Illinois Sustainable Technology Center - University of Illinois

ISTC News Highlights

2016 Governor's Sustainability Awards - Registration is Open!

governor's award plaques lined up at the ceremonyRegistration is now open for the 30th anniversary Illinois Governor’s Sustainability Award ceremony on Tuesday, Nov. 1 at the Union League Club of Chicago. The event will feature a morning technical symposium followed by the Awards Luncheon. Called the ‘Emmy Awards for Sustainability,’ the recognition program is the nation’s oldest continuous award for sustainable business. MORE

U.S. Army Lab Engineer Spending Fruitful Year Collaborating with Illinois Peers

Steve Cosper standing in front of pull up banners that read Energy, Water, Reuse of Materials, Contamin. each banner has an image related to its wordSteve Cosper is in the middle of a busy sabbatical year collaborating with ISTC researchers on a range of projects of mutual benefit spanning energy, water, and waste issues. It is the latest highlight of a closer relationship between the Prairie Research Institute (PRI) and the Army’s major research center in Champaign. MORE

ISTC Sponsored Research Evaluates Acoustic Leak Detection Network

leak detection with acoustic sensorsThe Billion Gallon Water Challenge has released a video of a research collaboration with American Water and Echologics to demonstrate new leak detection technology for residential drinking water distribution systems that demonstrated accuracy of 90 percent. MORE

Academic/Government Partners Work Toward the Next Level in Home Water Filtration

gold membrane water filtrationISTC researchers Nandakishore Rajagopalan and Wei Zheng are part of a team of experts from government and academia who are working to improve the filtration of household drinking water using new ultrathin nanoparticle-based membranes to remove trace organic contaminants (TrOCs). MORE

Illinois Teachers Prepare for Lessons on Impact of Drugs in Environment

teachers workshop on drug disposalSchool teachers from across Illinois attended a workshop at the Illinois Sustainable technology Center June 15-16 to help them develop curricula about the risks of improper disposal of pharmaceuticals and personal care products (PPCPs) and impacts of these emerging contaminants in the environment. MORE

It’s Not Mr. Fusion, But It’s A Whiz at Energy Production

waste to fuel research“Mr. Sewer” is a multi-stage waste-to-biofuel production system under development by ISTC which can extract 100 percent of energy from a wide variety of wastes. By combining hydrothermal liquefaction of wastes with algae farming, the process can extract three to 10 times the energy in the waste alone. A commercial-scale plant is now being optimized on the University of Illinois campus. MORE

Prairie Research Institute's Watershed Initiative Recognized at White House Water Summit

Watershed InitiativeThe White House Water Summit on March 22, 2016, highlighted the Prairie Research Institute’s Resilient Watersheds Initiative at the University of Illinois in its announcement of new measurable steps being taken across the country to address key water issues. The Resilient Watersheds Initiative at the University of Illinois seeks to provide a science-based and data-driven approach to promoting resilient, sustainable Illinois watersheds.

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Sketch of a faucet with water flowing out to form the word 'one' for the one billion gallon water challengeBillion Gallon Water Challenge

ISTC is encouraging people, businesses, organizations and others to help reduce water consumption in Illinois. It has a goal of saving one billion gallons as part of its One Billion Gallon Water Challenge efforts.

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link to the 2015 annual report link to Governor's Sustainability Awards; image says Save the Date Illinois Governor's Sustainability Awards Tuesday, Nov. 1 Union League Club of Chicago

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Researcher Spotlight

Photo of Elizabeth Meschewski


Elizabeth Meschewski
Research Specialist

Elizabeth (Beth) Meschewski joined ISTC in April 2011 as a research assistant in the lab and is now a research specialist conducting public engagement and outreach. Beth communicates ISTC’s research and technical assistance activities by creating displays, posters, and website content. She is also the assistant coordinator for the ISTC Sponsored Research Program which is funded by the Illinois Hazardous Waste Research Fund (HWRF) and assists with oversight of projects funded through HWRF and with a myriad of outreach events related to research at ISTC.

Beth’s research interests include the fate and transport of pharmaceuticals and personal care products (PPCPs) in the environment and she is currently working on efforts to increase both the public’s and health care professionals’ awareness of these issues as well as safe disposal of unwanted medicines.

Beth earned her master’s degree in environmental engineering and her bachelor’s degree in geology, both at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

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