An industrial ecology based systems approach for optimization of wastewater management from shale gas production

Sakineh Tavakkoli

University of Pittsburgh

I am Sakineh Tavakkoli, a PhD candidate in Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Pittsburgh, and I hold a M.S. and B.S. in Civil and Environmental Engineering from Sharif University of Technology, Tehran, with over eight years of experience in sustainability research, water resources management, life cycle assessment, resilience evaluation, process modeling, techno-economic assessment, industrial ecology, and systems-level optimization. As a senior researcher at the University of Pittsburgh, I have worked on multiple projects including evaluating the resilience of urban infrastructures using graph theoretic approaches, evaluating waste heat recovery opportunities from industrial processes, and a federally funded project in partnership with the U.S. Department Of Energy (US-DOE) on shale gas wastewater management. Such topics are reflected in my dissertation titled: “A systems-level approach for integrated shale gas wastewater management”. The dissertation is directed by Dr. Vikas Khanna from University of Pittsburgh and investigates the water-energy nexus opportunities in shale gas wastewater management utilizing metrics and methodologies derived from multiple disciplines including thermodynamics, applied statistics, economics, life cycle assessment, industrial ecology, and systems engineering. This interdisciplinary approach allows for a broader understanding of an emerging produced water management technology and potential environmental implications and tradeoffs of commercial scale adoption of this technique as compared to business-as-usual management strategies.


The rapidly developing unconventional shale gas industry offers economic benefits but also poses several outstanding environmental challenges. One such critical challenge is reducing the consumptive use of water in hydraulic... [ view full abstract ]


  1. Sakineh Tavakkoli (University of Pittsburgh)
  2. Omkar Lokare (University of Pittsburgh)
  3. Radisav Vidic (University of Pittsburgh)
  4. Vikas Khanna (University of Pittsburgh)

Topic Areas

• Industrial symbiosis and eco-industrial development , • Management and technology for sustainable and resilient energy, water, food, materials, , • Decision support methods and tools


MS-6 » Sustainable Water systems (10:00 - Monday, 26th June, Room I)

Presentation Files

The presenter has not uploaded any presentation files.