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Interdisciplinary Water Resources Seminar Sept. 17

September 14, 2012

As part of the Interdisciplinary Water Resources Seminar, Sybil Sharvelle will speak about biological waste processing at 4 p.m. Monday, Sept. 17 in the Natural Resources building, Rm. 109. The theme of this year's seminar is, "Addressing Global Water Resource Challenges with Local Expertise.

About Sharvelle

Sharvelle is an assistant professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering with expertise in biological waste processing. She attended the University of Colorado for her bachelor's and master's degrees. She received her doctoral degree from Purdue University, where she developed a biological processor for treatment of graywater for potable reuse during long duration space missions. Through this project, Sharvelle gained extensive experience in the area of water reuse and closed loop recycling of resources. This experience has led to her current interest in sustainable development concepts for water and wastewater management.

She has led projects funded by the Water Environment Research Foundation and WateReuse Foundation to both examine the long term effects of applying graywater for household landscape and also explore treatment, public health and regulatory issues associated with graywater reuse. Sharvelle has also consulted Colorado municipalities on their reclaimed water programs. As an extension of her work in the area of water reuse, Sharvelle is now also investigating the potential to implement.


Wastewater and drinking water systems in the U.S. are aging, even while population continues to grow and regulatory requirements are becoming increasingly stringent. Many water and wastewater system components exceed 100 years in age and a large gap has been identified between the finances needed for essential infrastructure improvements and the funding available to implement these improvements. As utilities grapple with limits on resources, rate structures and workforce capacity, they must integrate their management systems more fully. An added factor is the energy associated with providing water and wastewater services. Integration of data, decision-making, use of facilities, as well as integration of water, wastewater, stormwater, and other resources is required to realize cost, water, and energy savings. Innovative approaches for integrated management of water and wastewater will be discussed in this presentation including point of use water treatment, graywater reuse, stormwater capture and use, waste source separation and anaerobic digestion of blackwater to capture methane. Decentralized management of both water and wastewater may facilitate implementation of many of these advanced concepts.

All interested faculty, students and off-campus water professionals are encouraged to attend. For more information, contact Reagan Waskom.

Event hosted by Colorado Water Institute and the School of Global Environmental Sustainability (SoGES).