International Conference (GW8), held at Columbia University.

In 1998, the historic Henry Krumb School of Mines, the first mining and metallurgy school in the U.S. (1864) and the foundation of SEAS, was divided into the Department of Earth and Environmental Engineering (EEE), the first such program to be accredited in the U.S., the Materials Science Program, and the Earth Engineering Center. EEC has contributed to the formation of EEE and several important research units at Columbia (Clean Ocean and Shore Trust, Lenfest Center for Sustainable Energy, Water Center, and Center for Life Cycle Analysis).

As of the beginning of this century, EEC has concentrated on advancing the goals of sustainable waste management in the U.S. and globally. Economic development has resulted in the annual generation of billions of tons of used materials which are a considerable resource and, when not managed properly, constitute a major environmental problem both in developed and developing nations. This research has engaged many M.S. and Ph.D. students on all aspects of waste management.

In 2003, in collaboration with the U.S. Energy Recovery Council, EEC formed the Waste to Energy Research and Technology Council (WTERT). The Combustion and Catalysis Laboratory (CCL) is the experimental research arm of WTERT. In 2008, under the sponsorship of Waste Management Inc., EEC formed the Council for Sustainable Use of Resources (SUR) with the mission to quantify greenhouse gas emissions from all methods of managing solid wastes and, through the application of science, help reduce their effects on climate change. As of 2010, EEC has sister organizations in Canada, China, Germany, and Greece; others are under development.

WTERT USA , Columbia University, EarthEngineering Center
500 West 120th St., Room 926 Mudd Building
USA - 10027 New York

Prof. Nickolas J. ThemelisProf. Nickolas J. Themelis
Columbia University, Earth Engineering Center
21 Articles, Fluency:  
sustainable waste management;
recovery of energy and materials;
industrial ecology


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