Environmental Engineering graduate students focused in the environmental engineering, management and policy area participate in VCEMS, the Vanderbilt Center for Environmental Management. An example of the new generation of environmental management and policy problems that will require innovative approaches is water stewardship. Ensuring sustainability of water resources requires intense interactions among leaders in the business, government and non-profit sector as they face enormous challenges when making expensive decisions about infrastructure investments that will need to last late into the twenty-first century. These types of problems require the development of a new generation of leaders who have the skill and expertise to guide such decision-making in the face of difficult and uncertain times.
Among the students who focused their studies on environmental management and policy are alumni that occupy leadership positions in academia (Princeton, University of Mississippi), government (Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation, Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Idaho National Laboratory), non-profit organizations (Harpeth River Watershed Association), and the private sector (manufacturers, management consulting firms).
Environmental management and policy studies promote and develop alliances among industry, government and academia. VCEMS provides the guidance and support for the interdisciplinary study of environmental management and policy issues, bringing faculty members and students together from various disciplines for collaborative study and research. The Center continues to build a sense of community within the environmental management and policy area at Vanderbilt so that we can recruit and educate the highest quality students, and attract and retain the highest quality faculty as the program continues to evolve. Travis Perkins' Environmental Improvement Plan sets out key actions being taken to deliver continuous improvement in the company's environmental performance. Below are external web links provided by Travis Perkins in relation to their business activities.
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If you learnt more about How an Environmental Management System (EMS) helps create a sustainable business from this Travis Perkins case study, why not share it with others? This page and contents, ©2016 Business Case Studies, is intended to be viewed online and may not be printed. Happy 40th Anniversary to the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management’s (BOEM) Environmental Studies Program (ESP)! This month, GCOOS congratulates the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) on the 40th Anniversary of their Environmental Studies Program (ESP). Biology – Characterization of Northern Gulf of Mexico Deepwater Hard Bottom Communities with Emphasis on Lophelia Coral.
Chemosynthetic Communities – Investigations of Chemosynthetic Communities on the Lower Continental Slope of the Gulf of Mexico. Corals – Long term monitoring at the East and West Flower Garden Banks (partnership with NOAA) to detect any subtle, chronic effects from natural and human-induced activities that could potentially endanger community integrity. Deepwater Environment – Gulf Scientific Environmental ROV Partnership using Existing Industrial Technology (SERPENT).
The ESP Studies Development Plan for 2013-2015 summarizes research priorities and potential new studies for the next three years, subject to the availability of funds. Moving further into the future, BOEM plans to build upon its history of successes in the Gulf during the last 40 years, as the Nation continues its quest for energy. BOEM frequently collaborates on environmental studies with other Federal agencies including those in the Departments of Commerce, Energy, the Interior, and Navy, among others. GCOOS participants also continue to collaborate with BOEM on these and other studies funded by the Bureau.
Professor Adams’ work focuses on the policies, strategies and technologies that can improve the sustainability of both industry and the communities they intersect.

Colgate-Palmolive’s Total toothpaste uses triclosan, an antibacterial chemical linked to cancer-cell growth in animals, to fight gum disease. While the company maintains that triclosan is safe for humans, some studies suggest the chemical is now found throughout the environment in including water and soil. In May, Minnesota lawmakers voted to ban the chemical and a month earlier Avon announced plans to phase out triclosan from its cosmetic and personal care products. That’s it I’m stopping the use of Colgate products today until this controversy has established beyond doubt that they are TRUELY safe to use! With shareholders and customers increasingly demanding sustainability and non-financial operational data, large organizations are realizing that such information needs to be easily available, standardized and consistent across their multiple operations in locations around the globe. The Center is a Vanderbilt University system-wide initiative jointly led by the School of Engineering, the Owen Graduate School of Management, and the Law School. We are now living in an era of "post-stationarity," that is, a period when assumptions about stable environmental and ecosystem conditions are no longer valid. They need to be able to think about problems from a long-term, interdisciplinary and complex systems perspective, and recognize the value of interacting with a diverse group of stakeholders.
Many of these students have been supported by funds made available via research assistantships and fellowships sponsored by agencies such as Bridgestone, Ingram Barge Company, Department of Energy, Department of Transportation and the Office of Naval Research. The program is funded by corporate sponsors and through outside research grants such as Dell, Patagonia, the U.S.
Mark Abkowitz  Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering and Professor of Engineering Management. The ESP is authorized by Section 20 of the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act of 1953, as amended, and was initiated in 1973. Since 1973, BOEM (and its predecessor agencies) has funded nearly $1 billion in research nationwide, culminating in more than 3,300 research reports.
This study focuses on hard-bottom sites in the Northern Gulf with coral communities, designs and implements submersible survey and sampling techniques to characterize these biological communities, and examines the environmental conditions. This project supports the use of operational standby time of industrial ROV’s for scientific research. For sperm whales, this study obtains baseline data about populations of sperm whales from less impacted areas in the eastern GOM. The purpose of this study is to make observation inside the Loop Current for a period of three years and to analyze the data of ocean currents to learn about the dynamics of this current. The focus of this study is to study, document and explain the history and evolution of the offshore oil and gas industry in southern Louisiana. BOEM is excited about the waters yet unexplored and the discoveries yet to be uncovered through its regional Environmental Studies Program. These inter- and intra-agency partnerships continue to provide valuable applied scientific information that is used in BOEM decision-making. The emphasis is to support regional sustainability through the integration of green technologies, renewable energy, and sustainability strategies applicable within the specific cultural, economic and social context. A Participatory Approach to Sustainable Energy Strategy Development in a Carbon-Intensive Jurisdiction: Case of Nova Scotia.
And some of the scientific findings that Colgate used to establish triclosan’s safety in toothpaste weren’t publically available until this year when the FDA released about three dozen pages summarizing toxicology studies on the chemical in response to a lawsuit, Bloomberg News reports. Although Avon says that scientific evidence “supports the safe use of triclosan,” the company bowed to consumer pressure to drop the chemical from its consumer products.

VCEMS activities are interdisciplinary and focus on environmental business, management and technology.
Consequently, for the rest of the century, the world is expected to face much higher levels of risk associated with water stressed regions, both in the form of access to clean water as well as exposure to severe floods and droughts.Environmental issues are arguably the most pressing problem of the 21st century.
Department of Energy, the Office of Naval Research, and the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA). Pat Roscigno, Chief of the Environmental Studies Section in BOEM’s Gulf of Mexico OCS Region (GOMR) office, is a Board member of GCOOS. Originally housed within the Bureau of Land Management, the program shifted over to the Minerals Management Service (MMS) with that agency’s formation in 1982 then to BOEM in 2011. BOEM’s Gulf of Mexico OCS Region alone has funded more than $350 million in research since the 1970s. The first study below characterizes known or newly discovered chemosynthetic communities and all other hard bottom biological communities encountered regardless of associations with active hydrocarbon seep activity at depths below 1,000 m in the central or western Gulf of Mexico. For dolphins, the study focuses on collecting data to support effective definition and delineation of stocks to improve impact quantification. The observed data will be used to understand and improve predictions of the shedding mechanism and energy leak from surface to bottom.
In the Gulf of Mexico Region, BOEM works with universities in Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida, many of which participate as members of GCOOS.
Knowledge Transfer for Sustainable Innovation: A Model for Academic-Industry Interaction to Improve Resource Efficiency within SME Manufacturers. These problems stem from patterns of human interaction with the earth and its ecosystems, and from unsustainable use of natural resources.
These funds are used to support curriculum development, student scholarships, faculty research projects, executive seminars, leadership summits, and Center marketing and administration. The Energy Policy Act of 2005 delegated the responsibility of offshore renewable energy development to BOEM (as well as identifying the complementary Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE)). BOEM funds studies from a broad variety of scientific disciplines and subjects related to offshore energy and marine mineral development such as: air quality, archaeology and cultural resources, biology, corals, chemosynthetic communities, the deepwater environment, ecology, fisheries, marine mammals and protected species, marine minerals, meteorology, oil spill research, physical oceanography, socioeconomics, and water quality.
The second study examines the sea floor communities that live in association with hydrocarbon seepage and on hard ground in the deep GOM between 1000 and 2200 m depth. Research grants for specific projects are provided by foundations, government agencies and corporations. The ESP develops, conducts and oversees world-class scientific research specifically to inform policy decisions regarding development of Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) energy and mineral resources. MAG-Plan is a Microsoft Access-based model that estimates industry expenditures required to complete an offshore activity, such as drilling an exploration well or operating a production facility.
Research covers physical oceanography, atmospheric sciences, biology, protected species, social sciences and economics, submerged cultural resources and environmental fates and effects. BOEM is a leading contributor to the growing body of scientific knowledge about the nationa€™s marine and coastal environment.

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