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Environment, Water, and Public Health

Decades after the passage of the Clean Water and Air Acts, the country continues to struggle with threats to public health and ecological integrity from environmental pollution. According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA), 46% of assessed river and stream miles, 61% of assessed lake acres, and 40% of bay and estuary areas do not meet state water quality standards, and air pollution continues to harm public health. In many parts of the country, urban centers continue to lose population as resident move into suburban and rural areas. As a result, regions across the country are confronted with issues surrounding sustainable land-use and abandoned or underused urban infrastructure.
The KSU Center has been assisting federal, state, and local officials in addressing these environmental concerns. Recently, the Center has published reports related to national water quality improvement efforts and infrastructure management in shrinking cities. Center staff members continue to participate in forums and conferences surrounding these issues.  They also provide targeted assistance to practitioners when needed. This website provides an overview of many of our research efforts, as well as descriptions of our work in educating others and facilitating efforts to restore and protect environmental integrity at all levels of government. 
Our Research

To address important environmental issues, the Center has conducted research to better understand and resolve factors that are negatively affecting our surroundings.  The Center's research in this area spans a variety of environmental policy topics, from water quality to sustainable infrastructure.  Our goal is to invest in research that is implementable - through proposing potential policy changes or alternative problem solving ideas.


The Center and its staff conduct educational programs and disseminate findings from the research they produce to educate interested audiences about ways in which environmental, public health, and energy programs and efforts can be improved.  Recent educational programs include the facilitation of a meeting of national and state water quality stakeholders in Washington D.C. in December 2010, presentations of research results at Water Environment Federation (WEF) conferences in 2009 and 2007, a presentation at the Water Management Association of Ohio’s (WMAO) annual conference in 2008, and moderation of a forum on water infrastructure management for Ohio state policymakers in 2009. 


The Center has assisted environmental organizations in addressing water quality issues on both state and national levels.  While research is an important aspect of the Center’s work, it is the measureable impacts of this research that fulfill the Center’s mission to positively impact public sector performance relating to the environment and public health.