WERF Offers $100,000 Award for Groundbreaking Research

The Water Environment Research Foundation (WERF), through the Endowment for Innovation in Applied Water Quality Research, is offering $100,000 to encourage researchers working in wastewater, water reuse, biosolids, stormwater, watersheds, and other areas to pursue groundbreaking research.

Now celebrating its 10th year, the Paul L. Busch Award is one of the largest in the water quality industry.

The award is also a celebration of Paul Busch, who left an enviable legacy, built through a lifetime of work in environmental engineering, a commitment to volunteerism and mentoring, and a passion to support those less fortunate who nevertheless shared his dream of a life in the sciences. Award winners are working to harness new forms of energy to ensure the adaptability of wastewater treatment systems for generations to come. Recent awards are supporting the development of new technologies to harness renewable sources of energy, including microbial fuel cells that generate electricity while they treat wastewater.

In 2009, Jaehong Kim of Georgia Tech received the Paul L. Busch Award for his work on a groundbreaking technology that harnesses ultraviolet radiation in sunlight to enhance the performance of sunlight disinfection processes used throughout the developing world. “This award gives researchers the freedom to explore new ideas that are riskier and therefore more exciting and hopefully more rewarding when successful,” says Kim. He hopes that one day this technology will be an essential component to easily maintained onsite wastewater treatment systems, bringing effective wastewater treatment to millions.

The WERF Endowment for Innovation in Applied Water Quality Research grants the award to an individual or team. Utilities, universities, environmental firms, and others conducting water quality research or engineering work are encouraged to apply. Applicants may self-nominate or be nominated by a third party. Interested individuals or teams must submit their application to WERF by June 1. More information on the Paul L. Busch Award, including the application process, is online at www.werf.org/PaulLBusch.

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