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Z. Jason Ren granted top award for work decarbonizing the water industry

September 22, 2021

By Andlinger Center for Energy and the Environment

Jason Ren, professor of civil and environmental engineering and the Andlinger Center for Energy and the Environment, has been awarded the 2021 Paul L. Busch Award from the Water Research Foundation. The award, in its 20th year, recognizes researchers who are making major breakthroughs in the water quality industry.

“It is a great honor to receive the 2021 Paul L. Busch Award and join many leaders in the field to advance water research and modernize the water industry,” said Ren, who is also the associate director for research at the Andlinger Center.

Ren is a leading expert on the water-energy nexus and has received recognition from several organizations. Last year he was awarded the 2020 Walter L. Huber Civil Engineering Research Prize from the American Society of Civil Engineers for “groundbreaking technological advancements that are transforming water infrastructure for energy and resource recovery.” Ren is also an investigator on several major research projects funded by DOE, USDA, NSF, and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation to study emissions from wastewater and agricultural systems and to develop technologies on carbon capture and waste valorization to enable a circular economy.

Ren was selected because of his novel, data-driven approach to quantifying emissions, and the tools and web applications he will create to make that data usable by water utilities that seek to manage the emissions from their facilities. Historically, emissions coming from wastewater treatment plants have been very difficult to measure because there is not a single point source of pollution from the facilities, but the plants also would not be considered non-point sources. This ambiguity requires a new framework for and approach to measurement. In the video above, Ren articulates his approach to addressing this knowledge gap.

“I am grateful for WRF’s support in taking this critical first step to understand the true emissions from the wastewater sector,” said Ren.

Register to join the Water Foundation’s webcast featuring Jason Ren on October 7 at 3 PM ET. Ren will discuss the research he will conduct using the funding from his Paul L. Busch Award.

See the announcement as it appeared on the Water Research Foundation’s website.

Corporations and Industry in the Race to Net-Zero Emissions: The Andlinger Center 2021 Annual Meeting will be held on Wednesday, October 27, 2021 from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.Register now
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