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Environmental Engineering Project Ideas (27 results)

The human population on Earth is now more than 7.5 billion, and growing quickly. With more and more of us living an energy-intensive, modern lifestyle, the environmental stresses from human activity continue to increase. Greenhouse gases leading to global warming and fertilizer runoff resulting in marine "dead zones" are just two examples of large-scale environmental impacts from human activity. Try one of our environmental engineering projects to see how science, engineering and technology can help us take good care of our environment while still enjoying the comforts of a modern lifestyle.

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Science Fair Project Idea
Most of us live in areas where sources of water exist nearby as oceans, rivers, lakes, ponds, streams, reservoirs, wells, or even underground streams. But in some places, like the desert, water is hard to find and a precious resource. In this environmental engineering science project, you will investigate one way that people living in arid regions can collect water inexpensively: dew traps. Read more
EnvEng_p034
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Time Required Long (2-4 weeks)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety Minor injury is possible. Use caution when digging holes with the shovel. Don't drink any of the water that you collect in the dew traps.
Science Fair Project Idea
Watch out! It's Eddy Vortex, Superhero! He swirls, he tumbles, he churns up air and water! OK, maybe eddies and vortices aren't exactly superheroes, but they are powerful regions of air and water flow that you have to watch out for in some surprising places. Try out this science fair project to discover why, as well as where and how to find them. Read more
EnvEng_p029
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Time Required Short (2-5 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety Be sure not to put your fingers or any other objects inside the fan. Adult supervision is recommended.
Science Fair Project Idea
If you're interested in arts and crafts, you might like this project. It uses several alternative, renewable sources of fiber to make paper, and compares the resulting papers for strength and writing quality. Read more
EnvEng_p014
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Time Required Long (2-4 weeks)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety Producing pulp from plant material requires that the plants be boiled in a caustic soda solution. Adult supervision is required, and proper precautions must be observed for handling the strong base.
  • Wear protective clothing and eyewear.
  • Use adequate ventilation.
  • Always add the soda ash (a strong base) to water, not water to soda ash.
  • Use stainless steel or enamel cooking vessel, not aluminum.
Science Fair Project Idea
Divide a part of your garden into two equal plots, with each plot receiving equal amounts of sun. Cover one plot with two inches of organic mulch, such as compost or ground bark. Leave the other plot uncovered. Use the same amount of water for each plot for two or three weeks. At the beginning of the experiment, and at one-week intervals, dig down and check the soil in each plot for moisture content. Which plot holds water better? Which plot shows better plant growth? (McCausland, 2006) Read more
EnvEng_p021
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Time Required Very Long (1+ months)
Science Fair Project Idea
The enormous task of cleaning up oil spills in oceans and seas has burdened industry, government, and environmentalists for decades. The cleanup is almost always difficult. It involves great amounts of time, resources, and money to remove the oil from the water, and the cleanup is often only partially successful. Today, however, scientists are coming to the rescue, developing a new technique that combines nanotechnology and magnetism. In this science project, you will test the proposed… Read more
EnvEng_p036
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability A kit containing the specialty items needed for this science project is available from our partner .
Cost Average ($50 - $100)
Safety Neodymium magnets are very strong. Some have the capacity to interfere or reset pacemakers. Never put a neodymium magnet in your mouth. Always keep them away from computers, credit cards, and other magnetized objects.

Ferrofluids create stains on skin and other materials, so take appropriate measures to keep the fluid contained to the working area.

Science Fair Project Idea
Soil erosion can cost the world billions of dollars every year by washing pollutants into our streams and rivers and by causing the loss of farmland. What can you do about this problem? Help save the world (and some money!) with nothing more than a few plants! Read more
EnvEng_p037
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Time Required Long (2-4 weeks)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
Water is a valuable resource, and water shortages are a serious problem in many parts of the world. The problem can be made worse by people who waste water; for example, by watering a garden or using sprinklers on their lawn (or a farmer taking care of an entire field) when it has rained recently or the soil is already moist. How can you help conserve water and prevent such waste? One way is to build an electronic soil moisture sensor. This project will show you how to build a circuit that… Read more
Elec_p066
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites Familiarity with using a solderless breadboard, or willingness to learn.
Material Availability Specialty electronics items are required. A kit is available from our partner . Time required includes shipping for the kit.
Cost Average ($50 - $100)
Safety Short circuits can get very hot. Double-check all of your wiring before you connect the 9 V battery.
Science Fair Project Idea
We are all familiar with the nursery rhyme, "Rain, rain, go away, come again some other day...", or the song "Singin' in the Rain." Numerous songs and stories describe our feelings about rain. Why so many? Because we humans understand how important rain is to our well-being. Rainfall, as part of the water cycle, brings water back to Earth that had previously evaporated or transpired from the surface. When water vapor in the atmosphere condenses into clouds and falls back to Earth as rain,… Read more
EnvEng_p033
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Time Required Very Long (1+ months)
Prerequisites Before starting this project, check your local and state laws regarding the rules for collecting rainwater.
Material Availability Readily available
Cost High ($100 - $150)
Safety Wear safety goggles and equipment when working with tools. Minor injury is possible. Adult supervision is required. Do not drink the water collected in the project.
Science Fair Project Idea
Did you know that there is plastic in the ocean? It probably isn't too hard to imagine that some of the plastic that litters roadways, sidewalks, and parks finds its way into the ocean. So, how much do you think is in there? Hundreds of pounds of plastic? How about thousands of pounds? No one knows for sure, but estimates, based on scientific surveys, suggest the amount is in the range of millions of pounds of plastic! Of course, the ocean is big, over 300 million square kilometers, so… Read more
EnvEng_p031
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites To do this science project you will need access to an urban or suburban community. Rural communities may not be suitable for this project as they are unlikely to have a stormwater drainage system.
Material Availability See the Materials and Equipment list for details.
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety Use caution when using the utility knife. Adult supervision is recommended.
Science Fair Project Idea
Is there a public park, playground, or beach near you that suffers from a litter problem? Here is a way that you can do something about it! First, get a measure of the size of the problem by conducting a litter survey. Select a fraction of the area to survey at regular intervals (e.g., every two or three days, or maybe once a week). The area should be large enough so that you can get a representative sample of litter, but not so large that you can't clean it up. Each time you conduct your… Read more
EnvEng_p020
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Time Required Very Long (1+ months)
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