UNLV College of Engineering Awarded $329,650 from EPA for Water Reuse Research

Mar. 23, 2016

UNLV’s Howard R. Hughes College of Engineering recently announced that Assistant Professor Daniel Gerrity was awarded a $329,650 grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to research human and ecological health impacts associated with water reuse and conservation practices. The grant was part of the EPA’s Science to Achieve Results (STAR) program and was highlighted during the White House Water Summit held to raise awareness of water issues and catalyze ideas and actions to help build a sustainable and secure water future through innovative science and technology.

“Located in an arid desert, we understand first-hand the importance of mitigating the effects of long- term drought and finding solutions to the increasing demand on our water resources,” said Rama Venkat, Dean of the College of Engineering. “We are proud to have our faculty’s work highlighted on the national stage and potentially be part of the solution to securing a sustainable water resource for the future.”

“Increasing demand for water resources is putting pressure on the finite supply of drinking water in some areas of the United States,” said Thomas A. Burke, EPA Science Advisor and Deputy Assistant Administrator of EPA’s Office of Research and Development. “The research announced today will help us manage and make efficient use of the water supply in the long term.”

With this grant the UNLV Environmental Engineering Water Quality Laboratory, co-managed by Professor Gerrity, will be studying the concept of potable reuse and evaluating sustainability and public health protection when transforming wastewater into a high quality drinking water supply. In addition, grant monies will used to collaborate with other college entities and educate students across the southwest.

“In addition to our research, we’re going to enlist the help of the UNLV Department of Film to develop multimedia content and educate middle school through graduate school students in Nevada and surrounding states on the topic of water conservation and particularly, water reuse,” said Gerrity. “As the next generation of environmental engineers, we need to make sure they are equipped with the skills needed to sustain life in communities with uncertain water supplies.”

Daniel Gerrity has a B.S. civil engineering, an M.S. in civil and environmental engineering, and a Ph.D. in civil and environmental engineering, all from Arizona State University.

For more information on UNLV’s Howard R. Hughes College of Engineering, visit www.unlv.edu/engineering.