Good Essay About Civil Engineering Challenges In The 21st Century
Type of paper: Essay
Topic: Water, Vehicles, Infrastructure, Population, Engineering, Transportation, Increase, Challenges
Sewage Disposal Challenges and Provision of Clean water
One of the main challenges facing civil engineering in the 21st century is the issue of improving and restoring urban infrastructure. Most of the structures are aging and deteriorating and thus require immediate attention to repair them. Consequently, most of these structures were constructed at roughly the same time. Thus, there will be a need to have sufficient funds to fund the restoration and improvement projects. However, there are insufficient funds to cater for all this work.
Increasing population in metropolitan areas has increased the stress on basic structures such as sewage disposal systems. There is a need to design bigger systems based on a population of maybe the next 100 or 50 years to cater for the increased population. Systems involved in water and sewage disposal in most cases are buried in the ground, and the location of these pipes may be difficult in a situation where records are unavailable or inadequate. Access to clean water has been documented as one of the millennium development goals of the 21st century. The lack of access to uncontaminated water has accounted for a significant amount of deaths in the world. Cases of children dying from diarrhea are common especially in the third world countries. Civil engineers are involved in the basic supply and access to clean water. However, the methods of providing access to water such as wells and dams are currently not adequate to address the increased needs of the increasing world population. With challenges such as climate change, there is a need to develop and use sophisticated methods, which will increase conservation of water and improve access to clean water.
Transportation Infrastructure Challenges
The growing population in the major cities has been accompanied by an increase in the number of vehicles. Since the population has different users of transportation systems such as cyclists, pedestrians and mass transit vehicles, it becomes a challenge to design efficient transportation systems that will cater for all these users. Additionally, the designs need to take into account other users such as the elderly and the disable people. Additionally, in designing of efficient systems issues of quality and cost become problematic. A balance between the two needs to be achieved in the design of the transportation systems. Furthermore, most of the bridges and super-elevated transport structures are aging and need to be improved to cater for the increase in loading because of the increased vehicles on the road.
Efforts have been made to advance the quality of civil engineering education at the undergraduate level. However, because of financial restrictions there has been a reduction in the semester hours. This has affected most of the final year technical courses. Furthermore, the increase in information and literature on civil engineering makes it had to be accommodated in the normal 4-year courses duration. Thus, more time is required for training an engineer, and this means more finances. Advanced technical knowledge and expertise in civil engineering is necessary for addressing the sustainability of different infrastructure.