Ecotechnology: For the Present and the Future

Climate change is one of the biggest environmental concerns that humanity is going through at present. And it’s only going to get worse, say reports and experts.

Today, we’ve started taking climate change and issues related to the ecosystem more seriously, as the impact of this has reached our doorsteps, and it is said to be unmeasurable. So, if you are someone who is concerned about the ecosystem and feel the need to protect and preserve it for now and for future generations to come, then you should definitely know about the emerging field of study known as ecotechnology.

Ecotechnology: here's what we're looking at today

  • The basics
  • What does a degree in ecotechnology offer?
  • Top ten universities to study environmental science and ecotechnology
  • Career roles in the sector
  • The future of ecotechnology

First, what is ecotechnology?

Materials and energy have been at the epicenter of science and technology since the time of the industrial revolution. The world has been less considerate towards environmental problems, and it took a while for us to realize and acknowledge the fact that human existence is only possible when things go hand in hand with the natural environment.

So, when we think of turning things back to normal and how it was years back the only solution in front of us is ecotechnology, it is the magical wizard that we have, the one that can do wonders by finding a solution for all the environmental problems that we are going through at present.

Ecotechnology is the branch of applied science that helps in fulfilling all human needs by causing very little or minimal damage to the ecology. This can also be called a technological means for ecosystem management. Ecotechnology integrates multiple thoughts of studies from natural science to social science and engineering to reduce environmental issues. Ecotechnology is also considered the basic principle for all sustainable engineering that works towards reducing the damage to the ecosystem.

Few areas in which ecotechnology plays an important role

  • Waste to energy solutions
  • Vertical farms
  • Reservoir management
  • Watershed, regional managements
  • Waste management
  • Vertical farms
  • Lake management
  • Eco-marketing
  • Effects of adverse environment practices
  • Advanced sewer treatment plants
  • Energy-efficient buildings

Now let's look at few fundamental principles of ecotechnology

  • Tackle issues related to overuse
  • Bring awareness about environmental protection and conservation of resources.
  • Develop new technology for environmental conservation
  • Help in waste management
  • To minimise the impact of pollution and come up with better ways to tackle the effect of pollution.
  • Save energy through practical methods.
  • Work towards to goal of making the earth a greener place

What does a degree in ecotechnology offer?

A course on ecotechnology mainly consists of subjects from two disciplines: natural science and social science. It’s a blend of theoretical knowledge and its practices. This course will also include topics related to environmental science and environmental technologies, which will focus mainly on addressing the issues that the ecosystem and the environment are facing currently and the solution for it. The Ecotechnology course will address all the environmental concerns from a global perspective to the grassroots level and find a solution.

Essential topics covered under the ecotechnology umbrella are as follows:

  • Environment and natural resources
  • Environmental audit and environmental economics
  • Relationship between environment and humankind
  • Environmental innovation and society
  • Environment management systems and life cycle assessment
  • Water and wastewater pollution control
  • Disaster management and risk assessment
  • Technological advancements
  • Sustainable development
  • Ecosystem services
  • Organ toxicity
  • Toxicants in the environment
  • Sustainability issues
  • Environmental engineering
  • Instruments for sustainable development
  • Industrial work environment

Top ten universities to study environmental science

Let us now look at the top 10 universities globally to study environmental sciences listed in the QS World Ranking.

Serial no. University Country
1 Harvard University United States
2 Stanford University United States
3 Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) United States
4 University of Oxford United Kingdom
5 University of Cambridge United kingdom
6 Wageningen University & Research Netherlands
7 ETH Zurich – Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Switzerland
8 Tsinghua University Beijing China
9 University of California, Berkeley (UCB) United States
10 Imperial College London United Kingdom

Following are few universities which offer courses in ecotechnology

  • Mondragon University
  • Mid Sweden University
  • Ecole Polytechnique
  • University Of Glasgow
  • University Of Toronto
  • Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University
  • The University Of Newcastle
  • Mcgill University
  • University Of Sussex
  • University Of Bristol
  • University Of Pennsylvania
  • Aalto University
  • University of British Columbia

Further study

After graduating in ecotechnology, if you aim to master the subject, there are immense opportunities to do a master’s or other postgraduate qualification in topics such as sustainable water environment, sustainable construction, environmental policy law, ecotechnology, and sustainable development, eco-technologies for sustainability, and environment management, environmental change, and global sustainability, energy policy and environmental science – climate change impact assessment.

After completing their master’s degree in ecotechnology or related fields, a large number of students take up research as their next step as there is a wide range of research opportunities in this relatively new field. Many universities offer Ph.D. programmes in ecotechnology and related areas like atmospheric and oceanic sciences, environmental science, ecology, and evolutionary biology.

As many regions of ecotechnology are significantly less explored, this field has the potential to create path-breaking research.

Career roles in ecotechnology

With the day-to-day increase in environmental issues and the importance given by the governments to tackle them, careers related to ecotechnology have become more critical.

Here are a few career opportunities that an ecotechnology graduate can apply for.

  • Environmental scientist
  • Zoologist
  • Energy analyst – commercial focus
  • Environmental consultant
  • Waste management officer
  • Inside sales and outreach representative – commercial energy efficiency focus
  • Home energy specialist
  • Landscape development
  • Conservation hydrologist
  • Oceanographer
  • Research and development in the field of ecotechnology
  • Sustainability consultant
  • Town planner
  • Environmental lawyer
  • Environmental science manager
  • Field services department lead
  • Business applications manager
  • Horticulture therapist
  • Research officer
  • Assistant professor
  • Environmental engineer
  • Environmental health practitioner
  • Landscape architect
  • Environmental conservation officer
  • Recycling officer
  • entomologist
  • Environment photographer
  • Environmental  accounting
  • Business recycling specialist
  • Speciality sales and merchandising specialist

The future of ecotechnology

Technological innovations have been part of eco-technology for quite some time. Like in every other field, even in the area of ecotechnology, there will be unpredictable changes and innovations taking place in the future. From making artificial photosynthesis to building smart roads now, there are many environmentally friendly alternatives for all our needs.

Scientists have created artificial leaves which can take in the sunlight to produce oxygen. Then, to decrease the carbon footprint, scientists have come up with an innovative creation known as a supertree, which is a single phylogenetic tree assembled from a combination of smaller phylogenetic trees. Cloning Endangered Species is also considered one of the best innovations in the field of ecotechnology as this will result in bringing back the endangered species.

Every day, we are moving in the direction of an irreversible change in our ecosystem, and the world is looking for alternatives that will harm our ecosystem less considered to how it is right now. This has resulted in creating multiple job opportunities and also demand for skilled professionals in this field of study.

If you are someone who really cares for the ecosystem that we are part of and you feel the need to protect it, then ecotechnology is the field worth considering. The work that you will be doing today is not just for the present but also for the future generations to come.

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