This is an engineering challenge that involves the responsible use of materials and innovations that will ensure that the materials can be recycled and reused. The challenge is to develop a product, solution that addresses the resource challenge, or a system to recover and reuse materials.
You might start by considering the questions, what waste streams you are familiar with or can see impacting in your local community, what scientific knowledge could tackle the problem, and how to meet the requirements of easy to use, economical affordable, safe and environmental friendly, etc.
Your solution should be consistent with the theme of World Engineering Day 2022
Build Back Wiser–Engineering the Future.
The Challenge addresses the UN Sustainable Development Goal 12
Responsible Use of Resources
Our planet has provided us with an abundance of natural resources. But we have not utilized them responsibly and currently consume far beyond what our planet can provide. We must learn how to use and produce in sustainable ways that will reverse the harm that we have inflicted on the planet.
There is an imperative to manage the transition away from certain waste streams, as a solution which has a positive impact for the environment may actually have a negative impact on vulnerable communities.
If the ‘more-sustainable’ alternative is not also affordable and appropriately-designed, this could limit access to important products for some communities. For example, some single-use plastic products such as menstrual pads and baby nappies are currently often much cheaper per unit than alternatives made of more environmentally-friendly materials.
It is imperative to mitigate impacts on low-income communities by providing economical alternatives which are also good for the planet.
The success of an engineering project depends on much more than just the technical feasibility of the initial concept but also consideration of human factors, environmental context, cost and economic benefits, etc., are very important to the successful implementation of any innovative and ‘technically-sound’ idea.
Below are a series of considerations we recommend you factor into your solution to ensure it is appropriate to the context where it is to be implemented. You might ask yourself these questions a few times throughout the development process – it’s okay if you don’t have all the answers right away! How can you build on your original idea, to improve it each time?
Most effective technical solution for the context
Environmental sustainability outcomes
Engagement of key stakeholders
Are there any ethical considerations – such as adverse impacts to the environment, economy, social inclusion, culture, community, resource use, that warrant consideration?
How has your team utilised digital tools, for example to develop models of your proposed solution as part of the solution. Also how the team has utilised ICT in the process of putting forward your submission.
Cost estimates and economic and non-economic benefits
Based on the International Engineering Alliance Global Graduate Attribute and Professional Competencies Profiles. Considering the proposal presented to you, evaluate whether the submission demonstrates the following engineering competencies.
Graduate Attributes that are addressed in the solution, referencing the International Engineering Alliance Graduate Attribute and Professional Competency (GAPC) Framework
Maximum Score per Category 4
Score: 0 - Not Addressed
Score: 1 - Limited attempt to address
Score: 2 - Some success in addressing the various elements
Score: 3 - Good attempt to address the element
Score: 4 - Addressed very effectively
The judging process will consist of two rounds