Aojeen Issac, Omotola Ajao, and Rafal Marynowski next to poster boardsAojeen Issac, Omotola Ajao, and Rafal Marynowski were among the civil engineering students displaying their water management projects in the Centre for Engineering Innovation lobby Friday.

Students tackle problems of water management

Proper urban planning can save money while saving the earth’s scarce resources, says Rafal Marynowski. A master’s student of civil engineering, he looked at ways that Windsor can save on expensive upgrades to its stormwater sewers in a project for professor Tirupati Bolisetti’s course on water resources management.

“If we used green roofs in housing construction and porous materials for street pavement, we could reduce the run-off by 50 percent,” Marynowski says. “Then we wouldn’t have to replace the sewers to prevent flooding. Water management is very important for the development of cities.”

His was one of a number of poster presentations displayed Friday in the Centre for Engineering Innovation in observance of World Water Day, March 22.

“Close to three-quarters of a billion people don’t have access to clean water,” says Dr. Bolisetti. “In an era of increasing populations and climate change, how can we secure our food supplies?”

He put his students to work on a variety of problems, addressing everything from phosphorus contamination in Lake Erie to flood control on the Red River. The students come from around the world to apply their skills in the Canadian context.

“The approaches they have taken range from very technical to socio-economic,” Bolisetti says. “We are trying to employ every tool in our hands to address these challenges.”