- School of Engineering
- About Us
Each year, civil engineering professor Steve Chiesa teaches an introductory level course in Environmental Engineering. In this course, students discuss the need to balance water supply and demand, to look at traditional waste materials as potential resources, and to include energy efficiency as a criterion for selecting appropriate treatment technologies. These interrelated concepts reinforce to students the need to protect public health and the environment while helping provide an acceptable standard of living and judiciously using precious natural resources.
Chiesa's research has focused on the use of biological processes and systems to provide treatment of wastewaters and organic solid waste streams. The use of biological processes embodies a more sustainable approach to waste management as they consume few, if any, chemicals and, in some cases, can be designed as net energy producers.
Aside from introducing SCU students to concepts of sustainability, Dr. Chiesa regularly provides K-12 outreach programs that include topics and activities related to sustainable engineering. Hands-on projects based on constructing simple solar oven systems and solar energy concentrators for use with commercial solar cells are included in the activities.