Green Engineering Education through a U.S. EPA/Academia Collaboration

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The need to use resources efficiently and reduce environmental impacts of industrial products and processes is becoming increasingly important in engineering design; therefore, green engineering principles are gaining prominence within engineering education. This paper describes a general framework for incorporating green engineering design principles into engineering curricula, with specific examples for chemical engineering. The framework for teaching green engineering discussed in this paper mirrors the 12 Principles of Green Engineering proposed by Anastas and Zimmerman (Environ. Sci. Technol 2003, 37, 94A-101A), especially in methods for estimating the hazardous nature of chemicals, strategies for pollution prevention, and approaches leading to efficient energy and material utilization. The key elements in green engineering education, which enlarge the "box" for engineering design, are environmental literacy, environmentally conscious design, and beyond-the-plant boundary considerations.

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Environmental Science and Technology