Science.gov

Sample records for sustainable micro products

  1. Sustainable hydrogen production

    SciTech Connect

    Block, D.L.; Linkous, C.; Muradov, N.

    1996-01-01

    This report describes the Sustainable Hydrogen Production research conducted at the Florida Solar Energy Center (FSEC) for the past year. The report presents the work done on the following four tasks: Task 1--production of hydrogen by photovoltaic-powered electrolysis; Task 2--solar photocatalytic hydrogen production from water using a dual-bed photosystem; Task 3--development of solid electrolytes for water electrolysis at intermediate temperatures; and Task 4--production of hydrogen by thermocatalytic cracking of natural gas. For each task, this report presents a summary, introduction/description of project, and results.

  2. Holistic sustainable development: Floor-layers and micro-enterprises.

    PubMed

    Lortie, Monique; Nadeau, Sylvie; Vezeau, Steve

    2016-11-01

    Attracting and retaining workers is important to ensuring the sustainability of floor laying businesses, which are for the most part micro-enterprises (MiE). The aim of this paper is to shed light on the challenges MiE face in OHS implementation in the context of sustainable development. Participative ergonomics and user-centred design approaches were used. The material collected was reviewed to better understand the floor layers' viewpoints on sustainability. The solutions that were retained and the challenges encountered to make material handling and physical work easier and to develop training and a website are presented. The importance of OHS as a sustainability factor, its structuring effect, what distinguishes MiE from small businesses and possible strategies for workings with them are also discussed. PMID:26860740

  3. Developing micro-level urban ecosystem indicators for sustainability assessment

    SciTech Connect

    Dizdaroglu, Didem

    2015-09-15

    Sustainability assessment is increasingly being viewed as an important tool to aid in the shift towards sustainable urban ecosystems. An urban ecosystem is a dynamic system and requires regular monitoring and assessment through a set of relevant indicators. An indicator is a parameter which provides information about the state of the environment by producing a quantitative value. Indicator-based sustainability assessment needs to be considered on all spatial scales to provide efficient information of urban ecosystem sustainability. The detailed data is necessary to assess environmental change in urban ecosystems at local scale and easily transfer this information to the national and global scales. This paper proposes a set of key micro-level urban ecosystem indicators for monitoring the sustainability of residential developments. The proposed indicator framework measures the sustainability performance of urban ecosystem in 3 main categories including: natural environment, built environment, and socio-economic environment which are made up of 9 sub-categories, consisting of 23 indicators. This paper also describes theoretical foundations for the selection of each indicator with reference to the literature [Turkish] Highlights: • As the impacts of environmental problems have multi-scale characteristics, sustainability assessment needs to be considered on all scales. • The detailed data is necessary to assess local environmental change in urban ecosystems to provide insights into the national and global scales. • This paper proposes a set of key micro-level urban ecosystem indicators for monitoring the sustainability of residential developments. • This paper also describes theoretical foundations for the selection of each indicator with reference to the literature.

  4. Sustainable food consumption. Product choice or curtailment?

    PubMed

    Verain, Muriel C D; Dagevos, Hans; Antonides, Gerrit

    2015-08-01

    Food consumption is an important factor in shaping the sustainability of our food supply. The present paper empirically explores different types of sustainable food behaviors. A distinction between sustainable product choices and curtailment behavior has been investigated empirically and predictors of the two types of behavior have been identified. Respondents were classified into four segments based on their sustainable food behaviors: unsustainers, curtailers, product-oriented consumers, and sustainers. Significant differences between the segments were found with regard to food choice motives, personal and social norms, food involvement, subjective knowledge on sustainable food, ability to judge how sustainably a product has been produced and socio-demographics. It is concluded that distinguishing between behavioral strategies toward sustainable food consumption is important as consumer segments can be identified that differ both in their level of sustainable food consumption and in the type of behavior they employ. PMID:25913683

  5. MicroResearch--Finding sustainable solutions to local health challenges in East Africa.

    PubMed

    Kollmann, Tobias R; Bortolussi, Robert; MacDonald, Noni E

    2015-06-01

    The urgent need in Africa for research capacity building has been recognized by African leaders and governments for many years. However, lack of large research funding opportunities has been seen as a major obstacle to improving research capacity in precisely those countries that need it the most. Microfinance has shown that a small infusion of capital can "prime the pump" to creative local economic productivity. In a similar way, MicroResearch has proven effective in promoting a similar bottom-up strategy to find sustainable solutions to local health challenges through local community focused research. Specifically, MicroResearch through hands-on didactic courses, mentoring and small-scale research funding promotes small research projects that improve research skills across the entire health-care provider spectrum to unleash a culture of inquiry. This in turn stimulates health care providers to identify the locally most relevant obstacles that need to be overcome and implement locally feasible and sustainable solutions. MicroResearch is a bottom-up strategy proven effective at finding sustainable solutions to local health challenges. PMID:25934328

  6. Sustainability Analysis for Products and Processes

    EPA Science Inventory

    Sustainability Analysis for Products and Processes Subhas K. Sikdar National Risk Management Research Laboratory United States Environmental protection Agency 26 W. M.L. King Dr. Cincinnati, OH 45237 Sikdar.subhas@epa.gov ABSTRACT Claims of both sustainable and unsu...

  7. Product Lifecycle Management and Sustainable Space Exploration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Caruso, Pamela W.; Dumbacher, Daniel L.; Grieves, Michael

    2011-01-01

    This slide presentation reviews the use of product lifecycle management (PLM) in the general aerospace industry, its use and development at NASA and at Marshall Space Flight Center, and how the use of PLM can lead to sustainable space exploration.

  8. A thermally self-sustained micro-power plant with integrated micro-solid oxide fuel cells, micro-reformer and functional micro-fluidic carrier

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scherrer, Barbara; Evans, Anna; Santis-Alvarez, Alejandro J.; Jiang, Bo; Martynczuk, Julia; Galinski, Henning; Nabavi, Majid; Prestat, Michel; Tölke, René; Bieberle-Hütter, Anja; Poulikakos, Dimos; Muralt, Paul; Niedermann, Philippe; Dommann, Alex; Maeder, Thomas; Heeb, Peter; Straessle, Valentin; Muller, Claude; Gauckler, Ludwig J.

    2014-07-01

    Low temperature micro-solid oxide fuel cell (micro-SOFC) systems are an attractive alternative power source for small-size portable electronic devices due to their high energy efficiency and density. Here, we report on a thermally self-sustainable reformer-micro-SOFC assembly. The device consists of a micro-reformer bonded to a silicon chip containing 30 micro-SOFC membranes and a functional glass carrier with gas channels and screen-printed heaters for start-up. Thermal independence of the device from the externally powered heater is achieved by exothermic reforming reactions above 470 °C. The reforming reaction and the fuel gas flow rate of the n-butane/air gas mixture controls the operation temperature and gas composition on the micro-SOFC membrane. In the temperature range between 505 °C and 570 °C, the gas composition after the micro-reformer consists of 12 vol.% to 28 vol.% H2. An open-circuit voltage of 1.0 V and maximum power density of 47 mW cm-2 at 565 °C is achieved with the on-chip produced hydrogen at the micro-SOFC membranes.

  9. Evaluation Product : Micro-ARSCL

    SciTech Connect

    Michael Jensen

    2014-07-31

    Microscale data product based on the increased temporal resolution of the MMCRs which includes information about the local maxima in each Doppler spectrum, uncertainty estimates for the Doppler moments of the primary peak, Doppler moment shape parameters (e.g., skewness and kurtosis), and more accurate identification of radar clutter.

  10. Towards Sustainable Production of Biofuels from Microalgae

    PubMed Central

    Patil, Vishwanath; Tran, Khanh-Quang; Giselrød, Hans Ragnar

    2008-01-01

    Renewable and carbon neutral biofuels are necessary for environmental and economic sustainability. The viability of the first generation biofuels production is however questionable because of the conflict with food supply. Microalgal biofuels are a viable alternative. The oil productivity of many microalgae exceeds the best producing oil crops. This paper aims to analyze and promote integration approaches for sustainable microalgal biofuel production to meet the energy and environmental needs of the society. The emphasis is on hydrothermal liquefaction technology for direct conversion of algal biomass to liquid fuel. PMID:19325798

  11. Sustainable approach toward synthesis of green functional carbonaceous 3-D micro/nanostructures from biomass

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tavangar, Amirhossein; Tan, Bo; Venkatakrishnan, Krishnan

    2013-08-01

    This study proposes a novel technique to synthesize functional carbonaceous three-dimensional (3-D) micro/nanocompounds from agricultural by-products using femtosecond laser irradiation. Biowastes of rice husk and wheat straw are value-engineered to carbonaceous structures in a single-step process under ambient conditions. Our results demonstrate that by controlling the laser fluence, structures with a variety of different morphologies from nanostructures to microstructures can be achieved. Also, the results indicate that altering the laser processing parameters influences the chemical composition of the synthesized structures. This sustainable approach presents an important step towards synthesizing 3-D micro/nanofibrous compounds from biowaste materials. These structures, as-synthesized or as nanocomposite fillers, can have practical uses in electronic, sensing, biological, and environmental applications.

  12. Sustainable approach toward synthesis of green functional carbonaceous 3-D micro/nanostructures from biomass.

    PubMed

    Tavangar, Amirhossein; Tan, Bo; Venkatakrishnan, Krishnan

    2013-01-01

    This study proposes a novel technique to synthesize functional carbonaceous three-dimensional (3-D) micro/nanocompounds from agricultural by-products using femtosecond laser irradiation. Biowastes of rice husk and wheat straw are value-engineered to carbonaceous structures in a single-step process under ambient conditions. Our results demonstrate that by controlling the laser fluence, structures with a variety of different morphologies from nanostructures to microstructures can be achieved. Also, the results indicate that altering the laser processing parameters influences the chemical composition of the synthesized structures. This sustainable approach presents an important step towards synthesizing 3-D micro/nanofibrous compounds from biowaste materials. These structures, as-synthesized or as nanocomposite fillers, can have practical uses in electronic, sensing, biological, and environmental applications. PMID:23924310

  13. Sustainable Multi-Product Seafood Production Planning Under Uncertainty

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simanjuntak, Ruth; Sembiring, Monalisa; Sinaga, Rani; Pakpahan, Endang J.; Mawengkang, Herman

    2013-04-01

    A multi-product fish production planning produces simultaneously multi fish products from several classes of raw resources. The goal in sustainable production planning is to meet customer demand over a fixed time horizon divided into planning periods by optimizing the tradeoff between economic objectives such as production cost, waste processed cost, and customer satisfaction level. The major decisions are production and inventory levels for each product and the number of workforce in each planning period. In this paper we consider the management of small scale traditional business at North Sumatera Province which performs processing fish into several local seafood products. The inherent uncertainty of data (e.g. demand, fish availability), together with the sequential evolution of data over time leads the sustainable production planning problem to a nonlinear mixed-integer stochastic programming model. We use scenario generation based approach and feasible neighborhood search for solving the model.

  14. Sustainability of three apple production systems.

    PubMed

    Reganold, J P; Glover, J D; Andrews, P K; Hinman, H R

    2001-04-19

    Escalating production costs, heavy reliance on non-renewable resources, reduced biodiversity, water contamination, chemical residues in food, soil degradation and health risks to farm workers handling pesticides all bring into question the sustainability of conventional farming systems. It has been claimed, however, that organic farming systems are less efficient, pose greater health risks and produce half the yields of conventional farming systems. Nevertheless, organic farming became one of the fastest growing segments of US and European agriculture during the 1990s. Integrated farming, using a combination of organic and conventional techniques, has been successfully adopted on a wide scale in Europe. Here we report the sustainability of organic, conventional and integrated apple production systems in Washington State from 1994 to 1999. All three systems gave similar apple yields. The organic and integrated systems had higher soil quality and potentially lower negative environmental impact than the conventional system. When compared with the conventional and integrated systems, the organic system produced sweeter and less tart apples, higher profitability and greater energy efficiency. Our data indicate that the organic system ranked first in environmental and economic sustainability, the integrated system second and the conventional system last. PMID:11309616

  15. Hydrazine Catalyst Production: Sustaining S-405 Technology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wucherer, E. J.; Cook, Timothy; Stiefel, Mark; Humphries, Randy, Jr.; Parker, Janet

    2003-01-01

    The development of the iridium-based Shell 405 catalyst for spontaneous decomposition of hydrazine was one of the key enabling technologies for today's spacecraft and launch vehicles. To ensure that this crucial technology was not lost when Shell elected to exit the business, Aerojet, supported by NASA, has developed a dedicated catalyst production facility that will supply catalyst for future spacecraft and launch vehicle requirements. We have undertaken a program to transfer catalyst production from Shell Chemical USA (Houston, TX) to Aerojet's Redmond, WA location. This technology transition was aided by Aerojet's 30 years of catalyst manufacturing experience and NASA diligence and support in sustaining essential technologies. The facility has produced and tested S-405 catalyst to existing Shell 405 specifications and standards. Our presentation will describe the technology transition effort including development of the manufacturing facility, capture of the manufacturing process, test equipment validation, initial batch build and final testing.

  16. Climate change and sustainable food production.

    PubMed

    Smith, Pete; Gregory, Peter J

    2013-02-01

    One of the greatest challenges we face in the twenty-first century is to sustainably feed nine to ten billion people by 2050 while at the same time reducing environmental impact (e.g. greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, biodiversity loss, land use change and loss of ecosystem services). To this end, food security must be delivered. According to the United Nations definition, 'food security exists when all people, at all times, have physical and economic access to sufficient, safe and nutritious food to meet their dietary needs and food preferences for an active and healthy life'. At the same time as delivering food security, we must also reduce the environmental impact of food production. Future climate change will make an impact upon food production. On the other hand, agriculture contributes up to about 30% of the anthropogenic GHG emissions that drive climate change. The aim of this review is to outline some of the likely impacts of climate change on agriculture, the mitigation measures available within agriculture to reduce GHG emissions and outlines the very significant challenge of feeding nine to ten billion people sustainably under a future climate, with reduced emissions of GHG. Each challenge is in itself enormous, requiring solutions that co-deliver on all aspects. We conclude that the status quo is not an option, and tinkering with the current production systems is unlikely to deliver the food and ecosystems services we need in the future; radical changes in production and consumption are likely to be required over the coming decades. PMID:23146244

  17. Sustainable and efficient biohydrogen production via electrohydrogenesis

    SciTech Connect

    Cheng, S.; Logan, B.E.

    2007-11-20

    Hydrogen gas has tremendous potential as an environmentally acceptable energy carrier for vehicles, but most hydrogen is generated from nonrenewable fossil fuels such as natural gas. Here, the authors show that efficient and sustainable hydrogen production is possible from any type of biodegradable organic matter by electrohydrogenesis. In this process, protons and electrons released by exoelectrogenic bateria in specially designed reactors (based on modifying microbial fuel cells) are catalyzed to form hydrogen gas through the addition of a small voltage to the circuit. By improving the materials and reactor architecture, hydrogen gas was produced at yields of 2.01-3.95 mol/mol (50-99% of the theoretical maximum) at applied voltages of 0.2 to 0.8 V using acetic acid, a typical dead-end product of glucose or cellulose fermentation. At an applied voltage of 0.6 V, the overall energy efficiency of the process was 288% based solely on electricity applied, and 82% when the heat of combusion of acetic acid was included in the energy balance, at a gas production rate of 1.1 m{sup 3} of H{sub 2} per cubic meter of reactor per day. Direct high-yield hydrogen gas production was further demonstrated by using glucose, several volatile acids (acetic, butyric, lactic, propionic, and valeric), and cellulose at maximum stoichiometric yields of 54-91% and overall energy efficiencies of 64-82%. This electrohydrogenic process thus provides a highly efficient route for producting hydrogen gas from renewable and carbon-neutral biomass resources.

  18. A self-sustaining micro thermomechanic-pyroelectric generator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ravindran, S. K. T.; Huesgen, T.; Kroener, M.; Woias, P.

    2011-09-01

    Pyroelectric generators (PEGs) can be used for thermal energy harvesting and present a potential alternative to thermoelectric generators. However, in contrary to thermoelectric generators, the PEG principle requires thermal transients to stimulate the conversion process. Such suitable thermal transients are rare in nature, hindering the deployment. In this paper, we present a micro thermomechanic-pyroelectric energy generator (μTMPG) that converts a stationary spatial thermal gradient into the required transient temperature profile across the PEG. The measured power output of the μTMPG is 3 μW from a temperature difference of 79.5 K. However, with an optimized design, a power output of 39.4 mW is estimated for the same temperature difference.

  19. Globally sustainable manganese metal production and use.

    PubMed

    Hagelstein, Karen

    2009-09-01

    The "cradle to grave" concept of managing chemicals and wastes has been a descriptive analogy of proper environmental stewardship since the 1970s. The concept incorporates environmentally sustainable product choices-such as metal alloys utilized steel products which civilization is dependent upon. Manganese consumption is related to the increasing production of raw steel and upgrading ferroalloys. Nonferrous applications of manganese include production of dry-cell batteries, plant fertilizer components, animal feed and colorant for bricks. The manganese ore (high grade 35% manganese) production world wide is about 6 million ton/year and electrolytic manganese metal demand is about 0.7 million ton/year. The total manganese demand is consumed globally by industries including construction (23%), machinery (14%), and transportation (11%). Manganese is recycled within scrap of iron and steel, a small amount is recycled within aluminum used beverage cans. Recycling rate is 37% and efficiency is estimated as 53% [Roskill Metals and Minerals Reports, January 13, 2005. Manganese Report: rapid rise in output caused by Chinese crude steel production. Available from: http://www.roskill.com/reports/manganese.]. Environmentally sustainable management choices include identifying raw material chemistry, utilizing clean production processes, minimizing waste generation, recycling materials, controlling occupational exposures, and collecting representative environmental data. This paper will discuss two electrolytically produced manganese metals, the metal production differences, and environmental impacts cited to date. The two electrolytic manganese processes differ due to the addition of sulfur dioxide or selenium dioxide. Adverse environmental impacts due to use of selenium dioxide methodology include increased water consumption and order of magnitude greater solid waste generation per ton of metal processed. The use of high grade manganese ores in the electrolytic process also

  20. Sustainable and efficient biohydrogen production via electrohydrogenesis.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Shaoan; Logan, Bruce E

    2007-11-20

    Hydrogen gas has tremendous potential as an environmentally acceptable energy carrier for vehicles, but most hydrogen is generated from nonrenewable fossil fuels such as natural gas. Here, we show that efficient and sustainable hydrogen production is possible from any type of biodegradable organic matter by electrohydrogenesis. In this process, protons and electrons released by exoelectrogenic bacteria in specially designed reactors (based on modifying microbial fuel cells) are catalyzed to form hydrogen gas through the addition of a small voltage to the circuit. By improving the materials and reactor architecture, hydrogen gas was produced at yields of 2.01-3.95 mol/mol (50-99% of the theoretical maximum) at applied voltages of 0.2 to 0.8 V using acetic acid, a typical dead-end product of glucose or cellulose fermentation. At an applied voltage of 0.6 V, the overall energy efficiency of the process was 288% based solely on electricity applied, and 82% when the heat of combustion of acetic acid was included in the energy balance, at a gas production rate of 1.1 m(3) of H(2) per cubic meter of reactor per day. Direct high-yield hydrogen gas production was further demonstrated by using glucose, several volatile acids (acetic, butyric, lactic, propionic, and valeric), and cellulose at maximum stoichiometric yields of 54-91% and overall energy efficiencies of 64-82%. This electrohydrogenic process thus provides a highly efficient route for producing hydrogen gas from renewable and carbon-neutral biomass resources. PMID:18000052

  1. Soil Quality as an Indicator of Sustainable Biofuel Feedstock Production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Sustainable production of cellulosic feedstocks for second-generation biofuels must not degrade soil, water, or air resources. Critical functions such as (i) sustaining biological productivity, (ii) regulating and portioning soil water, (iii) storing and cycling nutrients, and (iv) filtering and buf...

  2. Developing a Decision Model of Sustainable Product Design and Development from Product Servicizing in Taiwan

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Huang, Yu-Chen; Tu, Jui-Che; Hung, So-Jeng

    2016-01-01

    In response to the global trend of low carbon and the concept of sustainable development, enterprises need to develop R&D for the manufacturing of energy-saving and sustainable products and low carbon products. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to construct a decision model for sustainable product design and development from product…

  3. Production Equipment and Processes for Bulk Formed Micro Components

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Paldan, N. A.; Arentoft, M.; Eriksen, R. S.

    2007-04-01

    Manufacturing techniques for production of small precise metallic parts has gained interest during recent years, an interest led by an industrial demand for components for integrated products like mobile phones, personal digital assistants (PDAs), mp3-players and in the future for spare parts for the human body. Micro components have also found several applications within the medical, audiological and dental industry, applications that impose increased demands for biocompatible and corrosion-resistant materials and cleanness. So far these micro components have mainly been manufactured by traditional machining techniques or chemical etching. However, these traditional machining and etching techniques are generally not well suited for mass production of advanced micro components, due to handling problems, waste of expensive material and long machining times. This calls for development of a novel production system that can meet the demands for high productivity, high reliability, low cost, while being environmental acceptable. Bulk metal forming meets these demands to a great extent, but the technology cannot directly be transferred to the micro scale. A flexible machine system for bulk micro forming has been developed and used to form a number of industrial micro parts in aluminium and silver, with ongoing work on forming of titanium. Manufacture of billets by cropping has been examined using a simple test rig and an automatic cropping device has been designed, manufactured and tested.

  4. Introduction--the Socially Sustainable Egg Production project.

    PubMed

    Swanson, J C; Mench, J A; Thompson, P B

    2011-01-01

    The social and political pressure to change egg production from conventional cage systems to alternative systems has been largely driven by the desire to provide more behavioral freedom for egg-laying hens. However, a change of this magnitude can affect other components of the production system and may result in unintended outcomes. To understand this issue, a Socially Sustainable Egg Production project was formed to 1) conduct a holistic and integrated systematic review of the current state of knowledge about various aspects of sustainable egg production, and 2) develop a coordinated grant proposal for future extramural funding based on the research priorities identified from the review. Expert study groups were formed to write evidence-based papers in 5 critical sustainability areas: hen health and welfare, economics, food safety and quality, public attitudes, and environmental impacts. These papers were presented as the PSA Emerging Issues Symposium on Social Sustainability of Egg Production at the 2010 Poultry Science Association meeting. PMID:21177464

  5. Wood Energy Production, Sustainable Farming Livelihood and Multifunctionality in Finland

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Huttunen, Suvi

    2012-01-01

    Climate change and the projected depletion of fossil energy resources pose multiple global challenges. Innovative technologies offer interesting possibilities to achieve more sustainable outcomes in the energy production sector. Local, decentralized alternatives have the potential to sustain livelihoods in rural areas. One example of such a…

  6. Sustainable Production of Chemicals--An Educational Perspective

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Eissen, Marco

    2012-01-01

    "Sustainability" is a very general term and the question arises how to specify it within daily laboratory work. In this regard, appropriate metrics could support a socially acceptable, ecological and economic product development. The application of metrics for sustainability should be strengthened in education, because they do not belong to…

  7. Strategies for Sustainable Corn Stover Feedstock Production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Second-generation biofuels will be developed using cellulosic feedstocks rather than grain or oilseed crops that can also be used for food and feed. However, to be sustainable, soil and tillage management strategies used to produce those feedstocks must not irreversibly degrade soil resources. Our o...

  8. How "Sustainability" is Changing How We Make and Choose Products

    SciTech Connect

    Cheryl O'Brien

    2006-07-01

    What does Sustainability mean, and why should people in the thermophysical properties business care? This paper will describe sustainability in the context of product development, which is where much of the buzz is currently being generated. Once described, it will discuss how expectations for Sustainability are changing product lines, and then discuss the controversial issues now emerging from trying to measure Sustainability. One of the most organized efforts in the U.S. is the U.S. Green Building Council revolutionizing how the built environment is conceptualized, designed, built, used, and disposed of - and born again. The appeal of the US Green Building Council is that it has managed to checklist how to "do" Sustainability. By following this checklist, better described as a rating system, a more Sustainable product should be achieved. That is, a product that uses less energy, less water, is less noxious to the user, and consumes fewer resources. We care because these Sustainable products are viewed as preferable by a growing number of consumers and, consequently, are more valuable. One of the most interesting aspects of the Sustainability movement is a quantitative assessment of how sustainable a product is. Life Cycle Assessment techniques (not to be confused with life cycle economic costs) developed since the early 1990s are gaining ground as a less biased method to measure the ultimate "bad" consequences of creating a product (depletion of natural resources, nutrification, acid rain, air borne particulates, solid waste, etc.). For example, one assertion is that these studies have shown that recycling can sometimes do more environmental harm than good.

  9. Review and appraisal of concept of sustainable food production systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brklacich, Michael; Bryant, Christopher R.; Smit, Barry

    1991-01-01

    Environmental degradation, competition for resources, increasing food demands, and the integration of agriculture into the international economy threaten the sustainability of many food production systems. Despite these concerns, the concept of sustainable food production systems remains unclear, and recent attempts to appraise sustainability have been hampered by conceptual inconsistencies and the absence of workable definitions. Six perspectives are shown to underpin the concept. Environmental accounting identifies biophysical limits for agriculture. Sustained yield refers to output levels that can be maintained continuously. Carrying capacity defines maximum population levels that can be supported in perpetuity. Production unit viability refers to the capacity of primary producers to remain in agriculture. Product supply and security focuses on the adequacy of food supplies. Equity is concerned with the spatial and temporal distribution of products dervied from resource use. Many studies into sustainable agriculture cover more than one of these perspectives, indicating the concept is complex and embraces issues relating to the biophysical, social, and economic environments. Clarification of the concept would facilitate the development of frameworks and analytical systems for appraising the sustainability of food production systems.

  10. Activity-Based Micro-pricing: Realizing Sustainable Behavior Changes through Economic Incentives

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yamabe, Tetsuo; Lehdonvirta, Vili; Ito, Hitoshi; Soma, Hayuru; Kimura, Hiroaki; Nakajima, Tatsuo

    In this paper, we further develop the idea of combining pervasive computing techniques with electronic payment systems to create activity-based micro-incentives. Economic incentives are an effective way to influence consumer behavior, and are used in e.g. marketing and resource coordination. Our approach allows marketers and regulators to induce consumers to perform particular actions in new application domains by attaching micro-prices to a wider range of behaviors. A key challenge is designing incentive mechanisms that result in desired behavior changes. We examine two basic incentive models. Based on the results of preliminary experiments, we discuss how economic incentives can affect consumer attitudes and lead to sustainable behavior changes.

  11. Modeling Sustainability in Product Development and Commercialization

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Carlson, Robert C.; Rafinejad, Dariush

    2008-01-01

    In this article, the authors present the framework of a model that integrates strategic product development decisions with the product's impact on future conditions of resources and the environment. The impact of a product on stocks of nonrenewable sources and sinks is linked in a feedback loop to the cost of manufacturing and using the product…

  12. Assessing the sustainability of egg production systems in The Netherlands.

    PubMed

    van Asselt, E D; van Bussel, L G J; van Horne, P; van der Voet, H; van der Heijden, G W A M; van der Fels-Klerx, H J

    2015-08-01

    Housing systems for laying hens have changed over the years due to increased public concern regarding animal welfare. In terms of sustainability, animal welfare is just one aspect that needs to be considered. Social aspects as well as environmental and economic factors need to be included as well. In this study, we assessed the sustainability of enriched cage, barn, free-range, and organic egg production systems following a predefined protocol. Indicators were selected within the social, environmental, and economic dimensions, after which parameter values and sustainability limits were set for the core indicators in order to quantify sustainability. Uncertainty in the parameter values as well as assigned weights and compensabilities of the indicators influenced the outcome of the sustainability assessment. Using equal weights for the indicators showed that, for the Dutch situation, enriched cage egg production was most sustainable, having the highest score on the environmental dimension, whereas free-range egg production gave the highest score in the social dimension (covering food safety, animal welfare, and human welfare). In the economic dimension both enriched cage egg and organic egg production had the highest sustainability score. When weights were attributed according to stakeholder outputs, individual differences were seen, but the overall scores were comparable to the sustainability scores based on equal weights. The provided method enabled a quantification of sustainability using input from stakeholders to include societal preferences in the overall assessment. Allowing for different weights and compensabilities helps policymakers in communicating with stakeholders involved and provides a weighted decision regarding future housing systems for laying hens. PMID:26049800

  13. Assessing the sustainability of beef production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    As a major food source, beef production provides an important service to our economy. Production of cattle and the associated feed crops also impact our environment, and this impact is not well understood. Although several studies have assessed the carbon footprint of beef, there are other environme...

  14. Sustainable residue removal for energy production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Soils are an important natural resource allowing the production of food, feed, fiber and fuel. The growing demand for these services or products requires we protect the soil resource. Many characteristics of high quality soils can be related to the quantity and quality of soil organic matter (organi...

  15. Food production & availability - Essential prerequisites for sustainable food security

    PubMed Central

    Swaminathan, M.S.; Bhavani, R.V.

    2013-01-01

    Food and nutrition security are intimately interconnected, since only a food based approach can help in overcoming malnutrition in an economically and socially sustainable manner. Food production provides the base for food security as it is a key determinant of food availability. This paper deals with different aspects of ensuring high productivity and production without associated ecological harm for ensuring adequate food availability. By mainstreaming ecological considerations in technology development and dissemination, we can enter an era of evergreen revolution and sustainable food and nutrition security. Public policy support is crucial for enabling this. PMID:24135188

  16. Bioeconomic Sustainability of Cellulosic Biofuel Production on Marginal Lands

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gutierrez, Andrew Paul; Ponti, Luigi

    2009-01-01

    The use of marginal land (ML) for lignocellulosic biofuel production is examined for system stability, resilience, and eco-social sustainability. A North American prairie grass system and its industrialization for maximum biomass production using biotechnology and agro-technical inputs is the focus of the analysis. Demographic models of ML biomass…

  17. High Yields for Enhanced Sustainable Feedstock Production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Globally, humankind is in the midst of one of the greatest technological, environmental, and social transitions since the industrial revolution as we strive to replace fossil energy with renewable sources. The Billion Ton Report established a target for U.S. bioenergy feedstock production and throug...

  18. Sustainable potato production and global food security

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The potato (Solanum spp.) is currently the leading non-grain commodity in the global food system with production exceeding 329 million metric tonnes in 2009. The extraordinary adaptive range of this species complex combined with ease of cultivation and high nutritional content have promoted steady i...

  19. Definition of animal breeding goals for sustainable production systems.

    PubMed

    Olesen, I; Groen, A F; Gjerde, B

    2000-03-01

    What we do is determined by the way we "view" a complex issue and what sample of issues or events we choose to deal with. In this paper, a model based on a communal, cultural, or people-centered worldview, informed by a subjective epistemology and a holistic ontology, is considered. Definitions and interpretations of sustainable agriculture are reviewed. Common elements in published definitions of sustainable agriculture and animal production among those who seek long-term and equitable solutions for food production are resource efficiency, profitability, productivity, environmental soundness, biodiversity, social viability, and ethical aspects. Possible characteristics of future sustainable production systems and further development are presented. The impact of these characteristics on animal breeding goals is reviewed. The need for long-term biologically, ecologically, and sociologically sound breeding goals is emphasized, because animal breeding determined only by short-term market forces leads to unwanted side effects. Hence, a procedure for defining animal breeding goals with ethical priorities and weighing of market and non-market values is suggested. Implementation of non-market as well as market economic trait values in the aggregate genotype, as suggested, may allow for breeding programs that contribute to sustainable production systems. Examples of breeding goals in salmon, cattle, and pigs are given, and the resulting genetic responses are evaluated with respect to economic profit (or costs) and other criteria of sustainability. Important prerequisites for breeding programs for sustainable production are appropriate governmental policies, awareness of our way of thinking, and a more communal worldview informed by a subjective epistemology and a holistic ontology. PMID:10764063

  20. Sustained delivery of proangiogenic microRNA-132 by nanoparticle transfection improves endothelial cell transplantation

    PubMed Central

    Devalliere, Julie; Chang, William G.; Andrejecsk, Jillian W.; Abrahimi, Parwiz; Cheng, Christopher J.; Jane-wit, Dan; Saltzman, W. Mark; Pober, Jordan S.

    2014-01-01

    Transplantation of endothelial cells (ECs) for therapeutic vascularization or tissue engineering is a promising method for increasing tissue perfusion. Here, we report on a new approach for enhanced EC transplantation using targeted nanoparticle transfection to deliver proangiogenic microRNA-132 (miR-132) to cultured ECs before their transplantation, thereby sensitizing cells to the effects of endogenous growth factors. We synthesized biodegradable PLGA polymer nanoparticles (NPs) that were loaded with miR-132 and coated with cyclic RGD (cRGD) peptides that target integrin αvβ3 expressed on cultured human umbilical vein ECs (HUVECs), increasing NP uptake through clathrin-coated pits. Unlike previously reported NPs for miR delivery, these NPs slowly release RNA for several weeks. The endocytosed NPs remain in clathrin-coated vesicles from which they mediate intracellular delivery of siRNA or miRNA. Transfection of HUVECs with miR-132 enhances growth factor-induced proliferation and migration in 2D culture, producing a 1.8- and 5-fold increase, respectively. However, while the effects of conventional transfection were short-lived, NP transfection produced protein knockdown and biological effects that were significantly longer in duration (≥6 d). Transfection of HUVECs with miR-132 NP resulted in a 2-fold increase in the number of microvessels per square millimeter compared to lipid after transplantation into immunodeficient mice and led to a higher number of mural cell-invested vessels than control transfection. These data suggest that sustained delivery of miR-132 encapsulated in a targeted biodegradable polymer NP is a safe and efficient strategy to improve EC transplantation and vascularization.—Devalliere, J., Chang, W. G., Andrejecsk, J. W., Abrahimi, P., Cheng, C. J., Jane-wit, D., Saltzman, W. M., Pober, J. S. Sustained delivery of proangiogenic microRNA-132 by nanoparticle transfection improves endothelial cell transplantation. PMID:24221087

  1. Advances in Genetics and Genomics for Sustainable Peanut Production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Plant breeding, genetics, and genomics have a critical role to play in sustainable agriculture. These technologies are contributing to rapid progress in improving crop productivity, quality, and resistance to pests and diseases. The advances in genetics and genomics are opening new frontiers in pean...

  2. Using membrane transporters to improve crops for sustainable food production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    With the global population predicted to grow by at least 25% by 2050, the need for sustainable production of nutritious foods is critical for human and environmental well-being. Recent advances show that specialized plant membrane transporters can be utilized to enhance yields of staple crops, incre...

  3. A Landscape Vision for Sustainable Bioenergy Feedstock Production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Feedstock production for biofuel and other bioproducts is poised to rejuvenate rural economies, but may lead to long-term degradation of soil resources or other adverse and unintended environmental consequences if the practices are not developed in a sustainable manner. This presentation will examin...

  4. Sustainability.

    PubMed

    Chang, Chein-Chi; DiGiovanni, Kimberly; Mei, Ying; Wei, Li

    2016-10-01

    This review on Sustainability covers selected 2015 publications on the focus of Sustainability. It is divided into the following sections : • Sustainable water and wastewater utilities • Sustainable water resources management • Stormwater and green infrastructure • Sustainability in wastewater treatment • Life cycle assessment (LCA) applications • Sustainability and energy in wastewater industry, • Sustainability and asset management. PMID:27620092

  5. A micro-sized bio-solar cell for self-sustaining power generation.

    PubMed

    Lee, Hankeun; Choi, Seokheun

    2015-01-21

    Self-sustainable energy sources are essential for a wide array of wireless applications deployed in remote field locations. Due to their self-assembling and self-repairing properties, "biological solar (bio-solar) cells" are recently gaining attention for those applications. The bio-solar cell can continuously generate electricity from microbial photosynthetic and respiratory activities under day-night cycles. Despite the vast potential and promise of bio-solar cells, they, however, have not yet successfully been translated into commercial applications, as they possess persistent performance limitations and scale-up bottlenecks. Here, we report an entirely self-sustainable and scalable microliter-sized bio-solar cell with significant power enhancement by maximizing solar energy capture, bacterial attachment, and air bubble volume in well-controlled microchambers. The bio-solar cell has a ~300 μL single chamber defined by laser-machined poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA) substrates and it uses an air cathode to allow freely available oxygen to act as an electron acceptor. We generated a maximum power density of 0.9 mW m(-2) through photosynthetic reactions of cyanobacteria, Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803, which is the highest power density among all micro-sized bio-solar cells. PMID:25367739

  6. Vegetation Health and Productivity Indicators for Sustained National Climate Assessments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jones, M. O.; Running, S. W.

    2014-12-01

    The National Climate Assessment process is developing a system of physical, ecological, and societal indicators that communicate key aspects of the physical climate, climate impacts, vulnerabilities, and preparedness for the purpose of informing both decision makers and the public. Implementing a 14 year record of Gross and Net Primary Productivity (GPP/NPP) derived from the NASA EOS MODIS satellite sensor we demonstrate how these products can serve as Ecosystem Productivity and Vegetation Health National Climate Indicators for implementation in sustained National Climate Assessments. The NPP product combines MODIS vegetation data with daily global meteorology to calculate annual growth of all plant material at 1 sq. km resolution. NPP anomalies identify regions with above or below average plant growth that may result from climate fluctuations and can inform carbon source/sink dynamics, agricultural and forestry yield measures, and response to wildfire or drought conditions. The GPP product provides a high temporal resolution (8-day) metric of vegetation growth which can be used to monitor short-term vegetation response to extreme events and implemented to derive vegetation phenology metrics; growing season start, end, and length, which can elucidate land cover and regionally specific vegetation responses to a changing climate. The high spatial resolution GPP and NPP indicators can also inform and clarify responses seen from other proposed Pilot Indicators such as forest growth/productivity, land cover, crop production, and phenology. The GPP and NPP data are in continuous production and will be sustained into the future with the next generation satellite missions. The long-term Ecosystem Productivity and Vegetation Health Indicators are ideal for use in sustained National Climate Assessments, providing regionally specific responses to a changing climate and complete coverage at the national scale.

  7. The Power of Micro Urban Structures, Theory of EEPGC - the Micro Urban Energy Distribution Model as a Planning Tool for Sustainable City Development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tkáč, Štefan

    2015-11-01

    To achieve the smart growth and equitable development in the region, urban planners should consider also lateral energies represented by the energy urban models like further proposed EEPGC focused on energy distribution via connections among micro-urban structures, their onsite renewable resources and the perception of micro-urban structures as decentralized energy carriers based on pre industrialized era. These structures are still variously bound when part of greater patterns. After the industrial revolution the main traded goods became energy in its various forms. The EEPGC is focused on sustainable energy transportation distances between the villages and the city, described by the virtual "energy circles". This more human scale urbanization, boost the economy in micro-urban areas, rising along with clean energy available in situ that surely gives a different perspective to human quality of life in contrast to overcrowded multicultural mega-urban structures facing generations of problems and struggling to survive as a whole.

  8. Sustainable production of biologically active molecules of marine based origin.

    PubMed

    Murray, Patrick M; Moane, Siobhan; Collins, Catherine; Beletskaya, Tanya; Thomas, Olivier P; Duarte, Alysson W F; Nobre, Fernando S; Owoyemi, Ifeloju O; Pagnocca, Fernando C; Sette, L D; McHugh, Edward; Causse, Eric; Pérez-López, Paula; Feijoo, Gumersindo; Moreira, Ma T; Rubiolo, Juan; Leirós, Marta; Botana, Luis M; Pinteus, Susete; Alves, Celso; Horta, André; Pedrosa, Rui; Jeffryes, Clayton; Agathos, Spiros N; Allewaert, Celine; Verween, Annick; Vyverman, Wim; Laptev, Ivan; Sineoky, Sergei; Bisio, Angela; Manconi, Renata; Ledda, Fabio; Marchi, Mario; Pronzato, Roberto; Walsh, Daniel J

    2013-09-25

    The marine environment offers both economic and scientific potential which are relatively untapped from a biotechnological point of view. These environments whilst harsh are ironically fragile and dependent on a harmonious life form balance. Exploitation of natural resources by exhaustive wild harvesting has obvious negative environmental consequences. From a European industry perspective marine organisms are a largely underutilised resource. This is not due to lack of interest but due to a lack of choice the industry faces for cost competitive, sustainable and environmentally conscientious product alternatives. Knowledge of the biotechnological potential of marine organisms together with the development of sustainable systems for their cultivation, processing and utilisation are essential. In 2010, the European Commission recognised this need and funded a collaborative RTD/SME project under the Framework 7-Knowledge Based Bio-Economy (KBBE) Theme 2 Programme 'Sustainable culture of marine microorganisms, algae and/or invertebrates for high value added products'. The scope of that project entitled 'Sustainable Production of Biologically Active Molecules of Marine Based Origin' (BAMMBO) is outlined. Although the Union is a global leader in many technologies, it faces increasing competition from traditional rivals and emerging economies alike and must therefore improve its innovation performance. For this reason innovation is placed at the heart of a European Horizon 2020 Strategy wherein the challenge is to connect economic performance to eco performance. This article provides a synopsis of the research activities of the BAMMBO project as they fit within the wider scope of sustainable environmentally conscientious marine resource exploitation for high-value biomolecules. PMID:23563183

  9. Sustainability.

    PubMed

    Chang, Chein-Chi; DiGiovanni, Kimberly; Zhang, Gong; Yang, Xiahua; You, Shao-Hong

    2015-10-01

    This review on Sustainability covers selected 2014 publications on the focus of the following sections: • Sustainable water and wastewater utilities • Sustainable water resources management • Stormwater and green infrastructure • Sustainability in wastewater treatment • Life cycle assessment (LCA) applications • Sustainability and energy in wastewater industry, • Sustainability and asset management. PMID:26420087

  10. Using membrane transporters to improve crops for sustainable food production

    PubMed Central

    Schroeder, Julian I.; Delhaize, Emmanuel; Frommer, Wolf B.; Guerinot, Mary Lou; Harrison, Maria J.; Herrera-Estrella, Luis; Horie, Tomoaki; Kochian, Leon V.; Munns, Rana; Nishizawa, Naoko K.; Tsay, Yi-Fang; Sanders, Dale

    2013-01-01

    With the global population predicted to grow by at least 25 per cent by 2050, the need for sustainable production of nutritious foods is critical for human and environmental health. Recent advances show that specialized plant membrane transporters can be used to enhance yields of staple crops, increase nutrient content and increase resistance to key stresses, including salinity, pathogens and aluminium toxicity, which in turn could expand available arable land. PMID:23636397

  11. Multi-scale modeling for sustainable chemical production.

    PubMed

    Zhuang, Kai; Bakshi, Bhavik R; Herrgård, Markus J

    2013-09-01

    With recent advances in metabolic engineering, it is now technically possible to produce a wide portfolio of existing petrochemical products from biomass feedstock. In recent years, a number of modeling approaches have been developed to support the engineering and decision-making processes associated with the development and implementation of a sustainable biochemical industry. The temporal and spatial scales of modeling approaches for sustainable chemical production vary greatly, ranging from metabolic models that aid the design of fermentative microbial strains to material and monetary flow models that explore the ecological impacts of all economic activities. Research efforts that attempt to connect the models at different scales have been limited. Here, we review a number of existing modeling approaches and their applications at the scales of metabolism, bioreactor, overall process, chemical industry, economy, and ecosystem. In addition, we propose a multi-scale approach for integrating the existing models into a cohesive framework. The major benefit of this proposed framework is that the design and decision-making at each scale can be informed, guided, and constrained by simulations and predictions at every other scale. In addition, the development of this multi-scale framework would promote cohesive collaborations across multiple traditionally disconnected modeling disciplines to achieve sustainable chemical production. PMID:23520143

  12. Links between livestock production, the environment and sustainable development.

    PubMed

    Pradbre, J-P

    2014-12-01

    This study examines the prospects for strong growth in the supply and demand for animal products worldwide, especially in developing countries, where 80% of the world's population lives. Based on scientific publications, statistics and field observations, it reviews greenhouse gas emission levels from livestock, the ability of ruminant livestock systems to sequester carbon and the capacity of the livestock industry to meet the challenge of sustainable development and to share its benefits while minimising impacts to climate change. Special attention is paid to the situation of the 800 million livestock farmers in the world living at the extreme end of poverty. The study underlines the importance of improving livestock productivity and the interdependence of the economic, environmental and social components of sustainable development. It highlights how, in the least developed countries and most lower-middle-income countries, the pressure exerted by animal diseases hampers efforts to improve livestock productivity. Poor livestock farmers have not sufficiently benefited from development policies and need support to adopt technological advances to meet the challenges of sustainable development and poverty reduction. PMID:25812202

  13. Environmental indicators for sustainable production of algal biofuels

    SciTech Connect

    Efroymson, Rebecca A.; Dale, Virginia H.

    2014-10-01

    For analyzing sustainability of algal biofuels, we identify 16 environmental indicators that fall into six categories: soil quality, water quality and quantity, air quality, greenhouse gas emissions, biodiversity, and productivity. Indicators are selected to be practical, widely applicable, predictable in response, anticipatory of future changes, independent of scale, and responsive to management. Major differences between algae and terrestrial plant feedstocks, as well as their supply chains for biofuel, are highlighted, for they influence the choice of appropriate sustainability indicators. Algae strain selection characteristics do not generally affect which indicators are selected. The use of water instead of soil as the growth medium for algae determines the higher priority of water- over soil-related indicators. The proposed set of environmental indicators provides an initial checklist for measures of biofuel sustainability but may need to be modified for particular contexts depending on data availability, goals of the stakeholders, and financial constraints. Ultimately, use of these indicators entails defining sustainability goals and targets in relation to stakeholder values in a particular context and can lead to improved management practices.

  14. Environmental indicators for sustainable production of algal biofuels

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Efroymson, Rebecca A.; Dale, Virginia H.

    2014-10-01

    For analyzing sustainability of algal biofuels, we identify 16 environmental indicators that fall into six categories: soil quality, water quality and quantity, air quality, greenhouse gas emissions, biodiversity, and productivity. Indicators are selected to be practical, widely applicable, predictable in response, anticipatory of future changes, independent of scale, and responsive to management. Major differences between algae and terrestrial plant feedstocks, as well as their supply chains for biofuel, are highlighted, for they influence the choice of appropriate sustainability indicators. Algae strain selection characteristics do not generally affect which indicators are selected. The use of water instead of soil as themore » growth medium for algae determines the higher priority of water- over soil-related indicators. The proposed set of environmental indicators provides an initial checklist for measures of biofuel sustainability but may need to be modified for particular contexts depending on data availability, goals of the stakeholders, and financial constraints. Ultimately, use of these indicators entails defining sustainability goals and targets in relation to stakeholder values in a particular context and can lead to improved management practices.« less

  15. Water footprints of cities - indicators for sustainable consumption and production

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hoff, H.; Döll, P.; Fader, M.; Gerten, D.; Hauser, S.; Siebert, S.

    2014-01-01

    Water footprints have been proposed as sustainability indicators, relating the consumption of goods like food to the amount of water necessary for their production and the impacts of that water use in the source regions. We further developed the existing water footprint methodology, by globally resolving virtual water flows from production to consumption regions for major food crops at 5 arcmin spatial resolution. We distinguished domestic and international flows, and assessed local impacts of export production. Applying this method to three exemplary cities, Berlin, Delhi and Lagos, we find major differences in amounts, composition, and origin of green and blue virtual water imports, due to differences in diets, trade integration and crop water productivities in the source regions. While almost all of Delhi's and Lagos' virtual water imports are of domestic origin, Berlin on average imports from more than 4000 km distance, in particular soy (livestock feed), coffee and cocoa. While 42% of Delhi's virtual water imports are blue water based, the fractions for Berlin and Lagos are 2 and 0.5%, respectively, roughly equal to the water volumes abstracted in these two cities for domestic water use. Some of the external source regions of Berlin's virtual water imports appear to be critically water scarce and/or food insecure. However, for deriving recommendations on sustainable consumption and trade, further analysis of context-specific costs and benefits associated with export production will be required.

  16. Sustainability of organic food production: challenges and innovations.

    PubMed

    Niggli, Urs

    2015-02-01

    The greatest challenge for agriculture is to reduce the trade-offs between productivity and long-term sustainability. Therefore, it is interesting to analyse organic agriculture which is a given set of farm practices that emphasise ecological sustainability. Organic agriculture can be characterised as being less driven by off-farm inputs and being better embedded in ecosystem functions. The literature on public goods and non-commodity outputs of organic farms is overwhelming. Most publications address the positive effects of organic farming on soil fertility, biodiversity maintenance and protection of the natural resources of soil, water and air. As a consequence of focusing on public goods, organic agriculture is less productive. Meta-analyses show that organic agriculture yields range between 0·75 and 0·8 of conventional agriculture. Best practice examples from disadvantaged sites and climate conditions show equal or, in the case of subsistence farming in Sub-Saharan Africa, higher productivity of organic agriculture. Hence, organic agriculture is likely to be a good model for productive and sustainable food production. Underfunding in R&D addressing specific bottlenecks of organic agriculture are the main cause for both crop and livestock yield gaps. Therefore, the potential for improving the performance of organic agriculture through agricultural research is huge. Although organic farming is a niche in most countries, it is at the verge of becoming mainstream in leading European countries. Consumer demand has grown over the past two decades and does not seem to be a limiting factor for the future development of organic agriculture. PMID:25221987

  17. Water footprints of cities - indicators for sustainable consumption and production

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hoff, H.; Döll, P.; Fader, M.; Gerten, D.; Hauser, S.; Siebert, S.

    2013-02-01

    Water footprints have been proposed as sustainability indicators, relating the consumption of goods like food to the amount of water necessary for their production and the impacts of that water use in the source regions. We have further developed the existing water footprint methodology by globally resolving virtual water flows and import and source regions at 5 arc minutes spatial resolution, and by assessing local impacts of export production. Applying this method to three exemplary cities, Berlin, Delhi and Lagos, we find major differences in amounts, composition, and origin of green and blue virtual water imports, due to differences in diets, trade integration and crop water productivities in the source regions. While almost all of Delhi's and Lagos' virtual water imports are of domestic origin, Berlin on average imports from more than 4000 km distance, in particular soy (livestock feed), coffee and cocoa. While 42% of Delhi's virtual water imports are blue water based, the fractions for Berlin and Lagos are 2% and 0.5%, respectively, roughly equal to local drinking water abstractions of these cities. Some of the external source regions of Berlin's virtual water imports appear to be critically water scarce and/or food insecure. However for deriving recommendations on sustainable consumption and trade, further analysis of context-specific costs and benefits associated with export production will be required.

  18. Wayanad widows: A study of sustainable rural economic development using renewable energy technology for micro enterprise in Kerala, India

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Voorhees, Maire Claire

    This thesis examines the situation of the farmer widows of Wayanad, Kerala through exploration of the underlying agricultural and economic issues leading to farmers' suicides, the current state of the environment in the Wayanad District of Kerala, India, and an economic model of micro-entrepreneurship to address economic and social issues of the surviving widows. Quantitative and qualitative research methods were performed through the assessment and document analysis of archive, newspaper, and published reports to gain a macro perspective. The Environmental Vulnerability Index was used as a tool to evaluate and organize findings of the current environmental conditions in the region. This thesis supports the sustainability concept of considering the economic, ecological, and social impacts when identifying economic development pathways. The goal was to explore the appropriateness of small household solar systems as vehicle in the micro-enterprise model to be a sustainable alternative economic pathway to agriculture for the farmer widows of Wayanad.

  19. College Students' View of Biotechnology Products and Practices in Sustainable Agriculture Systems

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Anderson, William A.

    2008-01-01

    Sustainable agriculture implies the use of products and practices that sustain production, protect the environment, ensure economic viability, and maintain rural community viability. Disagreement exists as to whether or not the products and practices of modern biotechnological support agricultural sustainability. The purpose of this study was to…

  20. Cooperation Is Not Enough Exploring Social-Ecological Micro-Foundations for Sustainable Common-Pool Resource Use.

    PubMed

    Schill, Caroline; Wijermans, Nanda; Schlüter, Maja; Lindahl, Therese

    2016-01-01

    Cooperation amongst resource users holds the key to overcoming the social dilemma that characterizes community-based common-pool resource management. But is cooperation alone enough to achieve sustainable resource use? The short answer is no. Developing management strategies in a complex social-ecological environment also requires ecological knowledge and approaches to deal with perceived environmental uncertainty. Recent behavioral experimental research indicates variation in the degree to which a group of users can identify a sustainable exploitation level. In this paper, we identify social-ecological micro-foundations that facilitate cooperative sustainable common-pool resource use. We do so by using an agent-based model (ABM) that is informed by behavioral common-pool resource experiments. In these experiments, groups that cooperate do not necessarily manage the resource sustainably, but also over- or underexploit. By reproducing the patterns of the behavioral experiments in a qualitative way, the ABM represents a social-ecological explanation for the experimental observations. We find that the ecological knowledge of each group member cannot sufficiently explain the relationship between cooperation and sustainable resource use. Instead, the development of a sustainable exploitation level depends on the distribution of ecological knowledge among the group members, their influence on each other's knowledge, and the environmental uncertainty the individuals perceive. The study provides insights about critical social-ecological micro-foundations underpinning collective action and sustainable resource management. These insights may inform policy-making, but also point to future research needs regarding the mechanisms of social learning, the development of shared management strategies and the interplay of social and ecological uncertainty. PMID:27556175

  1. Sustainability of pasta production under future climate in Central Italy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dalla Marta, Anna; Baldi, Ada; Orlandini, Simone; Calanca, Pierluigi; Altobelli, Filiberto

    2016-04-01

    In this paper, the impact of future climate on pasta green water footprint (WF) was assessed. The model DSSAT CERES-Wheat was applied to simulate the production of rainfed winter durum wheat in Val d'Orcia (Central Italy), which provides the raw material for making traditional Italian pasta. The model was calibrated and validated for a 15-years period and used to estimate wheat yield and grain green WF. Further, the processing of grain for pasta making was analysed and taken into account for the calculation of the WF of final product. Then, the model was applied on future climate scenarios created with the stochastic generator LARS-WG, starting from a set of ENSEMBLES scenarios. The trend of wheat WF was analysed and the sustainability of the production of pasta in Central Italy was investigated and discussed.

  2. Values and public acceptability dimensions of sustainable egg production.

    PubMed

    Thompson, P B; Appleby, M; Busch, L; Kalof, L; Miele, M; Norwood, B F; Pajor, E

    2011-09-01

    The attributes of egg production that elicit values-based responses include the price and availability of eggs, environmental impacts, food safety or health concerns, and animal welfare. Different social groups have distinct interests regarding the sustainability of egg production that reflect these diverse values. Current scientifically based knowledge about how values and attitudes in these groups can be characterized is uneven and must be derived from studies conducted at varying times and using incomplete study methods. In general, some producer and consumer interests are translated through markets and are mediated by market mechanisms, whereas others are poorly reflected by economic behavior. An array of survey and focus group research has been performed to elicit consumer and activist beliefs about performance goals they would expect from an egg production system. These studies provide evidence that consumers' market behavior may be at odds with their ethical and political beliefs about performance goals. PMID:21844278

  3. Preparation and characterization of nanomaterials for sustainable energy production.

    PubMed

    Liu, Chang-jun; Burghaus, Uwe; Besenbacher, Flemming; Wang, Zhong Lin

    2010-10-26

    The use of nanotechnology to develop a suite of sustainable energy production schemes is one of the most important scientific challenges of the 21st century. The challenge is to design, to synthesize, and to characterize new functional nanomaterials with controllable sizes, shapes, and/or structures. To summarize the progress of the research and development made in this important field, the Fuel Chemistry Division of the American Chemical Society (ACS) organized a symposium on "Nanotechnology for Sustainable Energy and Fuels" during the 240th ACS National Meeting in Boston, MA on August 22-26, 2010, with the ACS Catalysis Division as the cosponsor. This symposium was a global gathering of leading scientists at the intersection of energy and nanotechnology. The topics discussed at the symposium included nanotechnology, not only for traditional fossil fuel production but also for novel processes for renewable energy applications. This article aims to highlight some of the most exciting advances presented at the symposium, including the preparation and characterization of nanomaterials for clean fuel production, CO(2) capture, solar cells and solar fuels, energy conversion and storage materials, hydrogen storage materials, and fuel cells. Finally, possible future developments in this important and timely area are discussed. PMID:20973572

  4. Start-up and Self-sustain Test of 500 W Ultra-Micro Gas Turbine Generator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seo, Jeong Min; Park, Jun Young; Seog Choi, Bum

    2013-12-01

    This paper provides the performance test for start-up and self-sustaining of 500W ultra-micro gas turbine (UMGT) generator. Each component of UMGT, a centrifugal compressor, a radial turbine, an annular combustor and a shaft is already designed, manufactured and tested to meet design requirements in previous researches. However, they are not tested to work in an integrate system. Currently, integrated test unit with a compressor, a combustor and a turbine, is developed to find the proper condition of start-up and self-sustain. Ignition sequence depending on rotating speed is designed. Performance test for start-up and self-sustain is designed based on the ignition possible condition. An air impingement starter and a hot bulb inginer are applied. LPG is used as main fuel.

  5. Microalgae as Sustainable Renewable Energy Feedstock for Biofuel Production

    PubMed Central

    Yusoff, Fatimah Md.; Shariff, M.

    2015-01-01

    The world energy crisis and increased greenhouse gas emissions have driven the search for alternative and environmentally friendly renewable energy sources. According to life cycle analysis, microalgae biofuel is identified as one of the major renewable energy sources for sustainable development, with potential to replace the fossil-based fuels. Microalgae biofuel was devoid of the major drawbacks associated with oil crops and lignocelluloses-based biofuels. Algae-based biofuels are technically and economically viable and cost competitive, require no additional lands, require minimal water use, and mitigate atmospheric CO2. However, commercial production of microalgae biodiesel is still not feasible due to the low biomass concentration and costly downstream processes. The viability of microalgae biodiesel production can be achieved by designing advanced photobioreactors, developing low cost technologies for biomass harvesting, drying, and oil extraction. Commercial production can also be accomplished by improving the genetic engineering strategies to control environmental stress conditions and by engineering metabolic pathways for high lipid production. In addition, new emerging technologies such as algal-bacterial interactions for enhancement of microalgae growth and lipid production are also explored. This review focuses mainly on the problems encountered in the commercial production of microalgae biofuels and the possible techniques to overcome these difficulties. PMID:25874216

  6. Microalgae as sustainable renewable energy feedstock for biofuel production.

    PubMed

    Medipally, Srikanth Reddy; Yusoff, Fatimah Md; Banerjee, Sanjoy; Shariff, M

    2015-01-01

    The world energy crisis and increased greenhouse gas emissions have driven the search for alternative and environmentally friendly renewable energy sources. According to life cycle analysis, microalgae biofuel is identified as one of the major renewable energy sources for sustainable development, with potential to replace the fossil-based fuels. Microalgae biofuel was devoid of the major drawbacks associated with oil crops and lignocelluloses-based biofuels. Algae-based biofuels are technically and economically viable and cost competitive, require no additional lands, require minimal water use, and mitigate atmospheric CO2. However, commercial production of microalgae biodiesel is still not feasible due to the low biomass concentration and costly downstream processes. The viability of microalgae biodiesel production can be achieved by designing advanced photobioreactors, developing low cost technologies for biomass harvesting, drying, and oil extraction. Commercial production can also be accomplished by improving the genetic engineering strategies to control environmental stress conditions and by engineering metabolic pathways for high lipid production. In addition, new emerging technologies such as algal-bacterial interactions for enhancement of microalgae growth and lipid production are also explored. This review focuses mainly on the problems encountered in the commercial production of microalgae biofuels and the possible techniques to overcome these difficulties. PMID:25874216

  7. Production and properties of micro-cellulose reinforced thermoplastic starch

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kmetty, Á.; Karger-Kocsis, J.; Czigány, T.

    2015-02-01

    Thermoplastic starch (TPS)/micro-fibrillated cellulose (MFC) composites were prepared from maize starch with different amount of distilled water, glycerol and cellulose reinforcement. The components were homogenized by kneader and twin roll technique. The produced TPS and TPS-based polymer composites were qualified by static and dynamic mechanical tests and their morphology was analysed by microscopic techniques. The results showed that the amount of water and the order of the production steps control the properties of both the TPS and its MFC reinforced version. With increasing content of MFC the stiffness and strength of the TPS matrix increased, as expected. Microscopic inspection revealed that the TPS has a homogenous structure and the MFC is well dispersed therein when suitable preparation conditions were selected.

  8. Modeling Sustainable Bioenergy Feedstock Production in the Alps

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kraxner, Florian; Leduc, Sylvain; Kindermann, Georg; Fuss, Sabine; Pietsch, Stephan; Lakyda, Ivan; Serrano Leon, Hernan; Shchepashchenko, Dmitry; Shvidenko, Anatoly

    2016-04-01

    Sustainability of bioenergy is often indicated by the neutrality of emissions at the conversion site while the feedstock production site is assumed to be carbon neutral. Recent research shows that sustainability of bioenergy systems starts with feedstock management. Even if sustainable forest management is applied, different management types can impact ecosystem services substantially. This study examines different sustainable forest management systems together with an optimal planning of green-field bioenergy plants in the Alps. Two models - the biophysical global forest model (G4M) and a techno-economic engineering model for optimizing renewable energy systems (BeWhere) are implemented. G4M is applied in a forward looking manner in order to provide information on the forest under different management scenarios: (1) managing the forest for maximizing the carbon sequestration; or (2) managing the forest for maximizing the harvestable wood amount for bioenergy production. The results from the forest modelling are then picked up by the engineering model BeWhere, which optimizes the bioenergy production in terms of energy demand (power and heat demand by population) and supply (wood harvesting potentials), feedstock harvesting and transport costs, the location and capacity of the bioenergy plant as well as the energy distribution logistics with respect to heat and electricity (e.g. considering existing grids for electricity or district heating etc.). First results highlight the importance of considering ecosystem services under different scenarios and in a geographically explicit manner. While aiming at producing the same amount of bioenergy under both forest management scenarios, it turns out that in scenario (1) a substantially larger area (distributed across the Alps) will need to be used for producing (and harvesting) the necessary amount of feedstock than under scenario (2). This result clearly shows that scenario (2) has to be seen as an "intensification

  9. Sustainability of biofuels and renewable chemicals production from biomass.

    PubMed

    Kircher, Manfred

    2015-12-01

    In the sectors of biofuel and renewable chemicals the big feedstock demand asks, first, to expand the spectrum of carbon sources beyond primary biomass, second, to establish circular processing chains and, third, to prioritize product sectors exclusively depending on carbon: chemicals and heavy-duty fuels. Large-volume production lines will reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emission significantly but also low-volume chemicals are indispensable in building 'low-carbon' industries. The foreseeable feedstock change initiates innovation, securing societal wealth in the industrialized world and creating employment in regions producing biomass. When raising the investments in rerouting to sustainable biofuel and chemicals today competitiveness with fossil-based fuel and chemicals is a strong issue. Many countries adopted comprehensive bioeconomy strategies to tackle this challenge. These public actions are mostly biased to biofuel but should give well-balanced attention to renewable chemicals as well. PMID:26256682

  10. Feeding nine billion: the challenge to sustainable crop production.

    PubMed

    Gregory, Peter J; George, Timothy S

    2011-11-01

    In the recent past there was a widespread working assumption in many countries that problems of food production had been solved, and that food security was largely a matter of distribution and access to be achieved principally by open markets. The events of 2008 challenged these assumptions, and made public a much wider debate about the costs of current food production practices to the environment and whether these could be sustained. As in the past 50 years, it is anticipated that future increases in crop production will be achieved largely by increasing yields per unit area rather than by increasing the area of cropped land. However, as yields have increased, so the ratio of photosynthetic energy captured to energy expended in crop production has decreased. This poses a considerable challenge: how to increase yield while simultaneously reducing energy consumption (allied to greenhouse gas emissions) and utilizing resources such as water and phosphate more efficiently. Given the timeframe in which the increased production has to be realized, most of the increase will need to come from crop genotypes that are being bred now, together with known agronomic and management practices that are currently under-developed. PMID:21841178

  11. The role of productivity in improving the environmental sustainability of ruminant production systems.

    PubMed

    Capper, Judith L; Bauman, Dale E

    2013-01-01

    The global livestock industry is charged with providing sufficient animal source foods to supply the global population while improving the environmental sustainability of animal production. Improved productivity within dairy and beef systems has demonstrably reduced resource use and greenhouse gas emissions per unit of food over the past century through the dilution of maintenance effect. Further environmental mitigation effects have been gained through the current use of technologies and practices that enhance milk yield or growth in ruminants; however, the social acceptability of continued intensification and use of productivity-enhancing technologies is subject to debate. As the environmental impact of food production continues to be a significant issue for all stakeholders within the field, further research is needed to ensure that comparisons among foods are made based on both environmental impact and nutritive value to truly assess the sustainability of ruminant products. PMID:25387028

  12. Toward cropping systems that enhance productivity and sustainability

    PubMed Central

    Cook, R. James

    2006-01-01

    The defining features of any cropping system are (i) the crop rotation and (ii) the kind or intensity of tillage. The trend worldwide starting in the late 20th century has been (i) to specialize competitively in the production of two, three, a single, or closely related crops such as different market classes of wheat and barley, and (ii) to use direct seeding, also known as no-till, to cut costs and save soil, time, and fuel. The availability of glyphosate- and insect-resistant varieties of soybeans, corn, cotton, and canola has helped greatly to address weed and insect pest pressures favored by direct seeding these crops. However, little has been done through genetics and breeding to address diseases caused by residue- and soil-inhabiting pathogens that remain major obstacles to wider adoption of these potentially more productive and sustainable systems. Instead, the gains have been due largely to innovations in management, including enhancement of root defense by antibiotic-producing rhizosphere-inhabiting bacteria inhibitory to root pathogens. Historically, new varieties have facilitated wider adoption of new management, and changes in management have facilitated wider adoption of new varieties. Although actual yields may be lower in direct-seed compared with conventional cropping systems, largely due to diseases, the yield potential is higher because of more available water and increases in soil organic matter. Achieving the full production potential of these more-sustainable cropping systems must now await the development of varieties adapted to or resistant to the hazards shown to account for the yield depressions associated with direct seeding. PMID:17130454

  13. How can we improve the environmental sustainability of poultry production?

    PubMed

    Leinonen, Ilkka; Kyriazakis, Ilias

    2016-08-01

    The review presents results of recent life cycle assessment studies aiming to quantify and improve the environmental performance of UK poultry production systems, including broiler meat, egg and turkey meat production. Although poultry production has been found to be relatively environmentally friendly compared with the production of other livestock commodities, it still contributes to environmental impacts, such as global warming, eutrophication and acidification. Amongst different sub-processes, feed production and transport contributes about 70 % to the global warming potential of poultry systems, whereas manure management contributes about 40-60 % to their eutrophication potential and acidification potential, respectively. All these impacts can be reduced by improving the feed efficiency, either by changing the birds through genetic selection or by making the feed more digestible (e.g. by using additives such as enzymes). However, although genetic selection has the potential to reduce the resources needed for broiler production (including feed consumption), the changing need of certain feed ingredients, most notably protein sources as a result of changes in bird requirements may limit the benefits of this strategy. The use of alternative feed ingredients, such as locally grown protein crops and agricultural by-products, as a replacement of South American grown soya, can potentially also lead to improvements in several environmental impact categories, as long as such feeding strategies have no negative effect on bird performance. Other management options, such as improving poultry housing and new strategies for manure management have also the potential to further improve the environmental sustainability of the poultry industries in Europe. PMID:26935025

  14. Animal welfare towards sustainability in pork meat production.

    PubMed

    Velarde, Antonio; Fàbrega, Emma; Blanco-Penedo, Isabel; Dalmau, Antoni

    2015-11-01

    Animal welfare is an important pillar of sustainability in meat production and is associated with other aspects of this concept, such as animal health, productivity, food safety, food quality and efficiency from a cost of production perspective. These interactions are present at all stages of the production cycle, from the beginning of the animals' farm life until their slaughter. On farm, some of the main welfare issues are related to neonatal mortality and low level of sensory input, which are likely to engender stereotypes and injurious behaviours, such as tail-biting. Pre-slaughter handling refers to the interaction between humans and animals prior to and during transport and at slaughter. Strategies to reduce pre-slaughter stress will benefit carcass and meat quality, being the training of stockpeople one of the most cost-effective policies to improve animal welfare. These strategies include also the implementation of standard monitoring procedures to detect signs of consciousness after stunning, before sticking and during bleeding until death occurs. PMID:26013042

  15. Towards sustainable sources for omega-3 fatty acids production.

    PubMed

    Adarme-Vega, T Catalina; Thomas-Hall, Skye R; Schenk, Peer M

    2014-04-01

    Omega-3 fatty acids eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docohexaenoic acid (DHA), provide significant health benefits for brain function/development and cardiovascular conditions. However, most EPA and DHA for human consumption is sourced from small fatty fish caught in coastal waters and, with depleting global fish stocks, recent research has been directed towards more sustainable sources. These include aquaculture with plant-based feeds, krill, marine microalgae, microalgae-like protists and genetically-modified plants. To meet the increasing demand for EPA and DHA, further developments are needed towards land-based sources. In particular large-scale cultivation of microalgae and plants is likely to become a reality with expected reductions in production costs, yield increasese and the adequate addressing of genetically modified food acceptance issues. PMID:24607804

  16. Assessing multimetric aspects of sustainability: Application to a bioenergy crop production system in East Tennessee

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Parish, Esther S.; Dale, Virginia H.; English, Burton C.; Jackson, Samuel W.; Tyler, Donald D.

    2016-02-26

    This paper connects the science of sustainability theory with applied aspects of sustainability deployment. A suite of 35 sustainability indicators spanning six environmental, three economic, and three social categories has been proposed for comparing the sustainability of bioenergy production systems across different feedstock types and locations. A recent demonstration-scale switchgrass-to-ethanol production system located in East Tennessee is used to assess the availability of sustainability indicator data and associated measurements for the feedstock production and logistics portions of the biofuel supply chain. Knowledge pertaining to the available indicators is distributed within a hierarchical decision tree framework to generate an assessment ofmore » the overall sustainability of this no-till switchgrass production system relative to two alternative business-as-usual scenarios of unmanaged pasture and tilled corn production. The relative contributions of the social, economic and environmental information are determined for the overall trajectory of this bioenergy system s sustainability under each scenario. Within this East Tennessee context, switchgrass production shows potential for improving environmental and social sustainability trajectories without adverse economic impacts, thereby leading to potential for overall enhancement in sustainability within this local agricultural system. Given the early stages of cellulosic ethanol production, it is currently difficult to determine quantitative values for all 35 sustainability indicators across the entire biofuel supply chain. This case study demonstrates that integration of qualitative sustainability indicator ratings may increase holistic understanding of a bioenergy system in the absence of complete information.« less

  17. Perspectives on achieving sustainable energy production and use

    EPA Science Inventory

    The traditional definition of sustainability calls for polices and strategies that meet society's present needs without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. Achieving operational sustainability requires three critical elements: advances in scien...

  18. A micro powder injection molding apparatus for high aspect ratio metal micro-structure production

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fu, Gang; Tor, Shubeng; Loh, Ngiaphiang; Tay, Beeyen; Hardt, David E.

    2007-09-01

    A new variotherm molding apparatus is presented in this paper for the fabrication of high aspect ratio 316L stainless steel micro-structures using micro powder injection molding (μPIM) technology. The molding apparatus prototype includes an injection mold in which a silicon insert with an array of 24 × 24 (576) microcavities is mounted, a set of rapid tempering systems for the mold and a set of vacuum systems. The key advantage of this molding apparatus lies in the real-time monitoring and rapid adjustment of the mold cavity temperature during injection molding and part ejection, which makes molding and demolding of high aspect ratio green micro-structures possible. For example, incomplete filling occurs while injection molding micro-structures of 60 µm × height 191 µm with an aspect ratio of 3.2 using a conventional mold. In comparison, smaller micro-structures with higher aspect ratio are produced successfully in the case of the new molding apparatus, e.g. micro-structures of 40 µm × height 174 µm with an aspect ratio of 4.35 and 20 µm × height 160 µm with an aspect ratio of 8 were molded successfully.

  19. Environmental impacts and sustainability of egg production systems.

    PubMed

    Xin, H; Gates, R S; Green, A R; Mitloehner, F M; Moore, P A; Wathes, C M

    2011-01-01

    As part of a systemic assessment toward social sustainability of egg production, we have reviewed current knowledge about the environmental impacts of egg production systems and identified topics requiring further research. Currently, we know that 1) high-rise cage houses generally have poorer air quality and emit more ammonia than manure belt (MB) cage houses; 2) manure removal frequency in MB houses greatly affects ammonia emissions; 3) emissions from manure storage are largely affected by storage conditions, including ventilation rate, manure moisture content, air temperature, and stacking profile; 4) more baseline data on air emissions from high-rise and MB houses are being collected in the United States to complement earlier measurements; 5) noncage houses generally have poorer air quality (ammonia and dust levels) than cage houses; 6) noncage houses tend to be colder during cold weather due to a lower stocking density than caged houses, leading to greater feed and fuel energy use; 7) hens in noncage houses are less efficient in resource (feed, energy, and land) utilization, leading to a greater carbon footprint; 8) excessive application of hen manure to cropland can lead to nutrient runoff to water bodies; 9) hen manure on open (free) range may be subject to runoff during rainfall, although quantitative data are lacking; 10) mitigation technologies exist to reduce generation and emission of noxious gases and dust; however, work is needed to evaluate their economic feasibility and optimize design; and 11) dietary modification shows promise for mitigating emissions. Further research is needed on 1) indoor air quality, barn emissions, thermal conditions, and energy use in alternative hen housing systems (1-story floor, aviary, and enriched cage systems), along with conventional housing systems under different production conditions; 2) environmental footprint for different US egg production systems through life cycle assessment; 3) practical means to mitigate air

  20. Exploiting microRNA Specificity and Selectivity: Paving a Sustainable Path Towards Precision Medicine.

    PubMed

    Santulli, Gaetano

    2015-01-01

    In his State of the Union address before both chambers of the US Congress, President Barack Obama called for increased investment in US infrastructure and research and announced the launch of a new Precision Medicine Initiative, aiming to accelerate biomedical discovery. Due to their well-established selectivity and specificity, microRNAs can represent a useful tool, both in diagnosis and therapy, in forging the path towards the achievement of precision medicine. This introductory chapter represents a guide for the Reader in examining the functional roles of microRNAs in the most diverse aspects of clinical practice, which will be explored in this third volume of the microRNA trilogy. PMID:26663175

  1. Sustainable Energy Production from Jatropha Bio-Diesel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yadav, Amit Kumar; Krishna, Vijai

    2012-10-01

    The demand for petroleum has risen rapidly due to increasing industrialization and modernization of the world. This economic development has led to a huge demand for energy, where the major part of that energy is derived from fossil sources such as petroleum, coal and natural gas. Continued use of petroleum sourced fuels is now widely recognized as unsustainable because of depleting supplies. There is a growing interest in using Jatropha curcas L. oil as the feedstock for biodiesel production because it is non-edible and thus does not compromise the edible oils, which are mainly used for food consumption. Further, J. curcas L. seed has a high content of free fatty acids that is converted in to biodiesel by trans esterification with alcohol in the presence of a catalyst. The biodiesel produced has similar properties to that of petroleum-based diesel. Biodiesel fuel has better properties than petro diesel fuel; it is renewable, biodegradable, non-toxic, and essentially free of sulfur and aromatics. Biodiesel seems to be a realistic fuel for future. Biodiesel has the potential to economically, socially, and environmentally benefit communities as well as countries, and to contribute toward their sustainable development.

  2. GM crops, the environment and sustainable food production.

    PubMed

    Raven, Peter H

    2014-12-01

    Today, over 7.1 billion people rely on the earth's resources for sustenance, and nearly a billion people are malnourished, their minds and bodies unable to develop properly. Globally, population is expected to rise to more than 9 billion by 2050. Given the combined pressures of human population growth, the rapidly growing desire for increased levels of consumption, and the continued use of inappropriate technologies, it is not surprising that humans are driving organisms to extinction at an unprecedented rate. Many aspects of the sustainable functioning of the natural world are breaking down in the face of human-induced pressures including our individual and collective levels of consumption and our widespread and stubborn use of destructive technologies. Clearly, agriculture must undergo a redesign and be better and more effectively managed so as to contribute as well as possible to feeding people, while at the same time we strive to lessen the tragic loss of biodiversity and damage to all of its productive systems that the world is experiencing. For GM crops to be part of the solution, biosafety assessments should not be overly politically-driven or a burdensome impedance to delivering this technology broadly. Biosafety scientists and policy makers need to recognize the undeniable truth that inappropriate actions resulting in indecision also have negative consequences. It is no longer acceptable to delay the use of any strategy that is safe and will help us achieve the ability to feed the world's people. PMID:24150918

  3. The Role of Sustained Attention in the Production of Conjoined Noun Phrases: An Individual Differences Study

    PubMed Central

    Jongman, Suzanne R.; Meyer, Antje S.; Roelofs, Ardi

    2015-01-01

    It has previously been shown that language production, performed simultaneously with a nonlinguistic task, involves sustained attention. Sustained attention concerns the ability to maintain alertness over time. Here, we aimed to replicate the previous finding by showing that individuals call upon sustained attention when they plan single noun phrases (e.g., "the carrot") and perform a manual arrow categorization task. In addition, we investigated whether speakers also recruit sustained attention when they produce conjoined noun phrases (e.g., "the carrot and the bucket") describing two pictures, that is, when both the first and second task are linguistic. We found that sustained attention correlated with the proportion of abnormally slow phrase-production responses. Individuals with poor sustained attention displayed a greater number of very slow responses than individuals with better sustained attention. Importantly, this relationship was obtained both for the production of single phrases while performing a nonlinguistic manual task, and the production of noun phrase conjunctions in referring to two spatially separated objects. Inhibition and updating abilities were also measured. These scores did not correlate with our measure of sustained attention, suggesting that sustained attention and executive control are distinct. Overall, the results suggest that planning conjoined noun phrases involves sustained attention, and that language production happens less automatically than has often been assumed. PMID:26335441

  4. Computational study of plasma sustainability in radio frequency micro-discharges

    SciTech Connect

    Zhang, Y.; Jiang, W.; Zhang, Q. Z.; Bogaerts, A.

    2014-05-21

    We apply an implicit particle-in-cell Monte-Carlo (PIC-MC) method to study a radio-frequency argon microdischarge at steady state in the glow discharge limit, in which the microdischarge is sustained by secondary electron emission from the electrodes. The plasma density, electron energy distribution function (EEDF), and electron temperature are calculated in a wide range of operating conditions, including driving voltage, microdischarge gap, and pressure. Also, the effect of gap size scaling (in the range of 50-1000 μm) on the plasma sustaining voltage and peak electron density at atmospheric pressure is examined, which has not been explored before. In our simulations, three different EEDFs, i.e., a so-called three temperature hybrid mode, a two temperature α mode, and a two temperature γ mode distribution, are identified at different gaps and voltages. The maximum sustaining voltage to avoid a transition from the glow mode to an arc is predicted, as well as the minimum sustaining voltage for a steady glow discharge. Our calculations elucidate that secondary electrons play an essential role in sustaining the discharge, and as a result the relationship between breakdown voltage and gap spacing is far away from the Paschen law at atmospheric pressure.

  5. 36 CFR 223.219 - Sustainable harvest of special forest products.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... 36 Parks, Forests, and Public Property 2 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Sustainable harvest of special forest products. 223.219 Section 223.219 Parks, Forests, and Public Property FOREST SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE SALE AND DISPOSAL OF NATIONAL FOREST SYSTEM TIMBER Special Forest Products § 223.219 Sustainable harvest of special...

  6. Double- and relay-cropping oilseed and biomass crops for sustainable energy production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Economically and environmentally sustainable bioenergy production requires strategic integration of biofuel crops into modern cropping systems. Double- and relay-cropping can offer a means of increasing production efficiency to boost profits and provide environmental benefits through crop diversific...

  7. A low-temperature co-fired ceramic micro-reactor system for high-efficiency on-site hydrogen production

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jiang, Bo; Maeder, Thomas; Santis-Alvarez, Alejandro J.; Poulikakos, Dimos; Muralt, Paul

    2015-01-01

    A ceramic-based, meso-scale fuel processor for on-board production of syngas fuel was demonstrated for applications in micro-scale solid-oxide fuel cells (μ-SOFCs). The processor had a total dimension of 12 mm × 40 mm × 2 mm, the gas reforming micro reactor occupying the hot end of a cantilever had outer dimensions of 12 × 18 mm. The device was fabricated through a novel progressive lamination process in low-temperature co-fired ceramic (LTCC) technology. Both, heating function and desired fluidic structures were integrated monolithically into the processor. Using catalytic partial oxidation of a hydrocarbon fuel (propane) as a reaction model, a thermally self-sustaining hydrogen production was achieved. The output flow is sufficiently high to drive an optimized single membrane μSOFC cell of about the same footprint as the micro reactor. Microsystem design, fabrication, catalyst integration as well as the chemical characterization are discussed in detail.

  8. Sustainable bioenergy production from marginal lands in the US Midwest.

    PubMed

    Gelfand, Ilya; Sahajpal, Ritvik; Zhang, Xuesong; Izaurralde, R César; Gross, Katherine L; Robertson, G Philip

    2013-01-24

    Legislation on biofuels production in the USA and Europe is directing food crops towards the production of grain-based ethanol, which can have detrimental consequences for soil carbon sequestration, nitrous oxide emissions, nitrate pollution, biodiversity and human health. An alternative is to grow lignocellulosic (cellulosic) crops on 'marginal' lands. Cellulosic feedstocks can have positive environmental outcomes and could make up a substantial proportion of future energy portfolios. However, the availability of marginal lands for cellulosic feedstock production, and the resulting greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, remains uncertain. Here we evaluate the potential for marginal lands in ten Midwestern US states to produce sizeable amounts of biomass and concurrently mitigate GHG emissions. In a comparative assessment of six alternative cropping systems over 20 years, we found that successional herbaceous vegetation, once well established, has a direct GHG emissions mitigation capacity that rivals that of purpose-grown crops (-851 ± 46 grams of CO(2) equivalent emissions per square metre per year (gCO(2)e m(-2) yr(-1))). If fertilized, these communities have the capacity to produce about 63 ± 5 gigajoules of ethanol energy per hectare per year. By contrast, an adjacent, no-till corn-soybean-wheat rotation produces on average 41 ± 1 gigajoules of biofuel energy per hectare per year and has a net direct mitigation capacity of -397 ± 32 gCO(2)e m(-2) yr(-1); a continuous corn rotation would probably produce about 62 ± 7 gigajoules of biofuel energy per hectare per year, with 13% less mitigation. We also perform quantitative modelling of successional vegetation on marginal lands in the region at a resolution of 0.4 hectares, constrained by the requirement that each modelled location be within 80 kilometres of a potential biorefinery. Our results suggest that such vegetation could produce about 21 gigalitres of ethanol per year from

  9. The Future of Pork Production in the World: Towards Sustainable, Welfare-Positive Systems

    PubMed Central

    McGlone, John J.

    2013-01-01

    Simple Summary More pork is eaten in the world than any other meat. Making production systems and practices more sustainable will benefit the animals, the planet and people. A system is presented by which production practices are evaluated using a sustainability matrix. The matrix shows why some practices are more common in some countries and regions and the impediments to more sustainable systems. This method can be used to assess the sustainability of production practices in the future where objective, science-based information is presented alongside ethical and economic information to make the most informed decisions. Finally, this paper points to current pork production practices that are more and less sustainable. Abstract Among land animals, more pork is eaten in the world than any other meat. The earth holds about one billion pigs who deliver over 100 mmt of pork to people for consumption. Systems of pork production changed from a forest-based to pasture-based to dirt lots and finally into specially-designed buildings. The world pork industry is variable and complex not just in production methods but in economics and cultural value. A systematic analysis of pork industry sustainability was performed. Sustainable production methods are considered at three levels using three examples in this paper: production system, penning system and for a production practice. A sustainability matrix was provided for each example. In a comparison of indoor vs. outdoor systems, the food safety/zoonoses concerns make current outdoor systems unsustainable. The choice of keeping pregnant sows in group pens or individual crates is complex in that the outcome of a sustainability assessment leads to the conclusion that group penning is more sustainable in the EU and certain USA states, but the individual crate is currently more sustainable in other USA states, Asia and Latin America. A comparison of conventional physical castration with immunological castration shows that the less

  10. Effects of artemisinin sustained-release granules on mixed alga growth and microcystins production and release.

    PubMed

    Ni, Lixiao; Li, Danye; Hu, Shuzhen; Wang, Peifang; Li, Shiyin; Li, Yiping; Li, Yong; Acharya, Kumud

    2015-12-01

    To safely and effectively apply artemisinin sustained-release granules to control and prevent algal water-blooms, the effects of artemisinin and its sustained-release granules on freshwater alga (Scenedesmus obliquus (S. obliquus) and Microcystis aeruginosa (M. aeruginosa)), as well as the production and release of microcystins (MCs) were studied. The results showed that artemisinin sustained-release granules inhibited the growth of M. aeruginosa (above 95% IR) and S. obliquus (about 90% IR), with M. aeruginosa more sensitive. The artemisinin sustained-release granules had a longer inhibition effect on growth of pure algae and algal coexistence than direct artemisinin dosing. The artemisinin sustained-release granules could decrease the production and release of algal toxins due to the continued stress of artemisinin released from artemisinin sustained-release granules. There was no increase in the total amount of MC-LR in the algal cell culture medium. PMID:26432265

  11. Sustainable production of bioactive compounds from sponges: primmorphs as bioreactors.

    PubMed

    Schröder, H C; Brümmer, F; Fattorusso, E; Aiello, A; Menna, M; de Rosa, S; Batel, R; Müller, W E G

    2003-01-01

    Sponges [phylum Porifera] are a rich source for the isolation of biologically active and pharmacologically valuable compounds with a high potential to become effective drugs for therapeutic use. However, until now, only one compound has been introduced into clinics because of the limited amounts of starting material available for extraction. To overcome this serious problem in line with the rules for a sustainable use of marine resources, the following routes can be pursued; first, chemical synthesis, second, cultivation of sponges in the sea (mariculture), third, growth of sponge specimens in a bioreactor, and fourth, cultivation of sponge cells in vitro in a bioreactor. The main efforts to follow the latter strategy have been undertaken with the marine sponge Suberites domuncula. This species produces compounds that affect neuronal cells, such as quinolinic acid, a well-known neurotoxin, and phospholipids. A sponge cell culture was established after finding that single sponge cells require cell-cell contact in order to retain their telomerase activity, one prerequisite for continuous cell proliferation. The sponge cell culture system, the primmorphs, comprises proliferating cells that have the potency to differentiate. While improving the medium it was found that, besides growth factors, certain ions (e.g. silicate and iron) are essential. In the presence of silicate several genes required for the formation of the extracellular matrix are expressed (silicatein, collagen and myotrophin). Fe3+ is essential for the synthesis of the spicules, and causes an increased expression of the ferritin-, septin- and scavenger receptor genes. Furthermore, high water current is required for growth and canal formation in the primmorphs. The primmorph system has already been successfully used for the production of pharmacologically useful, bioactive compounds, such as avarol or (2'-5')oligoadenylates. Future strategies to improve the sponge cell culture are discussed; these

  12. DEVELOPMENT PLAN OF A SUSTAINABLE MICRO-HYDRO POWER PLANT AND DISTRIBUTION SYSTEM FOR A TRIBAL VILLAGE CLUSTER IN RURAL INDIA

    EPA Science Inventory

    Columbia University Engineers Without Borders (CU-EWB) is developing a sustainable micro-hydro power plant for the Badi Trika Gouda village in the Indian state of Orissa. The community currently relies on firewood and animal waste matter for lighting and cooking. Our ...

  13. Estimating Green Net National Product for Puerto Rico: An Economic Measure of Sustainability (Journal article)

    EPA Science Inventory

    This paper presents the data sources and methodology used to estimate Green Net National Product (GNNP), an economic metric of sustainability, for Puerto Rico. Using the change in GNNP as a one-sided test of weak sustainability (i.e., positive growth in GNNP is not enough to show...

  14. The sustainability of organic dairy production in the U.S.

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Both organic and conventional dairy farming practices in the U.S. have unique challenges for maintaining sustainable production. Economic sustainability may be most important because milk will not be produced in our economy unless there is profit for the producer. The demand for organic milk has cre...

  15. Comprehensive national assessment of the sustainability of beef production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A national assessment is being conducted by the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, a contractor to the beef checkoff, to develop better scientific understanding of the sustainability of beef. This includes a life cycle assessment (LCA) of greenhouse gas emissions along with other environmental, ...

  16. An integrative modeling framework to evaluate the productivity and sustainability of biofuel crop production systems

    SciTech Connect

    Zhang, X; Izaurralde, R. C.; Manowitz, D.; West, T. O.; Thomson, A. M.; Post, Wilfred M; Bandaru, Vara Prasad; Nichols, Jeff; Williams, J.

    2010-10-01

    The potential expansion of biofuel production raises food, energy, and environmental challenges that require careful assessment of the impact of biofuel production on greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, soil erosion, nutrient loading, and water quality. In this study, we describe a spatially explicit integrative modeling framework (SEIMF) to understand and quantify the environmental impacts of different biomass cropping systems. This SEIMF consists of three major components: (1) a geographic information system (GIS)-based data analysis system to define spatial modeling units with resolution of 56 m to address spatial variability, (2) the biophysical and biogeochemical model Environmental Policy Integrated Climate (EPIC) applied in a spatially-explicit way to predict biomass yield, GHG emissions, and other environmental impacts of different biofuel crops production systems, and (3) an evolutionary multiobjective optimization algorithm for exploring the trade-offs between biofuel energy production and unintended ecosystem-service responses. Simple examples illustrate the major functions of the SEIMF when applied to a nine-county Regional Intensive Modeling Area (RIMA) in SW Michigan to (1) simulate biofuel crop production, (2) compare impacts of management practices and local ecosystem settings, and (3) optimize the spatial configuration of different biofuel production systems by balancing energy production and other ecosystem-service variables. Potential applications of the SEIMF to support life cycle analysis and provide information on biodiversity evaluation and marginal-land identification are also discussed. The SEIMF developed in this study is expected to provide a useful tool for scientists and decision makers to understand sustainability issues associated with the production of biofuels at local, regional, and national scales.

  17. An Integrative Modeling Framework to Evaluate the Productivity and Sustainability of Biofuel Crop Production Systems

    SciTech Connect

    Zhang, Xuesong; Izaurralde, Roberto C.; Manowitz, David H.; West, T. O.; Post, W. M.; Thomson, Allison M.; Bandaru, V. P.; Nichols, J.; Williams, J.R.

    2010-09-08

    The potential expansion of biofuel production raises food, energy, and environmental challenges that require careful assessment of the impact of biofuel production on greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, soil erosion, nutrient loading, and water quality. In this study, we describe a spatially-explicit integrative modeling framework (SEIMF) to understand and quantify the environmental impacts of different biomass cropping systems. This SEIMF consists of three major components: 1) a geographic information system (GIS)-based data analysis system to define spatial modeling units with resolution of 56 m to address spatial variability, 2) the biophysical and biogeochemical model EPIC (Environmental Policy Integrated Climate) applied in a spatially-explicit way to predict biomass yield, GHG emissions, and other environmental impacts of different biofuel crops production systems, and 3) an evolutionary multi-objective optimization algorithm for exploring the trade-offs between biofuel energy production and unintended ecosystem-service responses. Simple examples illustrate the major functions of the SEIMF when applied to a 9-county Regional Intensive Modeling Area (RIMA) in SW Michigan to 1) simulate biofuel crop production, 2) compare impacts of management practices and local ecosystem settings, and 3) optimize the spatial configuration of different biofuel production systems by balancing energy production and other ecosystem-service variables. Potential applications of the SEIMF to support life cycle analysis and provide information on biodiversity evaluation and marginal-land identification are also discussed. The SEIMF developed in this study is expected to provide a useful tool for scientists and decision makers to understand sustainability issues associated with the production of biofuels at local, regional, and national scales.

  18. C2CAD: A SUSTAINABLE APPAREL DESIGN AND PRODUCTION CONCEPTUAL FRAMEWORK

    EPA Science Inventory

    Many environmental problems related to apparel industry, such as toxicity in dyeing wastewater, could be minimized by apparel designers and manufacturers. However, no apparel design and production model put designers' role in environmental sustainability into consideration. ...

  19. Product Lifecycle Management and the Quest for Sustainable Space Transportation Solutions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Caruso, Pamela W.

    2009-01-01

    This viewgraph presentation reviews NASA Marshall's effort to sustain space transportation solutions through product lines that include: 1) Propulsion and Transportation Systems; 2) Life Support Systems; and 3) and Earth and Space Science Spacecraft Systems, and Operations.

  20. Sustainable Harvest and marketing of rain forest products

    SciTech Connect

    Plotkin, M.J.; Famolare, L.M.

    1992-01-01

    The economics of nontimber rainforest products often make a strong case for forest protection and prevention of deforestation. This book contains 33 diverse papers falling into three catagories: tropical rainforests are underutilized sources of new plant products; increased use of tropical forest products should benefit human inhabitants of the rainforest; nontimber forest products many not be the panacea that some suggest.

  1. Integration: valuing stakeholder input in setting priorities for socially sustainable egg production.

    PubMed

    Swanson, J C; Lee, Y; Thompson, P B; Bawden, R; Mench, J A

    2011-09-01

    Setting directions and goals for animal production systems requires the integration of information achieved through internal and external processes. The importance of stakeholder input in setting goals for sustainable animal production systems should not be overlooked by the agricultural animal industries. Stakeholders play an integral role in setting the course for many aspects of animal production, from influencing consumer preferences to setting public policy. The Socially Sustainable Egg Production Project (SSEP) involved the development of white papers on various aspects of egg production, followed by a stakeholder workshop to help frame the issues for the future of sustainable egg production. Representatives from the environmental, food safety, food retail, consumer, animal welfare, and the general farm and egg production sectors participated with members of the SSEP coordination team in a 1.5-d workshop to explore socially sustainable egg production. This paper reviews the published literature on values integration methodologies and the lessons learned from animal welfare assessment models. The integration method used for the SSEP stakeholder workshop and its outcome are then summarized. The method used for the SSEP stakeholder workshop can be used to obtain stakeholder input on sustainable production in other farm animal industries. PMID:21844279

  2. Sustained expression of microRNA-155 in hematopoietic stem cells causes a myeloproliferative disorder.

    PubMed

    O'Connell, Ryan M; Rao, Dinesh S; Chaudhuri, Aadel A; Boldin, Mark P; Taganov, Konstantin D; Nicoll, John; Paquette, Ronald L; Baltimore, David

    2008-03-17

    Mammalian microRNAs are emerging as key regulators of the development and function of the immune system. Here, we report a strong but transient induction of miR-155 in mouse bone marrow after injection of bacterial lipopolysaccharide (LPS) correlated with granulocyte/monocyte (GM) expansion. Demonstrating the sufficiency of miR-155 to drive GM expansion, enforced expression in mouse bone marrow cells caused GM proliferation in a manner reminiscent of LPS treatment. However, the miR-155-induced GM populations displayed pathological features characteristic of myeloid neoplasia. Of possible relevance to human disease, miR-155 was found to be overexpressed in the bone marrow of patients with certain subtypes of acute myeloid leukemia (AML). Furthermore, miR-155 repressed a subset of genes implicated in hematopoietic development and disease. These data implicate miR-155 as a contributor to physiological GM expansion during inflammation and to certain pathological features associated with AML, emphasizing the importance of proper miR-155 regulation in developing myeloid cells during times of inflammatory stress. PMID:18299402

  3. 36 CFR 223.219 - Sustainable harvest of special forest products.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... 36 Parks, Forests, and Public Property 2 2013-07-01 2013-07-01 false Sustainable harvest of special forest products. 223.219 Section 223.219 Parks, Forests, and Public Property FOREST SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE SALE AND DISPOSAL OF NATIONAL FOREST SYSTEM TIMBER, SPECIAL FOREST PRODUCTS, AND FOREST BOTANICAL PRODUCTS Special...

  4. 36 CFR 223.219 - Sustainable harvest of special forest products.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... 36 Parks, Forests, and Public Property 2 2014-07-01 2014-07-01 false Sustainable harvest of special forest products. 223.219 Section 223.219 Parks, Forests, and Public Property FOREST SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE SALE AND DISPOSAL OF NATIONAL FOREST SYSTEM TIMBER, SPECIAL FOREST PRODUCTS, AND FOREST BOTANICAL PRODUCTS Special...

  5. 36 CFR 223.219 - Sustainable harvest of special forest products.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... 36 Parks, Forests, and Public Property 2 2012-07-01 2012-07-01 false Sustainable harvest of special forest products. 223.219 Section 223.219 Parks, Forests, and Public Property FOREST SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE SALE AND DISPOSAL OF NATIONAL FOREST SYSTEM TIMBER, SPECIAL FOREST PRODUCTS, AND FOREST BOTANICAL PRODUCTS Special...

  6. 36 CFR 223.219 - Sustainable harvest of special forest products.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... 36 Parks, Forests, and Public Property 2 2011-07-01 2011-07-01 false Sustainable harvest of special forest products. 223.219 Section 223.219 Parks, Forests, and Public Property FOREST SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE SALE AND DISPOSAL OF NATIONAL FOREST SYSTEM TIMBER, SPECIAL FOREST PRODUCTS, AND FOREST BOTANICAL PRODUCTS Special...

  7. Toward a sustainability label for food products: an analysis of experts' and consumers' acceptance.

    PubMed

    Engels, Stéphanie V; Hansmann, Ralf; Scholz, Roland W

    2010-01-01

    The recent proliferation of standards and labels for organic, fair-trade, locally produced, and healthy food products risks creating confusion among consumers. This study presents a standardized approach to developing a comprehensive sustainability label that incorporates ecological, economic, and social values. The methodology is based on an extension of modular life-cycle assessment to non-environmental sustainability criteria. Interviews with a wide range of experts (n=65) and a consumer survey (n=233) were conducted to analyze the feasibility and potential effectiveness of the approach. Responses indicated that a comprehensive sustainability label could considerably influence consumption patterns and facilitate cross-product comparisons. PMID:21883088

  8. Expanding lean thinking to the product and process design and development within the framework of sustainability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sorli, M.; Sopelana, A.; Salgado, M.; Pelaez, G.; Ares, E.

    2012-04-01

    Companies require tools to change towards a new way of developing and producing innovative products to be manufactured considering the economic, social and environmental impact along the product life cycle. Based on translating Lean principles in Product Development (PD) from the design stage and, along the entire product life cycle, it is aimed to address both sustainability and environmental issues. The drivers of sustainable culture within a lean PD have been identified and a baseline for future research on the development of appropriate tools and techniques has been provided. This research provide industry with a framework which balance environmental and sustainable factors with lean principles to be considered and incorporated from the beginning of product design and development covering the entire product lifecycle.

  9. MicroRNA-155 regulates inflammatory cytokine production in tumor-associated macrophages via targeting C/EBPbeta.

    PubMed

    He, Min; Xu, Zhenqun; Ding, Tong; Kuang, Dong-Ming; Zheng, Limin

    2009-10-01

    Macrophages (Mphi) are prominent components of solid tumors and exhibit distinct phenotypes in different microenvironments. We have recently found that tumors can alter the normal developmental process of Mphi to trigger transient activation of monocytes, but the underlying regulatory mechanisms are incompletely understood. Here, we showed that the protein expression of transcription factor C/EBPbeta was markedly elevated in tumor-associated Mphi both in vitro and human tumors in situ. The expression of C/EBP protein correlated with cytokine production in tumor-activated monocytes. Moreover, we found that C/EBPbeta expression was regulated at the post-transcriptional level and correlated with sustained reduction of microRNA-155 (miR-155) in tumor-activated monocytes. Bioinformatic analysis revealed that C/EBPbeta is a potential target of miR-155 and luciferase assay confirmed that C/EBPbeta translation is suppressed by miR-155 through interaction with the 3'UTR of C/EBPbeta mRNA. Further analysis showed that induction of miR-155 suppressed C/EBPbeta protein expression as well as cytokine production in tumor-activated monocytes, an effect which could be mimicked by silencing of C/EBPbeta. These results indicate that tumor environment causes a sustained reduction of miR-155 in monocytes/Mphi, which in turn regulates the functional activities of monocytes/Mphi by releasing the translational inhibition of transcription factor C/EBPbeta. PMID:19887047

  10. Heterogeneous catalysis for sustainable biodiesel production via esterification and transesterification.

    PubMed

    Lee, Adam F; Bennett, James A; Manayil, Jinesh C; Wilson, Karen

    2014-11-21

    Concern over the economics of accessing fossil fuel reserves, and widespread acceptance of the anthropogenic origin of rising CO2 emissions and associated climate change from combusting such carbon sources, is driving academic and commercial research into new routes to sustainable fuels to meet the demands of a rapidly rising global population. Here we discuss catalytic esterification and transesterification solutions to the clean synthesis of biodiesel, the most readily implemented and low cost, alternative source of transportation fuels to meet future societal demands. PMID:24957179

  11. Can the co-cultivation of rice and fish help sustain rice production?

    PubMed

    Hu, Liangliang; Zhang, Jian; Ren, Weizheng; Guo, Liang; Cheng, Yongxu; Li, Jiayao; Li, Kexin; Zhu, Zewen; Zhang, Jiaen; Luo, Shiming; Cheng, Lei; Tang, Jianjun; Chen, Xin

    2016-01-01

    Because rice feeds half of the world's population, a secure global food supply depends on sustainable rice production. Here we test whether the co-cultivation of rice and fish into one "rice-fish system" (RFS; fish refers to aquatic animals in this article) could help sustain rice production. We examined intensive and traditional RFSs that have been widely practiced in China. We found that rice yields did not decrease when fish yield was below a threshold value in each intensive RFS. Below the thresholds, moreover, fish yields in intensive RFSs can be substantially higher than those in traditional RFS without reducing rice yield. Relative to rice monoculture, the use of fertilizer-nitrogen and pesticides decreased, and the farmers' net income increased in RFSs. The results suggest that RFSs can help sustain rice production, and suggest that development of co-culture technologies (i.e. proper field configuration for fish and rice) is necessary to achieve the sustainability. PMID:27349875

  12. A microBio reactor for hydrogen production.

    SciTech Connect

    Volponi, Joanne V.; Walker, Andrew William

    2003-12-01

    The purpose of this work was to explore the potential of developing a microfluidic reactor capable of enzymatically converting glucose and other carbohydrates to hydrogen. This aggressive project was motivated by work in enzymatic hydrogen production done by Woodward et al. at OWL. The work reported here demonstrated that hydrogen could be produced from the enzymatic oxidation of glucose. Attempts at immobilizing the enzymes resulted in reduced hydrogen production rates, probably due to buffer compatibility issues. A novel in-line sensor was also developed to monitor hydrogen production in real time at levels below 1 ppm. Finally, a theoretical design for the microfluidic reactor was developed but never produced due to the low production rates of hydrogen from the immobilized enzymes. However, this work demonstrated the potential of mimicking biological systems to create energy on the microscale.

  13. Sustain

    SciTech Connect

    2013-08-20

    Current building energy simulation technology requires excessive labor, time and expertise to create building energy models, excessive computational time for accurate simulations and difficulties with the interpretation of the results. These deficiencies can be ameliorated using modern graphical user interfaces and algorithms which take advantage of modern computer architectures and display capabilities. To prove this hypothesis, we developed an experimental test bed for building energy simulation. This novel test bed environment offers an easy-to-use interactive graphical interface, provides access to innovative simulation modules that run at accelerated computational speeds, and presents new graphics visualization methods to interpret simulation results. Our system offers the promise of dramatic ease of use in comparison with currently available building energy simulation tools. Its modular structure makes it suitable for early stage building design, as a research platform for the investigation of new simulation methods, and as a tool for teaching concepts of sustainable design. Improvements in the accuracy and execution speed of many of the simulation modules are based on the modification of advanced computer graphics rendering algorithms. Significant performance improvements are demonstrated in several computationally expensive energy simulation modules. The incorporation of these modern graphical techniques should advance the state of the art in the domain of whole building energy analysis and building performance simulation, particularly at the conceptual design stage when decisions have the greatest impact. More importantly, these better simulation tools will enable the transition from prescriptive to performative energy codes, resulting in better, more efficient designs for our future built environment.

  14. Life Cycle Assessment Software for Product and Process Sustainability Analysis

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vervaeke, Marina

    2012-01-01

    In recent years, life cycle assessment (LCA), a methodology for assessment of environmental impacts of products and services, has become increasingly important. This methodology is applied by decision makers in industry and policy, product developers, environmental managers, and other non-LCA specialists working on environmental issues in a wide…

  15. Sustain

    Energy Science and Technology Software Center (ESTSC)

    2013-08-20

    Current building energy simulation technology requires excessive labor, time and expertise to create building energy models, excessive computational time for accurate simulations and difficulties with the interpretation of the results. These deficiencies can be ameliorated using modern graphical user interfaces and algorithms which take advantage of modern computer architectures and display capabilities. To prove this hypothesis, we developed an experimental test bed for building energy simulation. This novel test bed environment offers an easy-to-use interactivemore » graphical interface, provides access to innovative simulation modules that run at accelerated computational speeds, and presents new graphics visualization methods to interpret simulation results. Our system offers the promise of dramatic ease of use in comparison with currently available building energy simulation tools. Its modular structure makes it suitable for early stage building design, as a research platform for the investigation of new simulation methods, and as a tool for teaching concepts of sustainable design. Improvements in the accuracy and execution speed of many of the simulation modules are based on the modification of advanced computer graphics rendering algorithms. Significant performance improvements are demonstrated in several computationally expensive energy simulation modules. The incorporation of these modern graphical techniques should advance the state of the art in the domain of whole building energy analysis and building performance simulation, particularly at the conceptual design stage when decisions have the greatest impact. More importantly, these better simulation tools will enable the transition from prescriptive to performative energy codes, resulting in better, more efficient designs for our future built environment.« less

  16. Biogeochemical research priorities for sustainable biofuel and bioenergy feedstock production in the Americas

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rapid expansion in biomass production for biofuels and bioenergy in the Americas is increasing demands on the ecosystem resources required to sustain soil and site productivity. We review the current state of knowledge and highlight gaps in research on biogeochemical processes and ecosystem sustaina...

  17. 77 FR 10939 - Driving Innovation and Creating Jobs in Rural America Through Biobased and Sustainable Product...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-02-24

    ... memorandum in the Federal Register. (Presidential Sig.) THE WHITE HOUSE, Washington, February 21, 2012 [FR... Creating Jobs in Rural America Through Biobased and Sustainable Product Procurement Memorandum for the... procurement of biobased products to promote rural economic development, create new jobs, and provide...

  18. Conservation Considerations for Sustainable Bioenergy Feedstock Production: If, What, Where, and How Much?

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Increased awareness of the need to achieve energy independence and security has resulted in many questions regarding the use of agricultural products as feedstock for bioenergy production. Initial efforts with grain crops, though successful, raised many more questions regarding sustainability and po...

  19. Integrated Metrics for Improving the Life Cycle Approach to Assessing Product System Sustainability

    EPA Science Inventory

    Life cycle approaches are critical for identifying and managing to reduce burdens in the sustainability of product systems. While these methods can indicate potential environmental impacts of a product, current Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) methods fail to integrate the multiple im...

  20. The Role of Diverse Strategies in Sustainable Knowledge Production.

    PubMed

    Wu, Lingfei; Baggio, Jacopo A; Janssen, Marco A

    2016-01-01

    Online communities are becoming increasingly important as platforms for large-scale human cooperation. These communities allow users seeking and sharing professional skills to solve problems collaboratively. To investigate how users cooperate to complete a large number of knowledge-producing tasks, we analyze Stack Exchange, one of the largest question and answer systems in the world. We construct attention networks to model the growth of 110 communities in the Stack Exchange system and quantify individual answering strategies using the linking dynamics on attention networks. We identify two answering strategies. Strategy A aims at performing maintenance by doing simple tasks, whereas strategy B aims at investing time in doing challenging tasks. Both strategies are important: empirical evidence shows that strategy A decreases the median waiting time for answers and strategy B increases the acceptance rate of answers. In investigating the strategic persistence of users, we find that users tends to stick on the same strategy over time in a community, but switch from one strategy to the other across communities. This finding reveals the different sets of knowledge and skills between users. A balance between the population of users taking A and B strategies that approximates 2:1, is found to be optimal to the sustainable growth of communities. PMID:26934733

  1. The Role of Diverse Strategies in Sustainable Knowledge Production

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Lingfei; Baggio, Jacopo A.; Janssen, Marco A.

    2016-01-01

    Online communities are becoming increasingly important as platforms for large-scale human cooperation. These communities allow users seeking and sharing professional skills to solve problems collaboratively. To investigate how users cooperate to complete a large number of knowledge-producing tasks, we analyze Stack Exchange, one of the largest question and answer systems in the world. We construct attention networks to model the growth of 110 communities in the Stack Exchange system and quantify individual answering strategies using the linking dynamics on attention networks. We identify two answering strategies. Strategy A aims at performing maintenance by doing simple tasks, whereas strategy B aims at investing time in doing challenging tasks. Both strategies are important: empirical evidence shows that strategy A decreases the median waiting time for answers and strategy B increases the acceptance rate of answers. In investigating the strategic persistence of users, we find that users tends to stick on the same strategy over time in a community, but switch from one strategy to the other across communities. This finding reveals the different sets of knowledge and skills between users. A balance between the population of users taking A and B strategies that approximates 2:1, is found to be optimal to the sustainable growth of communities. PMID:26934733

  2. A testpart for interdisciplinary analyses in micro production engineering

    SciTech Connect

    Möhring, H. -C.; Kersting, P.; Carmignato, S.; Yagüe-Fabra, J. A.; Maestro, M.; Jiménez, R.; Ferraris, E.; Tunc, L. T.; Bleicher, F.; Wits, W. W.; Walczak, K.; Hedlind, M.

    2015-04-26

    In 2011, a round robin test was initiated within the group of CIRP Research Affiliates. The aim was to establish a platform for linking interdisciplinary research in order to share the expertise and experiences of participants all over the world. This paper introduces a testpart which has been designed to allow an analysis of different manufacturing technologies, simulation methods, machinery and metrology as well as process and production planning aspects. Current investigations are presented focusing on the machining and additive processes to produce the geometry, simulation approaches, machine analysis, and a comparison of measuring technologies. Challenges and limitations regarding the manufacturing and evaluation of the testpart features by the applied methods are discussed.

  3. Productivity ranges of sustainable biomass potentials from non-agricultural land

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schueler, Vivian; Fuss, Sabine; Steckel, Jan Christoph; Weddige, Ulf; Beringer, Tim

    2016-07-01

    Land is under pressure from a number of demands, including the need for increased supplies of bioenergy. While bioenergy is an important ingredient in many pathways compatible with reaching the 2 °C target, areas where cultivation of the biomass feedstock would be most productive appear to co-host other important ecosystems services. We categorize global geo-data on land availability into productivity deciles, and provide a geographically explicit assessment of potentials that are concurrent with EU sustainability criteria. The deciles unambiguously classify the global productivity range of potential land currently not in agricultural production for biomass cultivation. Results show that 53 exajoule (EJ) sustainable biomass potential are available from 167 million hectares (Mha) with a productivity above 10 tons of dry matter per hectare and year (tD Mha‑1 a‑1), while additional 33 EJ are available on 264 Mha with yields between 4 and 10 tD M ha‑1 a‑1: some regions lose less of their highly productive potentials to sustainability concerns than others and regional contributions to bioenergy potentials shift when less productive land is considered. Challenges to limit developments to the exploitation of sustainable potentials arise in Latin America, Africa and Developing Asia, while new opportunities emerge for Transition Economies and OECD countries to cultivate marginal land.

  4. Alfalfa -- a sustainable crop for biomass energy production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Alfalfa (Medicago sativa) has the potential to be a significant contributor to America's renewable energy future. In an alfalfa biomass energy production system, alfalfa forage would be separated into stem and leave fractions. The stems would be processed to produce energy, and the leaves would be s...

  5. Sustainable Harvests Through Increased Utilization of Salmon By-Products

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The growing demand for fish meals and oils has produced a steady rise in the market price garnered by these commodities. However, the practice of discarding fish-processing wastes is still widespread. Alaska’s fishing industry generates over one million metric tons of fish by-products each year, muc...

  6. Developing sustainable management practices for organic rice production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Demand for organically produced rice has been increasing with up to 50,000 acres now produced in the USA. Although acreage of conventional rice production has decreased in Texas by 36% during the last 15 years, it is now home to some 15,000 acres of organic rice, which has brought new vitality to ot...

  7. Sustainable bioenergy production from marginal lands in the US Midwest

    SciTech Connect

    Gelfand, Ilya; Sahajpal, Ritvik; Zhang, Xuesong; Izaurralde, Roberto C.; Gross, Katherine L.; Robertson, G. P.

    2013-01-24

    Long-term measurements of global warming impact coupled with spatially explicit modeling suggests that both climate benefits and the production potential of cellulosic crops grown on marginal lands of the US North Central region are substantial but will be insufficient to meet long-term biofuel needs.

  8. Sustaining Motivation and Productivity during Significant Organizational Change.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pellak, Mary T.

    2001-01-01

    Discussion of organizational change and possible negative effects which can impact organizational performance focuses on ways a manager can identify problems with employee motivation and productivity and address them in a supportive manner. Topics include clear expectations, open communication, and recognizing employee efforts. (Author/LRW)

  9. Soil Biochar Applications Enhance Sustainability of Bioenergy Feedstock Production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Crop residues return plant nutrients to soils and are critically important for nutrient cycling, maintaining levels of soil organic matter, and stabilizing soil structure. Removal of crop residues for use as feedstock for bioenergy production could adversely impact soil quality, reduce net energy pr...

  10. Switchgrass: a productive, profitable, and sustainable biofuel feedstock

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Switchgrass is a model biofuel feedstock for the USA. Progress has been made in all areas of switchgrass for bioenergy and a complete field-validated biomass production system has been developed. However, switchgrass for bioenergy has not been adopted on a large scale. This is a classic chicken-and-...

  11. A testpart for interdisciplinary analyses in micro production engineering

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Möhring, H. -C.; Kersting, P.; Carmignato, S.; Yagüe-Fabra, J. A.; Maestro, M.; Jiménez, R.; Ferraris, E.; Tunc, L. T.; Bleicher, F.; Wits, W. W.; et al

    2015-04-26

    In 2011, a round robin test was initiated within the group of CIRP Research Affiliates. The aim was to establish a platform for linking interdisciplinary research in order to share the expertise and experiences of participants all over the world. This paper introduces a testpart which has been designed to allow an analysis of different manufacturing technologies, simulation methods, machinery and metrology as well as process and production planning aspects. Current investigations are presented focusing on the machining and additive processes to produce the geometry, simulation approaches, machine analysis, and a comparison of measuring technologies. Challenges and limitations regarding themore » manufacturing and evaluation of the testpart features by the applied methods are discussed.« less

  12. Sustainable production of green feed from carbon dioxide and hydrogen.

    PubMed

    Landau, Miron V; Vidruk, Roxana; Herskowitz, Moti

    2014-03-01

    Carbon dioxide hydrogenation to form hydrocarbons was conducted on two iron-based catalysts, prepared according to procedures described in the literature, and on a new iron spinel catalyst. The CO2 conversion measured in a packed-bed reactor was limited to about 60% because of excessive amounts of water produced in this process. Switching to a system of three packed-bed reactors in series with interim removal of water and condensed hydrocarbons increased CO2 conversion to as much as 89%. The pure spinel catalyst displayed a significantly higher activity and selectivity than those of the other iron catalysts. This process produces a product called green feed, which is similar in composition to the product of a high-temperature, iron-based Fischer–Tropsch process from syngas. The green feed can be readily converted into renewable fuels by well-established technologies. PMID:24678062

  13. Product Lifecycle Management and the Quest for Sustainable Space Explorations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Caruso, Pamela W.; Dumbacher, Daniel L.

    2010-01-01

    Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) is an outcome of lean thinking to eliminate waste and increase productivity. PLM is inextricably tied to the systems engineering business philosophy, coupled with a methodology by which personnel, processes and practices, and information technology combine to form an architecture platform for product design, development, manufacturing, operations, and decommissioning. In this model, which is being implemented by the Engineering Directorate at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's (NASA's) Marshall Space Flight Center, total lifecycle costs are important variables for critical decision-making. With the ultimate goal to deliver quality products that meet or exceed requirements on time and within budget, PLM is a powerful concept to shape everything from engineering trade studies and testing goals, to integrated vehicle operations and retirement scenarios. This paper will demonstrate how the Engineering Directorate is implementing PLM as part of an overall strategy to deliver safe, reliable, and affordable space exploration solutions. It has been 30 years since the United States fielded the Space Shuttle. The next generation space transportation system requires a paradigm shift such that digital tools and knowledge management, which are central elements of PLM, are used consistently to maximum effect. The outcome is a better use of scarce resources, along with more focus on stakeholder and customer requirements, as a new portfolio of enabling tools becomes second nature to the workforce. This paper will use the design and manufacturing processes, which have transitioned to digital-based activities, to show how PLM supports the comprehensive systems engineering and integration function. It also will go through a launch countdown scenario where an anomaly is detected to show how the virtual vehicle created from paperless processes will help solve technical challenges and improve the likelihood of launching on schedule

  14. Fuel cell systems for a sustainable energy production

    SciTech Connect

    Kivisaari, T.

    1996-12-31

    When talking about fuel cell systems for stationary applications, two of the advantages are claimed to be a high inherent efficiency and environmentally favourable characteristics. It should, however, be obvious to everybody that in order to call an energy production route environmentally benign, it is not enough that just the energy production step itself has a low negative environmental impact, but that all steps involved (e.g. fuel pre-treatment, fuel processing etc.) should be subjected to the same constraints if the overall production process is to be considered environmentally friendly. In order to evaluate the technical possibilities of a biomass fuelled MCFC unit for stationary applications a system study of a 40 MWe biomass-fired MCFC system is currently carried out at The Royal Institute of Technology, as part of the international co-operation within the IEA Advanced Fuel Cell Programme Annex 1, Balance of Plant of MCFC Systems. In addition to the present work, other recent studies involving biomass and fuel cells can be found in literature.

  15. Biogeochemical Research Priorities for Sustainable Biofuel and Bioenergy Feedstock Production in the Americas.

    PubMed

    Gollany, Hero T; Titus, Brian D; Scott, D Andrew; Asbjornsen, Heidi; Resh, Sigrid C; Chimner, Rodney A; Kaczmarek, Donald J; Leite, Luiz F C; Ferreira, Ana C C; Rod, Kenton A; Hilbert, Jorge; Galdos, Marcelo V; Cisz, Michelle E

    2015-12-01

    Rapid expansion in biomass production for biofuels and bioenergy in the Americas is increasing demand on the ecosystem resources required to sustain soil and site productivity. We review the current state of knowledge and highlight gaps in research on biogeochemical processes and ecosystem sustainability related to biomass production. Biomass production systems incrementally remove greater quantities of organic matter, which in turn affects soil organic matter and associated carbon and nutrient storage (and hence long-term soil productivity) and off-site impacts. While these consequences have been extensively studied for some crops and sites, the ongoing and impending impacts of biomass removal require management strategies for ensuring that soil properties and functions are sustained for all combinations of crops, soils, sites, climates, and management systems, and that impacts of biomass management (including off-site impacts) are environmentally acceptable. In a changing global environment, knowledge of cumulative impacts will also become increasingly important. Long-term experiments are essential for key crops, soils, and management systems because short-term results do not necessarily reflect long-term impacts, although improved modeling capability may help to predict these impacts. Identification and validation of soil sustainability indicators for both site prescriptions and spatial applications would better inform commercial and policy decisions. In an increasingly inter-related but constrained global context, researchers should engage across inter-disciplinary, inter-agency, and international lines to better ensure the long-term soil productivity across a range of scales, from site to landscape. PMID:26006220

  16. Biogeochemical Research Priorities for Sustainable Biofuel and Bioenergy Feedstock Production in the Americas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gollany, Hero T.; Titus, Brian D.; Scott, D. Andrew; Asbjornsen, Heidi; Resh, Sigrid C.; Chimner, Rodney A.; Kaczmarek, Donald J.; Leite, Luiz F. C.; Ferreira, Ana C. C.; Rod, Kenton A.; Hilbert, Jorge; Galdos, Marcelo V.; Cisz, Michelle E.

    2015-12-01

    Rapid expansion in biomass production for biofuels and bioenergy in the Americas is increasing demand on the ecosystem resources required to sustain soil and site productivity. We review the current state of knowledge and highlight gaps in research on biogeochemical processes and ecosystem sustainability related to biomass production. Biomass production systems incrementally remove greater quantities of organic matter, which in turn affects soil organic matter and associated carbon and nutrient storage (and hence long-term soil productivity) and off-site impacts. While these consequences have been extensively studied for some crops and sites, the ongoing and impending impacts of biomass removal require management strategies for ensuring that soil properties and functions are sustained for all combinations of crops, soils, sites, climates, and management systems, and that impacts of biomass management (including off-site impacts) are environmentally acceptable. In a changing global environment, knowledge of cumulative impacts will also become increasingly important. Long-term experiments are essential for key crops, soils, and management systems because short-term results do not necessarily reflect long-term impacts, although improved modeling capability may help to predict these impacts. Identification and validation of soil sustainability indicators for both site prescriptions and spatial applications would better inform commercial and policy decisions. In an increasingly inter-related but constrained global context, researchers should engage across inter-disciplinary, inter-agency, and international lines to better ensure the long-term soil productivity across a range of scales, from site to landscape.

  17. [Sustainable production of bulk chemicals by application of "white biotechnology"].

    PubMed

    Patel, M K; Dornburg, V; Hermann, B G; Shen, Li; van Overbeek, Leo

    2008-12-01

    Practically all organic chemicals and plastics are nowadays produced from crude oil and natural gas. However, it is possible to produce a wide range of bulk chemicals from renewable resources by application of biotechnology. This paper focuses on White Biotechnology, which makes use of bacteria (or yeasts) or enzymes for the conversion of the fermentable sugar to the target product. It is shown that White Biotechnology offers substantial savings of non-renewable energy use and greenhouse gas emissions for nearly all of the products studied. Under favorable boundary conditions up to two thirds (67%) of the current non-renewable energy use for the production of the selected chemicals can be saved by 2050 if substantial technological progress is made and if the use of lignocellulosic feedstocks is successfully developed. The analysis for Europe (E.U. 25 countries) shows that land requirements related to White Biotechnology chemicals are not likely to become a critical issue in the next few decades, especially considering the large unused and underutilized resources in Eastern Europe. Substantial macroeconomic savings can be achieved under favourable boundary conditions. In principle, natural bacteria and enzymes can be used for White Biotechnology but, according to many experts in the fields, Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO) will be necessary in order to achieve the high yields, concentrations and productivities that are required to reach economic viability. Safe containment and inactivation of GMOs after release is very important because not all possible implications caused by the interaction of recombinant genes with other populations can be foreseen. If adequate precautionary measures are taken, the risks related to the use of genetically modified organisms in White Biotechnology are manageable. We conclude that the core requirements to be fulfilled in order to make clear steps towards a bio-based chemical industry are substantial technological progress in the

  18. Sustained cyclic AMP production by parathyroid hormone receptor endocytosis

    PubMed Central

    Ferrandon, Sébastien; Feinstein, Timothy N; Castro, Marian; Wang, Bin; Bouley, Richard; Potts, John T; Gardella, Thomas J; Vilardaga, Jean-Pierre

    2011-01-01

    Cell signaling mediated by the G protein-coupled parathyroid hormone receptor type 1 (PTHR) is fundamental to bone and kidney physiology. It has been unclear how the two ligand systems—PTH, endocrine and homeostatic, and PTH-related peptide (PTHrP), paracrine—can effectively operate with only one receptor and trigger different durations of the cAMP responses. Here we analyze the ligand response by measuring the kinetics of activation and deactivation for each individual reaction step along the PTHR signaling cascade. We found that during the time frame of G protein coupling and cAMP production, PTHrP1–36 action was restricted to the cell surface, whereas PTH1–34 had moved to internalized compartments where it remained associated with the PTHR and Gαs, potentially as a persistent and active ternary complex. Such marked differences suggest a mechanism by which PTH and PTHrP induce differential responses, and these results indicate that the central tenet that cAMP production originates exclusively at the cell membrane must be revised. PMID:19701185

  19. Novel transparent electrodes allow sustainable production of electronic devices

    SciTech Connect

    Constant, Kristen

    2010-12-27

    A novel technique for fabricating inexpensive, transparent electrodes from common metals has been developed by engineers and scientists at Iowa State University and Ames Laboratory. They exhibit very high transparency and are very good electrical conductors. This is a combination of properties that is difficult to achieve with common materials. The most frequently used transparent electrode in today's high-technology devices (such as LCD screens) is indium tin oxide (ITO). While ITO performs well in these applications, the supply of indium is very limited. In addition, it is rapidly decreasing as consumer demand for flat-panel electronics is skyrocketing. According to a 2004 US Geological Survey report, as little as 14 years exploitation of known indium reserves remains. In addition to increasing prices, the dwindling supply of indium suggests its use is not sustainable for future generations of electronics enthusiasts. Solar cells represent another application where transparent electrodes are used. To make solar-energy collection economically feasible, all parts of solar photovoltaics must be made more efficient and cost-effective. Our novel transparent electrodes have the potential to do both. In addition, there is much interest in developing more efficient, cost-effective, and environmentally friendly lighting. Incandescent light bulbs are very inefficient, because most of their energy consumption is wasted as heat. Fluorescent lighting is much more efficient but still uses mercury, an environmental toxin. An attractive alternative is offered by LEDs, which have very high efficiencies and long lifetimes, and do not contain mercury. If made bright enough, LED use for general lighting could provide a viable alternative. We have fabricated electrodes from more commonly available materials, using a technique that is cost effective and environmentally friendly. Most of today's electronic devices are made in specialized facilities equipped with low

  20. Tailoring lignin biosynthesis for efficient and sustainable biofuel production.

    PubMed

    Liu, Chang-Jun; Cai, Yuanheng; Zhang, Xuebin; Gou, Mingyue; Yang, Huijun

    2014-12-01

    Increased global interest in a bio-based economy has reinvigorated the research on the cell wall structure and composition in plants. In particular, the study of plant lignification has become a central focus, with respect to its intractability and negative impact on the utilization of the cell wall biomass for producing biofuels and bio-based chemicals. Striking progress has been achieved in the last few years both on our fundamental understanding of lignin biosynthesis, deposition and assembly, and on the interplay of lignin synthesis with the plant growth and development. With the knowledge gleaned from basic studies, researchers are now able to invent and develop elegant biotechnological strategies to sophisticatedly manipulate the quantity and structure of lignin and thus to create economically viable bioenergy feedstocks. These concerted efforts open an avenue for the commercial production of cost-competitive biofuel to meet our energy needs. PMID:25209835

  1. Paths Forward: Current International and US Initiatives to Support More Sustainable Options for Uranium Production

    SciTech Connect

    Rehmann, M.; Rood, C.; Keefe, M.

    2008-07-01

    With the nuclear renaissance, the uranium mining industry has undergone a dramatic renaissance, as well. This has been evidenced in the past 2 years with forums such as those organized by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and in the United States (US) the National Mining Association/Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NMA/NRC) workshops drawing record attendance by established and junior uranium mining firms. In addition, IAEA meetings, as well as meetings of the NMA, industry, and agencies have begun to focus, not on only on site closure - but on the growing industry and plans for permitting new uranium recovery facilities. Finally, the International Forum on Sustainable Options for Uranium Production (IFSOUP) has emerged to carry forward many recent cooperative dialogs and concepts developed in sustainability initiatives, bringing together industry, agencies and NGOs - with the view to developing more sustainable, socially-acceptable uranium recovery practices. In this context, this paper will present current international and US initiatives which are intended to support more sustainable options for uranium production. First, we will describe a new initiative for international cooperative dialogues, to build industry, agency and NGO cooperation for enhancing global sustainability in uranium production operations, and avoid the legacy issues found in past operations: the inaugural meeting of the International Forum on Sustainable Options for Uranium Production, or IFSOUP. IFSOUP will carry forward discussions of recent and present initiatives including the Global Mining Initiative; the Mining, Minerals, and Sustainable Development Initiative (MMSD); the International Council on Mining and Metals; and the sustainable development initiatives of the US National Mining Association. Consistent with the process of ensuring development of a sustainable uranium recovery industry, while factoring in stakeholder concerns, an initiative to promote strong regulation in

  2. Denitrification 'Woodchip' Bioreactors for Productive and Sustainable Agricultural Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Christianson, L. E.; Summerfelt, S.; Sharrer, K.; Lepine, C.; Helmers, M. J.

    2014-12-01

    Growing alarm about negative cascading effects of reactive nitrogen in the environment has led to multifaceted efforts to address elevated nitrate-nitrogen levels in water bodies worldwide. The best way to mitigate N-related impacts, such as hypoxic zones and human health concerns, is to convert nitrate to stable, non-reactive dinitrogen gas through the natural process of denitrification. This means denitrification technologies need to be one of our major strategies for tackling the grand challenge of managing human-induced changes to our global nitrogen cycle. While denitrification technologies have historically been focused on wastewater treatment, there is great interest in new lower-tech options for treating effluent and drainage water from one of our largest reactive nitrogen emitters -- agriculture. Denitrification 'woodchip' bioreactors are able to enhance this natural N-conversion via addition of a solid carbon source (e.g., woodchips) and through designs that facilitate development of anoxic conditions required for denitrification. Wood-based denitrification technologies such as woodchip bioreactors and 'sawdust' walls for groundwater have been shown to be effective at reducing nitrate loads in agricultural settings around the world. Designing these systems to be low-maintenance and to avoid removing land from agricultural production has been a primary focus of this "farmer-friendly" technology. This presentation provides a background on woodchip bioreactors including design considerations, N-removal performance, and current research worldwide. Woodchip bioreactors for the agricultural sector are an accessible new option to address society's interest in improving water quality while simultaneously allowing highly productive agricultural systems to continue to provide food in the face of increasing demand, changing global diets, and fluctuating weather.

  3. Sustainability evaluation of Sicily's lemon and orange production: an energy, economic and environmental analysis.

    PubMed

    Pergola, M; D'Amico, M; Celano, G; Palese, A M; Scuderi, A; Di Vita, G; Pappalardo, G; Inglese, P

    2013-10-15

    The island of Sicily has a long standing tradition in citrus growing. We evaluated the sustainability of orange and lemon orchards, under organic and conventional farming, using an energy, environmental and economic analysis of the whole production cycle by using a life cycle assessment approach. These orchard systems differ only in terms of a few of the inputs used and the duration of the various agricultural operations. The quantity of energy consumption in the production cycle was calculated by multiplying the quantity of inputs used by the energy conversion factors drawn from the literature. The production costs were calculated considering all internal costs, including equipment, materials, wages, and costs of working capital. The performance of the two systems (organic and conventional), was compared over a period of fifty years. The results, based on unit surface area (ha) production, prove the stronger sustainability of the organic over the conventional system, both in terms of energy consumption and environmental impact, especially for lemons. The sustainability of organic systems is mainly due to the use of environmentally friendly crop inputs (fertilizers, not use of synthetic products, etc.). In terms of production costs, the conventional management systems were more expensive, and both systems were heavily influenced by wages. In terms of kg of final product, the organic production system showed better environmental and energy performances. PMID:23850762

  4. Micro-scale Plasma Arc Gasification for Waste Treatment and Energy Production Project

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Caraccio, Anne

    2015-01-01

    As NASA continues to develop technology for spaceflight beyond low earth orbit, we must develop the right systems for sustaining human life on a long duration or planetary mission. Plasma arc gasification (PAG) is an energy efficient mechanism of waste management for power generation and synthetic gas(syngas) production.

  5. Micro-scale energy valorization of grape marcs in winery production plants.

    PubMed

    Fabbri, Andrea; Bonifazi, Giuseppe; Serranti, Silvia

    2015-02-01

    The Biochemical Methane Potential (BMP) of winery organic waste, with reference to two Italian red and white grapes (i.e. Nero Buono and Greco) by-products was investigated. The study was carried out to verify the possibility to reduce the production impact in a green-waste-management-chain-perspective. The possibility to efficiently utilize wine-related-by-products for energy production at a micro-scale (i.e. small-medium scale winery production plant) was also verified. Results showed as a good correlation can be established between the percentage of COD removal and the biogas production, as the winery can produce, from its waste methanization, about 7800 kW h year(-1) electrical and 8900 kW h year(-1) thermal. A critical evaluation was performed about the possibility to utilize the proposed approach to realize an optimal biomass waste management and an energetic valorization in a local-energy-production-perspective. PMID:25529134

  6. Development Of Sustainable Biobased Products And Bioenergy In Cooperation With The Midwest Consortium For Sustainable Biobased Products And Energy

    SciTech Connect

    Michael Ladisch; Randy Woodson

    2009-03-18

    Collaborative efforts of Midwest Consortium have been put forth to add value to distiller's grains by further processing them into fermentable sugars, ethanol, and a protein rich co-product consistent with a pathway to a biorenewables industry (Schell et al, 2008). These studies were recently published in the enclosed special edition (Volume 99, Issue 12) of Bioresource Technology journal. Part of them have demonstrated the utilization of distillers grains as additional feedstock for increased ethanol production in the current dry grind process (Kim et al., 2008a, b; Dien et al.,2008, Ladisch et al., 2008a, b). Results showed that both liquid hot water (LHW) pretreatment and ammonia fiber expansion (AFEX) were effective for enhancing digestibility of distiller's grains. Enzymatic digestion of distiller's grains resulted in more than 90% glucose yield under standard assay conditions, although the yield tends to drop as the concentration of dry solids increases. Simulated process mass balances estimated that hydrolysis and fermentation of distillers grains can increase the ethanol yield by 14% in the current dry milling process (Kim et al., 2008c). Resulting co-products from the modified process are richer in protein and oil contents than conventional distiller's grains, as determined both experimentally and computationally. Other research topics in the special edition include water solubilization of DDGS by transesterification reaction with phosphite esters (Oshel el al., 2008) to improve reactivity of the DDGS to enzymes, hydrolysis of soluble oligomers derived from DDGS using functionalized mesoporous solid catalysts (Bootsma et al., 2008), and ABE (acetone, butanol, ethanol) production from DDGS by solventogenic Clostridia (Ezeji and Blaschek, 2008). Economic analysis of a modified dry milling process, where the fiber and residual starch is extracted and fermented to produce more ethanol from the distillers grains while producing highly concentrated protein co-product

  7. Technological challenges for boosting coal production with environmental sustainability.

    PubMed

    Ghose, Mrinal K

    2009-07-01

    The global energy requirement has grown at a phenomenon rate and the consumption of primary energy sources has been a very high positive growth. This paper focuses on the consumption of different primary energy sources and it identifies that coal will continue to remain as the prime energy source in foreseeable future. It examines the energy requirement perspective for India and demand of coal as the prime energy source. Economic development and poverty alleviation depend on securing affordable energy sources and Indian coal mining industry offers a bright future for the country's energy security, provided the industry is allowed to develop by supportive government policies and adopts latest technologies for mining. It is an irony that in-spite of having a plentiful reserves, India is not able to jack up coal production to meet its current and future demand. It discusses the strategies to be adopted for growth and meeting the coal demand. But such energy are very much concerned with environmental degradation and must be driven by contemporary managerial acumen addressing environmental and social challenges effectively The paper highlights the emissions of greenhouse gases due to burning of fossil fuels and environmental consequences of global warming and sea-level rise. Technological solutions for environment friendly coal mining and environmental laws for the abatement of environmental degradation are discussed in this paper. PMID:18604635

  8. PLETS model: a sustainability-concept-based approach to product end-of-life management

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dunmade, Israel

    2004-12-01

    The need for sustainable product end-of-life management technologies is critical in today's globally competitive environment. The ever-increasing environmental consciousness of consumers and strictness in legislative regulations necessitate more prudent product decisions. The ability to make sound decisions on which product end-of-life management technologies to adopt is crucial to achieving sustainability of the product systems. It is essential that effective assessments of these technologies for future investment and applications indicate the total economic, environmental and social impacts of each option as well as the trade-offs between the various product end-of-life management technologies. The tendency in modeling this decision scenario is to base the formulation and the analysis on crisp, deterministic, and precise data. The product end-of-life management decision environment is however characterized by a mix of crisp and linguistically expressed parameters, most of which are uncertain in nature. Furthermore, the decision makers are interested in selecting an option that both satisfies certain minimum requirements and maximize their utility from a set of feasible alternatives. The goal of this study therefore is to develop a simple, efficient procedure that provides the manufacturing and allied industry with the ability to assess and evaluate the sustainability of remanufacturing and related technologies based on lifecycle thinking. This methodology, termed "product lifecycle extension techniques selection (PLETS) model," is a hybrid of fuzzy logic and a number of multi-attribute decision making models. It can be used to determine the remanufacturability of each product. In addition, it can also be employed to compare the economic, environmental and social sustainability of the feasible set of the product end-of-life management technologies being considered. The proposed methodology is illustrated with an example of end-of-life management for a peanut

  9. Grain production versus resource and environmental costs: towards increasing sustainability of nutrient use in China.

    PubMed

    Jiao, Xiaoqiang; Lyu, Yang; Wu, Xiaobin; Li, Haigang; Cheng, Lingyun; Zhang, Chaochun; Yuan, Lixing; Jiang, Rongfeng; Jiang, Baiwen; Rengel, Zed; Zhang, Fusuo; Davies, William J; Shen, Jianbo

    2016-09-01

    Over the past five decades, Chinese grain production has increased 4-fold, from 110 Mt in 1961 to 557 Mt in 2014, with less than 9% of the world's arable land feeding 22% of the world's population, indicating a substantial contribution to global food security. However, compared with developed economies, such as the USA and the European Union, more than half of the increased crop production in China can be attributed to a rapid increase in the consumption of chemicals, particularly fertilizers. Excessive fertilization has caused low nutrient use efficiency and high environmental costs in grain production. We analysed the key requirements underpinning increased sustainability of crop production in China, as follows: (i) enhance nutrient use efficiency and reduce nutrient losses by fertilizing roots not soil to maximize root/rhizosphere efficiency with innovative root zone nutrient management; (ii) improve crop productivity and resource use efficiency by matching the best agronomic management practices with crop improvement; and (iii) promote technology transfer of the root zone nutrient management to achieve the target of high yields and high efficiency with low environmental risks on a broad scale. Coordinating grain production and environmental protection by increasing the sustainability of nutrient use will be a key step in achieving sustainable crop production in Chinese agriculture. PMID:27489235

  10. DO BIO-BASED PRODUCTS MOVE US TOWARD SUSTAINABILITY? A LOOK AT THREE USEPA CASE STUDIES

    EPA Science Inventory


    Do Bio-Based Products Move Us Toward Sustainability? A Look at Three Case Studies within the US EPA
    Mary Am Curran
    US Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Research & Development, Cincinnati, OH 45268; curran.maryann@epagov
    Abstract The movement to buy "...

  11. Watershed scale environmental sustainability analysis of biofuel production in changing land use and climate scenarios

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    RAJ, C.; Chaubey, I.; Cherkauer, K. A.; Brouder, S. M.; Volenec, J. J.

    2013-12-01

    One of the grand challenges in meeting the US biofuel goal is producing large quantities of cellulosic biofeedstock materials for the production of biofuels in an environmentally sustainable and economically viable manner. The possible land use and land management practice changes induce concerns over the environmental impacts of these bioenergy crop production scenarios both in terms of water availability and water quality, and these impacts may be exacerbated by climate variability and change. This study aims to evaluate environmental sustainability of various plausible land and crop management scenarios for biofuel production under changing climate scenarios for a Midwest US watershed. The study considers twelve environmental sustainability indicators related hydrology and water quality with thirteen plausible biofuels scenarios in the watershed under nine climate change scenarios. The land use change scenarios for evaluation includes, (1) bioenergy crops in highly erodible soils (3) bioenergy crops in low row crop productive fields (marginal lands); (3) bioenergy crops in pasture and range land use areas and (4) combinations of these scenarios. Future climate data bias corrected and downscaled to daily values from the World Climate Research Programme's (WCRP's) Coupled Model Intercomparison Project phase 3 (CMIP3) multi-model dataset were used in this study. The distributed hydrological model SWAT (Soil and Water Assessment Tool) was used to simulate bioenergy crops growth, hydrology and water quality. The watershed scale sustainability analysis was done in Wildcat Creek basin, which is located in North-Central Indiana, USA.

  12. Evaluation of greenhouse gas emissions in relation to irrigation methods and sustainable production in California orchard

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    California (CA) is one of the top agricultural production states in the United States of America (USA). Increasing water use efficiency and minimizing environmental impact are two of the major elements affecting sustainability of irrigated agriculture in CA. Field research has been conducted to eval...

  13. Influence of School Climate on Students' Achievement and Teachers' Productivity for Sustainable Development

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Adeogun, A. A.; Olisaemeka, Blessing U.

    2011-01-01

    The study covers ten secondary schools in Lagos State of Nigeria. The purpose is to ascertain the relationship between school climate and student achievements and teachers' productivity for sustainable development. A total sample of 150 respondents was taken. Ten principals, seven teachers and seven students were randomly picked per school. This…

  14. Workshop on the Design of Sustainable Product Systems and Supply Chains; Final Report,

    EPA Science Inventory

    ABOUT THE WORKSHOP The Workshop on the Design of Sustainable Product Systems and Supply Chains was held September 12–13, 2011 at the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF) offices in Arlington, Virginia. The Workshop was co-sponsored by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (...

  15. Expanding the Utilization of Sustainable Plant Products in Aquafeeds – A Review

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Continued growth and intensification of aquaculture production depends upon the development of sustainable protein sources to replace fish meal in aquafeeds. This document reviews various plant feedstuffs which currently are or potentially may be incorporated into aquafeeds to support the sustainab...

  16. Moving toward energy security and sustainability in 2050 by reconfiguring biofuel production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    To achieve energy security and sustainability by 2050 requires reconfiguring biofuel production both by building on current infrastructure and existing technology and also by making substantial improvements and changes in the feedstocks used, the process technologies applied, and the fuels produced....

  17. Engineering oilseeds for sustainable production of industrial and nutritional feedstocks: solving bottlenecks in fatty acid flux

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Vegetable oils provide a platform for the production of high-value fatty acids that can replace non-sustainable petroleum and oceanic sources of specialty chemicals and aquaculture feed. Recent efforts to engineer seeds of crop and model species to produce new types of fatty acid structures for thes...

  18. Addressing the challenges for sustainable production of algal biofuels: I. Algal strains and nutrient supply.

    PubMed

    Abdelaziz, Ahmed E M; Leite, Gustavo B; Hallenbeck, Patrick C

    2013-01-01

    Microalgae hold promise for the production of sustainable replacement of fossil fuels due to their high growth rates, ability to grow on non-arable land and their high content, under the proper conditions, of high energy compounds that can be relatively easily chemically converted to fuels using existing technology. However, projected large-scale algal production raises a number of sustainability concerns concerning land use, net energy return, water use and nutrient supply. The state-of-the-art of algal production of biofuels is presented with emphasis on some possible avenues to provide answers to the sustainability questions that have been raised. Here, issues concerning algal strains and supply of nutrients for large-scale production are discussed. Since sustainability concerns necessitate the use of wastewaters for supply of bulk nutrients, emphasis is placed on the composition and suitability of different wastewater streams. At the same time, algal cultivation has proven useful in waste treatment processes, and thus this aspect is also treated in some detail. PMID:24350435

  19. Evaluating Consumer Product Life Cycle Sustainability with Integrated Metrics: A Paper Towel Case Study

    EPA Science Inventory

    Integrated sustainability metrics provide an enriched set of information to inform decision-making. However, such approaches are rarely used to assess product supply chains. In this work, four integrated metrics—presented in terms of land, resources, value added, and stability—ar...

  20. Butanol production from food waste: a novel process for producing sustainable energy and reducing environmental pollution

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Efficient utilization of food waste for fuel and chemical production can positively influence both the energy and environmental sustainability. In these studies we investigated use of food waste to produce butanol by Clostridium beijerinckii P260. In control fermentation, 40.5 g/L of glucose (initia...

  1. Micro-scale energy valorization of grape marcs in winery production plants

    SciTech Connect

    Fabbri, Andrea; Bonifazi, Giuseppe; Serranti, Silvia

    2015-02-15

    Highlights: • BioMethane Potential of grape marcs was investigated. • Grape marcs were characterized to realize a micro-scale energy recovery. • Comparative BMP batch-tests utilizing lab-scale reactors were performed. • Biogas valorization by grape marcs anaerobic digestion at small scale is evaluated. - Abstract: The BiochemicalMethanePotential (BMP) of winery organic waste, with reference to two Italian red and white grapes (i.e. Nero Buono and Greco) by-products was investigated. The study was carried out to verify the possibility to reduce the production impact in a green-waste-management-chain-perspective. The possibility to efficiently utilize wine-related-by-products for energy production at a micro-scale (i.e. small-medium scale winery production plant) was also verified. Results showed as a good correlation can be established between the percentage of COD removal and the biogas production, as the winery can produce, from its waste methanization, about 7800 kW h year{sup −1} electrical and 8900 kW h year{sup −1} thermal. A critical evaluation was performed about the possibility to utilize the proposed approach to realize an optimal biomass waste management and an energetic valorization in a local-energy-production-perspective.

  2. Can the co-cultivation of rice and fish help sustain rice production?

    PubMed Central

    Hu, Liangliang; Zhang, Jian; Ren, Weizheng; Guo, Liang; Cheng, Yongxu; Li, Jiayao; Li, Kexin; Zhu, Zewen; Zhang, Jiaen; Luo, Shiming; Cheng, Lei; Tang, Jianjun; Chen, Xin

    2016-01-01

    Because rice feeds half of the world’s population, a secure global food supply depends on sustainable rice production. Here we test whether the co-cultivation of rice and fish into one “rice-fish system” (RFS; fish refers to aquatic animals in this article) could help sustain rice production. We examined intensive and traditional RFSs that have been widely practiced in China. We found that rice yields did not decrease when fish yield was below a threshold value in each intensive RFS. Below the thresholds, moreover, fish yields in intensive RFSs can be substantially higher than those in traditional RFS without reducing rice yield. Relative to rice monoculture, the use of fertilizer-nitrogen and pesticides decreased, and the farmers’ net income increased in RFSs. The results suggest that RFSs can help sustain rice production, and suggest that development of co-culture technologies (i.e. proper field configuration for fish and rice) is necessary to achieve the sustainability. PMID:27349875

  3. Estimating Green Net National Product for Puerto Rico: An Economic Measure of Sustainability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Shanshan; Heberling, Matthew T.

    2016-04-01

    This paper presents the data sources and methodology used to estimate Green Net National Product (GNNP), an economic metric of sustainability, for Puerto Rico. Using the change in GNNP as a one-sided test of weak sustainability (i.e., positive growth in GNNP is not enough to show the economy is sustainable), we measure the movement away from sustainability by examining the change in GNNP from 1993 to 2009. In order to calculate GNNP, we require both economic and natural capital data, but limited data for Puerto Rico require a number of simplifying assumptions. Based on the environmental challenges faced by Puerto Rico, we include damages from air emissions and solid waste, the storm protection value of mangroves and the value of extracting crushed stone as components in the depreciation of natural capital. Our estimate of GNNP also includes the value of time, which captures the effects of technological progress. The results show that GNNP had an increasing trend over the 17 years studied with two periods of negative growth (2004-2006 and 2007-2008). Our additional analysis suggests that the negative growth in 2004-2006 was possibly due to a temporary economic downturn. However, the negative growth in 2007-2008 was likely from the decline in the value of time, suggesting the island of Puerto Rico was moving away from sustainability during this time.

  4. The usability of a product can be an ally of sustainability.

    PubMed

    Anjos, Thaiana P; Matias, Márcio; Gontijo, Leila A

    2012-01-01

    Few steps like turning off the tap while brushing your teeth, turn off the lights when leaving a room, recycle waste or using recycling bags are considered sustainable attitudes. Sustainable development is one that meets the needs of the present generation without compromising the future generations and it doesn't deplete resources for the future. Consume with conscious is a sustainable habit and usability of products contributes to this. The goal of this paper is to prove that the usability of software contributes positivity or negativity for sustainability. By calculating the amount of electrical power dissipated by an electronic device, you can discover the amount of energy lost by it, and consequently, to relate this quantity with the amount charged by the concessionaire for each kWh of energy used. It was concluded that a software with low usability cause users to lose a lot of time interacting with it and thus spend more energy and money that goes against the concept of sustainability. PMID:22317029

  5. Estimating Green Net National Product for Puerto Rico: An Economic Measure of Sustainability.

    PubMed

    Wu, Shanshan; Heberling, Matthew T

    2016-04-01

    This paper presents the data sources and methodology used to estimate Green Net National Product (GNNP), an economic metric of sustainability, for Puerto Rico. Using the change in GNNP as a one-sided test of weak sustainability (i.e., positive growth in GNNP is not enough to show the economy is sustainable), we measure the movement away from sustainability by examining the change in GNNP from 1993 to 2009. In order to calculate GNNP, we require both economic and natural capital data, but limited data for Puerto Rico require a number of simplifying assumptions. Based on the environmental challenges faced by Puerto Rico, we include damages from air emissions and solid waste, the storm protection value of mangroves and the value of extracting crushed stone as components in the depreciation of natural capital. Our estimate of GNNP also includes the value of time, which captures the effects of technological progress. The results show that GNNP had an increasing trend over the 17 years studied with two periods of negative growth (2004-2006 and 2007-2008). Our additional analysis suggests that the negative growth in 2004-2006 was possibly due to a temporary economic downturn. However, the negative growth in 2007-2008 was likely from the decline in the value of time, suggesting the island of Puerto Rico was moving away from sustainability during this time. PMID:26721472

  6. Sustainability evaluation of pasteurized milk production with a life cycle assessment approach: An Iranian case study.

    PubMed

    Rafiee, Shahin; Khoshnevisan, Benyamin; Mohammadi, Issa; Aghbashlo, Mortaza; Mousazadeh, Hossein; Clark, Sean

    2016-08-15

    Agro-food systems play a significant role in the economies of all nations due to energy use and the resulting environmental consequences. The sustainability of these systems is determined by a multitude of interacting economic, social and environmental factors. Dairy production presents a relevant example of the sustainability trade-offs that occur within such systems. On the one hand, dairy production constitutes an important part of the human diet, but it is also responsible for significant emissions of potent greenhouse gases and other pollutants. In this study, the environmental aspects of pasteurized milk production in Iran were investigated using a life-cycle approach. Three sub-systems, namely feed production, dairy farm and dairy factory, were taken into account to determine how and where Iranian pasteurized milk production might be made more environmentally friendly and energy efficient. The results clearly demonstrate that the feed production stage was the hot spot in pasteurized milk production in terms of energy consumption, environmental burdens and economic costs. The largest share of the total production costs belonged to animal feeds (43%), which were part of the feed production stage. The largest consumers of energy in the production of raw milk were alfalfa (30.3%), concentrate (24%), straw (17.8%) and maize (10.9%) for cows, followed by diesel fuel (6.6%) and electricity (5.6%). The global warming potential for the production of 1000kg of raw milk at the dairy-farm gate was estimated at 457kg CO2,eq. Thus, more than 69% of the total impact at the milk-processing gate resulted from the previous two sub-systems (feed production and dairy farm), with the feed-production stage accounting for the largest fractions of the environmental burdens. PMID:27110976

  7. Sustainable, efficient livestock production with high biodiversity and good welfare for animals

    PubMed Central

    Broom, D. M.; Galindo, F. A.; Murgueitio, E.

    2013-01-01

    What is the future for livestock agriculture in the world? Consumers have concerns about sustainability but many widely used livestock production methods do not satisfy consumers' requirements for a sustainable system. However, production can be sustainable, occurring in environments that: supply the needs of the animals resulting in good welfare, allow coexistence with a wide diversity of organisms native to the area, minimize carbon footprint and provide a fair lifestyle for the people working there. Conservation need not just involve tiny islands of natural vegetation in a barren world of agriculture, as there can be great increases in biodiversity in farmed areas. Herbivores, especially ruminants that consume materials inedible by humans, are important for human food in the future. However, their diet should not be just ground-level plants. Silvopastoral systems, pastures with shrubs and trees as well as herbage, are described which are normally more productive than pasture alone. When compared with widely used livestock production systems, silvopastoral systems can provide efficient feed conversion, higher biodiversity, enhanced connectivity between habitat patches and better animal welfare, so they can replace existing systems in many parts of the world and should be further developed. PMID:24068362

  8. Catalytic oxidation of biorefinery lignin to value-added chemicals to support sustainable biofuel production.

    PubMed

    Ma, Ruoshui; Xu, Yan; Zhang, Xiao

    2015-01-01

    Transforming plant biomass to biofuel is one of the few solutions that can truly sustain mankind's long-term needs for liquid transportation fuel with minimized environmental impact. However, despite decades of effort, commercial development of biomass-to-biofuel conversion processes is still not an economically viable proposition. Identifying value-added co-products along with the production of biofuel provides a key solution to overcoming this economic barrier. Lignin is the second most abundant component next to cellulose in almost all plant biomass; the emerging biomass refinery industry will inevitably generate an enormous amount of lignin. Development of selective biorefinery lignin-to-bioproducts conversion processes will play a pivotal role in significantly improving the economic feasibility and sustainability of biofuel production from renewable biomass. The urgency and importance of this endeavor has been increasingly recognized in the last few years. This paper reviews state-of-the-art oxidative lignin depolymerization chemistries employed in the papermaking process and oxidative catalysts that can be applied to biorefinery lignin to produce platform chemicals including phenolic compounds, dicarboxylic acids, and quinones in high selectivity and yield. The potential synergies of integrating new catalysts with commercial delignification chemistries are discussed. We hope the information will build on the existing body of knowledge to provide new insights towards developing practical and commercially viable lignin conversion technologies, enabling sustainable biofuel production from lignocellulosic biomass to be competitive with fossil fuel. PMID:25272962

  9. Sustained production of multi-decadal climate records - Lessons from the NOAA Climate Data Record Program

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bates, J. J.

    2015-12-01

    NOAA's Climate Data Record (CDR) Program was designed to be responsive to the needs of climate monitoring, research, and services with the ultimate aim of serving decision making across a spectrum of users for the long term. It requires the sustained production of high quality, multidecadal time series data describing the global atmosphere, oceans, and land surface that can be used for informed decision making. The challenges of a long-term program of sustaining CDRs, as contrasted with short-term efforts of traditional three-year research programs, are substantial and different. The sustained production of CDRs requires collaboration between experts in the climate community, data management, and software development and maintenance. It is also informed by scientific application and associated user feedback on the accessibility and usability of the produced CDRs. The CDR Program has developed a metric for assessing the maturity of CDRs with respect to data management, software, and user application and applied it to over 28 CDRs. The main/primary lesson learned over the past seven years is that a rigorous, team approach to data management, employing subject matter experts at every step, is critical to open and transparent production. This approach also makes it much easier to support the needs of users who want near-real-time production of "interim" CDRs for monitoring and users who want to use CDRs for tailored authoritative information, such as a drought index. This talk will review of the history of the CDR program, current status, and plans.

  10. “Omics” of Maize Stress Response for Sustainable Food Production: Opportunities and Challenges

    PubMed Central

    Gong, Fangping; Yang, Le; Tai, Fuju; Hu, Xiuli

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Maize originated in the highlands of Mexico approximately 8700 years ago and is one of the most commonly grown cereal crops worldwide, followed by wheat and rice. Abiotic stresses (primarily drought, salinity, and high and low temperatures), together with biotic stresses (primarily fungi, viruses, and pests), negatively affect maize growth, development, and eventually production. To understand the response of maize to abiotic and biotic stresses and its mechanism of stress tolerance, high-throughput omics approaches have been used in maize stress studies. Integrated omics approaches are crucial for dissecting the temporal and spatial system-level changes that occur in maize under various stresses. In this comprehensive analysis, we review the primary types of stresses that threaten sustainable maize production; underscore the recent advances in maize stress omics, especially proteomics; and discuss the opportunities, challenges, and future directions of maize stress omics, with a view to sustainable food production. The knowledge gained from studying maize stress omics is instrumental for improving maize to cope with various stresses and to meet the food demands of the exponentially growing global population. Omics systems science offers actionable potential solutions for sustainable food production, and we present maize as a notable case study. PMID:25401749

  11. Impact of sustaining a controlled residual growth on polyhydroxybutyrate yield and production kinetics in Cupriavidus necator.

    PubMed

    Grousseau, Estelle; Blanchet, Elise; Déléris, Stéphane; Albuquerque, Maria G E; Paul, Etienne; Uribelarrea, Jean-Louis

    2013-11-01

    In this study a complementary modeling and experimental approach was used to explore how growth controls the NADPH generation and availability, and the resulting impact on PHB (polyhydroxybutyrate) yields and kinetics. The results show that the anabolic demand allowed the NADPH production through the Entner-Doudoroff (ED) pathway, leading to a high maximal theoretical PHB production yield of 0.89 C mole C mole(-1); whereas without biomass production, NADPH regeneration is only possible via the isocitrate dehydrogenase leading to a theoretical yield of 0.67 C mole C mole(-1). Furthermore, the maximum specific rate of NADPH produced at maximal growth rate (to fulfil biomass requirement) was found to be the maximum set in every conditions, which by consequence determines the maximal PHB production rate. These results imply that sustaining a controlled residual growth improves the PHB specific production rate without altering production yield. PMID:24035890

  12. microRNA-146a promotes mycobacterial survival in macrophages through suppressing nitric oxide production

    PubMed Central

    Li, Miao; Wang, Jinli; Fang, Yimin; Gong, Sitang; Li, Meiyu; Wu, Minhao; Lai, Xiaomin; Zeng, Gucheng; Wang, Yi; Yang, Kun; Huang, Xi

    2016-01-01

    Macrophages play a crucial role in host innate anti-mycobacterial defense, which is tightly regulated by multiple factors, including microRNAs. Our previous study showed that a panel of microRNAs was markedly up-regulated in macrophages upon mycobacterial infection. Here, we investigated the biological function of miR-146a during mycobacterial infection. miR-146a expression was induced both in vitro and in vivo after Mycobacterium bovis BCG infection. The inducible miR-146a could suppress the inducible nitric oxide (NO) synthase (iNOS) expression and NO generation, thus promoting mycobacterial survival in macrophages. Inhibition of endogenous miR-146a increased NO production and mycobacterial clearance. Moreover, miR-146a attenuated the activation of nuclear factor κB and mitogen-activated protein kinases signaling pathways during BCG infection, which in turn repressed iNOS expression. Mechanistically, miR-146a directly targeted tumor necrosis factor (TNF) receptor-associated factor 6 (TRAF6) at post-transcriptional level. Silencing TRAF6 decreased iNOS expression and NO production in BCG-infected macrophages, while overexpression of TRAF6 reversed miR-146a-mediated inhibition of NO production and clearance of mycobacteria. Therefore, we demonstrated a novel role of miR-146a in the modulation of host defense against mycobacterial infection by repressing NO production via targeting TRAF6, which may provide a promising therapeutic target for tuberculosis. PMID:27025258

  13. Micro-concentration Lipopolysaccharide as a Novel Stimulator of Megakaryocytopoiesis that Synergizes with IL-6 for Platelet Production

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Di; Xie, Jun; Wang, Xuejun; Zou, Bingcheng; Yu, Yin; Jing, Tao; Zhang, Songmei; Zhang, Qing

    2015-01-01

    Lipopolysaccharide (LPS) induces platelet activation and enhances platelet sensitivity to aggregation, which might alter platelet counts. We found that serial doses of micro-concentration LPS significantly increased the platelet count in mice treated with kanamycin, along with increased expression of IL-6 compared with IL-3 and TPO in megakaryocytes obtained from the mouse bone morrow following LPS administration. Furthermore, LPS at lower levels ranging plus IL-6 effectively stimulated CFU-MK formation and increased CD41 expression and megakaryocyte polyploidization. Meanwhile, there was a sustained rise in the percentage of reticulated platelets in the whole blood in response to low-dosage LPS combined with IL-6. In vivo experiments also demonstrated that the administration of LPS combined with IL-6 substantially enhanced the number of circulating platelets in normal and thrombocytopenic mice. Notably, the optimal LPS concentration in combination with IL-6 might be a novel stimulator of TLR4 and IL-6R expression in Dami cell lines, which initially occurs through TLR4-IL-6R crosstalk and then involves the activation of NF-κB and phosphorylation of p38 MAPK. These data suggest a new paradigm for the regulation of megakaryocytopoiesis and platelet production via a synergistic effect of LPS and IL-6, which has the potential to be used for the design of new therapies. PMID:26330186

  14. Transgenic Hybrid Poplar for Sustainable and Scalable Production of the Commodity/Specialty Chemical, 2-Phenylethanol

    PubMed Central

    Costa, Michael A.; Marques, Joaquim V.; Dalisay, Doralyn S.; Herman, Barrington; Bedgar, Diana L.; Davin, Laurence B.; Lewis, Norman G.

    2013-01-01

    Fast growing hybrid poplar offers the means for sustainable production of specialty and commodity chemicals, in addition to rapid biomass production for lignocellulosic deconstruction. Herein we describe transformation of fast-growing transgenic hybrid poplar lines to produce 2-phenylethanol, this being an important fragrance, flavor, aroma, and commodity chemical. It is also readily converted into styrene or ethyl benzene, the latter being an important commodity aviation fuel component. Introducing this biochemical pathway into hybrid poplars marks the beginnings of developing a platform for a sustainable chemical delivery system to afford this and other valuable specialty/commodity chemicals at the scale and cost needed. These modified plant lines mainly sequester 2-phenylethanol via carbohydrate and other covalently linked derivatives, thereby providing an additional advantage of effective storage until needed. The future potential of this technology is discussed. MALDI metabolite tissue imaging also established localization of these metabolites in the leaf vasculature. PMID:24386157

  15. Transgenic hybrid poplar for sustainable and scalable production of the commodity/specialty chemical, 2-phenylethanol.

    PubMed

    Costa, Michael A; Marques, Joaquim V; Dalisay, Doralyn S; Herman, Barrington; Bedgar, Diana L; Davin, Laurence B; Lewis, Norman G

    2013-01-01

    Fast growing hybrid poplar offers the means for sustainable production of specialty and commodity chemicals, in addition to rapid biomass production for lignocellulosic deconstruction. Herein we describe transformation of fast-growing transgenic hybrid poplar lines to produce 2-phenylethanol, this being an important fragrance, flavor, aroma, and commodity chemical. It is also readily converted into styrene or ethyl benzene, the latter being an important commodity aviation fuel component. Introducing this biochemical pathway into hybrid poplars marks the beginnings of developing a platform for a sustainable chemical delivery system to afford this and other valuable specialty/commodity chemicals at the scale and cost needed. These modified plant lines mainly sequester 2-phenylethanol via carbohydrate and other covalently linked derivatives, thereby providing an additional advantage of effective storage until needed. The future potential of this technology is discussed. MALDI metabolite tissue imaging also established localization of these metabolites in the leaf vasculature. PMID:24386157

  16. Sustained H2 Production Driven by Photosynthetic Water Splitting in a Unicellular Cyanobacterium

    PubMed Central

    Melnicki, Matthew R.; Pinchuk, Grigoriy E.; Hill, Eric A.; Kucek, Leo A.; Fredrickson, Jim K.; Konopka, Allan; Beliaev, Alexander S.

    2012-01-01

    ABSTRACT The relationship between dinitrogenase-driven H2 production and oxygenic photosynthesis was investigated in a unicellular cyanobacterium, Cyanothece sp. ATCC 51142, using a novel custom-built photobioreactor equipped with advanced process control. Continuously illuminated nitrogen-deprived cells evolved H2 at rates up to 400 µmol ⋅ mg Chl−1 ⋅ h−1 in parallel with uninterrupted photosynthetic O2 production. Notably, sustained coproduction of H2 and O2 occurred over 100 h in the presence of CO2, with both gases displaying inverse oscillations which eventually dampened toward stable rates of 125 and 90 µmol ⋅ mg Chl−1 ⋅ h−1, respectively. Oscillations were not observed when CO2 was omitted, and instead H2 and O2 evolution rates were positively correlated. The sustainability of the process was further supported by stable chlorophyll content, maintenance of baseline protein and carbohydrate levels, and an enhanced capacity for linear electron transport as measured by chlorophyll fluorescence throughout the experiment. In situ light saturation analyses of H2 production displayed a strong dose dependence and lack of O2 inhibition. Inactivation of photosystem II had substantial long-term effects but did not affect short-term H2 production, indicating that the process is also supported by photosystem I activity and oxidation of endogenous glycogen. However, mass balance calculations suggest that carbohydrate consumption in the light may, at best, account for no more than 50% of the reductant required for the corresponding H2 production over that period. Collectively, our results demonstrate that uninterrupted H2 production in unicellular cyanobacteria can be fueled by water photolysis without the detrimental effects of O2 and have important implications for sustainable production of biofuels. PMID:22872781

  17. Sustained H2 Production Driven by Photosynthetic Water Splitting in a Unicellular Cyanobacterium

    SciTech Connect

    Melnicki, Matthew R.; Pinchuk, Grigoriy E.; Hill, Eric A.; Kucek, Leo A.; Fredrickson, Jim K.; Konopka, Allan; Beliaev, Alex S.

    2012-08-07

    Continuously illuminated nitrogen-deprived Cyanothece sp. ATCC 51142 evolved H2 via dinitrogenase at rates up to 400 μmol•mg Chl-1•h-1 in parallel with photosynthetic O2 production. Notably, sustained co-production of H2 and O2 occurred over 100 h in the presence of CO2, with both gases displaying inverse oscillations which eventually dampened to stable rates. Oscillations were not observed when CO2 was omitted, while H2 and O2 evolution rates were positively correlated. In situ light saturation analyses of H2 production displayed dose-dependence and lack of O2 inhibition. Inactivation of photosystem II had substantial long-term effects but did not affect the short-term H2 production indicating that the process is also supported by photosystem I activity and oxidation of endogenous glycogen. Collectively, our results demonstrate that uninterrupted H2 production in unicellular diazotrophic cyanobacteria can be fueled by water photolysis without the detrimental effects of O2 and have important implications for sustainable production of biofuels.

  18. Concept for Sustained Plant Production on ISS Using VEGGIE Capillary Mat Rooting System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stutte, Gary W.; Newsham, Gerard; Morrow, Robert M.; Wheeler, Raymond M.

    2011-01-01

    Plant growth in microgravity presents unique challenges associated with maintaining appropriate conditions for seed germination, seedling establishment, maturation and harvest. They include maintaining appropriate soil moisture content, nutrient balance, atmospheric mixing and containment. Sustained production imposes additional challenges of harvesting, replanting, and safety. The VEGGIE is a deployable (collapsible) plant growth chamber developed as part of a NASA SBIR Phase II by Orbitec, Madison, WI. The intent of VEGGIE is to provide a low-resource system to produce fresh vegetables for the crew on long duration missions. The VEGGIE uses and LED array for lighting, an expandable bellows for containment, and a capillary matting system for nutrient and water delivery. The project evaluated a number of approaches to achieve sustained production, and repeated plantings, using the capillary rooting system. A number of different root media, seed containment, and nutrient delivery systems were evaluated and effects on seed germination and growth were evaluated. A number of issues limiting sustained production, such as accumulation of nutrients, uniform water, elevated vapor pressure deficit, and media containment were identified. A concept using pre-planted rooting packs shown to effectively address a number of those issues and is a promising approach for future development as a planting system for microgravity conditions.

  19. Sustainable biomass products development and evaluation, Hamakua project. Final draft report

    SciTech Connect

    1998-05-01

    The PICHTR Sustainable Biomass Energy Program was developed to evaluate the potential to cultivate crops for energy production as an alternative use of lands made available by the closing of large sugar plantations. In particular, the closing of the Hamakua Sugar Company on the island of Hawaii brought a great deal of attention to the future of agriculture in this region and in the state. Many options were proposed. Several promising alternatives had been proposed for cane lands. These included dedicated feedstock supply systems (DFSS) for electrical energy production, cultivation of sugarcane to produce ethanol and related by-products, and the production of feed and crops to support animal agriculture. Implementation of some of the options might require preservation of large tracts of land and maintenance of the sugar mills and sugar infrastructure. An analysis of the technical, financial, and other issues necessary to reach conclusions regarding the optimal use of these lands was required. At the request of the Office of State Planning and Senator Akaka`s office, the Pacific International Center for High Technology Research (PICHTR) established and coordinated a working group composed of state, county, federal, and private sector representatives to identify sustainable energy options for the use of idle sugar lands on the island of Hawaii. The Sustainable Biomass Energy Program`s Hamakua Project was established to complete a comprehensive evaluation of the most viable alternatives and assess the options to grow crops as a source of raw materials for the production of transportation fuel and/or electricity on the island of Hawaii. The motivation for evaluating biomass to energy conversion embraced the considerations that Hawaii`s energy security would be improved by diversifying the fuels used for transportation and reducing dependency on imported fossil fuels. The use of waste products as feedstocks could divert wastes from landfills.

  20. Emergent Patterns of Forest Biomass Production from Across and within a Micro-Network

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pederson, N.; Martin Benito, D.; Bishop, D. A.; Dawson, A.; Dietze, M.; Druckenbrod, D.; Dye, A.; Gonzalez, A. C.; Hessl, A. E.; Martin Fernandez, J.; McLachlan, J. S.; Paciorek, C. J.; Poulter, B.; Williams, J. W.

    2014-12-01

    Many factors drive short- and long-term trends in forest biomass production. Replication at multiple scales, from within individual trees up to continental scales, is necessary to determine factors of growth and at what scale they are most important. Here we report on patterns of biomass production from within and across a micro-network of three forests in the northeastern US. Each forest has different histories and species composition, but each is within a similar climatological setting, which gives insight on important factors of short- and long-term patterns of forest production. One emergent pattern is that two forests are showing a large uptick in production over the last decade. Coincident to this uptick, late-season biomass production is showing a significant increase, even among 150-200+ year old trees. The third forest experienced a severe ice storm in the early-Aughts that paused a three-decade trend of increasing production. In the least diverse forest, the most dominant species drives most of the annual to decadal trend in production. In the most diverse forest, no one species appears to be driving landscape-level production, yet the emergent pattern of production reflects not only drought and pluvial events, but the impact of invasive species and the ice storm. Variation in annual biomass production for most species is strongly related to annual variations in soil moisture. Interestingly at the species level, coherency of growth among yellow birch is lower in the oldest forest in which is it is common versus the youngest forest. Differences in coherency suggest different drivers operating at different scales. Growth of red maple is also driven by moisture, but competition appears to be driving a long-term decline of individuals below the canopy. The decline begins soon after a severe defoliation event. In this same forest, however, significant wetting and warming over the last two decades appears to have reduced some of the climatic constraints on red

  1. Sustainable Utilization of Traditional Chinese Medicine Resources: Systematic Evaluation on Different Production Modes

    PubMed Central

    Li, Xiwen; Chen, Yuning; Yang, Qing; Wang, Yitao

    2015-01-01

    The usage amount of medicinal plant rapidly increased along with the development of traditional Chinese medicine industry. The higher market demand and the shortage of wild herbal resources enforce us to carry out large-scale introduction and cultivation. Herbal cultivation can ease current contradiction between medicinal resources supply and demand while they bring new problems such as pesticide residues and plant disease and pests. Researchers have recently placed high hopes on the application of natural fostering, a new method incorporated herbal production and diversity protecting practically, which can solve the problems brought by artificial cultivation. However no modes can solve all problems existing in current herbal production. This study evaluated different production modes including cultivation, natural fostering, and wild collection to guide the traditional Chinese medicine production for sustainable utilization of herbal resources. PMID:26074987

  2. Development of Sustainable Landscape Designs for Improved Biomass Production in the U.S. Corn Belt

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bonner, Ian J.

    Demand for renewable and sustainable energy options has resulted in a significant commitment by the US Government to research pathways for fuel production from biomass. The research presented in this thesis describes one potential pathway to increase the amount of biomass available for biofuel production by integrating dedicated energy crops into agricultural fields. In the first chapter an innovative landscape design method based on subfield placement of an energy crop into row crop fields in central Iowa is used to reduce financial loss for farmers, increase and diversify biomass production, and improve soil resources. The second chapter explores how subfield management decisions may be made using high fidelity data and modeling to balance concerns of primary crop production and economics. This work provides critical forward looking support to agricultural land managers and stakeholders in the biomass and bioenergy industry for pathways to improving land stewardship and energy security.

  3. Production and supply of high-quality food protein for human consumption: sustainability, challenges, and innovations.

    PubMed

    Wu, Guoyao; Fanzo, Jessica; Miller, Dennis D; Pingali, Prabhu; Post, Mark; Steiner, Jean L; Thalacker-Mercer, Anna E

    2014-08-01

    The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations estimates that 843 million people worldwide are hungry and a greater number suffer from nutrient deficiencies. Approximately one billion people have inadequate protein intake. The challenge of preventing hunger and malnutrition will become even greater as the global population grows from the current 7.2 billion people to 9.6 billion by 2050. With increases in income, population, and demand for more nutrient-dense foods, global meat production is projected to increase by 206 million tons per year during the next 35 years. These changes in population and dietary practices have led to a tremendous rise in the demand for food protein, especially animal-source protein. Consuming the required amounts of protein is fundamental to human growth and health. Protein needs can be met through intakes of animal and plant-source foods. Increased consumption of food proteins is associated with increased greenhouse gas emissions and overutilization of water. Consequently, concerns exist regarding impacts of agricultural production, processing and distribution of food protein on the environment, ecosystem, and sustainability. To address these challenging issues, the New York Academy of Sciences organized the conference "Frontiers in Agricultural Sustainability: Studying the Protein Supply Chain to Improve Dietary Quality" to explore sustainable innovations in food science and programming aimed at producing the required quality and quantity of protein through improved supply chains worldwide. This report provides an extensive discussion of these issues and summaries of the presentations from the conference. PMID:25123207

  4. Effects of social sustainability signaling on neural valuation signals and taste-experience of food products.

    PubMed

    Enax, Laura; Krapp, Vanessa; Piehl, Alexandra; Weber, Bernd

    2015-01-01

    Value-based decision making occurs when individuals choose between different alternatives and place a value on each alternative and its attributes. Marketing actions frequently manipulate product attributes, by adding, e.g., health claims on the packaging. A previous imaging study found that an emblem for organic products increased willingness to pay (WTP) and activity in the ventral striatum (VS). The current study investigated neural and behavioral processes underlying the influence of Fair Trade (FT) labeling on food valuation and choice. Sustainability is an important product attribute for many consumers, with FT signals being one way to highlight ethically sustainable production. Forty participants valuated products in combination with an FT emblem or no emblem and stated their WTP in a bidding task while in an MRI scanner. After that, participants tasted-objectively identical-chocolates, presented either as "FT" or as "conventionally produced". In the fMRI task, WTP was significantly higher for FT products. FT labeling increased activity in regions important for reward-processing and salience, that is, in the VS, anterior and posterior cingulate, as well as superior frontal gyrus. Subjective value, that is, WTP was correlated with activity in the ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC). We find that the anterior cingulate, VS and superior frontal gyrus exhibit task-related increases in functional connectivity to the vmPFC when an FT product was evaluated. Effective connectivity analyses revealed a highly probable directed modulation of the vmPFC by those three regions, suggesting a network which alters valuation processes. We also found a significant taste-placebo effect, with higher experienced taste pleasantness and intensity for FT labeled chocolates. Our results reveal a possible neural mechanism underlying valuation processes of certified food products. The results are important in light of understanding current marketing trends as well as designing

  5. Effects of social sustainability signaling on neural valuation signals and taste-experience of food products

    PubMed Central

    Enax, Laura; Krapp, Vanessa; Piehl, Alexandra; Weber, Bernd

    2015-01-01

    Value-based decision making occurs when individuals choose between different alternatives and place a value on each alternative and its attributes. Marketing actions frequently manipulate product attributes, by adding, e.g., health claims on the packaging. A previous imaging study found that an emblem for organic products increased willingness to pay (WTP) and activity in the ventral striatum (VS). The current study investigated neural and behavioral processes underlying the influence of Fair Trade (FT) labeling on food valuation and choice. Sustainability is an important product attribute for many consumers, with FT signals being one way to highlight ethically sustainable production. Forty participants valuated products in combination with an FT emblem or no emblem and stated their WTP in a bidding task while in an MRI scanner. After that, participants tasted—objectively identical—chocolates, presented either as “FT” or as “conventionally produced”. In the fMRI task, WTP was significantly higher for FT products. FT labeling increased activity in regions important for reward-processing and salience, that is, in the VS, anterior and posterior cingulate, as well as superior frontal gyrus. Subjective value, that is, WTP was correlated with activity in the ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC). We find that the anterior cingulate, VS and superior frontal gyrus exhibit task-related increases in functional connectivity to the vmPFC when an FT product was evaluated. Effective connectivity analyses revealed a highly probable directed modulation of the vmPFC by those three regions, suggesting a network which alters valuation processes. We also found a significant taste-placebo effect, with higher experienced taste pleasantness and intensity for FT labeled chocolates. Our results reveal a possible neural mechanism underlying valuation processes of certified food products. The results are important in light of understanding current marketing trends as well as

  6. SALSA: a simulation tool to assess ecological sustainability of agricultural production.

    PubMed

    Eriksson, Ingrid Strid; Elmquist, Helena; Nybrant, Thomas

    2005-06-01

    In order to assess the ecological sustainability of agricultural production systems, there is a need for effective tools. We describe an environmental systems analysis tool called SALSA (Systems Ana/ysis for Sustainable Agriculture). It consists of substance/material flow models in which the simulation results are interpreted with life-cycle assessment methodology. The application of SALSA is demonstrated in a case study in which three different ways of producing pigs are compared with respect to energy input and the environmental impacts of global warming, eutrophication, and acidification. The scenario that combined a low-protein diet without soy meal with an improved manure-management technique with low nitrogen losses was the best for all impact categories studied. The strength of the SALSA models was their capacity to capture consequences of management options that had an influence on several processes on a farm, which enabled the type of complex studies we describe. PMID:16092274

  7. Overexpression of microRNAs enhances recombinant protein production in Chinese hamster ovary cells.

    PubMed

    Loh, Wan Ping; Loo, Bernard; Zhou, Lihan; Zhang, Peiqing; Lee, Dong-Yup; Yang, Yuansheng; Lam, Kong Peng

    2014-09-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are short, non-coding RNAs that can negatively regulate expression of multiple genes at post-transcriptional levels. Using miRNAs to target multiple genes and pathways is a promising cell-engineering strategy to increase recombinant protein production in mammalian cells. Here, we identified miRs-17, -19b, -20a, and -92a to be differentially expressed between high- and low- monoclonal antibody-producing Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cell clones using next-generation sequencing and quantitative real-time PCR. These miRNAs were stably overexpressed individually and in combination in a high-producing clone to assess their effects on CHO cell growth, recombinant protein productivity and product quality. Stably transfected pools demonstrated 24-34% increases in specific productivity (qP) and 21-31% increases in titer relative to the parental clone, without significant alterations in proliferation rates. The highest protein-producing clones isolated from these pools exhibited 130-140% increases in qP and titer compared to the parental clone, without major changes in product aggregation and N-glycosylation profile. From our clonal data, correlations between enhanced qP/titer and increased levels of miRs-17, -19b, and -92a were observed. Our results demonstrate the potential of miRs-17, -19b, and -92a as cell-engineering targets to increase recombinant protein production in mammalian cells. PMID:24819042

  8. Functional significance of dinitrogen fixation in sustaining coral productivity under oligotrophic conditions.

    PubMed

    Cardini, Ulisse; Bednarz, Vanessa N; Naumann, Malik S; van Hoytema, Nanne; Rix, Laura; Foster, Rachel A; Al-Rshaidat, Mamoon M D; Wild, Christian

    2015-11-01

    Functional traits define species by their ecological role in the ecosystem. Animals themselves are host-microbe ecosystems (holobionts), and the application of ecophysiological approaches can help to understand their functioning. In hard coral holobionts, communities of dinitrogen (N2)-fixing prokaryotes (diazotrophs) may contribute a functional trait by providing bioavailable nitrogen (N) that could sustain coral productivity under oligotrophic conditions. This study quantified N2 fixation by diazotrophs associated with four genera of hermatypic corals on a northern Red Sea fringing reef exposed to high seasonality. We found N2 fixation activity to be 5- to 10-fold higher in summer, when inorganic nutrient concentrations were lowest and water temperature and light availability highest. Concurrently, coral gross primary productivity remained stable despite lower Symbiodinium densities and tissue chlorophyll a contents. In contrast, chlorophyll a content per Symbiodinium cell increased from spring to summer, suggesting that algal cells overcame limitation of N, an essential element for chlorophyll synthesis. In fact, N2 fixation was positively correlated with coral productivity in summer, when its contribution was estimated to meet 11% of the Symbiodinium N requirements. These results provide evidence of an important functional role of diazotrophs in sustaining coral productivity when alternative external N sources are scarce. PMID:26511052

  9. Expansion of Sugarcane area for Ethanol production in Brazil: a Threat to Food Production and Environmental Sustainability?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Monteiro, J. M.; Coutinho, H. L.; Veiga, L. B.

    2012-12-01

    The raise in fossil fuels prices and the increase in Greenhouse Gas emissions is leading nations to adopt non-fossil fuels based energy sources. Sugarcane crops for biofuel production are expanding fast in Brazil, mainly through land use change (LUC) processes, in substitution of pasturelands and grain crops plantations. Would these changes affect negatively sustainability assessments of bioethanol production in the future? We estimate the extent of sugarcane cropland needed to produce sufficient ethanol to attend to market demands. This work presents a baseline scenario for sugarcane cropping area in Brazil in 2017, taking into account market forces (supply and demand). We also comment on a policy instrument targetting sustainable sugarcane production in Brazil. The expansion scenarios took into account the demand for ethanol from 2008-2017, produced by the Energy Research Corporation, of Brazil. In order to develop the expansion scenario, we estimated the amount of sugarcane needed to attend the ethanol demand. We then calculated the area needed to generate that amount of sugarcane. The analytical parameters were: 1) one tonne of sugarcane produces an average 81.6 liters of ethanol; 2) the average sugarcane crop productivity varied linearly from 81.4 tons/hectare in 2008 to 86.2 tons/hectare in 2017. We also assumed that sugarcane productivity in 2017 as the current average productivity of sugarcane in the State of São Paulo. The results show that the requirement for 3.5 million ha in 2007 will increase to 9 million ha in 2017. The Sugarcane Agroecologic Zoning (ZAECANA), published by Embrapa (2009), is a tool that not only informs the territory occupation and use policies, but also classifies land as qualified, restricted or non-qualified for the plantation of sugarcane crops. The ZAECANA is based on soil and climate suitability assessments, and is presented in a spatially-explicit format. Adopting the precautionary principle, a national policy was established

  10. Silicification-induced cell aggregation for the sustainable production of H2 under aerobic conditions.

    PubMed

    Xiong, Wei; Zhao, Xiaohong; Zhu, Genxing; Shao, Changyu; Li, Yaling; Ma, Weimin; Xu, Xurong; Tang, Ruikang

    2015-10-01

    Photobiological hydrogen production is of great importance because of its promise for generating clean renewable energy. In nature, green algae cannot produce hydrogen as a result of the extreme sensitivity of hydrogenase to oxygen. However, we find that silicification-induced green algae aggregates can achieve sustainable photobiological hydrogen production even under natural aerobic conditions. The core-shell structure of the green algae aggregates creates a balance between photosynthetic electron generation and hydrogenase activity, thus allowing the production of hydrogen. This finding provides a viable pathway for the solar-driven splitting of water into hydrogen and oxygen to develop green energy alternatives by using rationally designed cell-material complexes. PMID:26302695

  11. Banana production systems: identification of alternative systems for more sustainable production.

    PubMed

    Bellamy, Angelina Sanderson

    2013-04-01

    Large-scale, monoculture production systems dependent on synthetic fertilizers and pesticides, increase yields, but are costly and have deleterious impacts on human health and the environment. This research investigates variations in banana production practices in Costa Rica, to identify alternative systems that combine high productivity and profitability, with reduced reliance on agrochemicals. Farm workers were observed during daily production activities; 39 banana producers and 8 extension workers/researchers were interviewed; and a review of field experiments conducted by the National Banana Corporation between 1997 and 2002 was made. Correspondence analysis showed that there is no structured variation in large-scale banana producers' practices, but two other banana production systems were identified: a small-scale organic system and a small-scale conventional coffee-banana intercropped system. Field-scale research may reveal ways that these practices can be scaled up to achieve a productive and profitable system producing high-quality export bananas with fewer or no pesticides. PMID:23055273

  12. Land-based production of animal protein: impacts, efficiency, and sustainability.

    PubMed

    Wu, Guoyao; Bazer, Fuller W; Cross, H Russell

    2014-11-01

    Land-based production of high-quality protein by livestock and poultry plays an important role in improving human nutrition, growth, and health, as well as economical and social developments worldwide. With exponential growth of the global population and marked rises in meat consumption per capita, demands for animal-source protein are expected to increase by 72% between 2013 and 2050. This raises concerns about the sustainability and environmental impacts of animal agriculture. An attractive solution to meeting the increasing needs for animal products and mitigating undesired effects of agricultural practices is to enhance the efficiency of animal growth, reproduction, and lactation. Breeding techniques may help achieve this goal, but have only met with limited success. A promising, mechanism-based approach is to optimize the proportion and amounts of amino acids in diets for maximizing whole-body protein synthesis and feed efficiency. Improvements in farm animal productivity will not only decrease the contamination of soils, groundwater, and air by excessive manure, but will also help sustain animal agriculture to produce high-quality protein for the expanding population in the face of diminishing resources. PMID:25376888

  13. Adaptation to climate change in industry: improving resource efficiency through sustainable production applications.

    PubMed

    Alkayal, Emrah; Bogurcu, Merve; Ulutas, Ferda; Demirer, Göksel Niyazi

    2015-01-01

    The objective of this study was to investigate the climate change adaptation opportunities of six companies from different sectors through resource efficiency and sustainable production. A total of 77 sustainable production options were developed for the companies based on the audits conducted. After screening these opportunities with each company's staff, 19 options were selected and implemented. Significant water savings (849,668 m3/year) were achieved as a result of the applications that targeted reduction of water use. In addition to water savings, the energy consumption was reduced by 3,607 MWh, which decreased the CO2 emissions by 904.1 tons/year. Moreover, the consumption of 278.4 tons/year of chemicals (e.g., NaCl, CdO, NaCN) was avoided, thus the corresponding pollution load to the wastewater treatment plant was reduced. Besides the tangible improvements, other gains were achieved, such as improved product quality, improved health and safety conditions, reduced maintenance requirements, and ensured compliance with national and EU regulations. To the best of the authors' knowledge, this study is the first ever activity in Turkey devoted to climate change adaptation in the private sector. This study may serve as a building block in Turkey for the integration of climate change adaptation and mitigation approach in the industry, since water efficiency (adaptation) and carbon reduction (mitigation) are achieved simultaneously. PMID:25630123

  14. Integrated nutrient management (INM) for sustaining crop productivity and reducing environmental impact: a review.

    PubMed

    Wu, Wei; Ma, Baoluo

    2015-04-15

    The increasing food demands of a growing human population and the need for an environmentally friendly strategy for sustainable agricultural development require significant attention when addressing the issue of enhancing crop productivity. Here we discuss the role of integrated nutrient management (INM) in resolving these concerns, which has been proposed as a promising strategy for addressing such challenges. INM has multifaceted potential for the improvement of plant performance and resource efficiency while also enabling the protection of the environment and resource quality. This review examines the concepts, objectives, procedures and principles of INM. A comprehensive literature search revealed that INM enhances crop yields by 8-150% compared with conventional practices, increases water-use efficiency, and the economic returns to farmers, while improving grain quality and soil health and sustainability. Model simulation and fate assessment further reveal that reactive nitrogen (N) losses and GHG (greenhouse gas) emissions are reduced substantially under advanced INM practices. Lower inputs of chemical fertilizer and therefore lower human and environmental costs (such as intensity of land use, N use, reactive N losses and GHG emissions) were achieved under advanced INM practices without compromising crop yields. Various approaches and perspectives for further development of INM in the near future are also proposed and discussed. Strong and convincing evidence indicates that INM practice could be an innovative and environmentally friendly strategy for sustainable agriculture worldwide. PMID:25644838

  15. Sustainable energy crop: An analysis of ethanol production from cassava in Thailand

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ubolsook, Aerwadee

    The first essay formulates a dynamic general equilibrium optimal control model of an energy crop as part of a country's planned resource use over a period of time. The model attempts to allocate consumption, production, and factors of production to achieve the country's sustainable development goal. A Cobb-Douglas specification is used for both utility and production functions in the model. We calibrate the model with Thailand data. The selected model is used to generate the stationary state solution and to simulate the optimal policy function and optimal time paths. Two methods are used: a linear approximation method and the Runke-Kutta reverse shooting method. The model provides numerical results that can be used as information for decision makers and stakeholders to devise an economic plan to achieve sustainable development goals. The second essay studies the effect of international trade and changes in labor supply, land supply, and the price of imported energy on energy crop production for bio fuel and food, as well as impacts on social welfare. We develop a dynamic general equilibrium model to describe two baseline scenarios, a closed economy and an open economy. We find that international trade increases welfare and decreases the energy price. Furthermore, resources are allocated to produce more food under the open economy scenario than the quantities produced under a closed economy assumption. An increase in labor supply and land supply result in an increase in social welfare. An increase in imported energy price leads to a welfare loss, higher energy production, and lower food production. The third essay develops a partial equilibrium econometric model to project the impacts of an increase in ethanol production on the Thai agriculture sector over the next ten years. The model is applied to three scenarios for analyzing the effect of government ethanol production targets. The results from the baseline model and scenario analysis indicate that an expansion

  16. Optimizing root system architecture in biofuel crops for sustainable energy production and soil carbon sequestration

    PubMed Central

    To, Jennifer PC; Zhu, Jinming; Benfey, Philip N

    2010-01-01

    Root system architecture (RSA) describes the dynamic spatial configuration of different types and ages of roots in a plant, which allows adaptation to different environments. Modifications in RSA enhance agronomic traits in crops and have been implicated in soil organic carbon content. Together, these fundamental properties of RSA contribute to the net carbon balance and overall sustainability of biofuels. In this article, we will review recent data supporting carbon sequestration by biofuel crops, highlight current progress in studying RSA, and discuss future opportunities for optimizing RSA for biofuel production and soil carbon sequestration. PMID:21173868

  17. Environmental Sustainability and Effects on Urban Micro Region using Agent-Based Modeling of Urbanisation in Select Major Indian Cities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aithal, B. H.

    2015-12-01

    Abstract: Urbanisation has gained momentum with globalization in India. Policy decisions to set up commercial, industrial hubs have fuelled large scale migration, added with population upsurge has contributed to the fast growing urban region that needs to be monitored in order to design sustainable urban cities. Unplanned urbanization have resulted in the growth of peri-urban region referred to as urban sprawl, are often devoid of basic amenities and infrastructure leading to large scale environmental problems that are evident. Remote sensing data acquired through space borne sensors at regular interval helps in understanding urban dynamics aided by Geoinformatics which has proved very effective in mapping and monitoring for sustainable urban planning. Cellular automata (CA) is a robust approach for the spatially explicit simulation of land-use land cover dynamics. CA uses rules, states, conditions that are vital factors in modelling urbanisation. This communication effectively introduces simulation assistances of CA with the agent based modelling supported by its fuzzy characteristics and weightages through analytical hierarchal process (AHP). This has been done considering perceived agents such as industries, natural resource etc. Respective agent's role in development of a particular regions into an urban area has been examined with weights and its influence of each of these agents based on its characteristics functions. Validation was performed obtaining a high kappa coefficient indicating the quality and the allocation performance of the model & validity of the model to predict future projections. The prediction using the proposed model was performed for 2030. Further environmental sustainability of each of these cities are explored such as water features, environment, greenhouse gas emissions, effects on human human health etc., Modeling suggests trend of various land use classes transformation with the spurt in urban expansions based on specific regions and

  18. Sustainability of egg production in the United States--the policy and market context.

    PubMed

    Mench, J A; Sumner, D A; Rosen-Molina, J T

    2011-01-01

    The US egg industry is being pressured from many directions to change its production practices, particularly to address concerns about hen welfare in conventional cage systems. Responding to similar pressures, in 1999, the European Union banned conventional laying cages starting in 2012. This now impending European ban has led to the development of several alternative housing systems. These include noncage systems like aviaries and modified (enriched or furnished) cages that include perches, areas in which the hens can forage and dustbathe, and nests. Understanding the European experience is valuable as the United States considers the future direction of the egg industry. In the United States, the proportion of eggs produced in alternative systems is small (less than 5% of output) but growing, in part due to market and political incentives for systems that provide hens with more behavioral freedom than conventional cages. Animal welfare, however, is only one element of a sustainable production system. Other elements include those related to public values, the environment, economics, worker health, and food safety and quality. Eggs are a primary source of animal protein globally, and the United States is the third largest producer of eggs in the world, behind China and the European Union. The national table egg flock comprises about 280 million hens housed in all regions but with approximately 60% of eggs produced in the 10 leading states. Adopting new housing systems will have substantial effects on costs and other aspects of egg production on both a regional and national scale, with some positive effects but also potential negative effects that need to be carefully considered. This paper discusses the US egg industry in the context of legislation and standards related to hen housing systems. It also addresses initiatives by retailers, nongovernmental organizations, and private certification organizations to shape production practices in the egg industry as well as

  19. Technology for Improving Production, Economic Efficiency, Quality and Sustainability in Peanut Production and Handling

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Proper crop rotation is essential to maintaining high peanut yield and quality. However, the economic considerations of maintaining or altering crop rotation sequences must incorporate the commodity prices, production costs, and yield responses of all crops in, or potentially in, the crop rotation ...

  20. Food and sustainability: do consumers recognize, understand and value on-package information on production standards?

    PubMed

    Hoogland, Carolien T; de Boer, Joop; Boersema, Jan J

    2007-07-01

    We tested how consumers recognize, understand and value on-package information about food production methods that may contribute to a more sustainable agriculture. Nine copy tests were formed, each containing one out of three products and one out of three panels of information. The products were (1) fillet of chicken, (2) semi-skimmed milk and (3) fillet of salmon. The panels of information were (a) a certified organic logo and details about the animal welfare standards of organic products, (b) just the logo, or (c) a statement in which the product was attributed to the world market. About 371 customers of a supermarket in the city of Amsterdam filled in a questionnaire, which included a subset of three copy tests. The results showed that many consumers did not realize that the organic logo already covers all the standards. They were inclined to underestimate the distinctive advantage of the logo; products with logo and details got higher ratings of positive attributes but were also considered more expensive. As a consequence, the detailed information panels enabled consumers to choose more in agreement with their personal values but the net impacts on purchase intentions were small. PMID:17303285

  1. Sustainable Systems Analysis of Production and Transportation Scenarios for Conventional and Bio-based Energy Commodities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Doran, E. M.; Golden, J. S.; Nowacek, D. P.

    2013-12-01

    International commerce places unique pressures on the sustainability of water resources and marine environments. System impacts include noise, emissions, and chemical and biological pollutants like introduction of invasive species into key ecosystems. At the same time, maritime trade also enables the sustainability ambition of intragenerational equity in the economy through the global circulation of commodities and manufactured goods, including agricultural, energy and mining resources (UN Trade and Development Board 2013). This paper presents a framework to guide the analysis of the multiple dimensions of the sustainable commerce-ocean nexus. As a demonstration case, we explore the social, economic and environmental aspects of the nexus framework using scenarios for the production and transportation of conventional and bio-based energy commodities. Using coupled LCA and GIS methodologies, we are able to orient the findings spatially for additional insight. Previous work on the sustainable use of marine resources has focused on distinct aspects of the maritime environment. The framework presented here, integrates the anthropogenic use, governance and impacts on the marine and coastal environments with the natural components of the system. A similar framework has been highly effective in progressing the study of land-change science (Turner et al 2007), however modification is required for the unique context of the marine environment. This framework will enable better research integration and planning for sustainability objectives including mitigation and adaptation to climate change, sea level rise, reduced dependence on fossil fuels, protection of critical marine habitat and species, and better management of the ocean as an emerging resource base for the production and transport of commodities and energy across the globe. The framework can also be adapted for vulnerability analysis, resilience studies and to evaluate the trends in production, consumption and

  2. Community Markets for Conservation (COMACO) links biodiversity conservation with sustainable improvements in livelihoods and food production

    PubMed Central

    Lewis, Dale; Bell, Samuel D.; Fay, John; Bothi, Kim L.; Gatere, Lydiah; Kabila, Makando; Mukamba, Mwangala; Matokwani, Edwin; Mushimbalume, Matthews; Moraru, Carmen I.; Lehmann, Johannes; Lassoie, James; Wolfe, David; Lee, David R.; Buck, Louise; Travis, Alexander J.

    2011-01-01

    In the Luangwa Valley, Zambia, persistent poverty and hunger present linked challenges to rural development and biodiversity conservation. Both household coping strategies and larger-scale economic development efforts have caused severe natural resource degradation that limits future economic opportunities and endangers ecosystem services. A model based on a business infrastructure has been developed to promote and maintain sustainable agricultural and natural resource management practices, leading to direct and indirect conservation outcomes. The Community Markets for Conservation (COMACO) model operates primarily with communities surrounding national parks, strengthening conservation benefits produced by these protected areas. COMACO first identifies the least food-secure households and trains them in sustainable agricultural practices that minimize threats to natural resources while meeting household needs. In addition, COMACO identifies people responsible for severe natural resource depletion and trains them to generate alternative income sources. In an effort to maintain compliance with these practices, COMACO provides extension support and access to high-value markets that would otherwise be inaccessible to participants. Because the model is continually evolving via adaptive management, success or failure of the model as a whole is difficult to quantify at this early stage. We therefore test specific hypotheses and present data documenting the stabilization of previously declining wildlife populations; the meeting of thresholds of productivity that give COMACO access to stable, high-value markets and progress toward economic self-sufficiency; and the adoption of sustainable agricultural practices by participants and other community members. Together, these findings describe a unique, business-oriented model for poverty alleviation, food production, and biodiversity conservation. PMID:21873184

  3. Storage sizing for embedding of local gas production in a micro gas grid

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alkano, D.; Nefkens, W. J.; Scherpen, J. M. A.; Volkerts, M.

    2014-12-01

    In this paper we study the optimal control of a micro grid of biogas producers. The paper considers the possibility to have a local storage device for each producer, who partly consumes his own production, i.e. prosumer. In addition, connected prosumers can sell stored gas to create revenue from it. An optimization model is employed to derive the size of storage device and to provide a pricing mechanism in an effort to value the stored gas. Taking into account physical grid constraints, the model is constructed in a centralized scheme of model predictive control. Case studies show that there is a relation between the demand and price profiles in terms of peaks and lows. The price profiles generally follow each other. The case studies are employed as well to to study the impacts of model parameters on deriving the storage size.

  4. Dedicated Industrial Oilseed Crops as Metabolic Engineering Platforms for Sustainable Industrial Feedstock Production.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Li-Hua; Krens, Frans; Smith, Mark A; Li, Xueyuan; Qi, Weicong; van Loo, Eibertus N; Iven, Tim; Feussner, Ivo; Nazarenus, Tara J; Huai, Dongxin; Taylor, David C; Zhou, Xue-Rong; Green, Allan G; Shockey, Jay; Klasson, K Thomas; Mullen, Robert T; Huang, Bangquan; Dyer, John M; Cahoon, Edgar B

    2016-01-01

    Feedstocks for industrial applications ranging from polymers to lubricants are largely derived from petroleum, a non-renewable resource. Vegetable oils with fatty acid structures and storage forms tailored for specific industrial uses offer renewable and potentially sustainable sources of petrochemical-type functionalities. A wide array of industrial vegetable oils can be generated through biotechnology, but will likely require non-commodity oilseed platforms dedicated to specialty oil production for commercial acceptance. Here we show the feasibility of three Brassicaceae oilseeds crambe, camelina, and carinata, none of which are widely cultivated for food use, as hosts for complex metabolic engineering of wax esters for lubricant applications. Lines producing wax esters >20% of total seed oil were generated for each crop and further improved for high temperature oxidative stability by down-regulation of fatty acid polyunsaturation. Field cultivation of optimized wax ester-producing crambe demonstrated commercial utility of these engineered crops and a path for sustainable production of other industrial oils in dedicated specialty oilseeds. PMID:26916792

  5. Dedicated Industrial Oilseed Crops as Metabolic Engineering Platforms for Sustainable Industrial Feedstock Production

    PubMed Central

    Zhu, Li-Hua; Krens, Frans; Smith, Mark A.; Li, Xueyuan; Qi, Weicong; van Loo, Eibertus N.; Iven, Tim; Feussner, Ivo; Nazarenus, Tara J.; Huai, Dongxin; Taylor, David C.; Zhou, Xue-Rong; Green, Allan G.; Shockey, Jay; Klasson, K. Thomas; Mullen, Robert T.; Huang, Bangquan; Dyer, John M.; Cahoon, Edgar B.

    2016-01-01

    Feedstocks for industrial applications ranging from polymers to lubricants are largely derived from petroleum, a non-renewable resource. Vegetable oils with fatty acid structures and storage forms tailored for specific industrial uses offer renewable and potentially sustainable sources of petrochemical-type functionalities. A wide array of industrial vegetable oils can be generated through biotechnology, but will likely require non-commodity oilseed platforms dedicated to specialty oil production for commercial acceptance. Here we show the feasibility of three Brassicaceae oilseeds crambe, camelina, and carinata, none of which are widely cultivated for food use, as hosts for complex metabolic engineering of wax esters for lubricant applications. Lines producing wax esters >20% of total seed oil were generated for each crop and further improved for high temperature oxidative stability by down-regulation of fatty acid polyunsaturation. Field cultivation of optimized wax ester-producing crambe demonstrated commercial utility of these engineered crops and a path for sustainable production of other industrial oils in dedicated specialty oilseeds. PMID:26916792

  6. Iron control in west Texas sour-gas wells provides sustained production increases

    SciTech Connect

    Walker, M.L.; Dill, W.R.; Besler, M.R.; McFatridge, D.G. )

    1991-05-01

    Permian Basin operators have recorded sustained production increases in oil wells by preventing precipitation of iron sulfide and other sulfur-containing species. This improvement has resulted largely from cleaning out tubing before acidizing and from preventing the precipitation of ferrous sulfide and the formation of elemental sulfur by simultaneous use of iron chelants and sulfide-control agents. Previously used methods gave only temporary production increases that terminated when iron dissolved by the stimulation acid reprecipitated in the pay zone and damage the formation after the stimulation acid was spent. This paper describes a method to optimize iron sulfide control, methods to minimize reprecipitation, and case histories from the Permian Basin that show improved methods to control iron in sour-well environments.

  7. Fuelling the future: microbial engineering for the production of sustainable biofuels.

    PubMed

    Liao, James C; Mi, Luo; Pontrelli, Sammy; Luo, Shanshan

    2016-04-01

    Global climate change linked to the accumulation of greenhouse gases has caused concerns regarding the use of fossil fuels as the major energy source. To mitigate climate change while keeping energy supply sustainable, one solution is to rely on the ability of microorganisms to use renewable resources for biofuel synthesis. In this Review, we discuss how microorganisms can be explored for the production of next-generation biofuels, based on the ability of bacteria and fungi to use lignocellulose; through direct CO2 conversion by microalgae; using lithoautotrophs driven by solar electricity; or through the capacity of microorganisms to use methane generated from landfill. Furthermore, we discuss how to direct these substrates to the biosynthetic pathways of various fuel compounds and how to optimize biofuel production by engineering fuel pathways and central metabolism. PMID:27026253

  8. Synthetic nitrogen fertilizers deplete soil nitrogen: a global dilemma for sustainable cereal production.

    PubMed

    Mulvaney, R L; Khan, S A; Ellsworth, T R

    2009-01-01

    Cereal production that now sustains a world population of more than 6.5 billion has tripled during the past 40 yr, concurrent with an increase from 12 to 104 Tg yr(-1) of synthetic N applied largely in ammoniacal fertilizers. These fertilizers have been managed as a cost-effective form of insurance against low yields, without regard to the inherent effect of mineral N in promoting microbial C utilization. Such an effect is consistent with a net loss of soil organic C recently observed for the Morrow Plots, America's oldest experiment field, after 40 to 50 yr of synthetic N fertilization that substantially exceeded grain N removal. A similar decline in total soil N is reported herein for the same site and would be expected from the predominantly organic occurrence of soil N. This decline is in agreement with numerous long-term baseline data sets from chemical-based cropping systems involving a wide variety of soils, geographic regions, and tillage practices. The loss of organic N decreases soil productivity and the agronomic efficiency (kg grain kg(-1) N) of fertilizer N and has been implicated in widespread reports of yield stagnation or even decline for grain production in Asia. A major global evaluation of current cereal production systems should be undertaken, with a view toward using scientific and technological advances to increase input efficiencies. As one aspect of this strategy, the input of ammoniacal N should be more accurately matched to crop N requirement. Long-term sustainability may require agricultural diversification involving a gradual transition from intensive synthetic N inputs to legume-based crop rotations. PMID:19875786

  9. Making better maize plants for sustainable grain production in a changing climate

    PubMed Central

    Gong, Fangping; Wu, Xiaolin; Zhang, Huiyong; Chen, Yanhui; Wang, Wei

    2015-01-01

    Achieving grain supply security with limited arable land is a major challenge in the twenty-first century, owing to the changing climate and increasing global population. Maize plays an increasingly vital role in global grain production. As a C4 plant, maize has a high yield potential. Maize is predicted to become the number one cereal in the world by 2020. However, maize production has plateaued in many countries, and hybrid and production technologies have been fully exploited. Thus, there is an urgent need to shape maize traits and architectures for increased stress tolerance and higher yield in a changing climate. Recent achievements in genomics, proteomics, and metabolomics have provided an unprecedented opportunity to make better maize. In this paper, we discuss the current challenges and potential of maize production, particularly in China. We also highlight the need for enhancing maize tolerance to drought and heat waves, summarize the elite shoot and root traits and phenotypes, and propose an ideotype for sustainable maize production in a changing climate. This will facilitate targeted maize improvement through a conventional breeding program combined with molecular techniques. PMID:26500671

  10. Progress toward evaluating the sustainability of switchgrass production as a bioenergy crop using the SWAT model

    SciTech Connect

    Baskaran, Latha Malar; Jager, Yetta; Schweizer, Peter E; Srinivasan, Raghavan

    2010-01-01

    Adding bioenergy to the US energy portfolio requires long-term profitability for bioenergy producers and the long-term protection of affected ecosystems. In this study, we present steps along the path towards evaluating both sides of the sustainability equation (production and environmental) for switchgrass (Panicum virgatum) using the Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT). We modeled production of switchgrass and river flow using SWAT for current landscapes at a regional scale. To quantify feedstock production, we compared lowland switchgrass yields simulated by SWAT with estimates from a model based on empirical data for the eastern US. Geographic patterns were very similar. Average yields reported in field trials tended to be higher than average SWAT-predicted yields, which may nevertheless be more representative of production-scale yields. As a preliminary step toward quantifying bioenergy-related changes in water quality, we evaluated flow predictions by the SWAT model for the Arkansas-Red-White river basin. Monthly SWAT flow predictions were compared to USGS measurements from 86 subbasins across the region. Although agreement was good, analysis of residuals (functional validation) identified patterns to guide future improvements. Our next step will be to continue model improvement, after which we will forecast changes in water quality associated with incorporating bioenergy crops into future landscapes. This analysis will help us, in future, to identify areas with the highest economic and environmental potential for feedstock production.

  11. Making better maize plants for sustainable grain production in a changing climate.

    PubMed

    Gong, Fangping; Wu, Xiaolin; Zhang, Huiyong; Chen, Yanhui; Wang, Wei

    2015-01-01

    Achieving grain supply security with limited arable land is a major challenge in the twenty-first century, owing to the changing climate and increasing global population. Maize plays an increasingly vital role in global grain production. As a C4 plant, maize has a high yield potential. Maize is predicted to become the number one cereal in the world by 2020. However, maize production has plateaued in many countries, and hybrid and production technologies have been fully exploited. Thus, there is an urgent need to shape maize traits and architectures for increased stress tolerance and higher yield in a changing climate. Recent achievements in genomics, proteomics, and metabolomics have provided an unprecedented opportunity to make better maize. In this paper, we discuss the current challenges and potential of maize production, particularly in China. We also highlight the need for enhancing maize tolerance to drought and heat waves, summarize the elite shoot and root traits and phenotypes, and propose an ideotype for sustainable maize production in a changing climate. This will facilitate targeted maize improvement through a conventional breeding program combined with molecular techniques. PMID:26500671

  12. Interactions of woody biofuel feedstock production systems with water resources: Considerations for sustainability.

    SciTech Connect

    Trettin, Carl,C.; Amatya, Devendra; Coleman, Mark.

    2008-07-01

    Abstract. Water resources are important for the production of woody biofuel feedstocks. It is necessary to ensure that production systems do not adversely affect the quantity or quality of surface and ground water. The effects of woody biomass plantations on water resources are largely dependent on the prior land use and the management regime. Experience from both irrigated and non-irrigated systems has demonstrated that woody biofuel production systems do not impair water quality. Water quality actually improves from conversion of idle or degraded agricultural lands to woody biomass plantations. Site water balance may be altered by cultivation of woody biomass plantations relative to agricultural use, due to increases in evapostranspiration (ET) and storage. Incorporation of woody biomass production plantations within the landscape provides an opportunity to improve the quality of runoff water and soil conservation. Given the centrality of water resources to the sustainability of ecosystem services and other values derived, the experience with woody biofuels feedstock production systems is positive. Keywords. Short rotation woody crop, forest hydrology, water quality, hardwood plantation.

  13. Study of the Assessment Method for N Excretion in Sustainable Heavy Pigs Production

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guo, Kaijun; Liu, Fenghua; Xu, Xiaolong; Xu, Jianqin; Zoccarato, Ivo

    Italian heavy pigs, with an average slaughtering body weight of 150-170 kg, are world-wide famous for its Parma ham production. Because the requirement of market diversity, producers are interested in ham production following the procedure of Italian pork industry. However, with ever growing public concern about nitrogen (N) pollution in the environment, it is necessary to determine a suitable method to measure N excretion from heavy pig production. The N retention was calculated by factorial method and compared with estimations of other methods available in literature. The results showed that the N percentage of heavy pigs is 2.43% ± 0.07% on body weight basis and the percentage of N excretion was approximately 69.62% ± 0.20 of N intake. Regarding the N excretion of estimation methods, the proposal of Xiccato et al. was closer to reality of the heavy pig production than other methods and could be used as a standard way to calculate the N excretion. Besides the overall standard, it is opportune to make a N balance sheet for every individual farm under specific conditions. Only in this way, the farmers can realize their deficiencies and will voluntarily follow the Good Management Practice (GMP) indications so as to guarantee a sustainable development of pig production.

  14. Knowledge and tools to enhance resilience of beef grazing systems for sustainable animal protein production.

    PubMed

    Steiner, Jean L; Engle, David M; Xiao, Xiangming; Saleh, Ali; Tomlinson, Peter; Rice, Charles W; Cole, N Andy; Coleman, Samuel W; Osei, Edward; Basara, Jeffrey; Middendorf, Gerad; Gowda, Prasanna; Todd, Richard; Moffet, Corey; Anandhi, Aavudai; Starks, Patrick J; Ocshner, Tyson; Reuter, Ryan; Devlin, Daniel

    2014-11-01

    Ruminant livestock provides meat and dairy products that sustain health and livelihood for much of the world's population. Grazing lands that support ruminant livestock provide numerous ecosystem services, including provision of food, water, and genetic resources; climate and water regulation; support of soil formation; nutrient cycling; and cultural services. In the U.S. southern Great Plains, beef production on pastures, rangelands, and hay is a major economic activity. The region's climate is characterized by extremes of heat and cold and extremes of drought and flooding. Grazing lands occupy a large portion of the region's land, significantly affecting carbon, nitrogen, and water budgets. To understand vulnerabilities and enhance resilience of beef production, a multi-institutional Coordinated Agricultural Project (CAP), the "grazing CAP," was established. Integrative research and extension spanning biophysical, socioeconomic, and agricultural disciplines address management effects on productivity and environmental footprints of production systems. Knowledge and tools being developed will allow farmers and ranchers to evaluate risks and increase resilience to dynamic conditions. The knowledge and tools developed will also have relevance to grazing lands in semiarid and subhumid regions of the world. PMID:25376887

  15. Making Friends with the Sustainable Livelihoods Framework.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hinshelwood, Emily

    2003-01-01

    A renewable energy project in South Wales was enriched by elements of the sustainable livelihood approach: people centered, holistic, and dynamic. The approach shifted the focus from technology to people and from product to process; it combined micro and macro issues. (SK)

  16. Links between surface productivity and deep ocean particle flux at the Porcupine Abyssal Plain sustained observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frigstad, H.; Henson, S. A.; Hartman, S. E.; Omar, A. M.; Jeansson, E.; Cole, H.; Pebody, C.; Lampitt, R. S.

    2015-10-01

    In this study we present hydrography, biogeochemistry and sediment trap observations between 2003 and 2012 at Porcupine Abyssal Plain (PAP) sustained observatory in the Northeast Atlantic. The time series is valuable as it allows for investigation of the link between surface productivity and deep ocean carbon flux. The region is a perennial sink for CO2, with an average uptake of around 1.5 mmol m-2 day-1. The average monthly drawdowns of inorganic carbon and nitrogen were used to quantify the net community production (NCP) and new production. Seasonal NCP and new production were found to be 4.57 ± 0.85 mol C m-2 and 0.37 ± 0.14 mol N m-2, respectively. The C : N ratio was high (12) compared to the Redfield ratio (6.6), and the production calculated from carbon was higher than production calculated from nitrogen, which is indicative of carbon overconsumption. The export ratio and transfer efficiency were 16 and 4 %, respectively, and the site thereby showed high flux attenuation. Particle tracking was used to examine the source region of material in the sediment trap, and there was large variation in source regions, both between and within years. There were higher correlations between surface productivity and export flux when using the particle-tracking approach, than by comparing with the mean productivity in a 100 km box around the PAP site. However, the differences in correlation coefficients were not significant, and a longer time series is needed to draw conclusions on applying particle tracking in sediment trap analyses.

  17. Targeting the production of oncogenic microRNAs with multimodal synthetic small molecules.

    PubMed

    Vo, Duc Duy; Staedel, Cathy; Zehnacker, Laura; Benhida, Rachid; Darfeuille, Fabien; Duca, Maria

    2014-03-21

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are a recently discovered category of small RNA molecules that regulate gene expression at the post-transcriptional level. Accumulating evidence indicates that miRNAs are aberrantly expressed in a variety of human cancers and revealed to be oncogenic and to play a pivotal role in initiation and progression of these pathologies. It is now clear that the inhibition of oncogenic miRNAs, defined as blocking their biosynthesis or their function, could find an application in the therapy of different types of cancer in which these miRNAs are implicated. Here we report the design, synthesis, and biological evaluation of new small-molecule RNA ligands targeting the production of oncogenic microRNAs. In this work we focused our attention on miR-372 and miR-373 that are implicated in the tumorigenesis of different types of cancer such as gastric cancer. These two oncogenic miRNAs are overexpressed in gastric cancer cells starting from their precursors pre-miR-372 and pre-miR-373, two stem-loop structured RNAs that lead to mature miRNAs after cleavage by the enzyme Dicer. The small molecules described herein consist of the conjugation of two RNA binding motives, i.e., the aminoglycoside neomycin and different natural and artificial nucleobases, in order to obtain RNA ligands with increased affinity and selectivity compared to that of parent compounds. After the synthesis of this new series of RNA ligands, we demonstrated that they are able to inhibit the production of the oncogenic miRNA-372 and -373 by binding their pre-miRNAs and inhibiting the processing by Dicer. Moreover, we proved that some of these compounds bear anti-proliferative activity toward gastric cancer cells and that this activity is likely linked to a decrease in the production of targeted miRNAs. To date, only few examples of small molecules targeting oncogenic miRNAs have been reported, and such inhibitors could be extremely useful for the development of new anticancer therapeutic

  18. Production of Singlet Oxygen in a Non-Self-Sustained Discharge

    SciTech Connect

    Vasil'eva, A.N.; Klopovskii, K.S.; Kovalev, A.S.; Lopaev, D.V.; Mankelevich, Yu.A.; Popov, N.A.; Rakhimov, A.T.; Rakhimova, T.V.

    2005-04-15

    The production of O{sub 2}(a{sup 1}{delta}{sub g}) singlet oxygen in non-self-sustained discharges in pure oxygen and mixtures of oxygen with noble gases (Ar or He) was studied experimentally. It is shown that the energy efficiency of O{sub 2}(a{sup 1}{delta}{sub g}) production can be optimized with respect to the reduced electric field E/N. It is shown that the optimal E/N values correspond to electron temperatures of 1.2-1.4 eV. At these E/N values, a decrease in the oxygen percentage in the mixture leads to an increase in the excitation rate of singlet oxygen because of the increase in the specific energy deposition per O{sub 2} molecule. The onset of discharge instabilities not only greatly reduces the energy efficiency of singlet oxygen production but also makes it impossible to achieve high energy deposition in a non-self-sustained discharge. A model of a non-self-sustained discharge in pure oxygen is developed. It is shown that good agreement between the experimental and computed results for a discharge in oxygen over a wide range of reduced electric fields can be achieved only by taking into account the ion component of the discharge current. The cross section for the electron-impact excitation of O{sub 2}(a{sup 1}{delta}{sub g}) and the kinetic scheme of the discharge processes with the participation of singlet oxygen are verified by comparing the experimental and computed data on the energy efficiency of the production of O{sub 2}(a{sup 1}{delta}{sub g}) and the dynamics of its concentration. It is shown that, in the dynamics of O{sub 2}(a{sup 1}{delta}{sub g}) molecules in the discharge afterglow, an important role is played by their deexcitation in a three-body reaction with the participation of O({sup 3}P) atoms. At high energy depositions in a non-self-sustained discharge, this reaction can reduce the maximal attainable concentration of singlet oxygen. The effect of a hydrogen additive to an Ar : O{sub 2} mixture is analyzed based on the results

  19. Chronic Ethanol consumption modulates growth factor release, mucosal cytokine production and microRNA expression in nonhuman primates

    PubMed Central

    Asquith, Mark; Pasala, Sumana; Engelmann, Flora; Haberthur, Kristen; Meyer, Christine; Park, Byung; Grant, Kathleen A.; Messaoudi, Ilhem

    2013-01-01

    BACKGROUND Chronic alcohol consumption has been associated with enhanced susceptibility to both systemic and mucosal infections. However, the exact mechanisms underlying this enhanced susceptibility remain incompletely understood. METHODS Using a nonhuman primate model of ethanol self-administration, we examined the impact of chronic alcohol exposure on immune homeostasis, cytokine and growth factor production in peripheral blood, lung and intestinal mucosa following twelve months of chronic ethanol exposure. RESULTS Ethanol exposure inhibited activation-induced production of growth factors HGF, G-CSF and VEGF by peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC). Moreover, ethanol significantly reduced the frequency of colonic Th1 and Th17 cells in a dose-dependent manner. In contrast, we did not observe differences in lymphocyte frequency or soluble factor production in the lung of ethanol-consuming animals. To uncover mechanisms underlying reduced growth factor and Th1/Th17 cytokine production, we compared expression levels of microRNAs in PBMC and intestinal mucosa. Our analysis revealed ethanol-dependent upregulation of distinct microRNAs in affected tissues (miR-181a and miR-221 in PBMC; miR-155 in colon). Moreover, we were able to detect reduced expression of the transcription factors STAT3 and ARNT, which regulate expression of VEGF, G-CSF and HGF and contain targets for these microRNAs. To confirm and extend these observations, PBMC were transfected with either mimics or antagomirs of miR181 and 221and protein levels of the transcription factors and growth factors were determined. Transfection of microRNA mimics led to a reduction in both STAT-3/ARNT as well as VEGF/HGF/G-CSF levels. The opposite outcome was observed when microRNA antagomirs were transfected CONCLUSION Chronic ethanol consumption significantly disrupts both peripheral and mucosal immune homeostasis, and this dysregulation may be mediated by changes in microRNA expression. PMID:24329418

  20. From the Academy: Colloquium perspective. Toward cropping systems that enhance productivity and sustainability.

    PubMed

    Cook, R James

    2006-12-01

    The defining features of any cropping system are (i) the crop rotation and (ii) the kind or intensity of tillage. The trend worldwide starting in the late 20th century has been (i) to specialize competitively in the production of two, three, a single, or closely related crops such as different market classes of wheat and barley, and (ii) to use direct seeding, also known as no-till, to cut costs and save soil, time, and fuel. The availability of glyphosate- and insect-resistant varieties of soybeans, corn, cotton, and canola has helped greatly to address weed and insect pest pressures favored by direct seeding these crops. However, little has been done through genetics and breeding to address diseases caused by residue- and soil-inhabiting pathogens that remain major obstacles to wider adoption of these potentially more productive and sustainable systems. Instead, the gains have been due largely to innovations in management, including enhancement of root defense by antibiotic-producing rhizosphere-inhabiting bacteria inhibitory to root pathogens. Historically, new varieties have facilitated wider adoption of new management, and changes in management have facilitated wider adoption of new varieties. Although actual yields may be lower in direct-seed compared with conventional cropping systems, largely due to diseases, the yield potential is higher because of more available water and increases in soil organic matter. Achieving the full production potential of these more-sustainable cropping systems must now await the development of varieties adapted to or resistant to the hazards shown to account for the yield depressions associated with direct seeding. PMID:17130454

  1. Effect of parity on productivity and sustainability of Lotka-Volterra food chains: bounded orbits in food chains.

    PubMed

    Massarelli, Nicole; Hoffman, Kathleen; Previte, Joseph P

    2014-12-01

    Hairston, Slobodkin, and Smith conjectured that top down forces act on food chains, which opposed the previously accepted theory that bottom up forces exclusively dictate the dynamics of populations. We model food chains using the Lotka-Volterra predation model and derive sustainability constants which determine which species will persist or go extinct. Further, we show that the productivity of a sustainable food chain with even trophic levels is predator regulated, or top down, while a sustainable food chain with odd trophic levels is resource limited, which is bottom up, which is consistent with current ecological theory. PMID:24362648

  2. SYNBIOCHEM–a SynBio foundry for the biosynthesis and sustainable production of fine and speciality chemicals

    PubMed Central

    Carbonell, Pablo; Currin, Andrew; Dunstan, Mark; Fellows, Donal; Jervis, Adrian; Rattray, Nicholas J.W.; Robinson, Christopher J.; Swainston, Neil; Vinaixa, Maria; Williams, Alan; Yan, Cunyu; Barran, Perdita; Breitling, Rainer; Chen, George Guo-Qiang; Faulon, Jean-Loup; Goble, Carole; Goodacre, Royston; Kell, Douglas B.; Feuvre, Rosalind Le; Micklefield, Jason; Scrutton, Nigel S.; Shapira, Philip; Takano, Eriko; Turner, Nicholas J.

    2016-01-01

    The Manchester Synthetic Biology Research Centre (SYNBIOCHEM) is a foundry for the biosynthesis and sustainable production of fine and speciality chemicals. The Centre's integrated technology platforms provide a unique capability to facilitate predictable engineering of microbial bio-factories for chemicals production. An overview of these capabilities is described. PMID:27284023

  3. Farmers' Perception of Integrated Soil Fertility and Nutrient Management for Sustainable Crop Production: A Study of Rural Areas in Bangladesh

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Farouque, Md. Golam; Takeya, Hiroyuki

    2007-01-01

    This study aimed to determine farmers' perception of integrated soil fertility and nutrient management for sustainable crop production. Integrated soil fertility (ISF) and nutrient management (NM) is an advanced approach to maintain soil fertility and to enhance crop productivity. A total number of 120 farmers from eight villages in four districts…

  4. SYNBIOCHEM-a SynBio foundry for the biosynthesis and sustainable production of fine and speciality chemicals.

    PubMed

    Carbonell, Pablo; Currin, Andrew; Dunstan, Mark; Fellows, Donal; Jervis, Adrian; Rattray, Nicholas J W; Robinson, Christopher J; Swainston, Neil; Vinaixa, Maria; Williams, Alan; Yan, Cunyu; Barran, Perdita; Breitling, Rainer; Chen, George Guo-Qiang; Faulon, Jean-Loup; Goble, Carole; Goodacre, Royston; Kell, Douglas B; Feuvre, Rosalind Le; Micklefield, Jason; Scrutton, Nigel S; Shapira, Philip; Takano, Eriko; Turner, Nicholas J

    2016-06-15

    The Manchester Synthetic Biology Research Centre (SYNBIOCHEM) is a foundry for the biosynthesis and sustainable production of fine and speciality chemicals. The Centre's integrated technology platforms provide a unique capability to facilitate predictable engineering of microbial bio-factories for chemicals production. An overview of these capabilities is described. PMID:27284023

  5. Implementation of Sustainable Soil Management Practices to Improve Crop Production in the Different Ethiopian Agro Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    García Moreno, R.; Gameda, S.; Diaz Alvarez, M. C.; Selasie, Y. G.

    2012-04-01

    Agriculture in Ethiopia is one of first priority since close to 10 In this context, the Ethiopian crop production faces to the following soil management challenges: lack of updated soil data, macro and micro nutrient depletion, acidity, salinity and soil surface erosion and crusting. One of the biggest issues is the loss of arable land, above 137 T/yr, reaching during some particularly dried periods until 300 T/yr. In this context, the authors constituted a working group of experts from Spanish and Ethiopian universities, local producers and international and governmental organisms to analyse the problems related to the different agro ecological zones found in Ethiopia and the management practices of different local producers. The study produced the trends to implement in the different areas to improve soil management practices in order to contribute to increase the crop production mainly to achieve food security problems. The analyse produced different working fields for the next years for addressing soil degradation, improving land resources management practices, increasing agricultural productivity, updating the available soil data, developing an international program of education, transferring of knowledge from similar study cases and implementing economical tools to help producers to assure income after severe edapho-climatic events. The practical work and the projects developed for the next period is addressed to smallholder farms belonging to the different 34 agro ecological zones identified in Ethiopia, each of them with very specific environmental, cultural and soil management practices.

  6. Target Cultivation and Financing Parameters for Sustainable Production of Fuel and Feed from Microalgae.

    PubMed

    Gerber, Léda N; Tester, Jefferson W; Beal, Colin M; Huntley, Mark E; Sills, Deborah L

    2016-04-01

    Production of economically competitive and environmentally sustainable algal biofuel faces technical challenges that are subject to high uncertainties. Here we identify target values for algal productivity and financing conditions required to achieve a biocrude selling price of $5 per gallon and beneficial environmental impacts. A modeling framework--combining process design, techno-economic analysis, life cycle assessment, and uncertainty analysis--was applied to two conversion pathways: (1) "fuel only (HTL)", using hydrothermal liquefaction to produce biocrude, heat and power, and (2) "fuel and feed", using wet extraction to produce biocrude and lipid-extracted algae, which can substitute components of animal and aqua feeds. Our results suggest that with supporting policy incentives, the "fuel and feed" scenario will likely achieve a biocrude selling price of less than $5 per gallon at a productivity of 39 g/m(2)/day, versus 47 g/m(2)/day for the "fuel only (HTL)" scenario. Furthermore, if lipid-extracted algae are used to substitute fishmeal, the process has a 50% probability of reaching $5 per gallon with a base case productivity of 23 g/m(2)/day. Scenarios with improved economics were associated with beneficial environmental impacts for climate change, ecosystem quality, and resource depletion, but not for human health. PMID:26942694

  7. Genetic engineering and sustainable production of ornamentals: current status and future directions.

    PubMed

    Lütken, Henrik; Clarke, Jihong Liu; Müller, Renate

    2012-07-01

    Through the last decades, environmentally and health-friendly production methods and conscientious use of resources have become crucial for reaching the goal of a more sustainable plant production. Protection of the environment requires careful consumption of limited resources and reduction of chemicals applied during production of ornamental plants. Numerous chemicals used in modern plant production have negative impacts on human health and are hazardous to the environment. In Europe, several compounds have lost their approval and further legal restrictions can be expected. This review presents the more recent progress of genetic engineering in ornamental breeding, delivers an overview of the biological background of the used technologies and critically evaluates the usefulness of the strategies to obtain improved ornamental plants. First, genetic engineering is addressed as alternative to growth retardants, comprising recombinant DNA approaches targeting relevant hormone pathways, e.g. the gibberellic acid (GA) pathway. A reduced content of active GAs causes compact growth and can be facilitated by either decreased anabolism, increased catabolism or altered perception. Moreover, compactness can be accomplished by using a natural transformation approach without recombinant DNA technology. Secondly, metabolic engineering approaches targeting elements of the ethylene signal transduction pathway are summarized as a possible alternative to avoid the use of chemical ethylene inhibitors. In conclusion, molecular breeding approaches are dealt with in a way allowing a critical biological assessment and enabling the scientific community and public to put genetic engineering of ornamental plants into a perspective regarding their usefulness in plant breeding. PMID:22527196

  8. Geodecision system for traceability and sustainable production of beef cattle in Brazil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Victoria, D. D.; Andrade, R. G.; Bolfe, L.; Batistella, M.; Pires, P. P.; Vicente, L. E.; Visoli, M. C.

    2011-12-01

    Beef cattle production sustainability depends on incorporating innovative tools and technologies which are easy to comprehend, economically viable, and spatially explicit into the registration of precise, reliable data about production practices. This research developed from the needs and demands of food safety and food quality in extensive beef cattle production within the scope of the policies of Southern Cone and European Union's countries. Initially, the OTAG project (Operational Management and Geodecisional Prototype to Track and Trace Agricultural Production) focused on the development of a prototype traceability of cattle. The aim for the project's next phase is to enhance the electronic devices used in the identification and positioning of the animals, and the incorporation of more management and sanitary information. Besides, we intend to structure a database that enables the inclusion of greater amount of geospatial information linked to environmental aspects, such as water deficit, vegetation vigour, degradation indices of pasture areas, among others. For the extraction of knowledge, and the presentation of the results, we propose the development of a friendly interface to facilitate the exploration of the textual, tabular and geospatial information useful for the user.

  9. Product Lifecycle Management and the Quest for Sustainable Space Exploration Solutions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Caruso, Pamela W.; Dumbacher, Daniel L.; Grieves, Michael

    2011-01-01

    Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) is an outcome of lean thinking to eliminate waste and increase productivity. PLM is inextricably tied to the systems engineering business philosophy, coupled with a methodology by which personnel, processes and practices, and information technology combine to form an architecture platform for product design, development, manufacturing, operations, and decommissioning. In this model, which is being implemented by the Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) Engineering Directorate, total lifecycle costs are important variables for critical decision-making. With the ultimate goal to deliver quality products that meet or exceed requirements on time and within budget, PLM is a powerful concept to shape everything from engineering trade studies and testing goals, to integrated vehicle operations and retirement scenarios. This briefing will demonstrate how the MSFC Engineering Directorate is implementing PLM as part of an overall strategy to deliver safe, reliable, and affordable space exploration solutions and how that strategy aligns with the Agency and Center systems engineering policies and processes. Sustainable space exploration solutions demand that all lifecycle phases be optimized, and engineering the next generation space transportation system requires a paradigm shift such that digital tools and knowledge management, which are central elements of PLM, are used consistently to maximum effect. Adopting PLM, which has been used by the aerospace and automotive industry for many years, for spacecraft applications provides a foundation for strong, disciplined systems engineering and accountable return on investment. PLM enables better solutions using fewer resources by making lifecycle considerations in an integrative decision-making process.

  10. MicroRNA-155 potentiates the inflammatory response in hypothermia by suppressing IL-10 production.

    PubMed

    Billeter, Adrian T; Hellmann, Jason; Roberts, Henry; Druen, Devin; Gardner, Sarah A; Sarojini, Harshini; Galandiuk, Susan; Chien, Sufan; Bhatnagar, Aruni; Spite, Matthew; Polk, Hiram C

    2014-12-01

    Therapeutic hypothermia is commonly used to improve neurological outcomes in patients after cardiac arrest. However, therapeutic hypothermia increases sepsis risk and unintentional hypothermia in surgical patients increases infectious complications. Nonetheless, the molecular mechanisms by which hypothermia dysregulates innate immunity are incompletely understood. We found that exposure of human monocytes to cold (32°C) potentiated LPS-induced production of TNF and IL-6, while blunting IL-10 production. This dysregulation was associated with increased expression of microRNA-155 (miR-155), which potentiates Toll-like receptor (TLR) signaling by negatively regulating Ship1 and Socs1. Indeed, Ship1 and Socs1 were suppressed at 32°C and miR-155 antagomirs increased Ship1 and Socs1 and reversed the alterations in cytokine production in cold-exposed monocytes. In contrast, miR-155 mimics phenocopied the effects of cold exposure, reducing Ship1 and Socs1 and altering TNF and IL-10 production. In a murine model of LPS-induced peritonitis, cold exposure potentiated hypothermia and decreased survival (10 vs. 50%; P < 0.05), effects that were associated with increased miR-155, suppression of Ship1 and Socs1, and alterations in TNF and IL-10. Importantly, miR-155-deficiency reduced hypothermia and improved survival (78 vs. 32%, P < 0.05), which was associated with increased Ship1, Socs1, and IL-10. These results establish a causal role of miR-155 in the dysregulation of the inflammatory response to hypothermia. PMID:25231976

  11. Use of the SWAT model to evaluate the sustainability of bioenergy production at a National scale

    SciTech Connect

    Baskaran, Latha Malar; Jager, Yetta; Schweizer, Peter E; Srinivasan, Raghavan

    2009-01-01

    As the US begins to integrate biomass crops and residues into its mix of energy feedstocks, tools are needed to measure the long-term sustainability of these feedstocks. Two aspects of sustainability are long-term potential for profitably producing energy and protection of ecosystems influenced by energy-related activities. The Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) is an important model used in the efforts to quantify both aspects. To quantify potential feedstock production, they used SWAT to estimate switchgrass yields at a national scale. The results from this analysis produced a map of the potential switchgrass yield along its natural eastern range. To quantify ecological protection, they are using the SWAT model to forecast changes in water quality and fish richness as a result of landscape alterations due to incorporating bioenergy crops. They have implemented the SWAT model in the Arkansas-Red-White region, which drains into the Mississippi River, and they present their methods here. They identified two sub-watersheds for sensitivity analysis and calibration of the water quality results, and then, explored ways to apply the calibration results to the whole region and validate the model setup. They also present an overview of their research in which results from the calibrated regional SWAT model were used to analyze potential changes in fish biodiversity. Only by evaluating the energy and environmental implications of landscape changes can we make informed decisions about bioenergy at the national scale, and the SWAT model will enable us to reach that goal.

  12. Sacrificial component fabrication for optimised production of micro-vascular polymer composite

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dalton, B.; Dixon, D.; McIlhagger, A.; Archer, E.

    2015-02-01

    Smart functional materials are a viable future goal for advanced applications in aerospace, space and medical applications. In this work micro-vascular polymer composite systems have been developed using sacrificial fibres produced from catalyst loaded Poly(lactic acid). The sacrificial fibres have been produced via a published technique which treated PLA in a solvent catalyst mixture of 60% Trifluoroethanol, 40% H2O dispersed with 10 wt% tin (II) oxalate catalyst. A second process of polymer extrusion of PLA using graded fill contents of tin (II) oxalate has also been developed for the up scaled production of fibres as an alternative to solution treatment. Thermal analysis (TGA) was used to compare sacrificial fibre specimens. PLA fibres produced via the polymer extrusion method outperformed solution treated fibres displaying a lower degradation onset temperature (average 25°C lower), higher degradation rates (observed through a derivative curve comparison) and lower residual catalyst content (0.67% solvent treated fibre against 0.16% extruded fibre). The continuous extrusion process is solvent free and is suitable for high volume production. This work has been carried out to fully understand the fabrication issues with sacrificial components.

  13. Improved specific productivity in cephalexin synthesis by immobilized PGA in silica magnetic micro-particles.

    PubMed

    Bernardino, Susana M S A; Fernandes, Pedro; Fonseca, Luís P

    2010-12-01

    There is a marked trend in pharmaceutical industry towards the replacement of classical organic methods by "green" alternatives that minimize or eliminate the generation of waste and avoid, where possible, the use of toxic and/or hazardous reagents and solvents. In this work the kinetically controlled synthesis of cephalexin by soluble and penicillin G acylase immobilized in sol-gel micro-particles with magnetic properties was performed in aqueous media with PGME and 7-ADCA as substrates, at different concentrations of substrate, temperature, pH, enzyme to substrate ratio and acyl donor to nucleophile ratio. Excess acyl donor had a strong effect on cephalexin productivity. A PGME/7-ADCA ratio of 3 was considered optimum. A maximum specific productivity of 5.9 mmol h(-1), gbiocatalyst(-1) at 160 mM 7-ADCA, 480 mM PGME and low enzyme to substrate ratio at 32.5 U mmol(-1) 7-ADCA was obtained with immobilized PGA in full aqueous medium, suggesting that diffusional limitations were minimized when compared with other commercial biocatalysts. A half-life of 133 h for the immobilized biocatalyst was estimated during cephalexin synthesis in the presence of 100 mM 7-ADCA and 300 mM PGME, in 50 mM Tris/HCl at pH 7.2 and 14°C. These results compare quite favorably with those previously reported for the kinetically controlled synthesis of cephalexin. PMID:20632377

  14. Integration of microalgal cultivation system for wastewater remediation and sustainable biomass production.

    PubMed

    Gupta, Prabuddha L; Lee, Seung-Mok; Choi, Hee-Jeong

    2016-08-01

    Untreated wastewaters have been a great concern and can cause major pollution problems for environment. Conventional approaches for treating wastewater involve tremendous capital cost, have major short comings and are not sustainable. Microalgae culture offers an interesting step for wastewater treatment. Microalgae serve the dual purpose of phycoremediation along with the production of potentially valuable biomass, which can be used for several purposes. The ability of microalgae to accumulate nitrogen, phosphorus, heavy metals and other toxic compounds can be integrated with wastewater treatment system to offer an elegant solution towards tertiary and quaternary treatment. The current review explores possible role of microalgal based wastewater treatment and explores the current progress, key challenges, limitations and future prospects with special emphasis on strategies involved in harvesting, boosting biomass and lipid yield. PMID:27357407

  15. Engineering oilseeds for sustainable production of industrial and nutritional feedstocks: solving bottlenecks in fatty acid flux.

    PubMed

    Cahoon, Edgar B; Shockey, Jay M; Dietrich, Charles R; Gidda, Satinder K; Mullen, Robert T; Dyer, John M

    2007-06-01

    Oilseeds provide a unique platform for the production of high-value fatty acids that can replace non-sustainable petroleum and oceanic sources of specialty chemicals and aquaculture feed. However, recent efforts to engineer the seeds of crop and model plant species to produce new types of fatty acids, including hydroxy and conjugated fatty acids for industrial uses and long-chain omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids for farmed fish feed, have met with only modest success. The collective results from these studies point to metabolic 'bottlenecks' in the engineered plant seeds that substantially limit the efficient or selective flux of unusual fatty acids between different substrate pools and ultimately into storage triacylglycerol. Evidence is emerging that diacylglycerol acyltransferase 2, which catalyzes the final step in triacylglycerol assembly, is an important contributor to the synthesis of unusual fatty acid-containing oils, and is likely to be a key target for future oilseed metabolic engineering efforts. PMID:17434788

  16. Improvement in the yield and quality of kalmegh (Andrographis paniculata Nees) under the sustainable production system.

    PubMed

    Verma, Rajesh Kumar; Verma, Sanjeet K; Pankaj, Umesh; Gupta, Anand K; Khan, Khushboo; Shankar, Karuna

    2015-02-01

    Andrographis paniculata Nees is an annual erect herb with wide medicinal and pharmacological applications due to the presence of andrographolide and other active chemical constituents. The large-scale cultivation of the kalmegh is not in practice. The aim of this study was to establish sustainable production systems of A. paniculata cv CIM-Megha with the application of different bioinoculants and chemical fertilisers. A. paniculata herb and andrographolide yield in the dried leaves was found to be highest (218% and 61.3%, respectively) in treatment T3 (NPK+Bacillus sp.) compared with T1 (control). The soil organic carbon, soil microbial respiration, soil enzymes activity and available nutrients improved significantly with combined application of bioinoculants and chemical fertilisers. PMID:25348874

  17. Green Net Regional Product for the San Luis Basin, Colorado: an economic measure of regional sustainability.

    PubMed

    Heberling, Matthew T; Templeton, Joshua J; Wu, Shanshan

    2012-11-30

    This paper presents the data sources and methodology used to estimate Green Net Regional Product (GNRP), a green accounting approach, for the San Luis Basin (SLB). We measured the movement away from sustainability by examining the change in GNRP over time. Any attempt at green accounting requires both economic and natural capital data. However, limited data for the Basin requires a number of simplifying assumptions and requires transforming economic data at the national, state, and county levels to the level of the SLB. Given the contribution of agribusiness to the SLB, we included the depletion of both groundwater and soil as components in the depreciation of natural capital. We also captured the effect of the consumption of energy on climate change for future generations through carbon dioxide (CO(2)) emissions. In order to estimate the depreciation of natural capital, the shadow price of water for agriculture, the economic damages from soil erosion due to wind, and the social cost of carbon emissions were obtained from the literature and applied to the SLB using benefit transfer. We used Colorado's total factor productivity for agriculture to estimate the value of time (i.e., to include the effects of exogenous technological progress). We aggregated the economic data and the depreciation of natural capital for the SLB from 1980 to 2005. The results suggest that GNRP had a slight upward trend through most of this time period, despite temporary negative trends, the longest of which occurred during the period 1985-86 to 1987-88. However, given the upward trend in GNRP and the possibility of business cycles causing the temporary declines, there is no definitive evidence of moving away from sustainability. PMID:22483369

  18. The Sense-City equipment project: insight into the prototyping and validation of environmental micro- and nanosensors for a sustainable urbanization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lebental, Bérengère; Angelescu, Dan; Bourouina, Tarik; Bourquin, Frédéric; Cojocaru, Costel-Sorin; Derkx, François; Dumoulin, Jean; Ha, Thi-Lan; Robine, Enric; Van Damme, Henri

    2013-04-01

    While today's galloping urbanization weighs heavily on both People and Environment, the massive instrumentation of urban spaces appears a landmark toward sustainability. Collecting massively distributed information requires the use of high-performance communication systems as well as sensors with very small ecological footprint. Because of their high sensitivity, the wide range of their observables, their energetic self-sufficiency and their low cost, micro- and nano- sensors are particularly well suited to urban metrology. A 8 years, 9 M€ equipment project funded by the French "Programme d'Investissement d'Avenir" starting in 2012, the Sense-City project will offer a suite of high-quality facilities for the design, prototyping and performance assessment of micro- and nanosensors devoted to sustainable urbanization. The scientific program of Sense-City is built around four programs, environmental monitoring, structural health monitoring, energy performances monitoring and people health and exposure monitoring. We present the activities of the consortium partners, IFSTTAR, ESIEE-Paris, CSTB, LPICM, and the prospects brought by Sense-City equipment in terms of sensor prototyping, benchmarking and operation validation. We discuss how the various sensors developed by LPICM and ESIEE (for instance conformable chemical and gas microsensors using nanomaterials at LPICM, miniaturized gas chromatographs or microfluidic lab-on-chip for particles analysis at ESIEE-Paris) can be integrated by IFSTTAR into sensors networks tested by IFSTTAR and CSTB in both lab and urban settings. The massively distributed data are interpreted using advanced physical models and inverse methods in order to monitor water, air or soil quality, infrastructure and network safety, building energy performances as well as people health and exposure. We discuss the shortcomings of evaluating the performances of sensors only in lab conditions or directly in real, urban conditions. As a solution, Sense

  19. Vertical Integration of Biomass Saccharification of Enzymes for Sustainable Cellulosic Biofuel Production in a Biorefinery

    SciTech Connect

    Manoj Kumar, PhD

    2011-05-09

    Lignocellulosic biomass is the most abundant, least expensive renewable natural biological resource for the production of biobased products and bioenergy is important for the sustainable development of human civilization in 21st century. For making the fermentable sugars from lignocellulosic biomass, a reduction in cellulase production cost, an improvement in cellulase performance, and an increase in sugar yields are all vital to reduce the processing costs of biorefineries. Improvements in specific cellulase activities for non-complexed cellulase mixtures can be implemented through cellulase engineering based on rational design or directed evolution for each cellulase component enzyme, as well as on the reconstitution of cellulase components. In this paper, we will provide DSM's efforts in cellulase research and developments and focus on limitations. Cellulase improvement strategies based on directed evolution using screening on relevant substrates, screening for higher thermal tolerance based on activity screening approaches such as continuous culture using insoluble cellulosic substrates as a powerful selection tool for enriching beneficial cellulase mutants from the large library. We will illustrate why and how thermostable cellulases are vital for economic delivery of bioproducts from cellulosic biomass using biochemical conversion approach.

  20. Exploration of upstream and downstream process for microwave assisted sustainable biodiesel production from microalgae Chlorella vulgaris.

    PubMed

    Sharma, Amit Kumar; Sahoo, Pradeepta Kumar; Singhal, Shailey; Joshi, Girdhar

    2016-09-01

    The present study explores the integrated approach for the sustainable production of biodiesel from Chlorella vulgaris microalgae. The microalgae were cultivated in 10m(2) open raceway pond at semi-continuous mode with optimum volumetric and areal production of 28.105kg/L/y and 71.51t/h/y, respectively. Alum was used as flocculent for harvesting the microalgae and optimized at different pH. Lipid was extracted using chloroform: methanol (2:1) and having 12.39% of FFA. Effect of various reaction conditions such as effect of catalyst, methanol:lipid ratio, reaction temperature and time on biodiesel yields were studied under microwave irradiation; and 84.01% of biodiesel yield was obtained under optimized reaction conditions. A comparison was also made between the biodiesel productions under conventional heating and microwave irradiation. The synthesized biodiesel was characterized by (1)H NMR, (13)C NMR, FTIR and GC; however, fuel properties of biodiesel were also studied using specified test methods as per ASTM and EN standards. PMID:27318156

  1. Research and development of eco-sustainable solutions for the production of innovative rigid suitcases

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Domenico, Acierno; Pietro, Russo; Francesco, Costa; Irma, Nedi; Salvatore, Cioffi; Simona, Giudice; Massimiliano, Fraldi

    2015-12-01

    The huge difficulty recorded in the years about the disposal of an increasing amounts of plastic items at the end of their useful life has significantly influenced the choice of new materials in almost all industrial fields favouring the development of innovative eco-friendly solutions. In light of this consideration, under a national project, funded by the Research Ministry and specifically related to the luggage field, authors focused their attention on the production of new environmentally friendly suitcases based on the use of plastic scraps from the recycling chains and the use of biodegradable resins or coming from renewable resources. In the first case, recycled polyesters from bottle flakes were adequately modified by inclusion of opportune toughening and chain extender agents to meet quantitative specifications of the reference market. Alternatively, different commercial grades of poly(lactic acid) and poly(hydroxy alkanoates) resins have been considered still including organic modifiers to improve mechanical performances of products and natural reinforcement fabrics as cotton, jute and flax. All materials, always modified by reactive extrusion and transformed in pure sheets or woven fabric reinforced laminates by compression moulding, were characterized in terms of mechanical properties under static, dynamic and impulsive conditions, highlighting good perspectives for the reference applications. Suitcase prototypes, specifically designed in order to further improve mechanical performances of products and based on some selected formulations, were produced by thermoforming and validated by specific tests. Results confirmed a significant competitiveness of new eco-sustainable rigid suitcases with respect to commercial ones.

  2. Observation of exclusive charmonium production and gammagamma --> micro;{+}micro;{-} in pp[over] collisions at sqrt[s] = 1.96 TeV.

    PubMed

    Aaltonen, T; Adelman, J; Akimoto, T; Albrow, M G; Alvarez González, B; Amerio, S; Amidei, D; Anastassov, A; Annovi, A; Antos, J; Apollinari, G; Apresyan, A; Arisawa, T; Artikov, A; Ashmanskas, W; Attal, A; Aurisano, A; Azfar, F; Azzurri, P; Badgett, W; Barbaro-Galtieri, A; Barnes, V E; Barnett, B A; Bartsch, V; Bauer, G; Beauchemin, P-H; Bedeschi, F; Beecher, D; Behari, S; Bellettini, G; Bellinger, J; Benjamin, D; Beretvas, A; Beringer, J; Bhatti, A; Binkley, M; Bisello, D; Bizjak, I; Blair, R E; Blocker, C; Blumenfeld, B; Bocci, A; Bodek, A; Boisvert, V; Bolla, G; Bortoletto, D; Boudreau, J; Boveia, A; Brau, B; Bridgeman, A; Brigliadori, L; Bromberg, C; Brubaker, E; Budagov, J; Budd, H S; Budd, S; Burke, S; Burkett, K; Busetto, G; Bussey, P; Buzatu, A; Byrum, K L; Cabrera, S; Calancha, C; Campanelli, M; Campbell, M; Canelli, F; Canepa, A; Carls, B; Carlsmith, D; Carosi, R; Carrillo, S; Carron, S; Casal, B; Casarsa, M; Castro, A; Catastini, P; Cauz, D; Cavaliere, V; Cavalli-Sforza, M; Cerri, A; Cerrito, L; Chang, S H; Chen, Y C; Chertok, M; Chiarelli, G; Chlachidze, G; Chlebana, F; Cho, K; Chokheli, D; Chou, J P; Choudalakis, G; Chuang, S H; Chung, K; Chung, W H; Chung, Y S; Chwalek, T; Ciobanu, C I; Ciocci, M A; Clark, A; Clark, D; Compostella, G; Convery, M E; Conway, J; Cordelli, M; Cortiana, G; Cox, C A; Cox, D J; Crescioli, F; Cuenca Almenar, C; Cuevas, J; Culbertson, R; Cully, J C; Dagenhart, D; Datta, M; Davies, T; de Barbaro, P; De Cecco, S; Deisher, A; De Lorenzo, G; Dell'orso, M; Deluca, C; Demortier, L; Deng, J; Deninno, M; Derwent, P F; di Giovanni, G P; Dionisi, C; Di Ruzza, B; Dittmann, J R; D'Onofrio, M; Donati, S; Dong, P; Donini, J; Dorigo, T; Dube, S; Efron, J; Elagin, A; Erbacher, R; Errede, D; Errede, S; Eusebi, R; Fang, H C; Farrington, S; Fedorko, W T; Feild, R G; Feindt, M; Fernandez, J P; Ferrazza, C; Field, R; Flanagan, G; Forrest, R; Frank, M J; Franklin, M; Freeman, J C; Furic, I; Gallinaro, M; Galyardt, J; Garberson, F; Garcia, J E; Garfinkel, A F; Genser, K; Gerberich, H; Gerdes, D; Gessler, A; Giagu, S; Giakoumopoulou, V; Giannetti, P; Gibson, K; Gimmell, J L; Ginsburg, C M; Giokaris, N; Giordani, M; Giromini, P; Giunta, M; Giurgiu, G; Glagolev, V; Glenzinski, D; Gold, M; Goldschmidt, N; Golossanov, A; Gomez, G; Gomez-Ceballos, G; Goncharov, M; González, O; Gorelov, I; Goshaw, A T; Goulianos, K; Gresele, A; Grinstein, S; Grosso-Pilcher, C; Grundler, U; Guimaraes da Costa, J; Gunay-Unalan, Z; Haber, C; Hahn, K; Hahn, S R; Halkiadakis, E; Hamilton, A; Han, B-Y; Han, J Y; Happacher, F; Hara, K; Hare, D; Hare, M; Harper, S; Harr, R F; Harris, R M; Hartz, M; Hatakeyama, K; Hays, C; Heck, M; Heijboer, A; Heinrich, J; Henderson, C; Herndon, M; Heuser, J; Hewamanage, S; Hidas, D; Hill, C S; Hirschbuehl, D; Hocker, A; Hou, S; Houlden, M; Hsu, S-C; Huffman, B T; Hughes, R E; Husemann, U; Hussein, M; Huston, J; Incandela, J; Introzzi, G; Iori, M; Ivanov, A; James, E; Jang, D; Jayatilaka, B; Jeon, E J; Jha, M K; Jindariani, S; Johnson, W; Jones, M; Joo, K K; Jun, S Y; Jung, J E; Junk, T R; Kamon, T; Kar, D; Karchin, P E; Kato, Y; Kephart, R; Keung, J; Khotilovich, V; Kilminster, B; Kim, D H; Kim, H S; Kim, H W; Kim, J E; Kim, M J; Kim, S B; Kim, S H; Kim, Y K; Kimura, N; Kirsch, L; Klimenko, S; Knuteson, B; Ko, B R; Kondo, K; Kong, D J; Konigsberg, J; Korytov, A; Kotwal, A V; Kreps, M; Kroll, J; Krop, D; Krumnack, N; Kruse, M; Krutelyov, V; Kubo, T; Kuhr, T; Kulkarni, N P; Kurata, M; Kwang, S; Laasanen, A T; Lami, S; Lammel, S; Lancaster, M; Lander, R L; Lannon, K; Lath, A; Latino, G; Lazzizzera, I; Lecompte, T; Lee, E; Lee, H S; Lee, S W; Leone, S; Lewis, J D; Lin, C-S; Linacre, J; Lindgren, M; Lipeles, E; Lister, A; Litvintsev, D O; Liu, C; Liu, T; Lockyer, N S; Loginov, A; Loreti, M; Lovas, L; Lucchesi, D; Luci, C; Lueck, J; Lujan, P; Lukens, P; Lungu, G; Lyons, L; Lys, J; Lysak, R; Macqueen, D; Madrak, R; Maeshima, K; Makhoul, K; Maki, T; Maksimovic, P; Malde, S; Malik, S; Manca, G; Manousakis-Katsikakis, A; Margaroli, F; Marino, C; Marino, C P; Martin, A; Martin, V; Martínez, M; Martínez-Ballarín, R; Maruyama, T; Mastrandrea, P; Masubuchi, T; Mathis, M; Mattson, M E; Mazzanti, P; McFarland, K S; McIntyre, P; McNulty, R; Mehta, A; Mehtala, P; Menzione, A; Merkel, P; Mesropian, C; Miao, T; Miladinovic, N; Miller, R; Mills, C; Milnik, M; Mitra, A; Mitselmakher, G; Miyake, H; Moggi, N; Moon, C S; Moore, R; Morello, M J; Morlock, J; Movilla Fernandez, P; Mülmenstädt, J; Mukherjee, A; Muller, Th; Mumford, R; Murat, P; Mussini, M; Nachtman, J; Nagai, Y; Nagano, A; Naganoma, J; Nakamura, K; Nakano, I; Napier, A; Necula, V; Nett, J; Neu, C; Neubauer, M S; Neubauer, S; Nielsen, J; Nodulman, L; Norman, M; Norniella, O; Nurse, E; Oakes, L; Oh, S H; Oh, Y D; Oksuzian, I; Okusawa, T; Orava, R; Osterberg, K; Pagan Griso, S; Palencia, E; Papadimitriou, V; Papaikonomou, A; Paramonov, A A; Parks, B; Pashapour, S; Patrick, J; Pauletta, G; Paulini, M; Paus, C; Peiffer, T; Pellett, D E; Penzo, A; Phillips, T J; Piacentino, G; Pianori, E; Pinera, L; Pinfold, J; Pitts, K; Plager, C; Pondrom, L; Poukhov, O; Pounder, N; Prakoshyn, F; Pronko, A; Proudfoot, J; Ptohos, F; Pueschel, E; Punzi, G; Pursley, J; Rademacker, J; Rahaman, A; Ramakrishnan, V; Ranjan, N; Redondo, I; Renton, P; Renz, M; Rescigno, M; Richter, S; Rimondi, F; Ristori, L; Robson, A; Rodrigo, T; Rodriguez, T; Rogers, E; Rolli, S; Roser, R; Rossi, M; Rossin, R; Roy, P; Ruiz, A; Russ, J; Rusu, V; Saarikko, H; Safonov, A; Sakumoto, W K; Saltó, O; Santi, L; Sarkar, S; Sartori, L; Sato, K; Savoy-Navarro, A; Schlabach, P; Schmidt, A; Schmidt, E E; Schmidt, M A; Schmidt, M P; Schmitt, M; Schwarz, T; Scodellaro, L; Scribano, A; Scuri, F; Sedov, A; Seidel, S; Seiya, Y; Semenov, A; Sexton-Kennedy, L; Sforza, F; Sfyrla, A; Shalhout, S Z; Shears, T; Shepard, P F; Shimojima, M; Shiraishi, S; Shochet, M; Shon, Y; Shreyber, I; Sidoti, A; Sinervo, P; Sisakyan, A; Slaughter, A J; Slaunwhite, J; Sliwa, K; Smith, J R; Snider, F D; Snihur, R; Soha, A; Somalwar, S; Sorin, V; Spalding, J; Spreitzer, T; Squillacioti, P; Stanitzki, M; St Denis, R; Stelzer, B; Stelzer-Chilton, O; Stentz, D; Strologas, J; Strycker, G L; Stuart, D; Suh, J S; Sukhanov, A; Suslov, I; Suzuki, T; Taffard, A; Takashima, R; Takeuchi, Y; Tanaka, R; Tecchio, M; Teng, P K; Terashi, K; Thom, J; Thompson, A S; Thompson, G A; Thomson, E; Tipton, P; Ttito-Guzmán, P; Tkaczyk, S; Toback, D; Tokar, S; Tollefson, K; Tomura, T; Tonelli, D; Torre, S; Torretta, D; Totaro, P; Tourneur, S; Trovato, M; Tsai, S-Y; Tu, Y; Turini, N; Ukegawa, F; Vallecorsa, S; van Remortel, N; Varganov, A; Vataga, E; Vázquez, F; Velev, G; Vellidis, C; Vidal, M; Vidal, R; Vila, I; Vilar, R; Vine, T; Vogel, M; Volobouev, I; Volpi, G; Wagner, P; Wagner, R G; Wagner, R L; Wagner, W; Wagner-Kuhr, J; Wakisaka, T; Wallny, R; Wang, S M; Warburton, A; Waters, D; Weinberger, M; Weinelt, J; Wester, W C; Whitehouse, B; Whiteson, D; Wicklund, A B; Wicklund, E; Wilbur, S; Williams, G; Williams, H H; Wilson, P; Winer, B L; Wittich, P; Wolbers, S; Wolfe, C; Wright, T; Wu, X; Würthwein, F; Xie, S; Yagil, A; Yamamoto, K; Yamaoka, J; Yang, U K; Yang, Y C; Yao, W M; Yeh, G P; Yoh, J; Yorita, K; Yoshida, T; Yu, G B; Yu, I; Yu, S S; Yun, J C; Zanello, L; Zanetti, A; Zhang, L; Zhang, X; Zheng, Y; Zucchelli, S

    2009-06-19

    In CDF we have observed the reactions p + p[over] --> p + X + p[over], with X being a centrally produced J/psi, psi(2S), or chi_{c0}, and gammagamma-->micro;{+}micro;{-} in pp[over] collisions at sqrt[s] = 1.96 TeV. The event signature requires two oppositely charged central muons, and either no other particles or one additional photon detected. Exclusive vector meson production is as expected for elastic photoproduction, gamma + p --> J/psi(psi(2S)) + p, observed here for the first time in hadron-hadron collisions. We also observe exclusive chi_{c0} --> J/psi + gamma. The cross sections dsigma/dy|_{y = 0} for J/psi, psi(2S), and chi_{c0} are 3.92 +/- 0.25(stat) +/- 0.52(syst) nb, 0.53 +/- 0.09(stat) +/- 0.10(syst) nb, and 76 +/- 10(stat) +/- 10(syst) nb, respectively, and the continuum is consistent with QED. We put an upper limit on the cross section for Odderon exchange in exclusive J/psi production. PMID:19658998

  3. A MicroRNA Network Dysregulated in Asthma Controls IL-6 Production in Bronchial Epithelial Cells

    PubMed Central

    Louafi, Fethi; Francisco-Garcia, Ana S.; Rupani, Hitasha; Bedke, Nicole; Holgate, Stephen; Howarth, Peter H.; Davies, Donna E.; Sanchez-Elsner, Tilman

    2014-01-01

    MicroRNAs are short non-coding single stranded RNAs that regulate gene expression. While much is known about the effects of individual microRNAs, there is now growing evidence that they can work in co-operative networks. MicroRNAs are known to be dysregulated in many diseases and affect pathways involved in the pathology. We investigated dysregulation of microRNA networks using asthma as the disease model. Asthma is a chronic inflammatory disease of the airways characterized by bronchial hyperresponsiveness and airway remodelling. The airway epithelium is a major contributor to asthma pathology and has been shown to produce an excess of inflammatory and pro-remodelling cytokines such as TGF-β, IL-6 and IL-8 as well as deficient amounts of anti-viral interferons. After performing microRNA arrays, we found that microRNAs -18a, -27a, -128 and -155 are down-regulated in asthmatic bronchial epithelial cells, compared to cells from healthy donors. Interestingly, these microRNAs are predicted in silico to target several components of the TGF-β, IL-6, IL-8 and interferons pathways. Manipulation of the levels of individual microRNAs in bronchial epithelial cells did not have an effect on any of these pathways. Importantly, knock-down of the network of microRNAs miR-18a, -27a, -128 and -155 led to a significant increase of IL-8 and IL-6 expression. Interestingly, despite strong in silico predictions, down-regulation of the pool of microRNAs did not have an effect on the TGF-β and Interferon pathways. In conclusion, using both bioinformatics and experimental tools we found a highly relevant potential role for microRNA dysregulation in the control of IL-6 and IL-8 expression in asthma. Our results suggest that microRNAs may have different roles depending on the presence of other microRNAs. Thus, interpretation of in silico analysis of microRNA function should be confirmed experimentally in the relevant cellular context taking into account interactions with other micro

  4. Participation, Value Rationality and Mutual Learning in Transdisciplinary Knowledge Production for Sustainable Development

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Polk, Merritt; Knutsson, Per

    2008-01-01

    Given the complexity of current social structures and environmental problems, attaining a truly sustainable society seems rather improbable today. Not only has society not been planned for the complexity of the preconditions and effects that sustainability entails, sustainability is also unlikely given current individual consumption patterns,…

  5. Indirect water management through Life Cycle Assessment: Fostering sustainable production in developing countries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pfister, S.; Bayer, P.; Koehler, A.; Hellweg, S.

    2009-04-01

    Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) represents a methodological framework for analyzing the total environmental impact of any product or service of our daily life. After tracking all associated emissions and the consumption of resources, this impact is expressed with respect to a few common impact categories. These are supposed to reflect major societal and environmental priorities. However, despite their central role in environmental processes, to date hydrological as well as hydrogeological aspects are only rarely considered in LCA. Compared with standard impact categories within LCA, water is special. In contrast to other abiotic resources such as crude oil, it can be replenished. Total freshwater resources are immense, but not evenly distributed and often scarce in regions of high demand. Consequently, threads to natural water bodies have immense spatial dependency. Setting up functional relationships in order to derive a generally valid and practicable evaluation is tedious due to the complex, insufficiently understood, and uncertain natural processes involved. LCA that includes the environmental effects of water consumption means global indirect water resource management. It supports goal-directed consumer behaviour that aims to reduce pressure on natural water systems. By developing a hydrologically-based assessment of potential impacts from human interaction with natural water bodies, "greener" products can be prioritised. More sustainable and environmentally friendly water management is the result. The proposed contribution presents an operational assessment method of global surface water consumption for impacts on human health and ecosystem quality within a LCA framework. A major focus is the issue of how such global assessment helps to quantify potential impacts from water-intensive production in developing countries, where the means for proper water management are often limited. We depict a compensation scheme for impacts related to water consumption that

  6. Fabrication of Hierarchically Micro- and Nano-structured Mold Surfaces Using Laser Ablation for Mass Production of Superhydrophobic Surfaces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Noh, Jiwhan; Lee, Jae-Hoon; Na, Suckjoo; Lim, Hyuneui; Jung, Dae-Hwan

    2010-10-01

    Many studies have examined the formation of surfaces with mixed patterns of micro- and nano-sized lotus leaves that have hydrophobic properties. In this study, micro- and nano-shapes such as lotus leaves were fabricated on a metal mold surface using laser ablation and ripple formation. A microstructure on the mold surface was replicated onto poly(dimethylsiloxane) (PDMS) using the polymer casting method to manufacture low-cost hydrophobic surfaces. A PDMS surface with micro- and nano-structures that were the inverse image of a lotus leaf showed hydrophobic characteristics (water contact angle: 157°). From these results, we deduced that portions of the microstructures were wet and that air gaps existed between the microstructures and the water drops. In this paper we suggest the possibility of the mass production of hydrophobic plastic surfaces and the development of a methodology for the hydrophobic texturing of various polymer surfaces, using the polymer casting method with laser-processed molds.

  7. Evaluating the composition and processing potential of novel sources of Brazilian biomass for sustainable biorenewables production

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background The search for promising and renewable sources of carbohydrates for the production of biofuels and other biorenewables has been stimulated by an increase in global energy demand in the face of growing concern over greenhouse gas emissions and fuel security. In particular, interest has focused on non-food lignocellulosic biomass as a potential source of abundant and sustainable feedstock for biorefineries. Here we investigate the potential of three Brazilian grasses (Panicum maximum, Pennisetum purpureum and Brachiaria brizantha), as well as bark residues from the harvesting of two commercial Eucalyptus clones (E. grandis and E. grandis x urophylla) for biofuel production, and compare these to sugarcane bagasse. The effects of hot water, acid, alkaline and sulfite pretreatments (at increasing temperatures) on the chemical composition, morphology and saccharification yields of these different biomass types were evaluated. Results The average yield (per hectare), availability and general composition of all five biomasses were compared. Compositional analyses indicate a high level of hemicellulose and lignin removal in all grass varieties (including sugarcane bagasse) after acid and alkaline pretreatment with increasing temperatures, whilst the biomasses pretreated with hot water or sulfite showed little variation from the control. For all biomasses, higher cellulose enrichment resulted from treatment with sodium hydroxide at 130°C. At 180°C, a decrease in cellulose content was observed, which is associated with high amorphous cellulose removal and 5-hydroxymethyl-furaldehyde production. Morphological analysis showed the effects of different pretreatments on the biomass surface, revealing a high production of microfibrillated cellulose on grass surfaces, after treatment with 1% sodium hydroxide at 130°C for 30 minutes. This may explain the higher hydrolysis yields resulting from these pretreatments, since these cellulosic nanoparticles can be easily

  8. Activated human valvular interstitial cells sustain interleukin-17 production to recruit neutrophils in infective endocarditis.

    PubMed

    Yeh, Chiou-Yueh; Shun, Chia-Tung; Kuo, Yu-Min; Jung, Chiau-Jing; Hsieh, Song-Chou; Chiu, Yen-Ling; Chen, Jeng-Wei; Hsu, Ron-Bin; Yang, Chia-Ju; Chia, Jean-San

    2015-06-01

    The mechanisms that underlie valvular inflammation in streptococcus-induced infective endocarditis (IE) remain unclear. We previously demonstrated that streptococcal glucosyltransferases (GTFs) can activate human heart valvular interstitial cells (VIC) to secrete interleukin-6 (IL-6), a cytokine involved in T helper 17 (Th17) cell differentiation. Here, we tested the hypothesis that activated VIC can enhance neutrophil infiltration through sustained IL-17 production, leading to valvular damage. To monitor cytokine and chemokine production, leukocyte recruitment, and the induction or expansion of CD4(+) CD45RA(-) CD25(-) CCR6(+) Th17 cells, primary human VIC were cultured in vitro and activated by GTFs. Serum cytokine levels were measured using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), and neutrophils and Th17 cells were detected by immunohistochemistry in infected valves from patients with IE. The expression of IL-21, IL-23, IL-17, and retinoic acid receptor-related orphan receptor C (Rorc) was upregulated in GTF-activated VIC, which may enhance the proliferation of memory Th17 cells in an IL-6-dependent manner. Many chemokines, including chemokine (C-X-C motif) ligand 1 (CXCL1), were upregulated in GTF-activated VIC, which might recruit neutrophils and CD4(+) T cells. Moreover, CXCL1 production in VIC was induced in a dose-dependent manner by IL-17 to enhance neutrophil chemotaxis. CXCL1-expressing VIC and infiltrating neutrophils could be detected in infected valves, and serum concentrations of IL-17, IL-21, and IL-23 were increased in patients with IE compared to healthy donors. Furthermore, elevated serum IL-21 levels have been significantly associated with severe valvular damage, including rupture of chordae tendineae, in IE patients. Our findings suggest that VIC are activated by bacterial modulins to recruit neutrophils and that such activities might be further enhanced by the production of Th17-associated cytokines. Together, these factors can amplify

  9. Considerations for Sustainable Biomass Production in Quercus-Dominated Forest Ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bruckman, Viktor; Yan, Shuai; Hochbichler, Eduard

    2013-04-01

    Our current energy system is mainly based on carbon (C) intensive metabolisms, resulting in great effects on the earth's biosphere. The majority of the energy sources are fossil (crude oil, coal, natural gas) and release CO2 in the combustion (oxidation) process which takes place during utilization of the energy. C released to the atmosphere was once sequestered by biomass over a time span of millions of years and is now being released back into the atmosphere within a period of just decades. In the context of green and CO2 neutral Energy, there is an on-going debate regarding the potentials of obtaining biomass from forests on multiple scales, from stand to international levels. Especially in the context of energy, it is highlighted that biomass is an entirely CO2 neutral feedstock since the carbon stored in wood originates from the atmospheric CO2 pool and it was taken up during plant growth. It needs systems approaches in order to justify this statement and ensure sustainability covering the whole life-cycle from biomass production to (bio)energy consumption. There are a number of Quercus woodland management systems focussing solely on woody biomass production for energetic utilization or a combination with traditional forestry and high quality timber production for trades and industry. They have often developed regionally as a consequence of specific demands and local production capacities, which are mainly driven by environmental factors such as climate and soil properties. We assessed the nutritional status of a common Quercus-dominated forest ecosystem in northern Austria, where we compared biomass- with belowground C and nutrient pools in order to identify potential site limits if the management shifts towards systems with a higher level of nutrient extraction. Heterogeneity of soils, and soil processes are considered, as well as other, growth-limiting factors (e.g. precipitation) and species-specific metabolisms and element translocation.

  10. A novel framework to classify marginal land for sustainable biomass feedstock production.

    PubMed

    Gopalakrishnan, Gayathri; Cristina Negri, M; Snyder, Seth W

    2011-01-01

    To achieve food and energy security, sustainable bioenergy has become an important goal for many countries. The use of marginal lands to produce energy crops is one strategy for achieving this goal, but what is marginal land? Current definitions generally focus on a single criterion, primarily agroeconomic profitability. Herein, we present a framework that incorporates multiple criteria including profitability of current land use, soil health indicators (erosion, flooding, drainage, or high slopes), and environmental degradation resulting from contamination of surface water or groundwater resources. We tested this framework for classifying marginal land in the state of Nebraska and estimated the potential for using marginal land to produce biofuel crops. Our results indicate that approximately 1.6 million ha, or 4 million acres, of land (approximately 8% of total land area) could be classified as marginal on the basis of at least two criteria. Second-generation lignocellulosic bioenergy crops such as switchgrass ( Panicum virgatum L.), miscanthus (Miscanthus giganteus), native prairie grasses, and short-rotation woody crops could be grown on this land in redesigned landscapes that meet energy and environmental needs, without significant impacts on food or feed production. Calculating tradeoffs between the economics of redesigned landscapes and current practices at the field scale is the next step for determining functional designs for integrating biofuel feedstock production into current land management practices. PMID:21869522