Science.gov

Sample records for sustainable micro products

  1. Product engineering and sustainability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Janssen, L. P. B. M.; Janssen, C. H. C.

    2016-11-01

    Chemical engineering has made a substantial contribution to the improvement of the environment during the last decades. Many processes have become more sustainable and harmful waste streams are minimised. However, considerable improvement of sustainability can still be obtained in product engineering and design. Especially the aspects that are important at the end of the life cycle of the product can be improved considerably. A priority list for the design of more sustainable products is presented and illustrated with examples of daily chemical engineering practice.

  2. 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.

  3. Toward Sustainable Amino Acid Production.

    PubMed

    Usuda, Yoshihiro; Hara, Yoshihiko; Kojima, Hiroyuki

    2016-11-22

    Because the global amino acid production industry has been growing steadily and is expected to grow even more in the future, efficient production by fermentation is of great importance from economic and sustainability viewpoints. Many systems biology technologies, such as genome breeding, omics analysis, metabolic flux analysis, and metabolic simulation, have been employed for the improvement of amino acid-producing strains of bacteria. Synthetic biological approaches have recently been applied to strain development. It is also important to use sustainable carbon sources, such as glycerol or pyrolytic sugars from cellulosic biomass, instead of conventional carbon sources, such as glucose or sucrose, which can be used as food. Furthermore, reduction of sub-raw substrates has been shown to lead to reduction of environmental burdens and cost. Recently, a new fermentation system for glutamate production under acidic pH was developed to decrease the amount of one sub-raw material, ammonium, for maintenance of culture pH. At the same time, the utilization of fermentation coproducts, such as cells, ammonium sulfate, and fermentation broth, is a useful approach to decrease waste. In this chapter, further perspectives for future amino acid fermentation from one-carbon compounds are described.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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...

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  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 multipurpose tree production systems for Nepal

    SciTech Connect

    Shen, S.Y.; Kilpatrick, K.J.

    1988-03-01

    Argonne National Laboratory is developing methods for producing reforestation plating stock, fuel, and fodder in a sustainable manner in Nepal. This project, in cooperation with the Ministry of Forest and Soil Conservation of Nepal, is sponsored by the US Agency for International Development (AID). Several production systems are being evaluated for the Mid-Hills Region of Nepal. To provide sustainable biomass production and ecological management of the fragile Mid-Hills Region, the production systems must simultaneously satisfy the physiological requirements of the plants, the symbiotic requirements of the plant and the microorganisms in its rhizosphere, the physicochemical requirements of nutrient and water cycling, and the climatic and topographic constraints.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. Agricultural sustainability and intensive production practices.

    PubMed

    Tilman, David; Cassman, Kenneth G; Matson, Pamela A; Naylor, Rosamond; Polasky, Stephen

    2002-08-08

    A doubling in global food demand projected for the next 50 years poses huge challenges for the sustainability both of food production and of terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems and the services they provide to society. Agriculturalists are the principal managers of global usable lands and will shape, perhaps irreversibly, the surface of the Earth in the coming decades. New incentives and policies for ensuring the sustainability of agriculture and ecosystem services will be crucial if we are to meet the demands of improving yields without compromising environmental integrity or public health.

  17. Sustainable strategies for nano-in-micro particle engineering for pulmonary delivery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Silva, A. Sofia; Tavares, Márcia T.; Aguiar-Ricardo, Ana

    2014-11-01

    With the increasing popularity and refinement of inhalation therapy, there has been a huge demand for the design and development of fine-tuned inhalable drug particles capable of assuring an efficient delivery to the lungs with optimal therapeutic outcomes. To cope with this demand, novel particle technologies have arisen over the last decade agreeing with the progress of pulmonary therapeutics that were commonly given by injection. Nanotechnology holds a considerable potential in the development of new release mechanisms of active ingredients to the deep lungs. For an accurate deep lung deposition and effective delivery of nanoparticles, respirable nano-in-micro formulations have been extensively investigated. Microparticles with nanoscale features can now be developed, and their functionalities have contributed to stabilize and improve the efficacy of the particulated dosage form. This paper reviews the different types of the aerosolizable nano-in-micro particles, as well as their sustainable production and characterization processes as dry powders. This review also intends to provide a critical insight of the current goals and technologies of particle engineering for the development of pulmonary drug delivery systems with a special emphasis on nano-micro dry powder formulations prepared by spray-drying and supercritical fluid-assisted techniques. The merits and limitations of these technologies are debated with reference to their appliance to specific drug and/or excipient materials. Finally, a list of most recent/ongoing clinical trials regarding pulmonary delivery of this type of formulation is described.

  18. Criteria Assessment Model for Sustainable Product Development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mohd Turan, Faiz; Johan, Kartina; Hisyamudin Muhd Nor, Nik

    2016-11-01

    The instability in today's market and the ever increasing and emerging demands for mass customized and hybrid products by customers, are driving companies and decision makers to seek for cost effective and time efficient improvements in their product development process. Design concept evaluation which is the end of conceptual design is one of the most critical decision points in product development. It relates to the final success of product development, because poor criteria assessment in design concept evaluation can rarely compensated at the later stages. This has led to real pressure for the adaptation of new developmental architecture and operational parameters to remain competitive in the market. In this paper, a new integrated design concept evaluation based on fuzzy-technique for order preference by similarity to ideal solution (Fuzzy-TOPSIS) is presented, and it also attempts to incorporate sustainability practices in assessing the criteria. Prior to Fuzzy-TOPSIS, a new scale of “Weighting criteria” for survey process is developed to quantify the evaluation criteria. This method will help engineers to improve the effectiveness and objectivity of the sustainable product development. Case example from industry is presented to demonstrate the efficacy of the proposed methodology. The result of the example shows that the new integrated method provides an alternative to existing methods of design concept evaluation.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 75 FR 56528 - EPA's Role in Advancing Sustainable Products

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-09-16

    ... in the ``green'' or sustainable products movement. The Agency will consider the information gathered... regarding the Agency's role in the ``green'' or sustainable products movement. The Agency will consider the..., or industrial products that may be considered as ``green,'' ``sustainable,'' or...

  2. Self-sustained micro mechanical oscillator with linear feedback

    DOE PAGES

    Chen, Changyao; Zanette, Damian H.; Guest, Jeffrey R.; ...

    2016-07-01

    Autonomous oscillators, such as clocks and lasers, produce periodic signals without any external frequency reference. In order to sustain stable periodic motions, there needs to be external energy supply as well as nonlinearity built into the oscillator to regulate the amplitude. Usually, nonlinearity is provided by the sustaining feedback mechanism, which also supplies energy, whereas the constituent resonator that determines the output frequency stays linear. Here we propose a new self-sustaining scheme that relies on the nonlinearity originating from the resonator itself to limit the oscillation amplitude, while the feedback remains linear. We introduce a model to describe the workingmore » principle of the self-sustained oscillations and validate it with experiments performed on a nonlinear microelectromechanical (MEMS) based oscillator.« less

  3. Self-sustained micro mechanical oscillator with linear feedback

    SciTech Connect

    Chen, Changyao; Zanette, Damian H.; Guest, Jeffrey R.; Czaplewski, David A.; Lopez, Daniel

    2016-07-01

    Autonomous oscillators, such as clocks and lasers, produce periodic signals without any external frequency reference. In order to sustain stable periodic motions, there needs to be external energy supply as well as nonlinearity built into the oscillator to regulate the amplitude. Usually, nonlinearity is provided by the sustaining feedback mechanism, which also supplies energy, whereas the constituent resonator that determines the output frequency stays linear. Here we propose a new self-sustaining scheme that relies on the nonlinearity originating from the resonator itself to limit the oscillation amplitude, while the feedback remains linear. We introduce a model to describe the working principle of the self-sustained oscillations and validate it with experiments performed on a nonlinear microelectromechanical (MEMS) based oscillator.

  4. 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.

  5. 10-Year Framework of Programmes on Sustainable Consumption and Production

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    One of the important programmatic outcomes from the U.N. Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20) was the adoption of the 10-Year Framework of Programmes (10YFP) on Sustainable Consumption and Production (SCP).

  6. Identification of microprocessor-dependent cancer cells allows screening for growth-sustaining micro-RNAs.

    PubMed

    Peric, D; Chvalova, K; Rousselet, G

    2012-04-19

    Micro-RNAs are deregulated in cancer cells, and some are either tumor suppressive or oncogenic. In addition, a link has been established between decreased expression of micro-RNAs and transformation, and several proteins of the RNA interference pathway have been shown to be haploinsufficient tumor suppressors. Oncogenic micro-RNAs (oncomiRs) could represent new therapeutic targets, and their identification is therefore crucial. However, structural and functional redundancy between micro-RNAs hampers approaches relying on individual micro-RNA inhibition. We reasoned that in cancer cells that depend on oncomiRs, impairing the micro-RNA pathway could lead to growth perturbation rather than increased tumorigenesis. Identifying such cells could allow functional analyses of individual micro-RNAs by complementation of the phenotypes observed upon global micro-RNA inhibition. Therefore, we developed episomal vectors coding for small hairpin RNAs targeting either Drosha or DGCR8, the two components of the microprocessor, the nuclear micro-RNA maturation complex. We identified cancer cell lines in which both vectors induced colony growth arrest. We then screened for individual micro-RNAs complementing this growth arrest, and identified miR-19a, miR-19b, miR-20a and miR-27b as major growth-sustaining micro-RNAs. However, the effect of miR-19a and miR-19b was only transient. In addition, embryonic stem cell-derived micro-RNAs with miR-20a seeds were much less efficient than miR-20a in sustaining cancer cell growth, a finding that contrasted with results obtained in stem cells. Finally, we showed that the tumor suppressor phosphatase and tensin homologue deleted on chromosome 10, a shared target of miR-19 and miR-20, was functionally involved in the growth arrest induced by microprocessor inhibition. We conclude that our approach allowed to identify microprocessor-dependent cancer cells, which could be used to screen for growth-sustaining micro-RNAs. This complementation screen

  7. 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.

  8. 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

  9. 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.

  10. Micro-scale variability enhances trophic transfer and potentially sustains biodiversity in plankton ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Priyadarshi, Anupam; Mandal, Sandip; Smith, S Lan; Yamazaki, Hidekatsu

    2017-01-07

    We develop moment closure approximations to represent micro-scale spatial variability in the concentrations of nutrients (N), phytoplankton (P) and zooplankton (Z) in an NPZ model, which we apply to examine the impact of different levels of micro-scale variability on both ecosystem dynamics and trophic transfer. Accounting explicitly for both the mean-field and fluctuating components of each prognostic variable in the NPZ model yields different dynamics for the mean-field concentrations, as well as lower phytoplankton biomass and greater zooplankton biomass, compared to the conventional NPZ model without micro-scale variability. The biomass of zooplankton consistently increases with increasing total micro-scale variability, and a minimum threshold of such variability is required for the existence of stable steady state solutions in the NPZ closure model. Compared to the conventional NPZ model, the domain of parameter space over which stable solutions exist is larger than for the NPZ closure model, and this stable domain widens with increasing total variability. The latter result suggests that natural systems with greater micro-scale variability may have the potential to sustain greater biodiversity. We find that with the NPZ closure model: (1) the stability domains increases with micro-scale variability, (2) increase of the level of total micro-scale variability enhances trophic transfer, i.e. increases the biomass of zooplankton, and (3) the coefficient of variation (CVP) of phytoplankton increases with micro-scale variability.

  11. Fungal endophytes for sustainable crop production.

    PubMed

    Lugtenberg, Ben J J; Caradus, John R; Johnson, Linda J

    2016-12-01

    This minireview highlights the importance of endophytic fungi for sustainable agriculture and horticulture production. Fungal endophytes play a key role in habitat adaptation of plants resulting in improved plant performance and plant protection against biotic and abiotic stresses. They encode a vast variety of novel secondary metabolites including volatile organic compounds. In addition to protecting plants against pathogens and pests, selected fungal endophytes have been used to remove animal toxicities associated with fungal endophytes in temperate grasses, to create corn and rice plants that are tolerant to a range of biotic and abiotic stresses, and for improved management of post-harvest control. We argue that practices used in plant breeding, seed treatments and agriculture, often caused by poor knowledge of the importance of fungal endophytes, are among the reasons for the loss of fungal endophyte diversity in domesticated plants and also accounts for the reduced effectiveness of some endophyte strains to confer plant benefits. We provide recommendations on how to mitigate against these negative impacts in modern agriculture.

  12. Production of the smallest QED atom: true microonium (micro+micro-).

    PubMed

    Brodsky, Stanley J; Lebed, Richard F

    2009-05-29

    The "true microonium" (micro+micro-) and "true tauonium" (tau+tau-) bound states are not only the heaviest, but also the most compact pure QED systems. The rapid weak decay of the tau makes the observation of true tauonium difficult. However, as we show, the production and study of true microonium is possible at modern electron-positron colliders.

  13. 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…

  14. Comprehensive Analysis Competence and Innovative Approaches for Sustainable Chemical Production.

    PubMed

    Appel, Joerg; Colombo, Corrado; Dtwyler, Urs; Chen, Yun; Kerimoglu, Nimet

    2016-09-01

    Humanity currently sees itself facing enormous economic, ecological, and social challenges. Sustainable products and production in specialty chemistry are an important strategic element to address these megatrends. In addition to that, digitalization and global connectivity will create new opportunities for the industry. One aspect is examined in this paper, which shows the development of comprehensive analysis of production networks for a more sustainable production in which the need for innovative solutions arises. Examples from data analysis, advanced process control and automated performance monitoring are shown. These efforts have significant impact on improved yields, reduced energy and water consumption, and better product performance in the application of the products.

  15. Comprehensive Analysis Competence and Innovative Approaches for Sustainable Chemical Production.

    PubMed

    Appel, Joerg; Colombo, Corrado; Dätwyler, Urs; Chen, Yun; Kerimoglu, Nimet

    2016-01-01

    Humanity currently sees itself facing enormous economic, ecological, and social challenges. Sustainable products and production in specialty chemistry are an important strategic element to address these megatrends. In addition to that, digitalization and global connectivity will create new opportunities for the industry. One aspect is examined in this paper, which shows the development of comprehensive analysis of production networks for a more sustainable production in which the need for innovative solutions arises. Examples from data analysis, advanced process control and automated performance monitoring are shown. These efforts have significant impact on improved yields, reduced energy and water consumption, and better product performance in the application of the products.

  16. 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.

  17. 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…

  18. 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…

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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…

  2. Combining micro-structures and micro-algae to increase lipid production for bio-fuel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vyawahare, Saurabh; Zhu, Emilly; Mestler, Troy; Estévez-Torres, André.; Austin, Robert

    2011-03-01

    3rd generation bio-fuels like lipid producing micro-algae are a promising source of energy that could replace our dependence on petroleum. However, until there are improvements in algae oil yields, and a reduction in the energy needed for processing, algae bio-fuels are not economically competitive with petroleum. Here, we describe our work combining micro-fabricated devices with micro-algae Neochloris oleoabundans, a species first isolated on the sand dunes of Saudi Arabia. Inserting micro-algae of varying fitness into a landscape of micro-habitats allows us to evolve and select them based on a variety of conditions like specific gravity, starvation response and Nile Red fluorescence (which is a marker for lipid production). Hence, we can both estimate the production of lipids and generate conditions that allow the creation and isolation of algae which produce higher amounts of lipids, while discarding the rest. Finally, we can use micro-fabricated structures and flocculation to de-water these high lipid producing algae, reducing the need for expensive centrifugation and filtration.

  3. 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.

  4. 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...

  5. 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.

  6. Sustainable agriculture: how to sustain a production system in a changing environment.

    PubMed

    Wagner, W C

    1999-01-01

    During the past 10-15 years, sustainable agriculture has progressed from a focus primarily on a low-input, organic farming approach with a major emphasis on small fruit or vegetable production farms, often described as Low Input Sustainable Agriculture, to the current situation where sustainability is an important part of mainstream animal and plant production units. The US Department of Agriculture programmes cover a broad range of activities, including conserving the natural resource base, enhancing environmental quality, and sustaining productivity of the nation's farms. The use of Geographic Information Systems technology to direct application of fertilisers, pesticides, and herbicides is one example of a rapidly emerging technology that can reduce use of external inputs, protect the agricultural environment, and improve economic returns. This Geographic Information Systems technology also is being used to localise animal pest and disease problems, assist in regulatory or control measures, and identify high risk areas that might need different management systems or should be avoided as sites for animal production. Use of intensive grazing systems also has increased markedly over the past 5-6 years. These systems will allow longer grazing seasons in southern parts of the USA, provide more efficient use of the forages being produced and reduce labour costs in the typical dairy operation. Major animal and plant production agriculture-oriented programmes at the US Department of Agriculture focus on integrated production systems, use of Integrated Pest Management techniques, and development of alternative methods to manage pests and diseases that reduce or avoid the use of drugs and chemicals. The US Department of Agriculture has a programme for sustainable agriculture, the Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education programme, which emphasises alternative approaches for animal and plant production systems.

  7. The potential of sustainable algal biofuel production using wastewater resources.

    PubMed

    Pittman, Jon K; Dean, Andrew P; Osundeko, Olumayowa

    2011-01-01

    The potential of microalgae as a source of renewable energy has received considerable interest, but if microalgal biofuel production is to be economically viable and sustainable, further optimization of mass culture conditions are needed. Wastewaters derived from municipal, agricultural and industrial activities potentially provide cost-effective and sustainable means of algal growth for biofuels. In addition, there is also potential for combining wastewater treatment by algae, such as nutrient removal, with biofuel production. Here we will review the current research on this topic and discuss the potential benefits and limitations of using wastewaters as resources for cost-effective microalgal biofuel production.

  8. 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

  9. Environmental impacts and sustainability of egg production systems

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    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 q...

  10. 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…

  11. Knowledge Productivity for Sustainable Innovation: Social Capital as HRD Target

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ehlen, Corry; van der Klink, Marcel; Roentgen, Uta; Curfs, Emile; Boshuizen, Henny

    2014-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to test the feasibility of a conceptual model on relations between organisational innovation, knowledge productivity and social capital. It explores processes of knowledge productivity for sustainable innovation and associated HRD implications in knowledge intensive organisations, taking the perspective that…

  12. Sustainable production of orphan radionuclides at Wisconsin.

    PubMed

    Nickles, R J; Avila-Rodriguez, M A; Nye, J A; Houser, E N; Selwyn, R G; Schueller, M J; Christian, B T; Jensen, M

    2008-06-01

    Over a hundred proton-induced reactions have been studied at the University of Wisconsin Medical Physics department since the installation of the first CTI RDS 112 in 1985. The focus has been to measure thick target yields at 11 MeV, in an effort to concentrate on the practical production of positron emitting radionuclides that have favorable decay characteristics, high yields and the potential for labeling pivotal biological tracers. This review covers our recent advances to scale-up the production of the heavy halogens and transition metals as feed-stock for non-conventional PET tracers that are currently attracting increased attention in oncology.

  13. Biological engineering for sustainable biomass production

    SciTech Connect

    Shen, S.

    1986-09-01

    A new discipline has evolved in efforts to engineer photosynthetic production systems that produce biomass feedstocks efficiently, economically and with minimal adverse environmental impact. In this talk an overview is given of how biological engineering systems are designed to produce energy and novel material products within the framework of existing market infrastructure. Practical examples of biological engineering systems which employ components based on genetic engineering, species propagation, modern agricultural techniques, chemical engineering, and mechanical engineering are analyzed for worldwide materials application and environmental conservation. 9 refs., 6 figs.

  14. 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...

  15. 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...

  16. Sustainability Product Properties in Building Information Models

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2012-09-01

    Architect, Engineers, Contractors, Com- missioning Agent, and Environmental and Energy Consultant. This ap- proach is a powerful tool that can result in...energy consuming products shall also be designated as using “low standby power ” as required by Executive Order 13221. Specific to the Guiding...use of onsite renewable energy or green power , measurement and verification and benchmarking. ERDC/CERL CR-12-6 23 1.5.1 Energy efficiency The

  17. 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.

  18. Sustainable Algal Energy Production and Environmental Remediation

    SciTech Connect

    Cooke, William E.

    2012-07-14

    Overall, our results confirm that wild algal species sequester a wide range of organic and metal contaminants and excess nutrients (PAHs, trace metals, and nutrients) from natural waters, and suggest parameters that could be useful in predicting uptake rates for algae growing on an algal floway or other algal growth systems in the environment or in industrial processes. The implication for various fuel production processes differ with the detailed unit operations involved, and these results will be of use in the developing of scaling experiments for various types of engineering process designs.

  19. The future of sustainable food production.

    PubMed

    Ronald, Pamela; Adamchak, Raoul

    2010-03-01

    By the year 2050, the number of people on Earth is expected to increase from the current 6.7 to 9.2 billion. What is the best way to produce enough food to feed all these people? If we continue with current farming practices, vast amounts of wilderness will be lost, millions of birds and billions of insects will die, farm workers will be at increased risk for disease, and the public will lose billions of dollars as a consequence of environmental degradation. Clearly, there must be a better way to resolve the need for increased food production with the desire to minimize its impact.

  20. Improving the sustainability of global meat and milk production.

    PubMed

    Salter, Andrew M

    2017-02-01

    Global demand for meat and dairy products has increased dramatically in recent decades and, through a combination of global population growth, increased lifespan and improved economic prosperity in the developing world will inevitably continue to increase. The predicted increases in livestock production will put a potentially unsustainable burden on global resources, including land for production of crops required for animal feed and fresh water. Furthermore, animal production itself is associated with greenhouse gas production, which may speed up global warming and thereby impact on our ability to produce food. There is, therefore, an urgent need to find methods to improve the sustainability of livestock production. This review will consider various options for improving the sustainability of livestock production with particular emphasis on finding ways to replace conventional crops as sources of animal feeds. Alternatives, such as currently underutilised crops (grown on a marginal land) and insects, reared on substrates not suitable for direct consumption by farm animals, represent possible solutions. Coupled with a moderation of excessive meat consumption in wealthier countries, such strategies may secure the long-term sustainability of meat and milk production and mitigate against the adverse health effects of excessive intake.

  1. 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...

  2. 36 CFR 223.219 - Sustainable harvest of special forest products.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... scale, and scientific data available prior to making their sustainability determination and establishing... on the sustainability of special forest products. Such monitoring may include, but is not limited...

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

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... scale, and scientific data available prior to making their sustainability determination and establishing... on the sustainability of special forest products. Such monitoring may include, but is not limited...

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

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... scale, and scientific data available prior to making their sustainability determination and establishing... on the sustainability of special forest products. Such monitoring may include, but is not limited...

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

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... scale, and scientific data available prior to making their sustainability determination and establishing... on the sustainability of special forest products. Such monitoring may include, but is not limited...

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. Neglecting legumes has compromised human health and sustainable food production.

    PubMed

    Foyer, Christine H; Lam, Hon-Ming; Nguyen, Henry T; Siddique, Kadambot H M; Varshney, Rajeev K; Colmer, Timothy D; Cowling, Wallace; Bramley, Helen; Mori, Trevor A; Hodgson, Jonathan M; Cooper, James W; Miller, Anthony J; Kunert, Karl; Vorster, Juan; Cullis, Christopher; Ozga, Jocelyn A; Wahlqvist, Mark L; Liang, Yan; Shou, Huixia; Shi, Kai; Yu, Jingquan; Fodor, Nandor; Kaiser, Brent N; Wong, Fuk-Ling; Valliyodan, Babu; Considine, Michael J

    2016-08-02

    The United Nations declared 2016 as the International Year of Pulses (grain legumes) under the banner 'nutritious seeds for a sustainable future'. A second green revolution is required to ensure food and nutritional security in the face of global climate change. Grain legumes provide an unparalleled solution to this problem because of their inherent capacity for symbiotic atmospheric nitrogen fixation, which provides economically sustainable advantages for farming. In addition, a legume-rich diet has health benefits for humans and livestock alike. However, grain legumes form only a minor part of most current human diets, and legume crops are greatly under-used. Food security and soil fertility could be significantly improved by greater grain legume usage and increased improvement of a range of grain legumes. The current lack of coordinated focus on grain legumes has compromised human health, nutritional security and sustainable food production.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. SOIL ECOLOGY AS KEY TO SUSTAINABLE CROP PRODUCTION.

    PubMed

    De Deyn, G B

    2015-01-01

    Sustainable production of food, feed and fiberwarrants sustainable soil management and crop protection. The tools available to achieve this are both in the realm of the plants and of the soil, with a key role for plant-soil interactions. At the plant level we have vast knowledge of variation within plant species with respect to pests and diseases, based on which we can breed for resistance. However, given that systems evolve this resistance is bound to be temporarily, hence also other strategies are needed. Here I plea for an integrative approach for sustainable production using ecological principles. Ecology, the study of how organisms interact with their environment, teaches us that diversity promotes productivity and yield stability. These effects are thought to be governed through resource use complementarity and reduced build-up of pests and diseases both above- and belowground. In recent years especially the role of soil biotic interactions has revealed new insights in how plant diversity and productivity are related to soil biodiversity and the functions soil biota govern. In our grassland biodiversity studies we found that root feeders can promote plant diversity and succession without reducing plant community productivity, this illustrates the role of diversity to maintain productivity. Also diversity within species offers scope for sustainable production, for example through awareness of differences between plant genotypes in chemical defense compounds that can attract natural enemies of pests aboveground- and belowground thereby providing plant protection. Plant breeding can also benefit from using complementarity between plant species in the selection for new varieties, as our work demonstrated that when growing in species mixtures plant species adapt to each other over time such that their resource acquisition traits become more complementing. Finally, in a recent meta-analysis we show that earthworms can stimulate crop yield with on average 25%, but

  12. 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.

  13. Sustainable development of food production: a case study on scenarios for pig production.

    PubMed

    Stern, Susanne; Sonesson, Ulf; Gunnarsson, Stefan; Oborn, Ingrid; Kumm, Karl-Ivar; Nybrant, Thomas

    2005-06-01

    To study future, sustainable production systems, a step-wise method was used to create three future scenarios for pig production based on different sustainability goals. The first scenario focused on animal welfare and the natural behavior of the animals. The second targeted low impacts on the environment and the efficient use of natural resources. The third scenario aimed at product quality and safety. Each scenario fulfilled different aspects of sustainability, but there were goal conflicts because no scenario fulfilled all sustainability goals. The scenarios were then parameterized. The environmental impact was calculated using the life-cycle assessment (LCA) methodology, and the economic cost was calculated from the same data set. The cost per kilo of pork was highest for the animal welfare scenario and similar for the other two scenarios. The environmental scenario had the lowest environmental impact, and the product-quality scenario the highest. The results are discussed based on different future priorities.

  14. 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

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

    PubMed

    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

    2013-05-02

    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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. Relay cropping as a sustainable approach: problems and opportunities for sustainable crop production.

    PubMed

    Tanveer, Mohsin; Anjum, Shakeel Ahmad; Hussain, Saddam; Cerdà, Artemi; Ashraf, Umair

    2017-03-01

    Climate change, soil degradation, and depletion of natural resources are becoming the most prominent challenges for crop productivity and environmental sustainability in modern agriculture. In the scenario of conventional farming system, limited chances are available to cope with these issues. Relay cropping is a method of multiple cropping where one crop is seeded into standing second crop well before harvesting of second crop. Relay cropping may solve a number of conflicts such as inefficient use of available resources, controversies in sowing time, fertilizer application, and soil degradation. Relay cropping is a complex suite of different resource-efficient technologies, which possesses the capability to improve soil quality, to increase net return, to increase land equivalent ratio, and to control the weeds and pest infestation. The current review emphasized relay cropping as a tool for crop diversification and environmental sustainability with special focus on soil. Briefly, benefits, constraints, and opportunities of relay cropping keeping the goals of higher crop productivity and sustainability have also been discussed in this review. The research and knowledge gap in relay cropping was also highlighted in order to guide the further studies in future.

  19. 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.

  20. Stochastic Thermodynamics and Sustainable Efficiency in Work Production

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gaveau, B.; Moreau, M.; Schulman, L. S.

    2010-08-01

    We propose a novel definition of efficiency, valid for motors in a nonequilibrium stationary state exchanging heat and possibly other resources with an arbitrary number of reservoirs. This definition, based on a rational estimation of all irreversible effects associated with power production, is adapted to the concerns of sustainable development. Under conditions of maximum power production the new efficiency has for upper bound (1)/(2) in situations relevant for mesoscopic systems. These results imply that at maximum power bithermal, stationary motors could reach a higher Carnot efficiency than the usual cyclic motors.

  1. Environmental indicators for sustainable production of algal biofuels

    DOE PAGES

    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

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. Considerations for sustainable influenza vaccine production in developing countries.

    PubMed

    Nannei, Claudia; Chadwick, Christopher; Fatima, Hiba; Goldin, Shoshanna; Grubo, Myriam; Ganim, Alexandra

    2016-10-26

    Through its Global Action Plan for Influenza Vaccines (GAP), the World Health Organization (WHO) in collaboration with the United States Department of Health and Human Services has produced a checklist to support policy-makers and influenza vaccine manufacturers in identifying key technological, political, financial, and logistical issues affecting the sustainability of influenza vaccine production. This checklist highlights actions in five key areas that are beneficial for establishing successful local vaccine manufacturing. These five areas comprise: (1) the policy environment and health-care systems; (2) surveillance systems and influenza evidence; (3) product development and manufacturing; (4) product approval and regulation; and (5) communication to support influenza vaccination. Incorporating the checklist into national vaccine production programmes has identified the policy gaps and next steps for countries involved in GAP's Technology Transfer Initiative. Lessons learnt from country experiences provide context and insight that complement the checklist's goal of simplifying the complexities of influenza prevention, preparedness, and vaccine manufacturing.

  6. Agroecology and the Sustainable Production of Food and ...

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    The silvopastoral, agricultural system of the montado in Southern Portugal is an example of the self-organization of an agroecological system adapted to the climate and soil conditions of the Mediterranean basin. This system with its consistent production of food, fiber, and ecosystem services along with its concomitant rural social organization has been sustained in the region for over 1000 years. However, the system has been gradually decreasing in extent since the 19th century and its rate of decline has accelerated since the 1980s. The causes of this decline have been traced in descending order of importance to land managment choices, spatial factors and environmental factors. In addition, past studies have shown that there is an optimum livestock support capacity for maintaining the health of the montado agroecosystem. In this study, we used the results of an emergy evaluation of a cattle farm as part of a montado agroecosystem to examine the effects of the European Union’s (EU) Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) on the viability of both cattle rearing and the long term regional sustainability of montado agroecosystems. We found that the CAP and its two pillars for providing subsidies, (1) Common Market Organization (CMO) and (2) Rural Development Policy (RDP) are complex and take into account many aspects of prices and markets for particular products, e.g., beef and veal (CMO) and sustainable rural development, e.g., silvopastoral agroecosystems (RDP). How

  7. 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.

  8. 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…

  9. Nutrient balances as indicators for sustainability of broiler production systems.

    PubMed

    Kratz, S; Halle, I; Rogasik, J; Schnug, E

    2004-04-01

    1. Flock balances of nitrogen, phosphorus, zinc and copper (N, P, Zn, Cu) were calculated in order to evaluate environmental effects of three different broiler production systems (intensive indoor, free range and organic). 2. Nutrient gain in birds per unit nutrient intake (retention) in intensive indoor production was higher than in free range and organic production. 3. Nutrient surplus relative to nutrient retention was higher in organic production than in free range and intensive indoor production. 4. The main reasons for differences in nutrient efficiency between intensive indoor, free range and organic production were duration of growth period, strain of broilers and feeding strategy. 5. The calculation of whole farm indicators (livestock density, N and P excretions per hectare of farmland) demonstrates how defining system boundaries affects the outcome of an evaluation: organic farms had the smallest livestock densities and the lowest N and P excretions per hectare of farmland. 6. In the efforts to reach a more holistic evaluation of agricultural production systems, the definition of adequate system boundaries must be discussed. In addition to nutrient balances, further indicators of sustainability, such as human and ecological toxicity, should be considered.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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

  13. 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.

  14. 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

  15. 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.

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

    PubMed Central

    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

  17. 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.

  18. Quality and safety requirements for sustainable phage therapy products.

    PubMed

    Pirnay, Jean-Paul; Blasdel, Bob G; Bretaudeau, Laurent; Buckling, Angus; Chanishvili, Nina; Clark, Jason R; Corte-Real, Sofia; Debarbieux, Laurent; Dublanchet, Alain; De Vos, Daniel; Gabard, Jérôme; Garcia, Miguel; Goderdzishvili, Marina; Górski, Andrzej; Hardcastle, John; Huys, Isabelle; Kutter, Elizabeth; Lavigne, Rob; Merabishvili, Maia; Olchawa, Ewa; Parikka, Kaarle J; Patey, Olivier; Pouilot, Flavie; Resch, Gregory; Rohde, Christine; Scheres, Jacques; Skurnik, Mikael; Vaneechoutte, Mario; Van Parys, Luc; Verbeken, Gilbert; Zizi, Martin; Van den Eede, Guy

    2015-07-01

    The worldwide antibiotic crisis has led to a renewed interest in phage therapy. Since time immemorial phages control bacterial populations on Earth. Potent lytic phages against bacterial pathogens can be isolated from the environment or selected from a collection in a matter of days. In addition, phages have the capacity to rapidly overcome bacterial resistances, which will inevitably emerge. To maximally exploit these advantage phages have over conventional drugs such as antibiotics, it is important that sustainable phage products are not submitted to the conventional long medicinal product development and licensing pathway. There is a need for an adapted framework, including realistic production and quality and safety requirements, that allows a timely supplying of phage therapy products for 'personalized therapy' or for public health or medical emergencies. This paper enumerates all phage therapy product related quality and safety risks known to the authors, as well as the tests that can be performed to minimize these risks, only to the extent needed to protect the patients and to allow and advance responsible phage therapy and research.

  19. 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.

  20. MicroRNAs regulating apolipoprotein B-containing lipoprotein production.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Liye; Irani, Sara; Sirwi, Alaa; Hussain, M Mahmood

    2016-12-01

    MicroRNAs (miRs) are small, non-coding RNAs that regulate gene expression and have been implicated in many pathological conditions. Significant progress has been made to unveil their role in lipid metabolism. This review aims at summarizing the role of different miRs that regulate hepatic assembly and secretion of apolipoprotein B (apoB)-containing lipoproteins. Overproduction and/or impaired clearance of these lipoproteins from circulation increase plasma concentrations of lipids enhancing risk for cardiovascular disease. So far, three miRs, miR-122, miR-34a, and miR-30c have been shown to modulate hepatic production of apoB-containing low density lipoproteins. In this review, we will first provide a brief overview of lipid metabolism and apoB-containing lipoprotein assembly to orient readers to different steps that have been shown to be regulated by miRs. Then, we will discuss the role of each miR on plasma lipids and atherosclerotic burden. Furthermore, we will summarize mechanistic studies explaining how these miRs regulate hepatic lipid synthesis, fatty acid oxidation, and lipoprotein secretion. Finally, we will briefly highlight the potential use of each miR as a therapeutic drug for treating cardiovascular diseases. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: MicroRNAs and lipid/energy metabolism and related diseases edited by Carlos Fernández-Hernando and Yajaira Suárez.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. 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.

  5. Improved sustainability of feedstock production with sludge and interacting mycorrhiza.

    PubMed

    Seleiman, Mahmoud F; Santanen, Arja; Kleemola, Jouko; Stoddard, Frederick L; Mäkelä, Pirjo S A

    2013-05-01

    Recycling nutrients saves energy and improves agricultural sustainability. Sewage sludge contains 2.6% P and 3.1% N, so the availability of these nutrients was investigated using four crops grown in either soil or sand. Further attention was paid to the role of mycorrhiza in improvement of nutrient availability. The content of heavy metals and metalloids in the feedstock was analyzed. Sewage sludge application resulted in greater biomass accumulation in ryegrass than comparable single applications of either synthetic fertilizer or digested sludge. Sewage sludge application resulted in more numerous mycorrhizal spores in soil and increased root colonization in comparison to synthetic fertilizer. All plants studied had mycorrhizal colonized roots, with the highest colonization rate in maize, followed by hemp. Sewage sludge application resulted in the highest P uptake in all soil-grown plants. In conclusion, sewage sludge application increased feedstock yield, provided beneficial use for organic wastes, and contributed to the sustainability of bioenergy feedstock production systems. It also improves the soil conditions and plant nutrition through colonization by mycorrhizal fungi as well as reducing leaching and need of synthetic fertilizers.

  6. 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.

  7. From eco-sustainability to risk assessment of aquaculture products.

    PubMed

    Gandini, G; Ababouch, L; Anichini, L

    2009-09-01

    The increasing demand for fishery products and the technical and commercial opportunities now available make the development of aquaculture an important subject for the policy of the fishery sector, in particular concerning aspects of its environmental and ecological sustainability. The latest studies show that it is possible to apply an ecological approach to the aquaculture sector and hence increase the interactions between fisheries and other activities such as fish/molluscs, fish/seaweed, rice-growing/fish. In this way we take part in the improvement of the environment thanks to the recycling of organic food, the reduction of pesticide use and the control of environmental euthrophication. In order to support and facilitate trade, but at the same time ensure the safety and quality of products, a harmonization of the policies for food safety protecting the products throughout the whole food chain is required (from the sea to the table). The above mentioned policy, based on scientific knowledge, relies on the analysis of risks from the competent Authorities and on the proper application of HACCP from the industries of the sector.

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

    DOE PAGES

    Parish, Esther S.; Dale, Virginia H.; English, Burton C.; ...

    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

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

    SciTech Connect

    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 of 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.

  10. 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...

  11. OH radical production in an atmospheric pressure surface micro-discharge array

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, D.; Nikiforov, A.; Britun, N.; Snyders, R.; Kong, M. G.; Leys, C.

    2016-11-01

    The generation of OH radicals from an array of surface micro-discharges working in atmospheric pressure He/Ar/H2O mixtures is investigated. The absolute OH density and its temporal-and-spatial dynamics are detected by UV broadband absorption spectroscopy (UV-BAS) and laser-induced fluorescence (LIF) spectroscopy. The measured absolute density of OH(X) state is about 1021 m-3 in Ar/H2O mixture reaching a peak at 0.05% of H2O. In the case of He/H2O mixtures however, the peaking at ~1019 m-3 is approximately two orders of magnitude lower and decreases monotonously with increasing H2O content. From a control standpoint, the ratio of the Ar/He mixture may be adjusted to tune the OH density over two orders of magnitude and to modulate the H2O content dependence of the OH density. The capability of modulating the OH radical production over a large density range is of practical interest for many applications such as atmospheric chemistry and biochemistry. With the array of atmospheric micro-discharges sustained over a large electrode area, a uniform distribution of its OH density can be achieved in a plane parallel to the electrodes thus enabling spatially controlled surface treatment of large samples.

  12. Knowledge and technologies for sustainable intensification of food production.

    PubMed

    Flavell, Richard

    2010-11-30

    Knowledge and technologies will always continue to be developed, as they have always, to bring new efficiencies to plant breeding and crop production, which suffer from many constraints and inefficiencies. These constraints need to be overcome throughout the world to help increase the rate of improvements in food production and intensify production on less land. The recent discoveries and technical innovations that are revealing the full complement of genes in crops, the ability to define genetic variation and use DNA markers to follow chromosome segments with known functions through breeding programmes are leading to new efficiencies in breeding. The ability to isolate and redesign genes and transfer them into different plants also offers the breeder solutions to several key limitations. These benefits are described together with some of the current issues associated with the use of transgenes. Generation after generation can look forward to new knowledge and technologies, many of which we cannot know at present, and thus there is no reason to be despondent about meeting future goals, if the right decisions and investments are made globally and locally. These decisions include putting optimal use of land at the top of the world agenda to sustain both the planet and an adequate quality of life for mankind. As always has been the case, more investments are urgently required into the dissemination of successful technologies in crop breeding and production, into teaching and training as well as into innovative research. Failure to invest adequately in innovative technologies will leave future decision-makers and citizens with fewer options and greatly enhance the risks for mankind and a healthy planet.

  13. 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

    ... identify and implement solutions to increase the visibility of biobased and other sustainable products; (c... 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...

  14. 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.

  15. Recirculation: A New Concept to Drive Innovation in Sustainable Product Design for Bio-Based Products.

    PubMed

    Sherwood, James; Clark, James H; Farmer, Thomas J; Herrero-Davila, Lorenzo; Moity, Laurianne

    2016-12-29

    Bio-based products are made from renewable materials, offering a promising basis for the production of sustainable chemicals, materials, and more complex articles. However, biomass is not a limitless resource or one without environmental and social impacts. Therefore, while it is important to use biomass and grow a bio-based economy, displacing the unsustainable petroleum basis of energy and chemical production, any resource must be used effectively to reduce waste. Standards have been developed to support the bio-based product market in order to achieve this aim. However, the design of bio-based products has not received the same level of attention. Reported here are the first steps towards the development of a framework of understanding which connects product design to resource efficiency. Research and development scientists and engineers are encouraged to think beyond simple functionality and associate value to the potential of materials in their primary use and beyond.

  16. 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

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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...

  20. Forage use to improve environmental sustainability of ruminant production.

    PubMed

    Guyader, J; Janzen, H H; Kroebel, R; Beauchemin, K A

    2016-08-01

    Ruminants raised for meat and milk are important sources of protein in human diets worldwide. Their unique digestive system allows them to derive energy and nourishment from forages, making use of vast areas of grazing lands not suitable for arable cropping or biofuel production and avoiding direct competition for grain that can be used as human food. However, sustaining an ever-growing population of ruminants consuming forages poses a dilemma: while exploiting their ecological niche, forage-fed ruminants produce large amount of enteric methane, a potent greenhouse gas. Resolving this quandary would allow ruminants an expanded role in meeting growing global demands for livestock products. One way around the dilemma is to devise forage-based diets and feeding systems that reduce methane emissions per unit of milk or meat produced. Ongoing research has made significant strides toward this objective. A wider opportunity is to look beyond methane emissions alone and consider all greenhouse gas emissions from the entire livestock-producing system. For example, by raising ruminants in systems using forages, some of the methane emissions can be offset by preserving or enhancing soil carbon reserves, thereby withholding carbon dioxide from the air. Similarly, well-managed systems based on forages may reduce synthetic fertilizer use by more effective use of manure and nitrogen-fixing plants, thereby curtailing nitrous oxide emissions. The potential environmental benefits of forage-based systems may be expanded even further by considering their other ecological benefits, such as conserving biodiversity, improving soil health, enhancing water quality, and providing wildlife habitat. The quandary, then, can be alleviated by managing ruminants within a holistic land-livestock synchrony that considers not only methane emissions but also suppression of other greenhouse gases as well as other ecological benefits. Given the complexity of such systems, there likely are no singular

  1. 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

  2. Applying fuel cell experience to sustainable power products

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    King, Joseph M.; O'Day, Michael J.

    Fuel cell power plants have demonstrated high efficiency, environmental friendliness, excellent transient response, and superior reliability and durability in spacecraft and stationary applications. Broader application of fuel cell technology promises significant contribution to sustainable global economic growth, but requires improvement to size, cost, fuel flexibility and operating flexibility. International Fuel Cells (IFC) is applying lessons learned from delivery of more than 425 fuel cell power plants and 3 million h of operation to the development of product technology which captures that promise. Key findings at the fuel cell power plant level include: (1) ancillary components account for more than 40% of the weight and nearly all unscheduled outages of hydrocarbon-fuelled power plants; a higher level of integration and simplification is required to achieve reasonable characteristics, (2) hydrocarbon fuel cell power plant components are highly interactive; the fuel processing approach and power plant operating pressure are major determinants of overall efficiency, and (3) achieving the durability required for heavy duty vehicles and stationary applications requires simultaneous satisfaction of electrochemical, materials and mechanical considerations in the design of the cell stack and other power plant components. Practical designs must minimize application specific equipment. Related lessons for stationary fuel cell power plants include: (1) within fuel specification limits, natural gas varies widely in heating value, minor constituents such as oxygen and nitrogen content and trace compounds such as the odorant; (2) city water quality varies widely; recovery of product water for process use avoids costly, complicated and site-specific water treatment systems, but water treatment is required to eliminate impurities and (3) the embedded protection functions for reliable operation of fuel cell power conditioners meet or exceed those required for connection to

  3. 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.

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

    PubMed

    McGlone, John J

    2013-05-15

    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-common immunological castration method is more sustainable (for a number of reasons). This paper provides a method to assess the sustainability of production systems and practices that take into account the best available science, human perception and culture, animal welfare, the environment, food safety, worker health and safety, and economics (including the cost of production and solving world hunger). This tool can be used in countries and regions where the table values of a sustainability matrix change based on local conditions. The sustainability matrix can be used to assess current systems and predict improved systems of the future.

  5. Production of Extrachromosomal MicroDNAs Is Linked to Mismatch Repair Pathways and Transcriptional Activity.

    PubMed

    Dillon, Laura W; Kumar, Pankaj; Shibata, Yoshiyuki; Wang, Yuh-Hwa; Willcox, Smaranda; Griffith, Jack D; Pommier, Yves; Takeda, Shunichi; Dutta, Anindya

    2015-06-23

    MicroDNAs are <400-base extrachromosomal circles found in mammalian cells. Tens of thousands of microDNAs have been found in all tissue types, including sperm. MicroDNAs arise preferentially from areas with high gene density, GC content, and exon density from promoters with activating chromatin modifications and in sperm from the 5'-UTR of full-length LINE-1 elements, but are depleted from lamin-associated heterochromatin. Analysis of microDNAs from a set of human cancer cell lines revealed lineage-specific patterns of microDNA origins. A survey of microDNAs from chicken cells defective in various DNA repair proteins reveals that homologous recombination and non-homologous end joining repair pathways are not required for microDNA production. Deletion of the MSH3 DNA mismatch repair protein results in a significant decrease in microDNA abundance, specifically from non-CpG genomic regions. Thus, microDNAs arise as part of normal cellular physiology—either from DNA breaks associated with RNA metabolism or from replication slippage followed by mismatch repair.

  6. 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, ...

  7. 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...

  8. 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...

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. High-Efficiency Food Production in a Renewable Energy Based Micro-Grid Power System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bubenheim, David; Meiners, Dennis

    2016-01-01

    Controlled Environment Agriculture (CEA) systems can be used to produce high-quality, desirable food year round, and the fresh produce can positively contribute to the health and well being of residents in communities with difficult supply logistics. While CEA has many positive outcomes for a remote community, the associated high electric demands have prohibited widespread implementation in what is typically already a fully subscribed power generation and distribution system. Recent advances in CEA technologies as well as renewable power generation, storage, and micro-grid management are increasing system efficiency and expanding the possibilities for enhancing community supporting infrastructure without increasing demands for outside supplied fuels. We will present examples of how new lighting, nutrient delivery, and energy management and control systems can enable significant increases in food production efficiency while maintaining high yields in CEA. Examples from Alaskan communities where initial incorporation of renewable power generation, energy storage and grid management techniques have already reduced diesel fuel consumption for electric generation by more than 40% and expanded grid capacity will be presented. We will discuss how renewable power generation, efficient grid management to extract maximum community service per kW, and novel energy storage approaches can expand the food production, water supply, waste treatment, sanitation and other community support services without traditional increases of consumable fuels supplied from outside the community. These capabilities offer communities with a range of choices to enhance their communities. The examples represent a synergy of technology advancement efforts to develop sustainable community support systems for future space-based human habitats and practical implementation of infrastructure components to increase efficiency and enhance health and well being in remote communities today and tomorrow.

  16. Sustained high external quantum efficiency in ultrasmall blue III–nitride micro-LEDs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hwang, David; Mughal, Asad; Pynn, Christopher D.; Nakamura, Shuji; DenBaars, Steven P.

    2017-03-01

    Ultrasmall blue InGaN micro-light-emitting diodes (µLEDs) with areas from 10‑4 to 0.01 mm2 were fabricated to study their optical and electrical properties. The peak external quantum efficiencies (EQEs) of the smallest and largest µLEDs were 40.2 and 48.6%, respectively. The difference in EQE was from nonradiative recombination originating from etching damage. This decrease is less severe than that in red AlInGaP LEDs. The efficiency droop at 900 A/cm2 of the smallest µLED was 45.7%, compared with 56.0% for the largest, and was lower because of improved current spreading. These results show that ultrasmall µLEDs may be fabricated without a significant loss in optical or electrical performance.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. New approaches in silicon production and recycling for sustainable future

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muzafarov, A. M.; Bystrova, A. V.; Vasilenko, N. G.; Ignat'eva, G. M.

    2013-07-01

    Key prerequisites for the accelerated development of chemistry of silicones are considered in the context of the significance of organosilicon polymers for sustainable future. The principal trends in this field during the past two decades are analyzed and the quantum leap that occurred in the control of the structures and selective synthesis of macromolecules is pointed out. The problems of research into silicones are defined and the most promising approaches to the solution of these problems aimed at more active involvement of such systems into various areas of practical activity are demonstrated. The bibliography includes 166 references.

  20. 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.

  1. Numerical study of cryogenic micro-slush particle production using a two-fluid nozzle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ishimoto, Jun

    2009-01-01

    The fundamental characteristics of the atomization behavior of micro-slush nitrogen ( SN) jet flow through a two-fluid nozzle was numerically investigated and visualized by a new type of integrated simulation technique. Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) analysis is focused on the production mechanism of micro-slush nitrogen particles in a two-fluid nozzle and on the consecutive atomizing spray flow characteristics of the micro-slush jet. Based on the numerically predicted nozzle atomization performance, a new type of superadiabatic two-fluid ejector nozzle is developed. This nozzle is capable of generating and atomizing micro-slush nitrogen by means of liquid-gas impingement of a pressurized subcooled liquid nitrogen ( LN) flow and a low-temperature, high-speed gaseous helium (GHe) flow. The application of micro-slush as a refrigerant for long-distance high-temperature superconducting cables (HTS) is anticipated, and its production technology is expected to result in an extensive improvement in the effective cooling performance of superconducting systems. Computation indicates that the cryogenic micro-slush atomization rate and the multiphase spraying flow characteristics are affected by rapid LN-GHe mixing and turbulence perturbation upstream of the two-fluid nozzle, hydrodynamic instabilities at the gas-liquid interface, and shear stress between the liquid core and periphery of the LN jet. Calculation of the effect of micro-slush atomization on the jet thermal field revealed that high-speed mixing of LN-GHe swirling flow extensively enhances the heat transfer between the LN 2-phase and the GHe-phase. Furthermore, the performance of the micro-slush production nozzle was experimentally investigated by particle image velocimetry (PIV), which confirmed that the measurement results were in reasonable agreement with the numerical results.

  2. 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…

  3. Blood stem cell products: toward sustainable benchmarks for clinical translation.

    PubMed

    Csaszar, Elizabeth; Cohen, Sandra; Zandstra, Peter W

    2013-03-01

    Robust ex vivo expansion of umbilical cord blood (UCB) derived hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells (HSPCs) should enable the widespread use of UCB as a source of cells to treat hematologic and immune diseases. Novel approaches for HSPC expansion have recently been developed, setting the stage for the production of blood stem cell derived products that fulfill our current best known criteria of clinical relevance. Translating these technologies into clinical use requires bioengineering strategies to overcome challenges of scale-up, reproducibility, and product quality assurance. Clinical-scale implementation should also define criteria and targets for cost-effective cell manufacturing. As production strategies become more effective, new opportunities in the therapeutic use of ex vivo expanded hematopoietic cell products will emerge. Herein we examine key technological milestones that need to be met in order to move ex vivo expanded HSPC therapies from the bench-top to the bedside in a robust and reliable manner.

  4. Micro-Discharge Micro-Thruster

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2005-06-01

    Approved for public release, distribution unlimited 1 American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics Micro -discharge Micro -thruster John...This paper summarizes the experiments and analysis of the micro -discharge micro - thruster developed jointly by Ewing Technology Associates and the...University of Washington. The key experimental result has been the demonstration of a sustained discharge in a very simple micro -discharge type of

  5. 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...

  6. 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...

  7. 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...

  8. 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.

  9. A thermally self-sustained micro solid-oxide fuel-cell stack with high power density.

    PubMed

    Shao, Zongping; Haile, Sossina M; Ahn, Jeongmin; Ronney, Paul D; Zhan, Zhongliang; Barnett, Scott A

    2005-06-09

    High energy efficiency and energy density, together with rapid refuelling capability, render fuel cells highly attractive for portable power generation. Accordingly, polymer-electrolyte direct-methanol fuel cells are of increasing interest as possible alternatives to Li ion batteries. However, such fuel cells face several design challenges and cannot operate with hydrocarbon fuels of higher energy density. Solid-oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) enable direct use of higher hydrocarbons, but have not been seriously considered for portable applications because of thermal management difficulties at small scales, slow start-up and poor thermal cyclability. Here we demonstrate a thermally self-sustaining micro-SOFC stack with high power output and rapid start-up by using single chamber operation on propane fuel. The catalytic oxidation reactions supply sufficient thermal energy to maintain the fuel cells at 500-600 degrees C. A power output of approximately 350 mW (at 1.0 V) was obtained from a device with a total cathode area of only 1.42 cm2.

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. 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...

  13. Optimizing Nutrient Management for Sustainable Bio-energy Feedstock Production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Corn grain and stover are both being evaluated as feedstock sources for bio-energy production. To meet current and future demands for corn, both short- and long-term effects on nutrient cycling, physical properties, and biological activity in soils must be understood. Our project goal was to increas...

  14. 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...

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. Sustainable heterologous production of terpene hydrocarbons in cyanobacteria.

    PubMed

    Formighieri, Cinzia; Melis, Anastasios

    2016-12-01

    Cyanobacteria can be exploited as photosynthetic platforms for heterologous generation of terpene hydrocarbons with industrial application. However, the slow catalytic activity of terpene synthases (k cat = 4 s(-1) or slower) makes them noncompetitive for the pool of available substrate, thereby limiting the rate and yield of product generation. Work in this paper applied transformation technologies in Synechocystis for the heterologous production of β-phellandrene (monoterpene) hydrocarbons. Conditions were defined whereby expression of the β-phellandrene synthase (PHLS), as a CpcB·PHLS fusion protein with the β-subunit of phycocyanin, accounted for up to 20 % of total cellular protein. Moreover, CpcB·PHLS was heterologously co-expressed with enzymes of the mevalonic acid (MVA) pathway and geranyl-diphosphate synthase, increasing carbon flux toward the terpenoid biosynthetic pathway and enhancing substrate availability. These improvements enabled yields of 10 mg of β-phellandrene per g of dry cell weight generated in the course of a 48-h incubation period, or the equivalent of 1 % β-phellandrene:biomass (w:w) carbon-partitioning ratio. The work helped to identify prerequisites for the efficient heterologous production of terpene hydrocarbons in cyanobacteria: (i) requirement for overexpression of the heterologous terpene synthase, so as to compensate for the slow catalytic turnover of the enzyme, and (ii) enhanced endogenous carbon partitioning toward the terpenoid biosynthetic pathway, e.g., upon heterologous co-expression of the MVA pathway, thereby supplementing the native metabolic flux toward the universal isopentenyl-diphosphate and dimethylallyl-diphosphate terpenoid precursors. The two prerequisites are shown to be critical determinants of yield in the photosynthetic CO2 to terpene hydrocarbons conversion process.

  2. [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

  3. 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

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. Phytoplankton, not allochthonous carbon, sustains herbivorous zooplankton production.

    PubMed

    Brett, Michael T; Kainz, Martin J; Taipale, Sami J; Seshan, Hari

    2009-12-15

    Terrestrial organic matter inputs have long been thought to play an important role in aquatic food web dynamics. Results from recent whole lake (13)C addition experiments suggest terrestrial particulate organic carbon (t-POC) inputs account for a disproportionate portion of zooplankton production. For example, several studies concluded that although t-POC only represented approximately 20% of the flux of particulate carbon available to herbivorous zooplankton, this food source accounted for approximately 50% of the C incorporated by zooplankton. We tested the direct dietary impact of t-POC (from the leaves of riparian vegetation) and various phytoplankton on Daphnia magna somatic growth, reproduction, growth efficiency, and lipid composition. By itself, t-POC was a very poor quality resource compared to cryptophytes, diatoms, and chlorophytes, but t-POC had similar food quality compared to cyanobacteria. Small additions of high quality Cryptomonas ozolinii to t-POC-dominated diets greatly increased Daphnia growth and reproduction. When offered alone, t-POC resulted in a Daphnia growth efficiency of 5 +/- 1%, whereas 100% Cryptomonas and Scenedesmus obliquus diets resulted in growth efficiencies of 46 +/- 8% (+/- SD) and 36 +/- 3%, respectively. When offered in a 50:50 mixed diet with Cryptomonas or Scenedesmus, the t-POC fraction resulted in a partial growth efficiency of 22 +/- 9% and 15 +/- 6%, respectively. Daphnia that obtained 80% of their available food from t-POC assimilated 84% of their fatty acids from the phytoplankton component of their diet. Overall, our results suggest Daphnia selectively allocate phytoplankton-derived POC and lipids to enhance somatic growth and reproduction, while t-POC makes a minor contribution to zooplankton production.

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  10. Micro-algae come of age as a platform for recombinant protein production.

    PubMed

    Specht, Elizabeth; Miyake-Stoner, Shigeki; Mayfield, Stephen

    2010-10-01

    A complete set of genetic tools is still being developed for the micro-alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. Yet even with this incomplete set, this photosynthetic single-celled plant has demonstrated significant promise as a platform for recombinant protein expression. In recent years, techniques have been developed that allow for robust expression of genes from both the nuclear and plastid genome. With these advances, many research groups have examined the pliability of this and other micro-algae as biological machines capable of producing recombinant peptides and proteins. This review describes recent successes in recombinant protein production in Chlamydomonas, including production of complex mammalian therapeutic proteins and monoclonal antibodies at levels sufficient for production at economic parity with existing production platforms. These advances have also shed light on the details of algal protein production at the molecular level, and provide insight into the next steps for optimizing micro-algae as a useful platform for the production of therapeutic and industrially relevant recombinant proteins.

  11. 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

  12. A testpart for interdisciplinary analyses in micro production engineering

    DOE PAGES

    Möhring, H. -C.; Kersting, P.; Carmignato, S.; ...

    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

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. Biodelignification of lignocellulose substrates: An intrinsic and sustainable pretreatment strategy for clean energy production.

    PubMed

    Chandel, Anuj K; Gonçalves, Bruna C M; Strap, Janice L; da Silva, Silvio S

    2015-01-01

    Lignocellulosic biomass (LB) is a promising sugar feedstock for biofuels and other high-value chemical commodities. The recalcitrance of LB, however, impedes carbohydrate accessibility and its conversion into commercially significant products. Two important factors for the overall economization of biofuel production is LB pretreatment to liberate fermentable sugars followed by conversion into ethanol. Sustainable biofuel production must overcome issues such as minimizing water and energy usage, reducing chemical usage and process intensification. Amongst available pretreatment methods, microorganism-mediated pretreatments are the safest, green, and sustainable. Native biodelignifying agents such as Phanerochaete chrysosporium, Pycnoporous cinnabarinus, Ceriporiopsis subvermispora and Cyathus stercoreus can remove lignin, making the remaining substrates amenable for saccharification. The development of a robust, integrated bioprocessing (IBP) approach for economic ethanol production would incorporate all essential steps including pretreatment, cellulase production, enzyme hydrolysis and fermentation of the released sugars into ethanol. IBP represents an inexpensive, environmentally friendly, low energy and low capital approach for second-generation ethanol production. This paper reviews the advancements in microbial-assisted pretreatment for the delignification of lignocellulosic substrates, system metabolic engineering for biorefineries and highlights the possibilities of process integration for sustainable and economic ethanol production.

  16. Sustainable semiarid dryland production in relation to tillage effects on Hydrology: 1983-2013

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Semiarid dryland crop yields with no-till, NT, residue management are often greater than stubble-mulch tillage, SM, as a result of improved soil conditions or water conservation, but knowledge of long-term tillage effects on the comprehensive field hydrology and sustained crop production is needed. ...

  17. 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 "...

  18. 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.

  19. 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…

  20. 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.

  1. 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...

  2. 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....

  3. 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 (...

  4. [Macroscopic analysis on production and marketing of medicinal material resources for sustainable development].

    PubMed

    Xiao, Peigen; Zhao, Runhuai; Long, Xingehao; Guo, Baolin

    2009-09-01

    In this paper, the production and marketing of medicinal materials of plant origin are sorted and analyzed. The total annual yield and total output value are presented. The resources sustainable development is discussed by three aspects, i.e., the yield Top 60 items, rare and endangered species and several wild drugs should be deeply concerned. Relevant measures and implementation are recommended respectively.

  5. Using an Outdoor Learning Space to Teach Sustainability and Material Processes in HE Product Design

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Firth, Richard; Stoltenberg, Einar; Jennings, Trent

    2016-01-01

    This "case study" of two jewellery workshops, used outdoor learning spaces to explore both its impact on learning outcomes and to introduce some key principles of sustainable working methodologies and practices. Using the beach as the classroom, academics and students from a Norwegian and Scottish (HE) product design exchange programme…

  6. 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...

  7. 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.

  8. Environment for thin-film manufacturing process development for product engineering of micro and nano devices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ortloff, Dirk; Hahn, Kai; Popp, Jens; Schmidt, Thilo; Brück, Rainer

    2009-08-01

    Product engineering of micro and nano technology (MNT) devices differs substantially from product engineering in more traditional industries. The general development approach is mostly bottom up, as it centers around the available fabrication techniques and is characterised by application specific fabrication flows, i.e. fabrication processes depending on the later product. In the first part of this paper we introduce a comprehensive customer-oriented product engineering methodology for MNT products that regards the customer as the driving force behind new product developments. The MNT product engineering process is analyzed with regard to application-specific procedures and interfaces. An environment for the development of MNT manufacturing processes has been identified as a technical foundation for the methodology and will be described in the second part of this paper.

  9. 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.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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

    2016-06-01

    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.

  11. 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

  12. Microalgal hydrogen production: prospects of an essential technology for a clean and sustainable energy economy.

    PubMed

    Bayro-Kaiser, Vinzenz; Nelson, Nathan

    2017-02-26

    Modern energy production is required to undergo a dramatic transformation. It will have to replace fossil fuel use by a sustainable and clean energy economy while meeting the growing world energy needs. This review analyzes the current energy sector, available energy sources, and energy conversion technologies. Solar energy is the only energy source with the potential to fully replace fossil fuels, and hydrogen is a crucial energy carrier for ensuring energy availability across the globe. The importance of photosynthetic hydrogen production for a solar-powered hydrogen economy is highlighted and the development and potential of this technology are discussed. Much successful research for improved photosynthetic hydrogen production under laboratory conditions has been reported, and attempts are underway to develop upscale systems. We suggest that a process of integrating these achievements into one system to strive for efficient sustainable energy conversion is already justified. Pursuing this goal may lead to a mature technology for industrial deployment.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. “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

  19. 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.

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-11-22

    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.

  1. 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

  2. "Omics" of maize stress response for sustainable food production: opportunities and challenges.

    PubMed

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

    2014-12-01

    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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  5. 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

  6. Preliminary assessment of Malaysian micro-algae strains for the production of bio jet fuel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, J. T.; Mustafa, E. M.; Vello, V.; Lim, P.; Nik Sulaiman, N. M.; Majid, N. Abdul; Phang, S.; Tahir, P. Md.; Liew, K.

    2016-10-01

    Malaysia is the main hub in South-East Asia and has one of the highest air traffic movements in the region. Being rich in biodiversity, Malaysia has long been touted as country rich in biodiversity and therefore, attracts great interests as a place to setup bio-refineries and produce bio-fuels such as biodiesel, bio-petrol, green diesel, and bio-jet fuel Kerosene Jet A-1. Micro-algae is poised to alleviate certain disadvantages seen in first generation and second generation feedstock. In this study, the objective is to seek out potential micro-algae species in Malaysia to determine which are suitable to be used as the feedstock to enable bio-jet fuel production in Malaysia. From 79 samples collected over 30 sites throughout Malaysia, six species were isolated and compared for their biomass productivity and lipid content. Their lipid contents were then used to derived the require amount of micro-algae biomass to yield 1 kg of certifiable jet fuel via the HEFA process, and to meet a scenario where Malaysia implements a 2% alternative (bio-) jet fuel requirement.

  7. 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.

  8. Interactions of Woody Biofuel Feedstock Production Systems with Water Resources: Considerations for Sustainability

    SciTech Connect

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

    2008-04-15

    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. Finally, 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.

  9. Towards sustainable parasite control practices in livestock production with emphasis in Latin America.

    PubMed

    Henrioud, A Nari

    2011-08-04

    Endo and ectoparasites of domestic ruminants directly or indirectly contribute to reduce sustainability affecting food security in subsistence or small scale farming systems, food safety (food borne diseases and pesticide residues), environment (pesticides, pollution and ecotoxicity) and farmer's equity (limited or uneven access to relevant technical information/training). This is especially true for some regions of Latin America where there still are huge areas of natural grazing land for cattle, sheep and goats. Sustainable parasite control is not an absolute concept given the different regions and productive systems of the world and therefore, could have different levels of adoption and impact on farmers. This article develops a conceptual framework to better understand where each region or country is situated in terms of attaining a reasonable increase in animal production while preserving sustainability. Within this context the capacity to prioritize the target parasite species for control according to local epidemiology and production systems, the early diagnosis and monitoring of parasite resistance as well as the availability of well trained field professionals acquire a major role, creating an enabling environment for present and future decision support system approaches. Until new and different means of controlling parasites become available; the challenge is to utilize Good Animal Husbandry Practices and Integrated Parasite Management (IPM) principles in a pragmatic way allowing the rational use of pesticides.

  10. 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.

  11. Production of collagen micro- and nanofibers for potential drug-carrier systems.

    PubMed

    Aras, Onur; Kazanci, Murat

    2015-12-01

    Two different nano- and micro-collagen fiber production methods are introduced and discussed. First one is the electrospinning method, that is very common technique to produce nanofibers from different polymeric solutions and recently collagen solutions are employed to produce nanofibers for different biomedical applications. This technique is extremely versatile method to produce nanofibers in a relatively short time, easy to control the fiber diameter and orientation with small pore sizes and a high surface area. The second method is self-assembly of collagen micro-fibers by co-extrusion method. The collagen fibers are obtained without any cross-linker, by using mainly ionic interactions. We demonstrated that self-assembled collagen fibers have well preserved their native structure (0.90 PP-II fraction), when compared with electrospun collagen fibers (0.38 PP-II fraction). However, it was only possible to produce collagen fibers with nanodimensions by using electrospinning method.

  12. 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.

  13. Natural products discovery from micro-organisms in the post-genome era.

    PubMed

    Ikeda, Haruo

    2017-01-01

    With the decision to award the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine to Drs. S. Ōmura, W.C. Campbell, and Y. Tu, the importance and usefulness of natural drug discovery and development have been revalidated. Since the end of the twentieth century, many genome analyses of organisms have been conducted, and accordingly, numerous microbial genomes have been decoded. In particular, genomic studies of actinomycetes, micro-organisms that readily produce natural products, led to the discovery of biosynthetic gene clusters responsible for producing natural products. New explorations for natural products through a comprehensive approach combining genomic information with conventional methods show great promise for the discovery of new natural products and even systematic generation of unnaturally occurring compounds.

  14. 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

  15. Self-sustainable production of hydrogen, chemicals, and energy from renewable alcohols by electrocatalysis.

    PubMed

    Bambagioni, Valentina; Bevilacqua, Manuela; Bianchini, Claudio; Filippi, Jonathan; Lavacchi, Alessandro; Marchionni, Andrea; Vizza, Francesco; Shen, Pei Kang

    2010-07-19

    The selective and simultaneous production of hydrogen and chemicals from renewable alcohols, such as ethanol, glycerol, and ethylene glycol, can be accomplished by means of electrolyzers in which the anode electrocatalyst is appropriately designed to promote the partial and selective oxidation of the alcohol. In the electrolyzers described herein, the production of 1 kg of hydrogen from aqueous ethanol occurs with one-third the amount of energy required by a traditional H(2)/O(2) electrolyzer, by virtue of the much lower oxidation potential of ethanol to acetate vs. water to oxygen in alkaline media (E(0)=0.10 V vs. 1.23 V). The self-sustainability of H(2) production is ensured by the simultaneous production of 25 kg of potassium acetate for every kg of H(2), if the promoting co-electrolyte is KOH.

  16. 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

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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

  1. 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

  2. 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.

  3. Addressing the challenges for sustainable production of algal biofuels: II. Harvesting and conversion to biofuels.

    PubMed

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

    2013-01-01

    In order to ensure the sustainability of algal biofuel production, a number of issues need to be addressed. Previously, we reviewed some of the questions in this area involving algal species and the important challenges of nutrient supply and how these might be met. Here, we take up issues involving harvesting and the conversion ofbiomass to biofuels. Advances in both these areas are required if these third-generation fuels are to have a sufficiently high net energy ratio and a sustainable footprint. A variety of harvesting technologies are under investigation and recent studies in this area are presented and discussed. A number of different energy uses are available for algal biomass, each with their own advantages as well as challenges in terms of efficiencies and yields. Recent advances in these areas are presented and some of the especially promising conversion processes are highlighted.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

    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

  5. Enabling sustainable pastoralism: policies and investments that optimise livestock production and rangeland stewardship.

    PubMed

    Ouedraogo, R; Davies, J

    2016-11-01

    Pastoralism is a system of dynamically managing livestock and land for economic, social and environmental benefit. To a large extent, pastoralism is an adaptation to ecological and climatic variability and is not simply a livestock production system but provides significant environmental services to humanity. Evidence from a range of national contexts shows that sustainable pastoralist development requires an understanding of the dual environmental and economic roles of pastoralism and an adaptation of policies and investments to support both. The current paper examines three cornerstones that have proven to be crucial for sustainable pastoralist development and for maximising the links between livestock production and environmental stewardship: strengthening pastoral capabilities and institutions, securing land tenure and natural resource governance, and ensuring equitable markets for pastoral diversity. To effectively support the dual economic-environmental roles of pastoralism requires not only optimisation of the production of ecosystem services through extensive livestock production, but also a major overhaul of the way we approach pastoralist development, and major investment in the people who are central to the system. As long as pastoralists remain marginalised, with weak rights and little access to services, their future will remain uncertain.

  6. Renewable sustainable biocatalyzed electricity production in a photosynthetic algal microbial fuel cell (PAMFC).

    PubMed

    Strik, David P B T B; Terlouw, Hilde; Hamelers, Hubertus V M; Buisman, Cees J N

    2008-12-01

    Electricity production via solar energy capturing by living higher plants and microalgae in combination with microbial fuel cells are attractive because these systems promise to generate useful energy in a renewable, sustainable, and efficient manner. This study describes the proof of principle of a photosynthetic algal microbial fuel cell (PAMFC) based on naturally selected algae and electrochemically active microorganisms in an open system and without addition of instable or toxic mediators. The developed solar-powered PAMFC produced continuously over 100 days renewable biocatalyzed electricity. The sustainable performance of the PAMFC resulted in a maximum current density of 539 mA/m2 projected anode surface area and a maximum power production of 110 mW/m2 surface area photobioreactor. The energy recovery of the PAMFC can be increased by optimization of the photobioreactor, by reducing the competition from non-electrochemically active microorganisms, by increasing the electrode surface and establishment of a further-enriched biofilm. Since the objective is to produce net renewable energy with algae, future research should also focus on the development of low energy input PAMFCs. This is because current algae production systems have energy inputs similar to the energy present in the outcoming valuable products.

  7. Biotechnological route for sustainable succinate production utilizing oil palm frond and kenaf as potential carbon sources.

    PubMed

    Luthfi, Abdullah Amru Indera; Manaf, Shareena Fairuz Abdul; Illias, Rosli Md; Harun, Shuhaida; Mohammad, Abdul Wahab; Jahim, Jamaliah Md

    2017-04-01

    Due to the world's dwindling energy supplies, greater thrust has been placed on the utilization of renewable resources for global succinate production. Exploration of such biotechnological route could be seen as an act of counterbalance to the continued fossil fuel dominance. Malaysia being a tropical country stands out among many other nations for its plenty of resources in the form of lignocellulosic biomass. To date, oil palm frond (OPF) contributes to the largest fraction of agricultural residues in Malaysia, while kenaf, a newly introduced fiber crop with relatively high growth rate, holds great potential for developing sustainable succinate production, apart from OPF. Utilization of non-food, inexhaustible, and low-cost derived biomass in the form of OPF and kenaf for bio-based succinate production remains largely untapped. Owing to the richness of carbohydrates in OPF and kenaf, bio-succinate commercialization using these sources appears as an attractive proposition for future sustainable developments. The aim of this paper was to review some research efforts in developing a biorefinery system based on OPF and kenaf as processing inputs. It presents the importance of the current progress in bio-succinate commercialization, in addition to describing the potential use of different succinate production hosts and various pretreatments-saccharifications under development for OPF and kenaf. Evaluations on the feasibility of OPF and kenaf as fermentation substrates are also discussed.

  8. Effect of micro gravity on the product selectivity of dichlorodifluoromethane electrolysis at metal supported gas diffusion electrodes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sonoyama, Noriyuki

    2007-12-01

    The micro gravity effect on the product selectivity of electrochemical reduction of CCl2 F2 (CFC-12) was studied using the metal supported gas diffusion electrodes (GDEs). Under the micro gravity, the current efficiency for methane formation (the final product) increased, whereas that for CHClF2formation (a intermediate product) decreased at the Cu-supported GDE compared with the result under the normal gravity. This result suggests that the convection has an influence on the product selectivity for electrochemical reaction.

  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. Consumer preferences for sustainable aquaculture products: Evidence from in-depth interviews, think aloud protocols and choice experiments.

    PubMed

    Risius, Antje; Janssen, Meike; Hamm, Ulrich

    2017-02-20

    Fish from aquaculture is becoming more important for human consumption. Sustainable aquaculture procedures were developed as an alternative to overcome the negative environmental impacts of conventional aquaculture procedures and wild fisheries. The objective of this contribution is to determine what consumers expect from sustainable aquaculture and whether they prefer sustainable aquaculture products. A combination of qualitative research methods, with think aloud protocols and in-depth interviews, as well as quantitative methods, using choice experiments and face-to-face interviews, was applied. Data was collected in three different cities of Germany. Results revealed that sustainable aquaculture was associated with natural, traditional, local, and small scale production systems with high animal welfare standards. Overall, participants paid a lot of attention to the declaration of origin; in particular fish products from Germany and Denmark were preferred along with local products. Frequently used sustainability claims for aquaculture products were mostly criticized as being imprecise by the participants of the qualitative study; even though two claims tested in the choice experiments had a significant positive impact on the choice of purchase. Similarly, existing aquaculture-specific labels for certified sustainable aquaculture had an impact on the buying decision, but were not well recognized and even less trusted. Overall, consumers had a positive attitude towards sustainable aquaculture. However, communication measures and labelling schemes should be improved to increase consumer acceptance and make a decisive impact on consumers' buying behavior.

  11. 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

  12. Nuclear Energy - Hydrogen Production - Fuel Cell: A Road Towards Future China's Sustainable Energy Strategy

    SciTech Connect

    Zhiwei Zhou

    2006-07-01

    Sustainable development of Chinese economy in 21. century will mainly rely on self-supply of clean energy with indigenous natural resources. The burden of current coal-dominant energy mix and the environmental stress due to energy consumptions has led nuclear power to be an indispensable choice for further expanding electricity generation capacity in China and for reducing greenhouse effect gases emission. The application of nuclear energy in producing substitutive fuels for road transportation vehicles will also be of importance in future China's sustainable energy strategy. This paper illustrates the current status of China's energy supply and the energy demand required for establishing a harmonic and prosperous society in China. In fact China's energy market faces following three major challenges, namely (1) gaps between energy supply and demand; (2) low efficiency in energy utilization, and (3) severe environmental pollution. This study emphasizes that China should implement sustainable energy development policy and pay great attention to the construction of energy saving recycle economy. Based on current forecast, the nuclear energy development in China will encounter a high-speed track. The demand for crude oil will reach 400-450 million tons in 2020 in which Chinese indigenous production will remain 180 million tons. The increase of the expected crude oil will be about 150 million tons on the basis of 117 million tons of imported oil in 2004 with the time span of 15 years. This demand increase of crude oil certainly will influence China's energy supply security and to find the substitution will be a big challenge to Chinese energy industry. This study illustrates an analysis of the market demands to future hydrogen economy of China. Based on current status of technology development of HTGR in China, this study describes a road of hydrogen production with nuclear energy. The possible technology choices in relation to a number of types of nuclear reactors are

  13. Associations between gastrointestinal toxicity, micro RNA and cytokine production in patients undergoing myeloablative allogeneic stem cell transplantation.

    PubMed

    Pontoppidan, Peter L; Jordan, Karina; Carlsen, Anting Liu; Uhlving, Hilde Hylland; Kielsen, Katrine; Christensen, Mette; Ifversen, Marianne; Nielsen, Claus Henrik; Sangild, Per; Heegaard, Niels Henrik Helweg; Heilmann, Carsten; Sengeløv, Henrik; Müller, Klaus

    2015-03-01

    Allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) is a procedure with a high risk of treatment related mortality. The primary aim of the present study was to examine associations between markers of gastrointestinal toxicity, markers of systemic inflammation, and plasma levels of microRNA (miRNA) -155 and -146a during the first month after HSCT. The secondary aim was to characterize the impact of the toxic-inflammatory response on the function of circulating leukocytes during immune recovery. Thirty HSCT patients were included. Gastrointestinal injury was monitored by toxicity scores, lactulose-mannitol test and plasma citrulline, as a measure of the enterocyte population. Nadir of citrulline and maximum of oral toxicity scores, intestinal permeability, CRP and plasma levels of IL-6 and IL-10 was seen at day +7 post-HSCT. miRNA-155 and mi-RNA-146a showed an inverse relation with significantly elevated miRNA-155 and decreased miRNA-146a levels, from day 0 to day +28 compared with pre-conditioning levels. Citrulline levels below the median at day +7 were associated with higher spontaneous production of IL-6 and TNF-α as well as higher in vitro stimulated production of IL-17A at day +21. This study is the first to demonstrate that toxic responses to chemotherapy are accompanied by differential regulation of miRNAs with opposing effects on immune regulation. We find that a proinflammatory miRNA profile is sustained during the first three weeks after the transplantation, indicating that these miRNAs may play a role in the regulation of the inflammatory environment during immune reconstitution after HSCT.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. Bioenergy production and sustainable development: science base for policymaking remains limited.

    PubMed

    Robledo-Abad, Carmenza; Althaus, Hans-Jörg; Berndes, Göran; Bolwig, Simon; Corbera, Esteve; Creutzig, Felix; Garcia-Ulloa, John; Geddes, Anna; Gregg, Jay S; Haberl, Helmut; Hanger, Susanne; Harper, Richard J; Hunsberger, Carol; Larsen, Rasmus K; Lauk, Christian; Leitner, Stefan; Lilliestam, Johan; Lotze-Campen, Hermann; Muys, Bart; Nordborg, Maria; Ölund, Maria; Orlowsky, Boris; Popp, Alexander; Portugal-Pereira, Joana; Reinhard, Jürgen; Scheiffle, Lena; Smith, Pete

    2017-03-01

    The possibility of using bioenergy as a climate change mitigation measure has sparked a discussion of whether and how bioenergy production contributes to sustainable development. We undertook a systematic review of the scientific literature to illuminate this relationship and found a limited scientific basis for policymaking. Our results indicate that knowledge on the sustainable development impacts of bioenergy production is concentrated in a few well-studied countries, focuses on environmental and economic impacts, and mostly relates to dedicated agricultural biomass plantations. The scope and methodological approaches in studies differ widely and only a small share of the studies sufficiently reports on context and/or baseline conditions, which makes it difficult to get a general understanding of the attribution of impacts. Nevertheless, we identified regional patterns of positive or negative impacts for all categories - environmental, economic, institutional, social and technological. In general, economic and technological impacts were more frequently reported as positive, while social and environmental impacts were more frequently reported as negative (with the exception of impacts on direct substitution of GHG emission from fossil fuel). More focused and transparent research is needed to validate these patterns and develop a strong science underpinning for establishing policies and governance agreements that prevent/mitigate negative and promote positive impacts from bioenergy production.

  17. 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

  18. 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.

  19. Micro-RNA378 (miR-378) regulates ovarian estradiol production by targeting aromatase.

    PubMed

    Xu, Shengyu; Linher-Melville, Katja; Yang, Burton B; Wu, De; Li, Julang

    2011-10-01

    Estradiol is a steroid hormone that not only plays an important role in ovarian follicular development but also is associated with many reproductive disorders. Owing to the importance of aromatase in the production of estradiol, the regulation of aromatase gene expression at the transcriptional level has been an extensive area of study for over two decades. However, its regulation at the posttranscriptional level has remained unclear. Here, we show that micro-RNA378 (miR-378) is spatiotemporally expressed in porcine granulosa cells, the cells that generate estradiol in the ovary during follicular development, in an inverse manner compared with the expression of aromatase. In vitro overexpression and inhibition experiments revealed that aromatase expression, and therefore estradiol production, by granulosa cells, is posttranscriptionally down-regulated by miR-378. Furthermore, site-directed mutation studies identified two binding sites in the 3'-untranslated region (3'-UTR) of the aromatase coding sequence that are critical for the action of miR-378. Interestingly, overexpression of the aromatase 3'-UTR enhanced aromatase expression at the protein level in granulosa cells, possibly mediated by the binding of miR-378 within this region, thereby reducing the binding of this micro-RNA to the endogenous aromatase 3'-UTR.

  20. Microfluidic device incorporating closed loop feedback control for uniform and tunable production of micro-droplets.

    PubMed

    Miller, Erik; Rotea, Mario; Rothstein, Jonathan P

    2010-05-21

    Both micro- and nanofluidics are finding increasing use in the growing toolbox of nanotechnology; for the production of nanoparticles, and as micro-reactors for carefully controlled chemical reactions. These laboratories-on-a-chip hold vast potential for industrial application, however, only the most simple are truly starting to emerge as commercially viable, particularly in the area of droplet formation and emulsion creation. In order to automate droplet production with a desired size and dispersity, we have designed a microfluidic-based technology utilizing elementary microchannel geometries in combination with a closed loop feedback system to control the continuous- and dispersed-phase flow rates. Both the device geometry and control system have been optimized to allow for the production of a tunable emulsion. By utilizing discrete linear control theory, the device is able to produce the desired results with little to no prior knowledge of the fluid material properties to be used in either phase. We present our results from initial development using flow-focusing microfluidic geometry for droplet formation, computer-tethered syringe pumps to individually control the continuous and dispersed phase flow rates, a high-speed camera, and a controller and driver system for the optical measurements and pumps, respectively. We will show the efficacy of this technique for Newtonian and viscoelastic liquids, with and without the presence of surfactants. It can be envisioned that through careful control optimization, such a system can be developed to a point that will allow the production of "designer" emulsions with droplets eventually reaching the nanoscale.

  1. 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

  2. 36 CFR 223.219 - Sustainable harvest of special forest products.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... making their sustainability determination and establishing monitoring time frames consistent with... Forest Service shall monitor the effects of harvesting on the sustainability of special forest...

  3. 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

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

    PubMed

    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

    2011-08-23

    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.

  5. 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

  6. Environmental solutions for the sustainable production of bioactive natural products from the marine sponge Crambe crambe.

    PubMed

    Pérez-López, Paula; Ternon, Eva; González-García, Sara; Genta-Jouve, Grégory; Feijoo, Gumersindo; Thomas, Olivier P; Moreira, Ma Teresa

    2014-03-15

    Crambe crambe is a Mediterranean marine sponge known to produce original natural substances belonging to two families of guanidine alkaloids, namely crambescins and crambescidins, which exhibit cytotoxic and antiviral activities. These compounds are therefore considered as potential anticancer drugs. The present study focuses on the environmental assessment of a novel in vivo process for the production of pure crambescin and crambescidin using sponge specimens cultured in aquarium. The assessment was performed following the ISO 14040 standard and extended from the production of the different mass and energy flows to the system to the growth of the sponge in indoor aquarium and further periodic extraction and purification of the bioactive compounds. According to the results, the two stages that have a remarkable contribution to all impact categories are the purification of the bioactive molecules followed by the maintenance of the sponge culture in the aquarium. Among the involved activities, the production of the chemicals (particularly methanol) together with the electricity requirements (especially due to the aquarium lighting) are responsible for up to 90% of the impact in most of the assessed categories. However, the contributions of other stages to the environmental burdens, such as the collection of sponges, considerably depend on the assumptions made during the inventory stage. The simulation of alternative scenarios has led to propose improvement alternatives that may allow significant reductions ranging from 20% to 70%, mainly thanks to the reduction of electricity requirements as well as the partial reuse of methanol.

  7. Nanotechnology for sustainable wastewater treatment and use for agricultural production: A comparative long-term study.

    PubMed

    De La Cueva Bueno, Patricia; Gillerman, Leonid; Gehr, Ronald; Oron, Gideon

    2017-03-01

    Nanotechnology applications can be used for filtering low quality waters, allowing under given conditions, the removal of salts and other micropollutants from these waters. A long-term field experiment, implementing nanotechnology in the form of UltraFiltration (UF) and Reverse Osmosis (RO) for salt removal from treated wastewater, was conducted with secondary effluents, aiming to prove the sustainability of agricultural production using irrigation with treated wastewater. Six outdoor field treatments, each under four replications, were conducted for examining the salt accumulation effects on the soil and the crops. The field experiments proved that crop development is correlated with the water quality as achieved from the wastewater filtration capability of the hybrid nanotechnology system. The key goal was to maintain sustainable food production, despite the low quality of the waters. Of the six treatment methods tested, irrigation with RO-treated effluent produced the best results in terms of its effect on soil salinity and crop yield. Nevertheless, it must be kept in mind that this process is not only costly, but it also removes all organic matter content from the irrigation water, requiring the addition of fertilizers to the effluent.

  8. 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

    2016-02-26

    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.

  9. Sustainable intensive livestock production demands manure and exhaust air treatment technologies.

    PubMed

    Melse, Roland W; Timmerman, Maikel

    2009-11-01

    Intensive livestock production is connected with a number of environmental effects, including discharges to soils and surface waters and emissions to the atmosphere. In areas with a high livestock density the low availability of nearby arable land, together with the preferred use of chemical fertilizer by arable farmers, results in high off-farm disposal costs for manure. Furthermore, ammonia abatement technologies, such as treatment of exhaust air, are important as ammonia emissions may account up to a quarter of the total nitrogen flux. Firstly, the paper describes and discusses the development of manure treatment in the Netherlands since the 1970's. Manure treatment processes that result in products that compete with and replace the use of chemical fertilizers can (partly) close the nutrient cycle again. From this point of view aerobic treatment of manure (nitrification/denitrification) can not be considered sustainable as nitrogen is taken out of the cycle at high environmental costs. Secondly, the state-of-the-art of techniques for treatment of exhaust air is presented. Besides ammonia, application of air treatment may also reduce environmental emissions of odour and particulate matter (dust). Both manure treatment and treatment of exhaust air are considered essential for sustainable livestock operations in areas with a high livestock density.

  10. 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

  11. Sustainable sheep production and consumer preference trends: compatibilities, contradictions, and unresolved dilemmas.

    PubMed

    Montossi, F; Font-i-Furnols, M; del Campo, M; San Julián, R; Brito, G; Sañudo, C

    2013-12-01

    There are increasing concerns of society towards the consumption of animal products which have been produced and transformed in a sustainable manner. This trend influences consumer purchasing decision making, particularly in developed countries. On the other hand, in the next years, the pressure to increase the volume and efficiency of meat production will be much higher to cope with the expected unsatisfied demand. At least in part, current and future technologies could contribute to solve this challenge. However, the use of some of these innovations could have a negative effect on consumer preferences. There is no consensus in our society about this dilemma. The objective of this paper is to review the scientific evidence related to these topics and to analyze and discuss the effect of some of the extrinsic and intrinsic factors linked with the sheep industry which could affect the acceptability of lamb meat by consumers.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. Castanea sativa by-products: a review on added value and sustainable application.

    PubMed

    Braga, Nair; Rodrigues, Francisca; Oliveira, M Beatriz P P

    2015-01-01

    Castanea sativa Mill. is a species of the family Fagaceae abundant in south Europe and Asia. The fruits (chestnut) are an added value resource in producing countries. Chestnut economic value is increasing not only for nutritional qualities but also for the beneficial health effects related with its consumption. During chestnut processing, a large amount of waste material is generated namely inner shell, outer shell and leaves. Studies on chestnut by-products revealed a good profile of bioactive compounds with antioxidant, anticarcinogenic and cardioprotective properties. These agro-industrial wastes, after valorisation, can be used by other industries, such as pharmaceutical, food or cosmetics, generating more profits, reducing pollution costs and improving social, economic and environmental sustainability. The purpose of this review is to provide knowledge about the type of chestnut by-products produced, the studies concerning its chemical composition and biological activity, and also to discuss other possible applications of these materials.

  15. Methane production through anaerobic digestion of various energy crops grown in sustainable crop rotations.

    PubMed

    Amon, Thomas; Amon, Barbara; Kryvoruchko, Vitaliy; Machmüller, Andrea; Hopfner-Sixt, Katharina; Bodiroza, Vitomir; Hrbek, Regina; Friedel, Jürgen; Pötsch, Erich; Wagentristl, Helmut; Schreiner, Matthias; Zollitsch, Werner

    2007-12-01

    Biogas production is of major importance for the sustainable use of agrarian biomass as renewable energy source. Economic biogas production depends on high biogas yields. The project aimed at optimising anaerobic digestion of energy crops. The following aspects were investigated: suitability of different crop species and varieties, optimum time of harvesting, specific methane yield and methane yield per hectare. The experiments covered 7 maize, 2 winter wheat, 2 triticale varieties, 1 winter rye, and 2 sunflower varieties and 6 variants with permanent grassland. In the course of the vegetation period, biomass yield and biomass composition were measured. Anaerobic digestion was carried out in eudiometer batch digesters. The highest methane yields of 7500-10200 m(N)(3)ha(-1) were achieved from maize varieties with FAO numbers (value for the maturity of the maize) of 300 to 600 harvested at "wax ripeness". Methane yields of cereals ranged from 3200 to 4500 m(N)(3)ha(-1). Cereals should be harvested at "grain in the milk stage" to "grain in the dough stage". With sunflowers, methane yields between 2600 and 4550 m(N)(3)ha(-1) were achieved. There were distinct differences between the investigated sunflower varieties. Alpine grassland can yield 2700-3500 m(N)(3)CH(4)ha(-1). The methane energy value model (MEVM) was developed for the different energy crops. It estimates the specific methane yield from the nutrient composition of the energy crops. Energy crops for biogas production need to be grown in sustainable crop rotations. The paper outlines possibilities for optimising methane yield from versatile crop rotations that integrate the production of food, feed, raw materials and energy. These integrated crop rotations are highly efficient and can provide up to 320 million t COE which is 96% of the total energy demand of the road traffic of the EU-25 (the 25 Member States of the European Union).

  16. 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.

  17. Towards a sustainable livestock production in developing countries and the importance of animal health strategy therein.

    PubMed

    Kaasschieter, G A; de Jong, R; Schiere, J B; Zwart, D

    1992-04-01

    Livestock and animal health development projects have not always led to substantial increases in animal productivity or in farmers' welfare. Some have even resulted in unsustainable systems, when they were not based on an understanding of (livestock) production systems. The multipurpose functions of livestock and complex relationships between the biological, technical and social components require a systems approach, whereby nutrition, animal health, breeding, biotechnology knowhow, inputs and technologies are used to optimise resource use. The challenge for developed and developing countries is to reverse the current degradation of the environment, and arrive at sustainable increases in crop and livestock production to secure present and future food supplies. For rural development, governments should show long term commitment and political will to support the rural population in development programmes, because smallholders (including women and landless livestock keepers) represent a large labour force in developing countries. Different systems need different approaches. Pastoral systems must focus on effective management of grazing pressure of the rangelands. Communal rangelands management involves not only the development and application of technologies (e.g. feedlots, vaccination campaigns), but also land tenure policies, institutional development, economic return and a reduction in the number of people depending upon livestock. Smallholder mixed farms must aim at intensification of the total production system, in which external inputs are indispensable, but with the emphasis on optimum input-output relationships by reducing resource losses due to poor management. Resource-poor farming systems must aim at the improved management of the various livestock species in backyards and very small farms, and proper packages for cattle, buffaloes, sheep, goats, rabbits and poultry should be developed. Specialised commercial livestock farming systems (poultry, pigs, dairy

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. 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

  1. 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.

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

    PubMed

    Cook, R James

    2006-12-05

    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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  5. 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…

  6. Agriculture in Africa: strategies to improve and sustain smallholder production systems.

    PubMed

    Jama, Bashir; Pizarro, Gonzalo

    2008-01-01

    Agricultural development lies at the heart of poverty reduction and increased food security of most developing nations. Sub-Saharan Africa (hereafter referred to as Africa) is, however, the only region in the world where per capita agricultural productivity has remained stagnant over the past 40 years. In Asia and Latin America, the use of tailored techniques and technologies has transformed agricultural practice and its productivity, leading to what has been called the "green revolution." The dissemination of uniquely African green revolution technologies has not occurred on the continent. This chapter will argue that the same results in increased productivity and food security can be achieved in Africa if the appropriate investments are made in key interventions: soil fertility improvement, improved seeds, water management, market access, extension services, access to credit, and improvements in weather forecasting. Where these have happened, even partially, the outcome has been remarkable. However, bringing them to scale in ways that sustainably increase agricultural productivity and alleviate poverty requires increased investments and innovative institutional arrangements. Fortunately, several research and development projects on the continent, including the Millennium Villages Project, are providing valuable insights. Finally, this chapter outlines the key remaining challenges.

  7. 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

    2016-04-05

    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.

  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. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. Optimization of H2 Production in Ar/NH3 Micro-discharges

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arakoni, Ramesh; Bhoj, Ananth N.; Kushner, Mark J.

    2006-10-01

    Hydrogen powered vehicles and portable fuel cells may require real-time generation of H2 to provide fuel safely and with rapid response. One such method is to produce H2 from feedstock gases that can be more safely stored, such as NH3. Microdischarge plasmas are being investigated as a means of H2 production from NH3 and other gases. The high power densities (10s kW/cm^3) that can be obtained in microdischarges provide an intense source of electron impact as well as thermal decomposition of the feedstock gases. By operating at high pressures (> 100s Torr), reformation of the dissociated products leads to efficient production of H2. In this work, results from a computational investigation of production of H2 in high pressure microdischarges sustained in Ar/NH3 mixtures will be discussed. Plug-flow and 2-dimensional plasma hydrodynamics models were used to develop scaling laws to optimize the energy efficiency of the process (e.g., eV/H2 molecule produced). The 2-d model resolves non-equilibrium electron, ion and neutral transport using fluid equations. The microdischarge geometry of interest is a sandwich flow-through reactor with a central hole a few hundred microns in diameter, power of a few W and residence times of a few microseconds.

  14. 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.

  15. Use of natural gums and cellulose derivatives in production of sustained release metoprolol tablets.

    PubMed

    Varshosaz, Jaleh; Tavakoli, Nasser; Eram, S Ali

    2006-01-01

    Metoprolol tartrate sustained-release tablets (100 mg) were prepared using xanthan/guar gums and also hydroxypropyl methyl cellulose (HPMC) carboxymethyl-Cellulose (CMC) polymers by direct compression method. Physical characteristics of the tablets and water uptake in addition to their dissolution profiles were compared with standard (Lopressor SR) tablets. Dissolution test was performed in the phosphate buffer solution (pH 6.8) and the samples were analyzed spectrophotometerically in 275.7 nm. Dissolution studies showed that formulations containing 100 and 80% of HPMC, 100% of guar, and 20% of xanthan followed the Higuchi model, while those containing 60 and 40% HPMC and 100 and 80% xanthan followed a zero-order model. The tablets with 40% xanthen followed a Hixon-Crowell model. In cellulose derivatives the highest MDT and dissolution efficiency until 8 hr (DE8%) belonged to tablets with 40% HPMC, increasing the amount of CMC decreased the drug release rate, and formulations containing 60 and 40% of HPMC had the USP dissolution standards. While, in the gum formulations, the highest mean dissolution time and the lowest DE(8)% belonged to tablets with 100% xanthan, increasing the xanthan decreased the release rate of metoprolol, and formulations containing 80 and 100% xanthan had the USP dissolution standards. Results showed that natural gums are suitable for production of sustained-release tablets of metoprolol.

  16. Sustainable Ammonia Synthesis – Exploring the scientific challenges associated with discovering alternative, sustainable processes for ammonia production

    SciTech Connect

    Nørskov, Jens; Chen, Jingguang; Miranda, Raul; Fitzsimmons, Tim; Stack, Robert

    2016-02-18

    Ammonia (NH3) is essential to all life on our planet. Until about 100 years ago, NH3 produced by reduction of dinitrogen (N2) in air came almost exclusively from bacteria containing the enzyme nitrogenase.. DOE convened a roundtable of experts on February 18, 2016. Participants in the Roundtable discussions concluded that the scientific basis for sustainable processes for ammonia synthesis is currently lacking, and it needs to be enhanced substantially before it can form the foundation for alternative processes. The Roundtable Panel identified an overarching grand challenge and several additional scientific grand challenges and research opportunities: -Discovery of active, selective, scalable, long-lived catalysts for sustainable ammonia synthesis. -Development of relatively low pressure (<10 atm) and relatively low temperature (<200 C) thermal processes. -Integration of knowledge from nature (enzyme catalysis), molecular/homogeneous and heterogeneous catalysis. -Development of electrochemical and photochemical routes for N2 reduction based on proton and electron transfer -Development of biochemical routes to N2 reduction -Development of chemical looping (solar thermochemical) approaches -Identification of descriptors of catalytic activity using a combination of theory and experiments -Characterization of surface adsorbates and catalyst structures (chemical, physical and electronic) under conditions relevant to ammonia synthesis.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. Towards transdisciplinarity in Arctic sustainability knowledge co-production: Socially-Oriented Observations as a participatory integrated activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vlasova, Tatiana; Volkov, Sergey

    2016-09-01

    The paper is an attempt to tie together main biogeophysical and social science projects under the auspice of interdisciplinary sustainability science development. Special attention is put to the necessity of the transdisciplinary knowledge co-production based on activities and problem-solutions approaches. It puts attention to the role of monitoring activities in sustainability interdisciplinary science and transdisciplinary knowledge evolution in the Arctic. Socially focused monitoring named Socially-Oriented Observations creating a transdisciplinary space is viewed as one of sources of learning and transformations towards sustainability making possible to shape rapid changes happening in the Arctic based on sustainability knowledge co-production. Continuous Socially-Oriented Observations integrating scientific, education and monitoring methods enables to define adaptation and transformation pathways in the Arctic - the most rapidly changing region of our planet. Socially-Oriented Observations are based on the existing and developing interdisciplinary scientific approaches emerged within natural science and social science projects, sustainable development and resilience concepts putting principle attention to building sustainable and resilient socio-ecological systems. It is argued that the Arctic sustainability science is a valuable component of the whole and broader system of the Arctic Sustainability knowledge co-produced with the help of transdisciplinary approaches integrating science, local/traditional knowledge, entrepreneurship, education, decision-making. Socially-Oriented Observations are designed to be a transdisciplinary interactive continuous participatory process empowering deliberate choices of people that can shape the changes and enable transformation towards sustainability. Approaches of Socially-Oriented Observations and methods of implementation that have been developed since the IPY 2007/2008 and being practiced in different regions of the

  20. 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.

  1. From ozone depletion to agriculture: understanding the role of UV radiation in sustainable crop production.

    PubMed

    Wargent, Jason J; Jordan, Brian R

    2013-03-01

    Largely because of concerns regarding global climate change, there is a burgeoning interest in the application of fundamental scientific knowledge in order to better exploit environmental cues in the achievement of desirable endpoints in crop production. Ultraviolet (UV) radiation is an energetic driver of a diverse range of plant responses and, despite historical concerns regarding the damaging consequences of UV-B radiation for global plant productivity as related to stratospheric ozone depletion, current developments representative of a range of organizational scales suggest that key plant responses to UV-B radiation may be exploitable in the context of a sustainable contribution towards the strengthening of global crop production, including alterations in secondary metabolism, enhanced photoprotection, up-regulation of the antioxidative response and modified resistance to pest and disease attack. Here, we discuss the prospect of this paradigm shift in photobiology, and consider the linkages between fundamental plant biology and crop-level outcomes that can be applied to the plant UV-B response, in addition to the consequences for related biota and many other facets of agro-ecosystem processes.

  2. Metabolic engineering of Escherichia coli: a sustainable industrial platform for bio-based chemical production.

    PubMed

    Chen, Xianzhong; Zhou, Li; Tian, Kangming; Kumar, Ashwani; Singh, Suren; Prior, Bernard A; Wang, Zhengxiang

    2013-12-01

    In order to decrease carbon emissions and negative environmental impacts of various pollutants, more bulk and/or fine chemicals are produced by bioprocesses, replacing the traditional energy and fossil based intensive route. The Gram-negative rod-shaped bacterium, Escherichia coli has been studied extensively on a fundamental and applied level and has become a predominant host microorganism for industrial applications. Furthermore, metabolic engineering of E. coli for the enhanced biochemical production has been significantly promoted by the integrated use of recent developments in systems biology, synthetic biology and evolutionary engineering. In this review, we focus on recent efforts devoted to the use of genetically engineered E. coli as a sustainable platform for the production of industrially important biochemicals such as biofuels, organic acids, amino acids, sugar alcohols and biopolymers. In addition, representative secondary metabolites produced by E. coli will be systematically discussed and the successful strategies for strain improvements will be highlighted. Moreover, this review presents guidelines for future developments in the bio-based chemical production using E. coli as an industrial platform.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

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

    SciTech Connect

    Kumar, Manoj

    2011-05-09

    These are a set of slides from this conference. 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.

  6. Temperature-sensitive PSII: a novel approach for sustained photosynthetic hydrogen production.

    PubMed

    Bayro-Kaiser, Vinzenz; Nelson, Nathan

    2016-12-01

    The need for energy and the associated burden are ever growing. It is crucial to develop new technologies for generating clean and efficient energy for society to avoid upcoming energetic and environmental crises. Sunlight is the most abundant source of energy on the planet. Consequently, it has captured our interest. Certain microalgae possess the ability to capture solar energy and transfer it to the energy carrier, H2. H2 is a valuable fuel, because its combustion produces only one by-product: water. However, the establishment of an efficient biophotolytic H2 production system is hindered by three main obstacles: (1) the hydrogen-evolving enzyme, [FeFe]-hydrogenase, is highly sensitive to oxygen; (2) energy conversion efficiencies are not economically viable; and (3) hydrogen-producing organisms are sensitive to stressful conditions in large-scale production systems. This study aimed to circumvent the oxygen sensitivity of this process with a cyclic hydrogen production system. This approach required a mutant that responded to high temperatures by reducing oxygen evolution. To that end, we randomly mutagenized the green microalgae, Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, to generate mutants that exhibited temperature-sensitive photoautotrophic growth. The selected mutants were further characterized by their ability to evolve oxygen and hydrogen at 25 and 37 °C. We identified four candidate mutants for this project. We characterized these mutants with PSII fluorescence, P700 absorbance, and immunoblotting analyses. Finally, we demonstrated that these mutants could function in a prototype hydrogen-producing bioreactor. These mutant microalgae represent a novel approach for sustained hydrogen production.

  7. Economic and market issues on the sustainability of egg production in the United States: analysis of alternative production systems.

    PubMed

    Sumner, D A; Gow, H; Hayes, D; Matthews, W; Norwood, B; Rosen-Molina, J T; Thurman, W

    2011-01-01

    Conventional cage housing for laying hens evolved as a cost-effective egg production system. Complying with mandated hen housing alternatives would raise marginal production costs and require sizable capital investment. California data indicate that shifts from conventional cages to barn housing would likely cause farm-level cost increases of about 40% per dozen. The US data on production costs of such alternatives as furnished cages are not readily available and European data are not applicable to the US industry structure. Economic analysis relies on key facts about production and marketing of conventional and noncage eggs. Even if mandated by government or buyers, shifts to alternative housing would likely occur with lead times of at least 5 yr. Therefore, egg producers and input suppliers would have considerable time to plan new systems and build new facilities. Relatively few US consumers now pay the high retail premiums required for nonconventional eggs from hens housed in alternative systems. However, data from consumer experiments indicate that additional consumers would also be willing to pay some premium. Nonetheless, current data do not allow easy extrapolation to understand the willingness to pay for such eggs by the vast majority of conventional egg consumers. Egg consumption in the United States tends to be relatively unresponsive to price changes, such that sustained farm price increases of 40% would likely reduce consumption by less than 10%. This combination of facts and relationships suggests that, unless low-cost imports grew rapidly, requirements for higher cost hen housing systems would raise US egg prices considerably while reducing egg consumption marginally. Eggs are a low-cost source of animal protein and low-income consumers would be hardest hit. However, because egg expenditures are a very small share of the consumer budget, real income loss for consumers would be small in percentage terms. Finally, the high egg prices imposed by

  8. 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

  9. 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,…

  10. Expressed microRNA associated with high rate of egg production in chicken ovarian follicles.

    PubMed

    Wu, N; Gaur, U; Zhu, Q; Chen, B; Xu, Z; Zhao, X; Yang, M; Li, D

    2016-10-26

    MicroRNA (miRNA) is a highly conserved class of small noncoding RNA about 19-24 nucleotides in length that function in a specific manner to post-transcriptionally regulate gene expression in organisms. Tissue miRNA expression studies have discovered a myriad of functions for miRNAs in various aspects, but a role for miRNAs in chicken ovarian tissue at 300 days of age has not hitherto been reported. In this study, we performed the first miRNA analysis of ovarian tissues in chickens with low and high rates of egg production using high-throughput sequencing. By comparing low rate of egg production chickens with high rate of egg production chickens, 17 significantly differentially expressed miRNAs were found (P < 0.05), including 11 known and six novel miRNAs. We found that all 11 known miRNAs were involved mainly in pathways of reproduction regulation, such as steroid hormone biosynthesis and dopaminergic synapse. Additionally, expression profiling of six randomly selected differentially regulated miRNAs were validated by quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-qPCR). Some miRNAs, such as gga-miR-34b, gga-miR-34c and gga-miR-216b, were reported to regulate processes such as proliferation, cell cycle, apoptosis and metastasis and were expressed differentially in ovaries of chickens with high rates of egg production, suggesting that these miRNAs have an important role in ovary development and reproductive management of chicken. Furthermore, we uncovered that a significantly up-regulated miRNA-gga-miR-200a-3p-is ubiquitous in reproduction-regulation-related pathways. This miRNA may play a special central role in the reproductive management of chicken, and needs to be further studied for confirmation.

  11. 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.

  12. Micro-FTIR reflectance spectroscopy of the solid products from processing heavy oils/resids

    SciTech Connect

    Kybett, B.D.; Potter, J.; Vasu Nambudiri, E.M.; Krane-Solomon, M. ); Rahimi, P.M.; Dawson, W.H. )

    1989-04-01

    The various semicokes present in the solid products of processing heavy oils and resid can be characterized by their morphology. Knowledge of their chemicl composition would provide additional information about their origin and fate. Eser and Jenkins investigated the carbonization of Ashland-240 pitch and a vacuum distillation residue (VDR) at 723-773 K and obtained the FTIR spectra (KBr disc) of the pyridine insolubles without separation. The A-240 pitch showed gradual development of the mesophase producing large flow domains consisting of planar polycyclic aromatic units. The VDR showed more rapid development of the mesophase and the formation of mosaic semicoke containing highly substituted and condensed rings. Separation of the complex solid products of processing, in order to obtain spectra of each constituent, is difficult. Micro-FTIR reflectance spectroscopy can be used to obtain absorbance-like spectra of the components of solid mixtures without prior separation. The differences in the spectra of isotropic and anisotropic semicokes from the hydrogenation of a resid and the coprocessing of a coal/resid are discussed.

  13. 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.

  14. Acetic acid production from food wastes using yeast and acetic acid bacteria micro-aerobic fermentation.

    PubMed

    Li, Yang; He, Dongwei; Niu, Dongjie; Zhao, Youcai

    2015-05-01

    In this study, yeast and acetic acid bacteria strains were adopted to enhance the ethanol-type fermentation resulting to a volatile fatty acids yield of 30.22 g/L, and improve acetic acid production to 25.88 g/L, with food wastes as substrate. In contrast, only 12.81 g/L acetic acid can be obtained in the absence of strains. The parameters such as pH, oxidation reduction potential and volatile fatty acids were tested and the microbial diversity of different strains and activity of hydrolytic ferment were investigated to reveal the mechanism. The optimum pH and oxidation reduction potential for the acetic acid production were determined to be at 3.0-3.5 and -500 mV, respectively. Yeast can convert organic matters into ethanol, which is used by acetic acid bacteria to convert the organic wastes into acetic acid. The acetic acid thus obtained from food wastes micro-aerobic fermentation liquid could be extracted by distillation to get high-pure acetic acid.

  15. 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.

  16. 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

  17. Activated Human Valvular Interstitial Cells Sustain Interleukin-17 Production To Recruit Neutrophils in Infective Endocarditis

    PubMed Central

    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

    2015-01-01

    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 the

  18. 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.

  19. 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

  20. Synthesis, conjugation and evaluation of some novel polymers and their micro particles for sustained release drug formulations.

    PubMed

    Jan, Syed Umer; Khan, Gul Majid; Hussain, Izhar; Gaskell, Elsie E; Hutcheon, Gillian H

    2013-07-01

    To prepare and evaluate three novels functionalized polymers (PGA, PGA-co-caprolactone & PGA-co-pentadecalactone) for the development of nanoparticles which were further used in the development of a novel polymeric prodrug using Ibuprofen as a model drug. The Ibuprofen-polymer prodrug was developed by coupling the drug to one of the three prepared polyester polymers via ester linkage. A hydrolytic enzyme was used to prepare two polymer monomers, glycerol and polyvinyl adipate, which are non toxic, ester linked biological monomers. The polymers and their prodrug were characterized using NMR, GPC, UV-spectrophotometer and DSC. In vitro drug release study of Ibuprofen-polymer conjugate was performed in phosphate buffer PH 7.4 using a roller (Stuart STR 1) placed in an incubator (Stuart SI 60) and the temperature was kept constant at 37 ± 1°C. Among the three polymers, glycerol-adipate-co-pentadecalactone was observed to give a burst release following slow release in the medium. These characteristics suggest that these polymers can be successfully used in sustained release drug formulations.

  1. Sustainable production of azadirachtin from differentiated in vitro cell lines of neem (Azadirachta indica)

    PubMed Central

    Singh, Mithilesh; Chaturvedi, Rakhi

    2013-01-01

    Azadirachtin has high industrial demand due to its immediate application as an ecofriendly, biodegradable biopesticide and also due to its various other significant bioactivities. To date, the only commercially feasible way to produce azadirachtin is extraction from seeds, but their availability is very limited as the tree flowers only once a year and only one-third of the fruits are collected due to operational problems. Further, due to the strict out-breeding nature of the plant, the seeds are highly heterozygous, resulting in inconsistent metabolite production. Therefore, in the present study, to achieve sustainable production of azadirachtin, dedifferentiated and redifferentiated calli derived from various explants of neem—zygotic embryo, leaf and ovary—were investigated for their potential to biosynthesize azadirachtin. High-performance liquid chromatography analysis of the in vitro cell lines showed the presence of azadirachtin in all the samples tested, the content of which in cultured cells varied with explant source and cell differentiation response. The presence of azadirachtin in samples was further confirmed by positive electrospray ionization mass spectroscopy. The zygotic embryo cultures of neem accumulated much higher amounts of azadirachtin than leaf and ovary cultures. Furthermore, organized in vitro callus cultures (redifferentiated) supported higher azadirachtin biosynthesis, while unorganized callus cultures (dedifferentiated) supported the least. The maximum azadirachtin content of 2.33 mg g−1 dry weight was obtained from redifferentiated immature zygotic embryo cultures.

  2. Sustainable design for automotive products: dismantling and recycling of end-of-life vehicles.

    PubMed

    Tian, Jin; Chen, Ming

    2014-02-01

    The growth in automotive production has increased the number of end-of-life vehicles (ELVs) annually. The traditional approach ELV processing involves dismantling, shredding, and landfill disposal. The "3R" (i.e., reduce, reuse, and recycle) principle has been increasingly employed in processing ELVs, particularly ELV parts, to promote sustainable development. The first step in processing ELVs is dismantling. However, certain parts of the vehicle are difficult to disassemble and use in practice. The extended producer responsibility policy requires carmakers to contribute in the processing of scrap cars either for their own developmental needs or for social responsibility. The design for dismantling approach can be an effective solution to the existing difficulties in dismantling ELVs. This approach can also provide guidelines in the design of automotive products. This paper illustrates the difficulty of handling polymers in dashboards. The physical properties of polymers prevent easy separation and recycling by using mechanical methods. Thus, dealers have to rely on chemical methods such as pyrolysis. Therefore, car designers should use a single material to benefit dealers. The use of materials for effective end-of-life processing without sacrificing the original performance requirements of the vehicle should be explored.

  3. Microglial production of TNF-alpha is a key element of sustained fear memory.

    PubMed

    Yu, Zhiqian; Fukushima, Hotaka; Ono, Chiaki; Sakai, Mai; Kasahara, Yoshiyuki; Kikuchi, Yoshie; Gunawansa, Nicole; Takahashi, Yuta; Matsuoka, Hiroo; Kida, Satoshi; Tomita, Hiroaki

    2017-01-01

    The proinflammatory cytokine productions in the brain are altered in a process of fear memory formation, indicating a possibility that altered microglial function may contribute to fear memory formation. We aimed to investigate whether and how microglial function contributes to fear memory formation. Expression levels of M1- and M2-type microglial marker molecules in microglia isolated from each conditioned mice group were assessed by real-time PCR and immunohistochemistry. Levels of tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α, but not of other proinflammatory cytokines produced by M1-type microglia, increased in microglia from mice representing retention of fear memory, and returned to basal levels in microglia from mice representing extinction of fear memory. Administration of inhibitors of TNF-α production facilitated extinction of fear memory. On the other hand, expression levels of M2-type microglia-specific cell adhesion molecules, CD206 and CD209, were decreased in microglia from mice representing retention of fear memory, and returned to basal levels in microglia from mice representing extinction of fear memory. Our findings indicate that microglial TNF-α is a key element of sustained fear memory and suggest that TNF-α inhibitors can be candidate molecules for mitigating posttraumatic reactions caused by persistent fear memory.

  4. Application of Biotechnology to Construct a Sustainable Biodiesel Production System on Wastewater

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Xiaodan; Liu, Yuhuan; Xu, Erni; Liu, Jianqiang; Ruan, Roger; Fu, Guiming

    2010-11-01

    The potential of microalgae biodiesel is unlimited. The ingenious combination of microalgae biomass exploitation, decontamination of municipal wastewater, and CO2 fixation may gestate the ultimate hope for solving the problem of liquid alternative fuel. However, the municipal wastewater has some characteristics, such as high content of nitrogen and phosphorus, low C/N ratio, fluctuation of loading rate, toxicity of heavy metal, etc. To overcome these problems, studies are currently underway in our laboratory. In this paper, an idea of constructing a sustainable biodiesel production system from microalgae on wastewater is assumed. The system could realize CO2 fixation, decontamination of municipal wastewater, and production of high value-added biodiesel by microalgae. Firstly, municipal wastewater is used as the cultivation media and CO2 as gaseous fertilizer for mass culture of Shuihua microalgae. So with the harvest of large quantities of low-price Shuihua microalgae, the nitrogen, phosphorus and heavy metals can be removed from the wastewater, and the emission of greenhouse gas can be reduced. Secondly, try to breed a high-oil content engineering microalgae by heterotrophic cultivation which could realize high-density growth through the conjunction of the advanced methods of fermentation engineering with the microalgae breeding technology. Finally, make the high-oil content engineering microalgae cultivated on the decomposed Shuihua microalgae cells, and try to make the high-oil content engineering microalgae grow rapidly in the initial stage and start oil accumulation when nitrogen is exhausted by controlling the conditions of fermentation.

  5. The Sustainable Release of Vancomycin and Its Degradation Products From Nanostructured Collagen/Hydroxyapatite Composite Layers.

    PubMed

    Suchý, Tomáš; Šupová, Monika; Klapková, Eva; Horný, Lukáš; Rýglová, Šárka; Žaloudková, Margit; Braun, Martin; Sucharda, Zbyněk; Ballay, Rastislav; Veselý, Jan; Chlup, Hynek; Denk, František

    2016-03-01

    Infections of the musculoskeletal system present a serious problem with regard to the field of orthopedic and trauma medicine. The aim of the experiment described in this study was to develop a resorbable nanostructured composite layer with the controlled elution of antibiotics. The layer is composed of collagen, hydroxyapatite nanoparticles, and vancomycin hydrochloride (10 wt%). The stability of the collagen was enhanced by means of cross-linking. Four cross-linking agents were studied, namely an ethanol solution, a phosphate buffer solution of N-(3-dimethylaminopropyl)-N'-ethylcarbodiimide hydrochloride/N-hydroxysuccinimide, genipin, and nordihydroguaiaretic acid. High performance liquid chromatography was used so as to characterize the in vitro release rates of the vancomycin and its crystalline degradation antibiotically inactive products over a 21-day period. The maximum concentration of the released active form of vancomycin (approximately 265 mg/L) exceeded the minimum inhibitory concentration up to an order of 17 times without triggering the burst releasing effect. At the end of the experiment, the minimum inhibitory concentration was exceeded by up to 6 times (approximately 100 mg/L). It was determined that the modification of collagen with hydroxyapatite nanoparticles does not negatively influence the sustainable release of vancomycin. The balance of vancomycin and its degradation products was observed after 14 days of incubation.

  6. Conceptual design of an integrated hydrothermal liquefaction and biogas plant for sustainable bioenergy production.

    PubMed

    Hoffmann, Jessica; Rudra, Souman; Toor, Saqib S; Holm-Nielsen, Jens Bo; Rosendahl, Lasse A

    2013-02-01

    Initial process studies carried out in Aspen Plus on an integrated thermochemical conversion process are presented herein. In the simulations, a hydrothermal liquefaction (HTL) plant is combined with a biogas plant (BP), such that the digestate from the BP is converted to a biocrude in the HTL process. This biorefinery concept offers a sophisticated and sustainable way of converting organic residuals into a range of high-value biofuel streams in addition to combined heat and power (CHP) production. The primary goal of this study is to provide an initial estimate of the feasibility of such a process. By adding a diesel-quality-fuel output to the process, the product value is increased significantly compared to a conventional BP. An input of 1000 kg h(-1) manure delivers approximately 30-38 kg h(-1) fuel and 38-61 kg h(-1) biogas. The biogas can be used to upgrade the biocrude, to supply the gas grid or for CHP. An estimated 62-84% of the biomass energy can be recovered in the biofuels.

  7. Effect of treatment with an ivermectin sustained-release bolus on productivity of stocker beef calves.

    PubMed

    Williams, J C; Loyacano, A F; Broussard, S D; Coombs, D F

    1995-05-01

    Three groups of 30 crossbred beef steers, 8-10 months of age and ranging in weight from 158 to 320 kg, were used to compare effects of treatment with an ivermectin sustained-release bolus or two ivermectin injectable treatments on parasite control and productivity in relation to untreated controls during a 168 day winter-spring grazing period. Each group of 30 consisted of five cattle on each of six separate 1.6 ha pastures. Treatments on Day 0 (12 December) were: Group 1: untreated controls; Group 2: ivermectin injectable at 200 micrograms kg-1 bodyweight, s.c., on Day 0 and Day 56; Group 3: ivermectin sustained-release bolus to deliver ivermectin at 12 mg day-1 over approximately 135 days. All cattle were weighed at 28 day intervals and fecal samples were collected for egg per gram counts (EPG). Geometric mean EPG for Group 3 remained consistently less than 1.0 after Day 0 and were highest (2.4) on Day 168. All group EPG were significantly different (P < 0.01) by Day 56, and EPG of Group 2 had increased to 10.5 following initial treatment and to 42.8 on Day 112. With the exception of a low mean EPG of 6.8 for Group 1 on Day 112, EPG of the group were consistently highest (range 24.9-36.0) to the end of the experiment. Ostertagia ostertagi was predominant, along with smaller proportions of Haemonchus placei and Cooperia spp. Throughout the experiment Group 3 had highest liveweights and gains that were most often different from those of Group 1 at P < 0.01 or greater.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

  8. Streptomycetes in micro-cultures: growth, production of secondary metabolites, and storage and retrieval in the 96-well format.

    PubMed

    Minas, W; Bailey, J E; Duetz, W

    2000-12-01

    Mycelium-forming Streptomyces strains were grown in one milliliter liquid micro-cultures in square deep-well microtiter plates. Growth was evaluated with respect to biomass formation and production of secondary metabolites which were found to be very similar in the micro-cultures, bioreactor, and shake flask cultivations, respectively. Despite repetitive sampling and extensive growth on the walls of the wells, no cross contamination occurred. Furthermore, we successfully employed cold storage at -20 degrees C of spore suspensions (in the 96-well format), directly prepared from cultures grown on agar in the microtitre plate. Cultures were retrieved by replicating aliquots from the frozen spore suspensions.

  9. Combined Sustainability Assessment and Techno-Economic Analysis for the Production of Biomass-Derived High-Octane Gasoline Blendstock

    SciTech Connect

    Tan, Eric C. D.; Talmadge, Michael; Dutta, Abhijit

    2015-11-13

    Conversion technologies for biomass to liquid hydrocarbon fuels are being actively developed. Converting biomass into advanced hydrocarbon fuels requires detailed assessments to help prioritize research; techno-economic analysis (TEA) is a long established tool used to assess feasibility and progress. TEA provides information needed to make informed judgments about the viability of any given conceptual conversion process; it is particularly useful to identify technical barriers and measure progress toward overcoming those barriers. Expansion of the cellulosic biofuels industry at the scale needed to meet the Renewable Fuel Standard goals is also expected to have environmental impacts. Hence, the success of the biofuels industry depends not only on economic viability, but also on environmental sustainability. A biorefinery process that is economically feasible but suffers from key sustainability drawbacks is not likely to represent a long-term solution to replace fossil-derived fuels. Overarching concerns like environmental sustainability need to be addressed for biofuels production. Combined TEA and environmental sustainability assessment of emerging pathways helps facilitate biorefinery designs that are both economically feasible and minimally impactful to the environment. This study focuses on environmental sustainability assessment and techno-economic analysis for the production of high-octane gasoline blendstock via gasification and methanol/dimethyl ether intermediates. Results from the conceptual process design with economic analysis, along with the quantification and assessment of the environmental sustainability, are presented and discussed. Sustainability metrics associated with the production of high-octane gasoline include carbon conversion efficiency, consumptive water use, life-cycle greenhouse gas emissions, fossil energy consumption, energy return on investment and net energy value.

  10. The RNase III enzyme DROSHA is essential for microRNA production and spermatogenesis.

    PubMed

    Wu, Qiuxia; Song, Rui; Ortogero, Nicole; Zheng, Huili; Evanoff, Ryan; Small, Chris L; Griswold, Michael D; Namekawa, Satoshi H; Royo, Helene; Turner, James M; Yan, Wei

    2012-07-20

    DROSHA is a nuclear RNase III enzyme responsible for cleaving primary microRNAs (miRNAs) into precursor miRNAs and thus is essential for the biogenesis of canonical miRNAs. DICER is a cytoplasmic RNase III enzyme that not only cleaves precursor miRNAs to produce mature miRNAs but also dissects naturally formed/synthetic double-stranded RNAs to generate small interfering RNAs (siRNAs). To investigate the role of canonical miRNA and/or endogenous siRNA production in spermatogenesis, we generated Drosha or Dicer conditional knock-out (cKO) mouse lines by inactivating Drosha or Dicer exclusively in spermatogenic cells in postnatal testes using the Cre-loxp strategy. Both Drosha and Dicer cKO males were infertile due to disrupted spermatogenesis characterized by depletion of spermatocytes and spermatids leading to oligoteratozoospermia or azoospermia. The developmental course of spermatogenic disruptions was similar at morphological levels between Drosha and Dicer cKO males, but Drosha cKO testes appeared to be more severe in spermatogenic disruptions than Dicer cKO testes. Microarray analyses revealed transcriptomic differences between Drosha- and Dicer-null pachytene spermatocytes or round spermatids. Although levels of sex-linked mRNAs were mildly elevated, meiotic sex chromosome inactivation appeared to have occurred normally. Our data demonstrate that unlike DICER, which is required for the biogenesis of several small RNA species, DROSHA is essential mainly for the canonical miRNA production, and DROSHA-mediated miRNA production is essential for normal spermatogenesis and male fertility.

  11. Selection of Sustainable Processes using Sustainability Footprint Method: A Case Study of Methanol Production from Carbon Dioxide

    EPA Science Inventory

    Chemical products can be obtained by process pathways involving varying amounts and types of resources, utilities, and byproduct formation. When such competing process options such as six processes for making methanol as are considered in this study, it is necessary to identify t...

  12. 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.

  13. Forest Productivity and Diversity: Using Ecological Theory and Landscape Models to Guide Sustainable Forest Management

    SciTech Connect

    Huston, M.A.

    1998-11-01

    Sustainable forest management requires maintaining or increasing ecosystem productivity, while preserving or restoring natural levels of biodiversity. Application of general concepts from ecological theory, along with use of mechanistic, landscape-based computer models, can contribute to the successful achievement of both of these objectives. Ecological theories based on the energetics and dynamics of populations can be used to predict the general distribution of individual species, the diversity of different types of species, ecosystem process rates and pool sizes, and patterns of spatial and temporal heterogeneity over a broad range of environmental conditions. This approach requires subdivision of total biodiversity into functional types of organisms, primarily because different types of organisms respond very differently to the spatial and temporal variation of environmental conditions on landscapes. The diversity of species of the same functional type (particularly among plants) tends to be highest at relatively low levels of net primary productivity, while the total number of different functional types (particularly among animals) tends to be highest at high levels of productivity (e.g., site index or potential net primary productivity). In general, the diversity of animals at higher trophic levels (e.g., predators) reaches its maximum at much higher levels of productivity than the diversity of lower trophic levels (e.g., plants). This means that a single environment cannot support high diversity of all types of organisms. Within the framework of the general patterns described above, the distributions, population dynamics, and diversity of organisms in specific regions can be predicted more precisely using a combination of computer simulation models and GIS data based on satellite information and ground surveys. Biophysical models that use information on soil properties, climate, and hydrology have been developed to predict how the abundance and spatial

  14. A microRNA network dysregulated in asthma controls IL-6 production in bronchial epithelial cells.

    PubMed

    Martinez-Nunez, Rocio T; Bondanese, Victor P; 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

  15. Piezoelectric Energy Harvesting: A Green and Clean Alternative for Sustained Power Production

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cook-Chennault, Kimberly Ann; Thambi, Nithya; Bitetto, Mary Anne; Hameyie, E. B.

    2008-01-01

    Providing efficient and clean power is a challenge for devices that range from the micro to macro in scale. Although there has been significant progress in the development of micro-, meso-, and macro-scale power supplies and technologies, realization of many devices is limited by the inability of power supplies to scale with the diminishing sizes…

  16. Digital Photonic Production of Micro Structures in Glass by In-Volume Selective Laser-Induced Etching using a High Speed Micro Scanner

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gottmann, Jens; Hermans, Martin; Ortmann, Jürgen

    Digital photonic production of 3D microfluidic devices and assembled micro mechanics inside fused silica glass is carried out using ISLE directly from digital CAD data. To exploit the potential productivity of new high average power fs-lasers >150 W a modular high speed scanning system has been developed. Acousto-optical beam deflection, galvo-scanners and translation stages are controlled by CAM software. Using a lens with 10 mm focal length a focus radius of 1 μm is scanned with a velocity of 12 m/s on 400 μm track radius enabling the up-scaling of the ISLE- process using fs-laser radiation with up to 30 W.

  17. Commercialization of bacterial cell factories for the sustainable production of polyhydroxyalkanoate thermoplastics: progress and prospects.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Abhishek; Srivastava, Janmejai K; Mallick, Nirupama; Singh, Akhilesh K

    2015-01-01

    Ubiquitous conventional plastics, generally manufactured from finite, nonsustainable fossil fuels are non-biodegradable wonder entities but their ill effect on Mother Nature has subsequently raised major environmental concerns like their safe disposal, solid waste management and several potential hazards. Such concerns have fuelled initiatives for research globally towards development of sustainable and eco-friendly bioplastics. The new generation of plastics called 'bioplastics' are polymers of long chain of repeating monomer units that are classified as photodegradable, semi-biodegradable, chemically synthesized and polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHAs). The commonly emerged novel bioplastics are polyesters of hydroxyalkanoates (HAs) called PHAs, which are lipoidic storage materials found in the cytosol of vast and diverse forms of bacteria. Among 150 different PHAs known so far, poly- 3-hydroxybutyrate is the most common and comprehensively characterized PHA. Interestingly, PHAs are only completely biodegradable plastics with material properties comparable to conventional plastics that can be achieved by regulating the co-monomers incorporation into PHAs backbone. PHA bioplastics are exploited in the form of user-friendly goods viz. films, absorbable sutures, bone plates, drug carriers, etc. Besides advantages, such useful entity(s) has major shortcomings as well like high production cost compared to conventional plastics. Precisely, in PHAs production, about fifty percent of the overall price is due to the carbon substrates. Consequently, exploring novel cost-effective substrates is a major compulsion for successful commercialization of this bioplastic, which is anticipated to reduce the cost of production as a result of advancing and intensifying research work. This review presents an insight and patent developments in the field of PHAs bioplastics.

  18. Roles of Nano- and Micro-Scale Subsurface Geochemical Reactions on Environmentally Sustainable Geologic Carbon Dioxide Sequestration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hu, Yandi

    Geologic CO2 sequestration (GCS) is a promising approach to reduce anthropogenic CO2 emissions into the atmosphere. At GCS sites, injected CO2 is kept in formation rock by an overlying low permeability caprock. During and after CO2 injection, geochemical reactions can affect the porosity, permeability, and pollutant transport in aquifers. Despite their importance, nano- and micro-scale subsurface geochemical reactions are far from well-understood. Clay mobilization has been reported to decrease aquifer permeability during water flooding, and clay minerals are abundant in caprock. Thus, we studied CO2-brine-clay interactions under varied conditions relevant to different GCS sites (at 35-95°C and under 35-120 atm CO2, in water, NaCl, MgCl2, or CaCl2 solutions). Biotite, Fe-bearing mica, was used as a model clay mineral. We observed numerous fibrous illite precipitates on mica after reaction for only 3 h, which had not been previously reported. A few hours later, the mica surface cracked and fibrous illite detached. The mobilization of fibrous illite can decrease the aquifer's permeability greatly and affect the safety and efficiency of GCS. Mechanisms related to ion exchange, mica swelling, and CO2 intercalation were explored. Oriented aggregation of illite nanoparticles forming the fibrous illite was directly observed, suggesting a new mechanism for fibrous illite formation. Interestingly, besides the pH effect, aqueous CO2 enhances mica cracking over N2. These findings can help to achieve safer subsurface operations. At GCS field sites, Fe concentration increased near the injection sites and originally adsorbed pollutants were released. As the brine flows, Fe re-precipitated because of pH increase. To better predict the fate and transport of aqueous pollutants, the nucleation and growth of Fe(III) (hydr)oxides were studied. New information about sizes and volumes of the Fe(III) (hydr)oxide nanoparticles precipitated in solution and on quartz, mica, and sapphire

  19. Recycling of quarry waste as part of sustainable aggregate production: Norwegian and Italian point of view

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Antonella Dino, Giovanna; Willy Danielsen, Svein; Chiappino, Claudia; Primavori, Piero; Engelsen, Christian John

    2016-04-01

    Resource preservation is one of the main challenges in Europe, together with waste management and recycling; recently several researchers are interested in the recovering of critical raw materials and secondary raw materials from landfill. Aggregate supply, even if it is not "critical" sensus stricto (s.s.), is one of the European priorities (low value but high volume needs). On the other side, the management of quarry waste , mainly from dimension stones, but also as fines from aggregate crushing, is still a matter of concern. Such materials are managed in different ways both locally and nationwide, and often they are landfilled, because of an unclear legislation and a general lack of data. Most of time the local authorities adopt the maximum precaution principle or the enterprises find it little profitable to recover them, so that the sustainable recycling of such material is not valued. Several studies have shown, depending on the material specific characteristics, the viability of recycling quarry waste into new raw materials used in glass and ceramic industries, precast concrete production, infrastructures etc. (Loudes et al. 2012, Dino&Marian 2015, Bozzola et al 2012, Dino et al. 2012, etc.). Thus, aggregate production may be one of the profitable ways to use quarry waste and is falling under the priority of EU (aggregate supply). Positive economic and environmental effects are likely to be achieved by systematic recycling of quarry waste planned by industries (industrial planning) and public authorities (national and local planning of aggregate exploitation). Today, the recycling level varies to a great extent and systematic recovery is not common among European Countries. In Italy and Norway no significant incentives on recycling or systematic approaches for local aggregate exploitation exist. The environmental consequences can be overexploitation of the natural resources, land take for the landfills, environmental contamination and landscape alteration by

  20. Technical Training Skills Needs of Youth for Sustainable Job Security in Rice Production in Ebonyi State, Nigeria

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Edu, Chukwuma Nwofe; Ogba, Ernest Ituma

    2016-01-01

    The study identifies technical training skills needs of youth for sustainable job security in rice production in Ebonyi State, Nigeria. This study was carried out in secondary schools in three educational zones in Ebonyi State, Nigeria. Ebonyi state is one of the states in the southeast geopolitical zone in Nigeria. Descriptive survey design was…

  1. Application of micro X-ray diffraction to investigate the reaction products formed by the alkali silica reaction in concrete structures

    SciTech Connect

    Dähn, R.; Arakcheeva, A.; Schaub, Ph.; Pattison, P.; Chapuis, G.; Grolimund, D.; Wieland, E.; Leemann, A.

    2015-12-21

    Alkali–silica reaction (ASR) is one of the most important deterioration mechanisms in concrete leading to substantial damages of structures worldwide. Synchrotron-based micro-X-ray diffraction (micro-XRD) was employed to characterize the mineral phases formed in micro-cracks of concrete aggregates as a consequence of ASR. This particular high spatial resolution technique enables to directly gain structural information on ASR products formed in a 40-year old motorway bridge damaged due to ASR. Micro-X-ray-fluorescence was applied on thin sections to locate the reaction products formed in veins within concrete aggregates. Micro-XRD pattern were collected at selected points of interest along a vein by rotating the sample. Rietveld refinement determined the structure of the ASR product consisting of a new layered framework similar to mountainite and rhodesite. Furthermore, it is conceivable that understanding the structure of the ASR product may help developing new technical treatments inhibiting ASR.

  2. Biosynthesis and metabolic engineering of palmitoleate production, an important contributor to human health and sustainable industry.

    PubMed

    Wu, Yongmei; Li, Runzhi; Hildebrand, David F

    2012-10-01

    Palmitoleate (cis-Δ9-16:1) shows numerous health benefits such as increased cell membrane fluidity, reduced inflammation, protection of the cardiovascular system, and inhibition of oncogenesis. Plant oils containing this unusual fatty acid can also be sustainable feedstocks for producing industrially important and high-demand 1-octene. Vegetable oils rich in palmitoleate are the ideal candidates for biodiesel production. Several wild plants are known that can synthesize high levels of palmitoleate in seeds. However, low yields and poor agronomic characteristics of these plants limit their commercialization. Metabolic engineering has been developed to create oilseed crops that accumulate high levels of palmitoleate or other unusual fatty acids, and significant advances have been made recently in this field, particularly using the model plant Arabidopsis as the host. The engineered targets for enhancing palmitoleate synthesis include overexpression of Δ9 desaturase from mammals, yeast, fungi, and plants, down-regulating KASII, coexpression of an ACP-Δ9 desaturase in plastids and CoA-Δ9 desaturase in endoplasmic reticulum (ER), and optimizing the metabolic flux into triacylglycerols (TAGs). This review will mainly describe the recent progress towards producing palmitoleate in transgenic plants by metabolic engineering along with our current understanding of palmitoleate biosynthesis and its regulation, as well as highlighting the bottlenecks that require additional investigation by combining lipidomics, transgenics and other "-omics" tools. A brief review of reported health benefits and non-food uses of palmitoleate will also be covered.

  3. Cisgenesis and intragenesis in microalgae: promising advancements towards sustainable metabolites production.

    PubMed

    Galarza, Janeth I; Delgado, Ninoska; Henríquez, Vitalia

    2016-12-01

    Microalgae are an economically important source of biomolecules and metabolites that can be exploited as feed, nutraceuticals and, potentially, as biofuels, among other biotechnological applications. Microalgae biotechnology involves both culture and metabolic pathways manipulation to obtain high-value products, such as omega-3 fatty acids and carotenoids. However, the introduction of genes and/or foreign regulatory sequences has caused public concern about the effect of genetically modified microalgae to achieve greater secondary metabolite accumulations. To placate these worries, we have focused on two cutting-edge concepts, cisgenesis and intragenesis in order to sustainably produce commercially relevant metabolites. This review provides updated background on current and future uses for microalgae molecular farming. We also discuss the development of genetic tools used in terrestrial plants to obtain genetically modified microalgae free of foreign DNA by means of (i) site-specific mutations, (ii) excision of selectable markers, (iii) zinc-finger nuclease and transcription activator-like effectors, and (iv) CRISPR/Cas9 systems. It is currently important to consider scientific debate not only from a technological standpoint but also in terms of conceptual, socioeconomic, ethical, and legal aspects.

  4. Knowledge Integration to Make Decisions About Complex Systems: Sustainability of Energy Production from Agriculture

    SciTech Connect

    Danuso, Francesco

    2008-06-18

    A major bottleneck for improving the governance of complex systems, rely on our ability to integrate different forms of knowledge into a decision support system (DSS). Preliminary aspects are the classification of different types of knowledge (a priori or general, a posteriori or specific, with uncertainty, numerical, textual, algorithmic, complete/incomplete, etc.), the definition of ontologies for knowledge management and the availability of proper tools like continuous simulation models, event driven models, statistical approaches, computational methods (neural networks, evolutionary optimization, rule based systems etc.) and procedure for textual documentation. Following these views at University of Udine, a computer language (SEMoLa, Simple, Easy Modelling Language) for knowledge integration has been developed. SEMoLa can handle models, data, metadata and textual knowledge; it implements and extends the system dynamics ontology (Forrester, 1968; Joergensen, 1994) in which systems are modeled by the concepts of material, group, state, rate, parameter, internal and external events and driving variables. As an example, a SEMoLa model to improve management and sustainability (economical, energetic, environmental) of the agricultural farms is presented. The model (X-Farm) simulates a farm in which cereal and forage yield, oil seeds, milk, calves and wastes can be sold or reused. X-Farm is composed by integrated modules describing fields (crop and soil), feeds and materials storage, machinery management, manpower management, animal husbandry, economic and energetic balances, seed oil extraction, manure and wastes management, biogas production from animal wastes and biomasses.

  5. Knowledge Integration to Make Decisions About Complex Systems: Sustainability of Energy Production from Agriculture

    SciTech Connect

    Danuso, Francesco

    2008-06-18

    A major bottleneck for improving the governance of complex systems, rely on our ability to integrate different forms of knowledge into a decision support system (DSS). Preliminary aspects are the classification of different types of knowledge (a priori or general, a posteriori or specific, with uncertainty, numerical, textual, algorithmic, complete/incomplete, etc.), the definition of ontologies for knowledge management and the availability of proper tools like continuous simulation models, event driven models, statistical approaches, computational methods (neural networks, evolutionary optimization, rule based systems etc.) and procedure for textual documentation. Following these views at University of Udine, a computer language (SEMoLa, Simple, Easy Modelling Language) for knowledge integration has been developed.  SEMoLa can handle models, data, metadata and textual knowledge; it implements and extends the system dynamics ontology (Forrester, 1968; Jørgensen, 1994) in which systems are modelled by the concepts of material, group, state, rate, parameter, internal and external events and driving variables. As an example, a SEMoLa model to improve management and sustainability (economical, energetic, environmental) of the agricultural farms is presented. The model (X-Farm) simulates a farm in which cereal and forage yield, oil seeds, milk, calves and wastes can be sold or reused. X-Farm is composed by integrated modules describing fields (crop and soil), feeds and materials storage, machinery management, manpower  management, animal husbandry, economic and energetic balances, seed oil extraction, manure and wastes management, biogas production from animal wastes and biomasses.

  6. Land-Use Analysis of Croplands for Sustainable Food and Energy Production in the United States

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zumkehr, Andrew Lee

    Energy security and environmental sustainability are major concerns to many in the U.S. Energy from biomass has been proposed as a strategy to help meet future energy needs; however, widespread cultivation for biofuels could have significant impacts on food security and the environment. One solution to minimizing the impacts of biofuel cultivation is to limit production to abandoned croplands where competition from food crops and environmental degradation will be minimized. Here I estimate the spatial distribution of historical U.S. cropland areas from 1850 to 2000 and subsequently calculate abandoned cropland areas for the year 2000. From this data I estimate the potential biomass energy that could be obtained from abandoned croplands. I also estimate the potential for biomass energy to contribute to a renewable energy system consisting of wind and solar power by meeting seasonal energy storage needs that are a result of the intermittent nature of renewable energy sources. Lastly, I use the historical cropland areas result to estimate the ability of U.S. croplands to supply food to local populations at the county level.

  7. A review of the substrates used in microbial fuel cells (MFCs) for sustainable energy production.

    PubMed

    Pant, Deepak; Van Bogaert, Gilbert; Diels, Ludo; Vanbroekhoven, Karolien

    2010-03-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) have gained a lot of attention in recent years as a mode of converting organic waste including low-strength wastewaters and lignocellulosic biomass into electricity. Microbial production of electricity may become an important form of bioenergy in future because MFCs offer the possibility of extracting electric current from a wide range of soluble or dissolved complex organic wastes and renewable biomass. A large number of substrates have been explored as feed. The major substrates that have been tried include various kinds of artificial and real wastewaters and lignocellulosic biomass. Though the current and power yields are relatively low at present, it is expected that with improvements in technology and knowledge about these unique systems, the amount of electric current (and electric power) which can be extracted from these systems will increase tremendously providing a sustainable way of directly converting lignocellulosic biomass or wastewaters to useful energy. This article reviews the various substrates that have been explored in MFCs so far, their resulting performance, limitations as well as future potential substrates.

  8. Proposal on a sustainable strategy to avoid point source pollution of water with plant protection products.

    PubMed

    Mestdagh, Inge; Bonicelli, Bernard; Laplana, Ramon; Roettele, Manfred

    2009-01-01

    Based on the results and lessons learned from the TOPPS project (Training the Operators to prevent Pollution from Point Sources), a proposal on a sustainable strategy to avoid point source pollution from Plant Protection Products (PPPs) was made. Within this TOPPS project (2005-2008), stakeholders were interviewed and research and analysis were done in 6 pilot catchment areas (BE, FR, DE, DK, IT, PL). Next, there was a repeated survey on operators' perception and opinion to measure changes resulting from TOPPS activities and good and bad practices were defined based on the Best Management Practices (risk analysis). Aim of the proposal is to suggest a strategy considering the differences between countries which can be implemented on Member State level in order to avoid PPP pollution of water through point sources. The methodology used for the up-scaLing proposal consists of the analysis of the current situation, a gap analysis, a consistency analysis and organisational structures for implementation. The up-scaling proposal focuses on the behaviour of the operators, on the equipment and infrastructure available with the operators. The proposal defines implementation structures to support correct behaviour through the development and updating of Best Management Practices (BMPs) and through the transfer and the implementation of these BMPs. Next, the proposal also defines requirements for the improvement of equipment and infrastructure based on the defined key factors related to point source pollution. It also contains cost estimates for technical and infrastructure upgrades to comply with BMPs.

  9. Innovative biocatalytic production of soil substrate from green waste compost as a sustainable peat substitute.

    PubMed

    Kazamias, Georgios; Roulia, Maria; Kapsimali, Ioanna; Chassapis, Konstantinos

    2016-08-02

    In the present work, a new simple and quick eco-friendly method is discussed to handle effectively the green wastes and produce a sustainable peat substitute of high quality on the large scale. Principal physicochemical parameters, i.e., temperature, moisture, specific weight, pH, electrical conductivity and, also, microorganisms, organic matter, humic substances, total Kjeldahl nitrogen and total organic carbon, C/N ratio, ash, metal content and phytotoxicity, were monitored systematically. Humic substances content values were interrelated to both C/N ratio and pH values and, similarly, bulk density, TOC, TKN, C/N, GI, ash and organic matter were found interconnected to each other. A novel biocatalyst, extremely rich in soil microorganisms, prepared from compost extracts and peaty lignite, accelerated the biotransformation. Zeolite was also employed. The compost does not demonstrate any phytotoxicity throughout the entire biotransformation process and has increased humic substances content. Both humic substances content and germination index can be employed as maturation indices of the compost. Addition of compost, processed for 60 days only, in cultivations of grass plants led to a significant increase in the stem mass and root size, annotating the significant contribution of the compost to both growth and germination. The product obtained is comparable to peat humus, useful as peat substitute and can be classified as a first class soil conditioner suitable for organic farming.

  10. Knowledge Integration to Make Decisions About Complex Systems: Sustainability of Energy Production from Agriculture

    ScienceCinema

    Danuso, Francesco [University of Udine, Italy

    2016-07-12

    A major bottleneck for improving the governance of complex systems, rely on our ability to integrate different forms of knowledge into a decision support system (DSS). Preliminary aspects are the classification of different types of knowledge (a priori or general, a posteriori or specific, with uncertainty, numerical, textual, algorithmic, complete/incomplete, etc.), the definition of ontologies for knowledge management and the availability of proper tools like continuous simulation models, event driven models, statistical approaches, computational methods (neural networks, evolutionary optimization, rule based systems etc.) and procedure for textual documentation. Following these views at University of Udine, a computer language (SEMoLa, Simple, Easy Modelling Language) for knowledge integration has been developed.  SEMoLa can handle models, data, metadata and textual knowledge; it implements and extends the system dynamics ontology (Forrester, 1968; Jørgensen, 1994) in which systems are modelled by the concepts of material, group, state, rate, parameter, internal and external events and driving variables. As an example, a SEMoLa model to improve management and sustainability (economical, energetic, environmental) of the agricultural farms is presented. The model (X-Farm) simulates a farm in which cereal and forage yield, oil seeds, milk, calves and wastes can be sold or reused. X-Farm is composed by integrated modules describing fields (crop and soil), feeds and materials storage, machinery management, manpower  management, animal husbandry, economic and energetic balances, seed oil extraction, manure and wastes management, biogas production from animal wastes and biomasses.

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

    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 decisionmaking. With the ultimate goal to deliver quality products that meet or exceed requirements on time and within budget, PLM is a powerful tool 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, with

  12. Perfectly monodisperse micro-bubble production by novel mechanical means. Scaling laws.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ganan-Calvo, Alfonso M.; Gordillo, Jose M.; Ouarti, Nawel; Prevost, Thomas; Sampedro, Jose L.

    2000-11-01

    A continuous stream of controllable, perfectly homogeneous size micro-bubbles (of the order of some microns and larger) can be produced by a novel, extremely simple mechanical means that we call "Flow Focusing" (e.g. see Ganan-Calvo 1998, Phys. Rev. Lett. vol. 80, 285). Using this technique, a capillary gas micro-jet is formed ("focused") by a co-flowing stream of liquid forced through a sub-millimetric orifice. This gas micro-jet undergoes a rapid capillary breakup (e.g. Chandrasekhar 1961 "Hydrodynamic and Hydromagnetic Stability", p. 541) with a strong frequency "self-locking" effect. In this work we present a theoretical model which predicts the micro-bubble size as a function of the physical and geometrical parameters of the system. A complete experimental study is also provided, and the raw data are collapsed into a universal scaling law given by our theoretical model. This novel micro-fluidics phenomenon may have a wide variety of applications ranging from bio-medicine, pharmaceutical specialities, food industry, and even for the mesoscale micro-templating of micro-engineered materials (i.e. photonic crystals, smart materials, etc.).

  13. One-step electrohydrodynamic production of drug-loaded micro- and nanoparticles

    PubMed Central

    Enayati, Marjan; Ahmad, Zeeshan; Stride, Eleanor; Edirisinghe, Mohan

    2010-01-01

    The objective of this work was to produce drug-loaded nanometre- and micrometre-scale particles using a single-step process that provides control over particle size and size distribution. Co-axial electrohydrodynamic processing was used, at ambient temperature and pressure, with poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) as the polymeric coating material and oestradiol as the encapsulated drug. The particle diameter was varied from less than 120 nm to a few micrometres, by simple methodical adjustments in the processing parameters (polymer concentration and applied voltage). In vitro studies were performed to determine the drug release profile from the particles during unassisted and ultrasound-stimulated degradation in simulated body fluid. An encapsulation efficiency of approximately 70% was achieved and release of the drug was sustained for a period of over 20 days. Exposing the particles to ultrasound (22.5 kHz) increased the rate of release by approximately 8 per cent. This processing method offers several advantages over conventional emulsification techniques for the preparation of drug-loaded particles. Most significantly, process efficiency and the drug's functionality are preserved, as complex multistep processing involving harsh solvents, other additives and elevated temperatures or pressures are avoided. Production rates of 1012 particles min−1 can be achieved with a single pair of co-axial needles and the process is amenable to being scaled up by using multiple sets. PMID:19828501

  14. One-step electrohydrodynamic production of drug-loaded micro- and nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Enayati, Marjan; Ahmad, Zeeshan; Stride, Eleanor; Edirisinghe, Mohan

    2010-04-06

    The objective of this work was to produce drug-loaded nanometre- and micrometre-scale particles using a single-step process that provides control over particle size and size distribution. Co-axial electrohydrodynamic processing was used, at ambient temperature and pressure, with poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) as the polymeric coating material and oestradiol as the encapsulated drug. The particle diameter was varied from less than 120 nm to a few micrometres, by simple methodical adjustments in the processing parameters (polymer concentration and applied voltage). In vitro studies were performed to determine the drug release profile from the particles during unassisted and ultrasound-stimulated degradation in simulated body fluid. An encapsulation efficiency of approximately 70% was achieved and release of the drug was sustained for a period of over 20 days. Exposing the particles to ultrasound (22.5 kHz) increased the rate of release by approximately 8 per cent. This processing method offers several advantages over conventional emulsification techniques for the preparation of drug-loaded particles. Most significantly, process efficiency and the drug's functionality are preserved, as complex multistep processing involving harsh solvents, other additives and elevated temperatures or pressures are avoided. Production rates of 10(12) particles min(-1) can be achieved with a single pair of co-axial needles and the process is amenable to being scaled up by using multiple sets.

  15. Exploring the sustainability of industrial production and energy generation with a model system

    EPA Science Inventory

    The importance and complexity of sustainability has been well recognized and a formal study of sustainability based on system theory approaches is imperative as many of the relationships between the various components of the system could be non-linear, intertwined, and non-intuit...

  16. Sustainable clinical research, health economic aspects and medical marketing: drivers of product innovation.

    PubMed

    Haschke, Ferdinand; Klassen-Wigger, Petra

    2010-01-01

    Marketing-driven innovation in the field of pediatric nutrition, in particular in the infant formula segment is not sustainable. New benefits of products must be scientifically proven and safety and efficacy of new formulae established in clinical trials. The scientific innovation process of three infant formulae is described. Improvement in protein quality allowed to reduce the protein concentration in whey-based infant formula. Weight gain and BMI of infants fed those formulae corresponds to breastfed infants and is lower than in infants fed traditional formulae with higher protein concentration. A meta-analysis indicates associations between rapid weight gain in infancy and obesity later in life. If infants cannot be exclusively breastfed until 4-6 months of age, feeding low-protein formulae may contribute to positive long-term health outcome with potentially important health economic effects. A partially hydrolyzed whey based formula for prevention of allergic symptoms in children with hereditary risk for allergic diseases was developed more than 25 years ago. The most recent meta-analysis which included 15 randomized clinical trials indicates that the risk of all allergic diseases and atopic dermatitis/eczema is significantly reduced in infants at risk when the partially hydrolyzed formula is fed. The partially hydrolyzed formula had the same protective effect as casein-based high-degree extensively hydrolyzed formula. Because of substantial price differences between the two formulae, feeding the partially hydrolyzed whey formula is cost saving. Hypoallergenic claims can be made in many countries, and international nutrition committees have positively commented the preventive effect of those formulae. Acidified formulae have been widely used during the last decade in replacement feeding programs for infants whose mothers are HIV positive. The formula was innovated by improving whey protein quality and lowering protein concentration. The bacteriostatic

  17. Renewable energy from biomass: a sustainable option? - Hydrogen production from alcohols

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Balla, Zoltán; Kith, Károly; Tamás, András; Nagy, Orsolya

    2015-04-01

    Sustainable development requires us to find new energy sources instead of fossil fuels. One possibility is the hydrogen fuel cell, which uses significantly more efficient than the current combustion engines. The task of the hydrogen is clean, carbon-free renewable energy sources to choose in the future by growing degree. Hungary can play a role in the renewable energy sources of biomass as a renewable biomass annually mass of about 350 to 360 million tons. The biomass is only a very small proportion of fossil turn carbonaceous materials substitution, while we may utilize alternative energy sources as well. To the hydrogen production from biomass, the first step of the chemical transformations of chemical bonds are broken, which is always activation energy investment needs. The methanol and ethanol by fermentation from different agricultural products is relatively easy to produce, so these can be regarded as renewable energy carriers of. The ethanol can be used directly, and used in several places in the world are mixed with the petrol additive. This method is the disadvantage that the anhydrous alcohol is to be used in the combustion process in the engine more undesired by-products may be formed, and the fuel efficiency of the engine is significantly lower than the efficiency of the fuel cells. More useful to produce hydrogen from the alcohol and is used in a fuel cell electric power generation. Particularly attractive option for the so-called on-board reforming of alcohols, that happens immediately when the vehicle hydrogen production. It does not need a large tank of hydrogen, because the hydrogen produced would be directly to the fuel cell. The H2 tank limit use of its high cost, the significant loss evaporation, the rare-station network, production capacity and service background and lack of opportunity to refuel problems. These can be overcome, if the hydrogen in the vehicle is prepared. As volume even 700 bar only about half the H2 pressure gas can be stored

  18. Lignocellulose: A sustainable material to produce value-added products with a zero waste approach-A review.

    PubMed

    Arevalo-Gallegos, Alejandra; Ahmad, Zanib; Asgher, Muhammad; Parra-Saldivar, Roberto; Iqbal, Hafiz M N

    2017-02-27

    A novel facility from the green technologies to integrate biomass-based carbohydrates, lignin, oils and other materials extraction and transformation into a wider spectrum of marketable and value-added products with a zero waste approach is reviewed. With ever-increasing scientific knowledge, worldwide economic and environmental consciousness, demands of legislative authorities and the manufacture, use, and removal of petrochemical-based by-products, from the last decade, there has been increasing research interests in the value or revalue of lignocellulose-based materials. The potential characteristics like natural abundance, renewability, recyclability, and ease of accessibility all around the year, around the globe, all makes residual biomass as an eco-attractive and petro-alternative candidate. In this context, many significant research efforts have been taken into account to change/replace petroleum-based economy into a bio-based economy, with an aim to develop a comprehensively sustainable, socially acceptable, and eco-friendly society. The present review work mainly focuses on various aspects of bio-refinery as a sustainable technology to process lignocellulose 'materials' into value-added products. Innovations in the bio-refinery world are providing, a portfolio of sustainable and eco-efficient products to compete in the market presently dominated by the petroleum-based products, and therefore, it is currently a subject of intensive research.

  19. Towards an Understanding of the Social Aspects of Sustainability in Product Design: Teaching HE Students in the UK and Ireland through Reflection and Peer Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Watkins, Matthew

    2014-01-01

    This paper presents findings from a doctoral study, which investigated effective methods for teaching social sustainability within product design courses in British and Irish universities. This paper explores approaches for encouraging students to explore the social aspects of sustainable product design through workshops specifically designed to…

  20. Product asssurance requirements for micro VCM-apparatus and associated equipment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    1982-10-01

    The rules for performing Micro VCM-tests (vacuum tests) on materials for European Space Agency projects are presented. Formal guidelines for initial audits along with annual and special quality assurance reviews are summarized. Inspection forms are displayed.

  1. Agriculture: Sustainability

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    Sustainability creates and maintains the conditions under which humans and nature can exist in productive harmony, that permit fulfilling the food, feed, and fiber needs of our country and the social, economic and other requirements.

  2. Sustainable Development.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Auerbach, Raymond

    1994-01-01

    Discusses South African national development priorities, sustainable development, and the future of agriculture and presents three scenarios of possible national action: production for sale and export, household food security, and conservation of natural resources. (MKR)

  3. Management of the four waters at micro level by considering the social and economic backwardness for sustainable development using remote sensing & gis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Perni, Venkateswarlu

    As we enter the third millennium, we are witnessing a gale of bewildering change and transformation. Communication is well on its way to becoming instant. Knowledge based processes and an electronic network blankets the globe. And yet, there are certain things that never change, like for instance, the basic needs, of which water is most important. While in the past wars were fought over territory, markets and access to resources, future wars in the new millennium are likely to be fought over access to water for domestic, agricultural and industrial purposes. Water that most abundant of natural resources, is also very scarce in its usable form in most places on earth. The critical challenge facing arid and semi-arid areas will be to provide enough water for domestic and sustainable agricultural purposes. Already 22 countries have renewable water resources of less than one thousand cubic meters per capita, dangerously little in years of rain scarcity. With ever increasing pressure of human population, there is severe stress on water resources. This dangerous situation can still be reversed through efficient rainwater harvesting and judicious utilization by the local community. And the best socio-physical unit for such resource management is the watershed. The present study deals with the application of Remote sensing and Geographical Information systems techniques for the generation of an alternative land use/land cover practice with due consideration to the social and economic backwardness of the different ethnic groups besides protecting the long term carrying capacity of the eco-system through the integrated micro-level management of the four waters concept. The Remote sensing data used is IRS-IC-LISS-III imagery and ERDAS / IMAGINE 8.3 GIS software. Landuse/Landcover, Hydro-geomorphology, Soil map etc are generated by interpreting the satellite data and with necessary ground check. The slope map and drainage maps are generated with the help of 1:50,000 scale

  4. Self-sustained cycle of hydrolysis and etching at solution/solid interfaces: a general strategy to prepare metal oxide micro-/nanostructured arrays for high-performance electrodes.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yingmeng; Zhang, Weixin; Yang, Zeheng; Gu, Heyun; Zhu, Qing; Yang, Shihe; Li, Mei

    2015-03-23

    Assembling micro-/nanostructured arrays on conducting substrates allows the integration of multiple functionalities into modern electronic devices. Herein, a novel self-sustained cycle of hydrolysis and etching (SCHE) is exploited to selectively synthesize an extensive series of metal oxide micro-/nanostructured arrays on a wide range of metal substrates, establishing the generality and efficacy of the strategy. To demonstrate the potential application of this method, the as-prepared NiO porous nanobelt array was directly used as the anode for lithium-ion batteries, exhibiting excellent capacity and rate capability. Conclusively, the SCHE strategy offers a systematic approach to design metal oxide micro-/nanostructured arrays on metal substrates, which are valuable not only for lithium-ion batteries but also for other energy conversion and storage systems and electronic devices at large.

  5. The generation of aerosols by accidents which may occur during plant-scale production of micro-organisms.

    PubMed Central

    Ashcroft, J.; Pomeroy, N. P.

    1983-01-01

    Experiments have been performed to simulate accidents which may occur during large-scale production of micro-organisms. Four types of accident, which were considered to be the most likely to result in the greatest hazard to health, were simulated using a bacterial model. The accidents were all concerned with faults occurring in the operation of the microbial fermenter. Gross contamination of surfaces occurred in all experiments, but only three types of accident produced a measurable aerosol. PMID:6350448

  6. Precision glass molding: an integrative approach for the production of high precision micro-optics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hünten, Martin; Klocke, Fritz; Dambon, Olaf

    2010-02-01

    Miniaturization and integration are the dominating factors for the success of numerous optical devices. Conventional manufacturing processes for the fabrication of precise glass optics by means of grinding and polishing cannot cope the increasing demands in terms of precision, volume and costs. Here, precision glass molding is the enabling technology to meet these demands of the future optical products and applications. Since the market requests further miniaturization and integration of the micro optical components the possession of the entire sequence of processes is absolutely essential. With the accomplished and ongoing developments at the Fraunhofer IPT, the replication of double-sided (a)spherical and (a)cylindrical glass lenses with form accuracies of < 150 nm as well as lens arrays and even freeform optics could be realized. Therefore, a sequence of processes needs to be passed. The FEM-simulation of the molding process which was driven to a point capable to simulate even the molding of freeform optics is the first process step. Further on, new mold design concepts were generated to enable the replication of free formed optics. The research works focusing on the mold manufacturing led to sophisticated grinding process strategies able to realized complex mold geometries such as lens arrays. With regard to the coating of the molds, proceedings were developed assuring a defect free and uniform coating which enables the longevity of the molds and therewith helps reducing the final costs per lens. Thus, the precision glass molding becomes more and more interesting even for highly complex mid volume lots, characteristic for European or US optics manufacturer.

  7. Agriculture, food, and nutrition interventions that facilitate sustainable food production and impact health: an overview of systematic reviews.

    PubMed

    Haby, Michelle M; Chapman, Evelina; Clark, Rachel; Galvão, Luiz A C

    2016-08-01

    Objectives To identify the agriculture, food, and nutrition security interventions that facilitate sustainable food production and have a positive impact on health. Methods Systematic review methods were used to synthesize evidence from multiple systematic reviews and economic evaluations through a comprehensive search of 17 databases and 10 websites. The search employed a pre-defined protocol with clear inclusion criteria. Both grey and peer-reviewed literature published in English, Spanish, and Portuguese between 1 January 1997 and November 2013 were included. To classify as "sustainable," interventions needed to aim to positively impact at least two dimensions of the integrated framework for sustainable development and include measures of health impact. Results Fifteen systematic reviews and seven economic evaluations met the inclusion criteria. All interventions had some impact on health or on risk factors for health outcomes, except those related to genetically modified foods. Impact on health inequalities was rarely measured. All interventions with economic evaluations were very cost-effective, had cost savings, or net benefits. In addition to impacting health (inclusive social development), all interventions had the potential to impact on inclusive economic development, and some, on environmental sustainability, though these effects were rarely assessed. Conclusions What is needed now is careful implementation of interventions with expected positive health impacts but with concurrent, rigorous evaluation. Possible impact on health inequalities needs to be considered and measured by future primary studies and systematic reviews, as does impact of interventions on all dimensions of sustainable development.

  8. Hyperglycemia Determines Increased Specific MicroRNAs Levels in Sera and HDL of Acute Coronary Syndrome Patients and Stimulates MicroRNAs Production in Human Macrophages

    PubMed Central

    Carnuta, Mihaela G.; Sanda, Gabriela M.; Stancu, Camelia S.; Popescu, Andreea C.; Popescu, Mihaela R.; Vlad, Adelina; Dimulescu, Doina R.; Simionescu, Maya; Sima, Anca V.

    2016-01-01

    We aimed to determine the levels of microRNAs (miRNAs) in sera and HDL of acute coronary syndrome (ACS) compared to stable angina (SA) patients with/without hyperglycemia, and evaluate comparatively the functional effect of these sera on the processing machinery proteins (Drosha, DGCR8, Dicer) and miRNAs production in human macrophages. MiRNAs levels in sera and HDL from 35 SA and 72 ACS patients and 30 healthy subjects were measured by using microRNA TaqMan assays. MiR-223, miR-92a, miR-486, miR-122, miR-125a and miR-146a levels were higher in the hyperglycemic ACS compared to normoglycemic sera. MiR-223 and miR-486 prevailed in HDL2, while miR-92a predominated in HDL3, all three miRNAs discriminating between ACS and SA patients; their levels were increased in HDL from hyperglycemic ACS patients versus normoglycemic ones. The incubation of human macrophages with sera from ACS and SA patients showed that all patients’ sera induced an increase of Drosha, DGCR8 and Dicer expressions and of selected miRNAs levels compared to control sera, the effect being higher in the case of hyperglycemic versus normoglycemic ACS sera. The addition of glucose to SA and ACS sera increased Drosha, DGCR8 and Dicer expression and miRNAs levels in the exposed macrophages. In conclusion, hyperglycemia is associated with increased miR-223, miR-92a, miR-486 levels in HDL, which discriminate between ACS and SA patients. Exposure of human macrophages to ACS compared to SA sera determines the upregulation of Drosha, DGCR8 and Dicer expression and the increase of selected miRNAs production, the effect being augmented by an increased glucose concentration. PMID:27519051

  9. Local Sustained Delivery of 25-Hydroxyvitamin D3 for Production of Antimicrobial Peptides

    PubMed Central

    Jiang, Jiang; Chen, Guojun; Shuler, Franklin D.; Wang, Chi-Hwa; Xie, Jingwei

    2015-01-01

    Purpose This study seeks to develop fiber membranes for local sustained delivery of 25-hydroxyvitamin D3 to induce the expression and secretion of LL-37 at or near the surgical site, which provides a novel therapeutic approach to minimize the risk of infections. Methods 25-hydroxyvitamin D3 loaded poly(L-lactide) (PLA) and poly(ε-caprolactone) (PCL) fibers were produced by electrospinning. The morphology of obtained fibers was characterized using atomic force microscope (AFM) and scanning electron microscope (SEM). 25-hydroxyvitamin D3 releasing kinetics were quantified by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) kit. The expression of cathelicidin (hCAP 18) and LL-37 was analyzed by immunofluorescence staining and ELISA kit. The antibacterial activity test was conducted by incubating pseudomonas aeruginosa in a monocytes’ lysis solution. Results AFM images suggest that the surface of PCL fibers is smooth, however, the surface of PLA fibers is relatively rough, in particular, after encapsulation of 25-hydroxyvitamin D3. The duration of 25-hydroxyvitamin D3 release can last more than 4 weeks for all the tested samples. Plasma treatment can promote the release rate of 25-hydroxyvitamin D3. Human keratinocytes and monocytes express significantly higher levels of hCAP18/LL-37 after incubation with plasma treated and 25-hydroxyvitamin D3 loaded PCL fibers than the cells incubated with around 10 times amount of free drug. After incubation with this fiber formulation for 5 days LL-37 in the lysis solutions of U937 cells can effectively kill the bacteria. Conclusions plasma treated and 25-hydroxyvitamin D3 loaded PCL fibers induce significantly higher levels of antimicrobial peptide production in human keratinocytes and monocytes without producing cytotoxicity. PMID:25773720

  10. Rainbow smelt: the unusual case of cryoprotection by sustained glycerol production in an aquatic animal.

    PubMed

    Driedzic, William R

    2015-07-01

    Rainbow smelt flourish at -1.8 °C, the freezing point of sea water. An antifreeze protein contributes to freeze point depression but, more importantly, cryoprotection is due to an elevation in osmotic pressure, by the accumulation of glycerol. The lower the water temperature, the higher the plasma glycerol with levels recorded as high as 400 mmol l(-1). Glycerol freely diffuses out in direct relation to the glycerol concentration and fish may lose as much as 15% of their glycerol reserve per day. Glycerol levels decrease from a maximum in February/March while water temperature is still sub-zero. The decrease in glycerol may respond to a photoperiod signal as opposed to initiation which is triggered by low temperature. The initial increase in glycerol level is supported by liver glycogen but high sustained glycerol level is dependent upon dietary carbohydrate and protein. The metabolic pathways leading to glycerol involve flux from glycogen/glucose to the level of dihydroxyacetone phosphate (DHAP) via the initial part of glycolysis and from amino acids via a truncated gluconeogenesis again to the level of DHAP. DHAP in turn is converted to glycerol 3-phosphate (G3P) and then directly to glycerol. The key to directing DHAP to G3P is a highly active glycerol 3-P dehydrogenase. G3P is converted directly to glycerol via G3P phosphatase, the rate-limiting step in the process. The transition to glycerol production is associated with increased activities of enzymes at key loci in the top part of glycogenolysis/glycolysis. Curtailment of the final section of glycolysis may reside at the level of pyruvate oxidation with an inactivation of pyruvate dehydrogenase (PDH) driven by increased levels of PDH kinase. Enzymes associated with amino acid trafficking are elevated as is the pivotal enzyme phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase.

  11. Viability, longevity, and egg production of Drosophila melanogaster are regulated by the miR-282 microRNA.

    PubMed

    Vilmos, Péter; Bujna, Agnes; Szuperák, Milán; Havelda, Zoltán; Várallyay, Éva; Szabad, János; Kucerova, Lucie; Somogyi, Kálmán; Kristó, Ildikó; Lukácsovich, Tamás; Jankovics, Ferenc; Henn, László; Erdélyi, Miklós

    2013-10-01

    The first microRNAs were discovered some 20 years ago, but only a small fraction of the microRNA-encoding genes have been described in detail yet. Here we report the molecular analysis of a computationally predicted Drosophila melanogaster microRNA gene, mir-282. We show that the mir-282 gene is the source of a 4.9-kb-long primary transcript with a 5' cap and a 3'-poly(A) sequence and a mature microRNA of ∼25 bp. Our data strongly suggest the existence of an independent mir-282 gene conserved in holometabolic insects. We give evidence that the mir-282 locus encodes a functional transcript that influences viability, longevity, and egg production in Drosophila. We identify the nervous system-specific adenylate cyclase (rutabaga) as a target of miR-282 and assume that one of the main functions of mir-282 is the regulation of adenylate cyclase activity in the nervous system during metamorphosis.

  12. Micro Navigator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Blaes, B. R.; Kia, T.; Chau, S. N.

    2001-01-01

    Miniature high-performance low-mass space avionics systems are desired for planned future outer planetary exploration missions (i.e. Europa Orbiter/Lander, Pluto-Kuiper Express). The spacecraft fuel and mass requirements enabling orbit insertion is the driving requirement. The Micro Navigator is an integrated autonomous Guidance, Navigation & Control (GN&C)micro-system that would provide the critical avionics function for navigation, pointing, and precision landing. The Micro Navigator hardware and software allow fusion of data from multiple sensors to provide a single integrated vehicle state vector necessary for six degrees of freedom GN&C. The benefits of this MicroNavigator include: 1) The Micro Navigator employs MEMS devices that promise orders of magnitude reductions in mass power and volume of inertial sensors (accelerometers and gyroscopes), celestial sensing devices (startracker, sun sensor), and computing element; 2) The highly integrated nature of the unit will reduce the cost of flight missions. a) The advanced miniaturization technologies employed by the Micro Navigator lend themselves to mass production, and therefore will reduce production cost of spacecraft. b) The integral approach simplifies interface issues associated with discrete components and reduces cost associated with integration and test of multiple components; and 3) The integration of sensors and processing elements into a single unit will allow the Micro Navigator to encapsulate attitude information and determination functions into a single object. This is particularly beneficial for object-oriented software architectures that are used in advanced spacecraft. Additional information is contained in the original extended abstract.

  13. The Influence of Older Age Groups to Sustainable Product Design Research of Urban Public Facilities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wen-juan, Zhang; Hou-peng, Song

    2017-01-01

    Through summarize the status quo of public facilities design to older age groups in China and a variety of factors what influence on them, the essay, from different perspective, is designed to put forward basic principle to sustainable design of public facilities for the aged in the city, and thus further promote and popularize the necessity of sustainable design applications in the future design of public facilities for elderly people.

  14. Effects of harvest on the sustainability and leaf productivity of populations of two palm species in Maya homegardens.

    PubMed

    Martínez-Ballesté, Andrea; Martorell, Carlos

    2015-01-01

    Traditional management practices are usually thought to be sustainable. The Maya manage Sabal (Arecaceae) palms in homegardens, using their leaves for thatching. The sustainability of such production systems depends on the long-term persistence of palm populations, whereas resource availability also depends on the number of leaves on individual palms. We examined how leaf harvest affects Sabal yapa and S. mexicana population growth rates (λ) and leaf production, comparing traditional and alternative harvest regimes in terms of sustainability and productivity. Demographic, harvest and leaf production data were recorded for three years in two homegardens. We used general integral projection models linked to leaf-production models to describe population dynamics and productivity. Harvest had no effect on S. yapa's vital rates or on λ, but it changed the growth rate of individuals of S. mexicana, with a negligible impact on λ. Homegardens affected λ values, reflecting the species' ecological affinities. S. mexicana, introduced from mesic forests, required watering and shade; therefore, its population declined rapidly in the homegarden that lacked both water and shade. The λ of the xerophilic S. yapa was slightly larger without watering than with watering. Palms usually compensated for leaf extraction, causing the number of leaves harvested per individual to increase with harvest intensity. Nevertheless, traditional management is relatively mild, allowing standing leaves to accumulate but reducing the homegarden's yield. Apparently, the Maya do not seek to maximize annual production but to ensure the availability of large numbers of leaves in homegardens. These leaves may then be used when the entire roof of a hut needs to be replaced every few years.

  15. Sustainability Impact Assessment of two forest-based bioenergy production systems related to mitigation and adaption to Climate Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gartzia-Bengoetxea, Nahia; Arias-González, Ander; Tuomasjukka, Diana

    2016-04-01

    New forest management strategies are necessary to resist and adapt to Climate Change (CC) and to maintain ecosystem functions such as forest productivity, water storage and biomass production. The increased use of forest-based biomass for energy generation as well as the application of combustion or pyrolysis co-products such as ash or biochar back into forest soils is being suggested as a CC mitigation and adaptation strategy while trying to fulfil the targets of both: (i) Europe 2020 growth strategy in relation to CC and energy sustainability and (ii) EU Action Plan for the Circular Economy. The energy stored in harvested biomass can be released through combustion and used for energy generation to enable national energy security (reduced oil dependence) and the substitution of fossil fuel by renewable biomass can decrease the emission of greenhouse gases.In the end, the wood-ash produced in the process can return to the forest soil to replace the nutrients exported by harvesting. Another way to use biomass in this green circular framework is to pyrolyse it. Pyrolysis of the biomass produce a carbon-rich product (biochar) that can increase carbon sequestration in the soils and liquid and gas co-products of biomass pyrolysis can be used for energy generation or other fuel use thereby offsetting fossil fuel consumption and so avoiding greenhouse gas emissions. Both biomass based energy systems differ in the amount of energy produced, in the co-product (biochar or wood ash) returned to the field, and in societal impacts they have. The Tool for Sustainability Impact Assessment (ToSIA) was used for modelling both energy production systems. ToSIA integrates several different methods, and allows a quantification and objective comparison of economic, environmental and social impacts in a sustainability impact assessment for different decision alternatives/scenarios. We will interpret the results in order to support the bioenergy planning in temperate forests under the

  16. Effects of Harvest on the Sustainability and Leaf Productivity of Populations of Two Palm Species in Maya Homegardens

    PubMed Central

    Martínez-Ballesté, Andrea; Martorell, Carlos

    2015-01-01

    Traditional management practices are usually thought to be sustainable. The Maya manage Sabal (Arecaceae) palms in homegardens, using their leaves for thatching. The sustainability of such production systems depends on the long-term persistence of palm populations, whereas resource availability also depends on the number of leaves on individual palms. We examined how leaf harvest affects Sabal yapa and S. mexicana population growth rates (λ) and leaf production, comparing traditional and alternative harvest regimes in terms of sustainability and productivity. Demographic, harvest and leaf production data were recorded for three years in two homegardens. We used general integral projection models linked to leaf-production models to describe population dynamics and productivity. Harvest had no effect on S. yapa’s vital rates or on λ, but it changed the growth rate of individuals of S. mexicana, with a negligible impact on λ. Homegardens affected λ values, reflecting the species’ ecological affinities. S. mexicana, introduced from mesic forests, required watering and shade; therefore, its population declined rapidly in the homegarden that lacked both water and shade. The λ of the xerophilic S. yapa was slightly larger without watering than with watering. Palms usually compensated for leaf extraction, causing the number of leaves harvested per individual to increase with harvest intensity. Nevertheless, traditional management is relatively mild, allowing standing leaves to accumulate but reducing the homegarden’s yield. Apparently, the Maya do not seek to maximize annual production but to ensure the availability of large numbers of leaves in homegardens. These leaves may then be used when the entire roof of a hut needs to be replaced every few years. PMID:25803029

  17. Trypanotolerance, an option for sustainable livestock production in areas at risk from trypanosomosis.

    PubMed

    d'Ieteren, G D; Authié, E; Wissocq, N; Murray, M

    1998-04-01

    Trypanosomosis is one of the major constraints on animal production in areas of Africa which have the greatest potential for significant increases in domestic livestock populations and livestock productivity. While the eradication of trypanosomosis from the entire continent is an unrealistic goal, considerable effort has been invested in the control of this disease through the use of trypanocidal drugs, management of the vector and exploitation of the genetic resistance exhibited by indigenous breeds. There is little hope that a conventional, anti-infection vaccine will be produced in the near future. Drug resistance is developing faster than generally thought. The control of the tsetse fly has been attempted over many decades. The decreasing efficacy of available trypanocidal drugs and the difficulties of sustaining tsetse control increase the imperative need to enhance trypanotolerance through selective breeding, either within breeds or through cross-breeding. Trypanotolerance has been defined as the relative capacity of an animal to control the development of the parasites and to limit their pathological effects, the most prominent of which is anaemia. A major constraint on selection for trypanotolerance in cattle, for both within-breed and cross-breeding programmes, has been the absence of practical reliable markers of resistance or susceptibility. Distinct humoral immune response to trypanosome infection is the major feature of bovine trypanotolerance. The role that these responses play in the control of infection or disease is being addressed by ongoing research, but remains a matter of speculation at present. Results in recent years have shown that packed cell volume (PCV) in particular and parasitaemia, the two principal indicators of trypanotolerance, are strongly correlated to animal performance. However, although direct effects of trypanosome infections on PCV and growth are obvious, more sensitive diagnostic methods for reflecting parasite control are

  18. Bioaugmentation of Mesorhizobium cicer, Pseudomonas spp. and Piriformospora indica for Sustainable Chickpea Production.

    PubMed

    Mansotra, Pallavi; Sharma, Poonam; Sharma, Sunita

    2015-07-01

    Chickpea establishes symbiotic association with Mesorhizobium to fulfill its nitrogen (N) requirement. Integrating chickpea rhizosphere with potential native mesorhizobia and other plant growth promoting microorganisms can contribute multiple benefits to plants. The present investigation was undertaken to study interactions among Piriformospora indica (PI) with potential plant growth promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR) viz. Pseudomonas argentinensis (LPGPR1), Pseudomonas sp. (LPGPR2) along with national check Pseudomons sp. (LK884) and Mesorhizobium cicer (LGR33, MR) to examine the synergistic effect of consortium for improving growth, symbiotic efficiency, nutrient acquisition and yield in two chickpea (Cicer arietinum L.) varieties viz. desi PBG1 and kabuli BG1053. In-vitro, seed germination with consortium MR + PI + LPGPR1 was the best compatible treatment followed by MR + PI + LK884 and MR + PI + LPGPR2. Significant improvement in the growth, symbiotic parameters and grain yield was observed with MR + PI + LPGPR1 and MR + PI + LK884 treatments. Significantly high chlorophyll and leghaemoglobin content was recorded with MR + PI + LPGPR1 (1.57 and 1.64 mg g(-1) fresh weight of leaves and 5.19 and 4.39 mg/g(-1) fresh weight of nodules) in desi PBG1 and kabuli BG1053 chickpea varieties, respectively. At 90 DAS, MR + PI + LPGPR1 treatment significantly improved nodule dry weight (ranged between 84.0 and 141.7 mg plant(-1)) as compared to MR alone treatment (ranged between 62.3 and 123.3 mg plant(-1)). Data revealed significant increase in total nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) content of shoot with MR + PI + LPGPR1 by 1.2 and 1.5 fold, respectively over MR alone treatment. On the basis of overall mean, MR + PI + LPGPR1 significantly improved the yield by 8.2 % over Mesorhizobium alone application. It seems from foregoing study that tripartite combination of different micro-organisms can be

  19. Development of a Low Input and sustainable Switchgrass Feedstock Production System Utilizing Beneficial Bacterial Endophytes

    SciTech Connect

    Mei, Chuansheng; Nowak, Jerzy; Seiler, John

    2014-10-24

    Switchgrass represents a promising feedstock crop for US energy sustainability. However, its broad utilization for bioenergy requires improvements of biomass yields and stress tolerance. In this DOE funded project, we have been working on harnessing beneficial bacterial endophytes to enhance switchgrass performance and to develop a low input feedstock production system for marginal lands that do not compete with the production of food crops. We have demonstrated that one of most promising plant growth-promoting bacterial endophytes, Burkholderia phytofirmans strain PsJN, is able to colonize roots and significantly promote growth of switchgrass cv. Alamo under in vitro, growth chamber, greenhouse, as well as field conditions. Furthermore, PsJN bacterization improved growth and development of switchgrass seedlings, significantly stimulated plant root and shoot growth, and tiller number in the field, and enhanced biomass accumulation on both poor (p<0.001) and rich (p<0.05) soils, with more effective stimulation of plant growth in low fertility soil. Plant physiology measurements showed that PsJN inoculated Alamo had consistently lower transpiration, lower stomatal conductance, and higher water use efficiency in greenhouse conditions. These physiological changes may significantly contribute to the recorded growth enhancement. PsJN inoculation rapidly results in an increase in photosynthetic rates which contributes to the advanced growth and development. Some evidence suggests that this initial growth advantage decreases with time when resources are not limited such as in greenhouse studies. Additionally, better drought resistance and drought hardening were observed in PsJN inoculated switchgrass. Using the DOE-funded switchgrass EST microarray, in a collaboration with the Genomics Core Facility at the Noble Foundation, we have determined gene expression profile changes in both responsive switchgrass cv. Alamo and non-responsive cv. Cave-in-Rock (CR) following Ps

  20. Stepping stone or stumbling block? Mode 2 knowledge production in sustainability science.

    PubMed

    Thorén, Henrik; Breian, Line

    2016-04-01

    The concept of Mode 2 has often been seen as especially applicable to fields addressing grand challenges, such as climate change. Being a relatively new field-interdisciplinary in its approach, and focused on addressing such issues-sustainability science would appear to be a case in point. The aim of this paper is twofold: 1) to explore the perceived relation between Mode 2 and sustainability science, and 2) to advance the discussion of Mode 2 from a philosophical perspective. To address these questions we focus on three characteristic features of Mode 2: the notion of a distinct, but evolving framework; boundary crossing; and a problem solving capacity "on the move". We report the results of a survey carried out amongst leading sustainability scientists. The survey gives insight into the scientists' perception of Mode 2, their perception of their own field of sustainability science and the relation between the two. The free text answers reveal a tension within the field of sustainability science: with developments both towards Mode 1 and Mode 2 science. We conclude that the implementation of inter- and trans-disciplinarity is challenged by institutional and conceptual factors alike.

  1. Quantification of Plasmodiophora brassicae Using a DNA-Based Soil Test Facilitates Sustainable Oilseed Rape Production.

    PubMed

    Wallenhammar, Ann-Charlotte; Gunnarson, Albin; Hansson, Fredrik; Jonsson, Anders

    2016-04-22

    Outbreaks of clubroot disease caused by the soil-borne obligate parasite Plasmodiophora brassicae are common in oilseed rape (OSR) in Sweden. A DNA-based soil testing service that identifies fields where P. brassicae poses a significant risk of clubroot infection is now commercially available. It was applied here in field surveys to monitor the prevalence of P. brassicae DNA in field soils intended for winter OSR production and winter OSR field experiments. In 2013 in Scania, prior to planting, P. brassicae DNA was detected in 60% of 45 fields on 10 of 18 farms. In 2014, P. brassicae DNA was detected in 44% of 59 fields in 14 of 36 farms, in the main winter OSR producing region in southern Sweden. P. brassicae was present indicative of a risk for >10% yield loss with susceptible cultivars (>1300 DNA copies g soil(-1)) in 47% and 44% of fields in 2013 and 2014 respectively. Furthermore, P. brassicae DNA was indicative of sites at risk of complete crop failure if susceptible cultivars were grown (>50 000 copies g(-1) soil) in 14% and 8% of fields in 2013 and 2014, respectively. A survey of all fields at Lanna research station in western Sweden showed that P. brassicae was spread throughout the farm, as only three of the fields (20%) showed infection levels below the detection limit for P.brassicae DNA, while the level was >50,000 DNA copies g(-1) soil in 20% of the fields. Soil-borne spread is of critical importance and soil scraped off footwear showed levels of up to 682 million spores g(-1) soil. Soil testing is an important tool for determining the presence of P. brassicae and providing an indication of potential yield loss, e.g., in advisory work on planning for a sustainable OSR crop rotation. This soil test is gaining acceptance as a tool that increases the likelihood of success in precision agriculture and in applied research conducted in commercial oilseed fields and at research stations. The present application highlights the importance of prevention of

  2. Projecting future grassland productivity to assess the sustainability of potential biofuel feedstock areas in the Greater Platte River Basin

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gu, Yingxin; Wylie, Bruce K.; Boyte, Stephen; Phyual, Khem

    2014-01-01

    This study projects future (e.g., 2050 and 2099) grassland productivities in the Greater Platte River Basin (GPRB) using ecosystem performance (EP, a surrogate for measuring ecosystem productivity) models and future climate projections. The EP models developed from a previous study were based on the satellite vegetation index, site geophysical and biophysical features, and weather and climate drivers. The future climate data used in this study were derived from the National Center for Atmospheric Research Community Climate System Model 3.0 ‘SRES A1B’ (a ‘middle’ emissions path). The main objective of this study is to assess the future sustainability of the potential biofuel feedstock areas identified in a previous study. Results show that the potential biofuel feedstock areas (the more mesic eastern part of the GPRB) will remain productive (i.e., aboveground grassland biomass productivity >2750 kg ha−1 year−1) with a slight increasing trend in the future. The spatially averaged EPs for these areas are 3519, 3432, 3557, 3605, 3752, and 3583 kg ha−1 year−1 for current site potential (2000–2008 average), 2020, 2030, 2040, 2050, and 2099, respectively. Therefore, the identified potential biofuel feedstock areas will likely continue to be sustainable for future biofuel development. On the other hand, grasslands identified as having no biofuel potential in the drier western part of the GPRB would be expected to stay unproductive in the future (spatially averaged EPs are 1822, 1691, 1896, 2306, 1994, and 2169 kg ha−1 year−1 for site potential, 2020, 2030, 2040, 2050, and 2099). These areas should continue to be unsuitable for biofuel feedstock development in the future. These future grassland productivity estimation maps can help land managers to understand and adapt to the expected changes in future EP in the GPRB and to assess the future sustainability and feasibility of potential biofuel feedstock areas.

  3. Efforts to improve and sustain the productive utilization of dry grasslands in Armenia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mezhunts, Bagrat; Navasardyan, Marine

    2014-05-01

    Armenia is a small mountainous country (29,743 km2) located in the South Caucasus. It lies in the sub-tropical zone and has a continental climate with hot summers (av. +250C) and cold winters (av. -60C). The average precipitation is 550 mm; in the dry-steppe zone it amounts to only 250 mm and with a rainy season in spring-early summer. Altitudinal variation (390-4,095 m) gives rise to a range of climatic zones (from semi-desert to alpine), soil types and plant communities. Besides, Armenia is situated on the crossroads of Caucasian - mesophyllous (humid) and Armeno-Iranian - xerophyllous (arid) floristic provinces, which has made it to a "biodiversity hotspot". Agriculture is important as a source of employment and for domestic food supply. The rural population (ca. 1.2 million) is largely dependent on livestock for their livelihood. The principal feed resource is extensive grasslands (60% of total agricultural lands), but past practices of uncontrolled grazing management has led to low grassland productivity and low proportion of valuable legume forages. Improvement of natural grasslands, enhancement of feed quality, prevention of soil erosion and re-establishment of vegetation cover are key socio-economic challenges and are needed to raise the livelihood of rural population in Armenia. This presentation focuses on present status and trends of dry pastureland degradation, exposed to intensive grazing, and on results from case studies to increase productivity and restore valuable forage species for sustainable use in agriculture. Three different conventional approaches have been applied in these studies including: fertilization with moderate doses of ammonium and potassium nitrate and superphosphate, over-sowing by local legume seeds and implementation of a 2-year rest period in overgrazed areas. From 1986 to 2007, the total yield (TY) in studied dry-steppe pastures decreased by 40%, while at the same time, the proportion of grasses in total yield decreased by 50

  4. Sustainable rice production and its impact on the rice value chain: A case study of rural paddy farm in Kedah

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Othman, Siti Norezam; Othman, Zakirah; Yaacob, Noorulsadiqin Azbiya; Hamid, Kamal Ab

    2016-08-01

    System of Rice Intensification (SRI) method had contributed towards environmental sustainability through improving paddy ecosystem, better sustainable economic due to improving paddy production and sales and social sustainability through local community development through community activity and health. This study aimed to find out whether the innovative practices of SRI affect the rice value chain and to determine the roles, activities of the actors in the value chain as well as challenges that impacted the value chain. Using interview as data collection method, case samples were selected from various SRI paddy site in Kedah. The findings indicated that implementing SRI practices in organic paddy cultivation had caused the value chain to be different from conventional paddy value chain in terms of actor and effect of middle man subject to the small scale paddy production. For organic rice value chain to become competitive, roles, activities and challenges were identified so that supports could be provided to the farmers and other related parties in the value chain.

  5. 3 CFR - Driving Innovation and Creating Jobs in Rural America Through Biobased and Sustainable Product...

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... Environmental, Energy, and Economic Performance). Further efforts will drive innovation and economic growth and... Sustainability Performance Plan required by section 8 of Executive Order 13514. (b) As required by section 2(h... 13423 of January 24, 2007 (Strengthening Federal Environmental, Energy, and Transportation...

  6. Dedicated industrial oilseed crops as metabolic engineering platforms for sustainable industrial feedstock production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    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 petrochemi...

  7. ARM Best Estimate Data (ARMBE) Products for Climate Science for a Sustainable Energy Future (CSSEF)

    DOE Data Explorer

    Riihimaki, Laura; Gaustad, Krista; McFarlane, Sally

    2014-06-12

    This data set was created for the Climate Science for a Sustainable Energy Future (CSSEF) model testbed project and is an extension of the hourly average ARMBE dataset to other extended facility sites and to include uncertainty estimates. Uncertainty estimates were needed in order to use uncertainty quantification (UQ) techniques with the data.

  8. A risk-based, product-level approach for assuring aquatic environmental safety of cleaning products in the context of sustainability: The Environmental Safety Check (ESC) scheme of the A.I.S.E. Charter for Sustainable Cleaning.

    PubMed

    Pickup, John Alexander; Dewaele, Joost; Furmanski, Nicola L; Kowalczyk, Agnieszka; Luijkx, Gerard Ca; Mathieu, Sophie; Stelter, Norbert

    2017-01-01

    Cleaning products have long been a focus of efforts to improve sustainability and assure safety for the aquatic environment when disposed of after use. The latter is addressed at ingredient level through environmental risk assessment, including in formal frameworks such as REACH. Nevertheless, in the context of programs to improve overall sustainability, stakeholders demand both environmental safety assurance and progress at product level. Current product-level approaches for aquatic toxicity (e.g., USEtox™, Critical Dilution Volume) can be seen as predominantly hazard-based. The more logical approach would be risk-based, because ecotoxicity is generally threshold-dependent and hazard-based assessment produces conflicts with risk-based learnings. The development of a risk-based approach to assess formulated products is described: the International Association for Soaps, Detergents and Maintenance Products (A.I.S.E.) Charter Environmental Safety Check (ESC), which is consistent with the scientific principles underlying REACH. This is implemented through a simple spreadsheet tool and internal database of ingredient parameters including predicted no-effect concentration (PNEC) and removal rate. A novel feature is applying market volume information for both product types and ingredients to permit a risk-based calculation. To pass the ESC check, the projected environmental safety ratio (PESR) for each ingredient as formulated and dosed (unless cleared by a published risk assessment or exempted as inherently low risk) must be less than 1. The advantages of a risk-based approach are discussed. The strengths and limitations of various possible approaches to standard-setting, product-ranking and driving continuous improvement in respect of potential ecotoxic impacts on the aquatic environment are considered. It is proposed that as ecotoxicity is generally accepted to be threshold-dependent, with no effect below the threshold, the most constructive approach to continuous

  9. Laser sustained discharge nozzle apparatus for the production of an intense beam of high kinetic energy atomic species

    DOEpatents

    Cross, Jon B.; Cremers, David A.

    1988-01-01

    Laser sustained discharge apparatus for the production of intense beams of high kinetic energy atomic species. A portion of the plasma resulting from a laser sustained continuous optical discharge which generates energetic atomic species from a gaseous source thereof is expanded through a nozzle into a region of low pressure. The expanded plasma contains a significant concentration of the high kinetic energy atomic species which may be used to investigate the interaction of surfaces therewith. In particular, O-atoms having velocities in excess of 3.5 km/s can be generated for the purpose of studying their interaction with materials in order to develop protective materials for spacecraft which are exposed to such energetic O-atoms during operation in low earth orbit.

  10. Laser sustained discharge nozzle apparatus for the production of an intense beam of high kinetic energy atomic species

    DOEpatents

    Cross, J.B.; Cremers, D.A.

    1986-01-10

    Laser sustained discharge apparatus for the production of intense beams of high kinetic energy atomic species is described. A portion of the plasma resulting from a laser sustained continuous optical discharge which generates energetic atomic species from a gaseous source thereof is expanded through a nozzle into a region of low pressure. The expanded plasma contains a significant concentration of the high kinetic energy atomic species which may be used to investigate the interaction of surfaces therewith. In particular, O-atoms having velocities in excess of 3.5 km/s can be generated for the purpose of studying their interaction with materials in order to develop protective materials for spacecraft which are exposed to such energetic O-atoms during operation in low earth orbit.

  11. Renewable and sustainable bioenergies production from palm oil mill effluent (POME): win-win strategies toward better environmental protection.

    PubMed

    Lam, Man Kee; Lee, Keat Teong

    2011-01-01

    Palm oil industry is one of the leading agricultural industries in Malaysia with average crude palm oil production of more than 13 million tonne per year. However, production of such huge amount of crude palm oil has consequently resulted to even larger amount of palm oil mill effluent (POME). POME is a highly polluting wastewater with high chemical oxygen demand (COD) and biochemical oxygen demand (BOD) in which can caused severe pollution to the environment, typically pollution to water resources. On the other hand, POME was identified as a potential source to generate renewable bioenergies such as biomethane and biohydrogen through anaerobic digestion. In other words, a combination of wastewater treatment and renewable bioenergies production would be an added advantage to the palm oil industry. In line with the world's focus on sustainability concept, such strategy should be implemented immediately to ensure palm oil is produced in an environmental friendly and sustainable manner. This review aims to discuss various technologies to convert POME to biomethane and biohydrogen in a commercial scale. Furthermore, discussion on using POME to culture microalgae for biodiesel and bioethanol production was included in the present paper as a new remedy to utilize POME with a greater beneficial return.

  12. Links between surface productivity and deep ocean particle flux at the Porcupine Abyssal Plain (PAP) 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.

    2015-04-01

    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 d-1. The average monthly drawdowns of inorganic carbon and nitrogen were used to quantify the net community production (NCP) and new production, respectively. Seasonal NCP and new production were found to be 4.57 ± 0.27 mol C m-2 and 0.37 ± 0.14 mol N m-2. The Redfield ratio was high (12), 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.

  13. Sustainable approaches for minimizing biosolids production and maximizing reuse options in sludge management: A review.

    PubMed

    Joo, Sung Hee; Dello Monaco, Francesca; Antmann, Eric; Chorath, Philip

    2015-08-01

    Sludge generation during wastewater treatment is inevitable even with proper management and treatment. Yet proper handling and disposal of sludge are still challenging in terms of treatment cost, presence of recalcitrant contaminants of concern, sanitary issues, and public acceptance. Conventional disposal methods (i.e. landfilling, incineration) have created concerns in terms of legislative restrictions and community perception, incentivizing consideration of substitute sludge management options. Furthermore, with proper treatment, biosolids from sludge, rich in organic materials and nutrients, could be utilizable as fertilizer. Despite the challenges of dealing with sludge, no review has dealt with integrated source reduction and reuse as the best sustainable management practices for sludge treatment. In this review, we present two main approaches as potentially sustainable controls: (i) pretreatment for minimizing extensive sludge treatment, and (ii) recycling and reuse of residual sludge. Drawing on these approaches, we also suggest strategies for efficient pretreatment mechanisms and residual reuse, presenting ideas for prospective future research.

  14. Frontiers of sustainability: Environmentally sound agriculture, forestry, transportation, and power production

    SciTech Connect

    Dower, R.; Ditz, D.

    1998-11-01

    The book presents the first practical vision of the sustainable future of the United States and the steps needed to get there. Authors examine the environmental performance and trends in four key economic sectors; agriculture, electricity generation, transportation, and pulp and paper manufacturing. They map out and explore the implications of potentially dangerous trends and developments, and detail methods for reducing or managing emergency threats. Each chapter sets forth a technologically feasible vision of the future in which the unwanted trends one sees unfolding now are reversed. Frontiers of sustainability presents an adaptable formula for moving the United States toward a future that ensures generations to come a healthy stock of environmental and natural resource assets.

  15. A self-sustaining advanced lignocellulosic biofuel production by integration of anaerobic digestion and aerobic fungal fermentation.

    PubMed

    Zhong, Yuan; Ruan, Zhenhua; Zhong, Yingkui; Archer, Steven; Liu, Yan; Liao, Wei

    2015-03-01

    High energy demand hinders the development and application of aerobic microbial biofuel production from lignocellulosic materials. In order to address this issue, this study focused on developing an integrated system including anaerobic digestion and aerobic fungal fermentation to convert corn stover, animal manure and food wastes into microbial lipids for biodiesel production. Dairy manure and food waste were first anaerobically digested to produce energy and solid digestate (AD fiber). AD fiber and corn stover were then processed by a combined alkali and acid hydrolysis, followed by fungal lipid accumulation. The integrated process can generate 1L biodiesel and 1.9 kg methane from 12.8 kg dry dairy manure, 3.1 kg dry food wastes and 12.2 kg dry corn stover with a positive net energy of 57 MJ, which concludes a self-sustaining lignocellulosic biodiesel process and provides a new route to co-utilize corn stover and organic wastes for advanced biofuel production.

  16. Sustainability of meat production beyond carbon footprint: a synthesis of case studies from grazing systems in Uruguay.

    PubMed

    Picasso, Valentín D; Modernel, Pablo D; Becoña, Gonzalo; Salvo, Lucía; Gutiérrez, Lucía; Astigarraga, Laura

    2014-11-01

    Livestock production has been challenged as a large contributor to climate change, and carbon footprint has become a widely used measure of cattle environmental impact. This analysis of fifteen beef grazing systems in Uruguay quantifies the range of variation of carbon footprint, and the trade-offs with other relevant environmental variables, using a partial life cycle assessment (LCA) methodology. Using carbon footprint as the primary environmental indicator has several limitations: different metrics (GWP vs. GTP) may lead to different conclusions, carbon sequestration from soils may drastically affect the results, and systems with lower carbon footprint may have higher energy use, soil erosion, nutrient imbalance, pesticide ecotoxicity, and impact on biodiversity. A multidimensional assessment of sustainability of meat production is therefore needed to inform decision makers. There is great potential to improve grazing livestock systems productivity while reducing carbon footprint and other environmental impacts, and conserving biodiversity.

  17. Sustainability Evaluation.

    PubMed

    Stichnothe, Heinz

    2017-03-17

    The long-term substitution of fossil resources can only be achieved through a bio-based economy, with biorefineries and bio-based products playing a major role. However, it is important to assess the implications of the transition to a bio-based economy. Life cycle-based sustainability assessment is probably the most suitable approach to quantify impacts and to identify trade-offs at multiple levels. The extended utilisation of biomass can cause land use change and affect food security of the most vulnerable people throughout the world. Although this is mainly a political issue and governments should be responsible, the responsibility is shifted to companies producing biofuels and other bio-based products. Organic wastes and lignocellulosic biomass are considered to be the preferred feedstock for the production of bio-based products. However, it is unlikely that a bio-based economy can rely only on organic wastes and lignocellulosic biomass.It is crucial to identify potential problems related to socio-economic and environmental issues. Currently there are many approaches to the sustainability of bio-based products, both quantitative and qualitative. However, results of different calculation methods are not necessarily comparable and can cause confusion among decision-makers, stakeholders and the public.Hence, a harmonised, globally agreed approach would be the best solution to secure sustainable biomass/biofuels/bio-based chemicals production and trade, and to avoid indirect effects (e.g. indirect land use change). However, there is still a long way to go.Generally, the selection of suitable indicators that serve the purpose of sustainability assessment is very context-specific. Therefore, it is recommended to use a flexible and modular approach that can be adapted to various purposes. A conceptual model for the selection of sustainability indicators is provided that facilitates identifying suitable sustainability indicators based on relevance and significance in a

  18. In vitro conservation and sustained production of breadfruit ( Artocarpus altilis, Moraceae): modern technologies for a traditional tropical crop

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murch, Susan J.; Ragone, Diane; Shi, Wendy Lei; Alan, Ali R.; Saxena, Praveen K.

    2008-02-01

    Breadfruit ( Artocarpus altilis, Moraceae) is a traditionally cultivated, high-energy, high-yield crop, but widespread use of the plant for food is limited by poor quality and poor storage properties of the fruit. A unique field genebank of breadfruit species and cultivars exists at the National Tropical Botanical Garden in the Hawaiian Islands and is an important global resource for conservation and sustainable use of breadfruit. However, this plant collection could be damaged by a random natural disaster such as a hurricane. We have developed a highly efficient in vitro plant propagation system to maintain, conserve, mass propagate, and distribute elite varieties of this important tree species. Mature axillary shoot buds were collected from three different cultivars of breadfruit and proliferated using a cytokinin-supplemented medium. The multiple shoots were maintained as stock cultures and repeatedly used to develop whole plants after root differentiation on a basal or an auxin-containing medium. The plantlets were successfully grown under greenhouse conditions and were reused to initiate additional shoot cultures for sustained production of plants. Flow cytometry was used to determine the nuclear deoxyribonucleic acid content and the ploidy status of the in vitro grown population. The efficacy of the micropropagation protocols developed in this study represents a significant advancement in the conservation and sustained mass propagation of breadfruit germplasm in a controlled environment free from contamination.

  19. In vitro conservation and sustained production of breadfruit (Artocarpus altilis, Moraceae): modern technologies for a traditional tropical crop.

    PubMed

    Murch, Susan J; Ragone, Diane; Shi, Wendy Lei; Alan, Ali R; Saxena, Praveen K

    2008-02-01

    Breadfruit (Artocarpus altilis, Moraceae) is a traditionally cultivated, high-energy, high-yield crop, but widespread use of the plant for food is limited by poor quality and poor storage properties of the fruit. A unique field genebank of breadfruit species and cultivars exists at the National Tropical Botanical Garden in the Hawaiian Islands and is an important global resource for conservation and sustainable use of breadfruit. However, this plant collection could be damaged by a random natural disaster such as a hurricane. We have developed a highly efficient in vitro plant propagation system to maintain, conserve, mass propagate, and distribute elite varieties of this important tree species. Mature axillary shoot buds were collected from three different cultivars of breadfruit and proliferated using a cytokinin-supplemented medium. The multiple shoots were maintained as stock cultures and repeatedly used to develop whole plants after root differentiation on a basal or an auxin-containing medium. The plantlets were successfully grown under greenhouse conditions and were reused to initiate additional shoot cultures for sustained production of plants. Flow cytometry was used to determine the nuclear deoxyribonucleic acid content and the ploidy status of the in vitro grown population. The efficacy of the micropropagation protocols developed in this study represents a significant advancement in the conservation and sustained mass propagation of breadfruit germplasm in a controlled environment free from contamination.

  20. Cow-calf reproductive, genetic, and nutritional management to improve the sustainability of whole beef production systems.

    PubMed

    White, R R; Brady, M; Capper, J L; McNamara, J P; Johnson, K A

    2015-06-01

    Optimizing efficiency in the cow-calf sector is an important step toward improving beef sustainability. The objective of the study was to use a model to identify the relative roles of reproductive, genetic, and nutritional management in minimizing beef production systems' environmental impact in an economically viable, socially acceptable manner. An economic and environmental diet optimizer was used to identify ideal nutritional management of beef production systems varying in genetic and reproductive technology use. Eight management scenarios were compared to a least cost baseline: average U.S. production practices (CON), CON with variable nutritional management (NUT), twinning cattle (TWN), early weaning (EW), sire selection by EPD using either on-farm bulls (EPD-B) or AI (EPD-AI), decreasing the calving window (CW), or selecting bulls by EPD and reducing the calving window (EPD-CW). Diets to minimize land use, water use, and/or greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions were optimized under each scenario. Increases in diet cost attributable to reducing environmental impact were constrained to less than stakeholder willingness to pay for improved efficiency and reduced environmental impact. Baseline land use, water use, and GHG emissions were 188 m, 712 L, and 21.9 kg/kg HCW beef. The NUT scenario, which assessed opportunities to improve sustainability by altering nutritional management alone, resulted in a simultaneous 1.5% reduction in land use, water use, and GHG emissions. The CW scenario improved calf uniformity and simultaneously decreased land use, water use, and GHG emissions by 3.2%. Twinning resulted in a 9.2% reduction in the 3 environmental impact metrics. The EW scenario allowed for an 8.5% reduction in the 3 metrics. The EPD-AI scenario resulted in an 11.1% reduction, which was comparable to the 11.3% reduction achieved by EPD-B in the 3 metrics. Improving genetic selection by using AI or by purchasing on-farm bulls based on their superior EPD demonstrated

  1. Regulation of Vapor Pressure Deficit by Greenhouse Micro-Fog Systems Improved Growth and Productivity of Tomato via Enhancing Photosynthesis during Summer Season

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Dalong; Zhang, Zhongdian; Li, Jianming; Chang, Yibo; Du, Qingjie; Pan, Tonghua

    2015-01-01

    The role of a proposed micro-fog system in regulating greenhouse environments and enhancing tomato (Solanum lycopersicum L.) productivity during summer season was studied. Experiments were carried out in a multi-span glass greenhouse, which was divided into two identical compartments involving different environments: (1) without environment control and (2) with a micro-fog system operating when the air vapor pressure deficit (VPD) of greenhouse was higher than 0.5 KPa. The micro-fog system effectively alleviated heat stress and evaporative demand in the greenhouse during summer season. The physiologically favourable environment maintained by micro-fog treatment significantly enhanced elongation of leaf and stem, which contributed to a substantial elevation of final leaf area and shoot biomass. These improvements in physiological and morphological traits resulted in around 12.3% increase of marketable tomato yield per plant. Relative growth rate (RGR) of micro-fog treatment was also significantly higher than control plants, which was mainly determined by the substantial elevation in net assimilation rate (NAR), and to a lesser extent caused by leaf area ratio (LAR). Measurement of leaf gas exchange parameters also demonstrated that micro-fog treatment significantly enhanced leaf photosynthesis capacity. Taken together, manipulation of VPD in greenhouses by micro-fog systems effectively enhanced tomato growth and productivity via improving photosynthesis during summer season. PMID:26221726

  2. Regulation of Vapor Pressure Deficit by Greenhouse Micro-Fog Systems Improved Growth and Productivity of Tomato via Enhancing Photosynthesis during Summer Season.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Dalong; Zhang, Zhongdian; Li, Jianming; Chang, Yibo; Du, Qingjie; Pan, Tonghua

    2015-01-01

    The role of a proposed micro-fog system in regulating greenhouse environments and enhancing tomato (Solanum lycopersicum L.) productivity during summer season was studied. Experiments were carried out in a multi-span glass greenhouse, which was divided into two identical compartments involving different environments: (1) without environment control and (2) with a micro-fog system operating when the air vapor pressure deficit (VPD) of greenhouse was higher than 0.5 KPa. The micro-fog system effectively alleviated heat stress and evaporative demand in the greenhouse during summer season. The physiologically favourable environment maintained by micro-fog treatment significantly enhanced elongation of leaf and stem, which contributed to a substantial elevation of final leaf area and shoot biomass. These improvements in physiological and morphological traits resulted in around 12.3% increase of marketable tomato yield per plant. Relative growth rate (RGR) of micro-fog treatment was also significantly higher than control plants, which was mainly determined by the substantial elevation in net assimilation rate (NAR), and to a lesser extent caused by leaf area ratio (LAR). Measurement of leaf gas exchange parameters also demonstrated that micro-fog treatment significantly enhanced leaf photosynthesis capacity. Taken together, manipulation of VPD in greenhouses by micro-fog systems effectively enhanced tomato growth and productivity via improving photosynthesis during summer season.

  3. Link practical-oriented research and education: New training tools for a sustainable use of plant protection products.

    PubMed

    Sacchettini, G; Calliera, M

    2017-02-01

    In the Horizon 2020 work programme 2016-17 it is stated that in 2010, 71% of European farm managers were operating on the basis of practical experience only. Education levels greatly vary depending on country, farm managers' age and gender, or farm structures, and this can hamper innovation. Transition towards a more sustainable agriculture requires a renewal and strengthening of the technical skills of all the actors involved and - as a consequence - of the educational system. The EU Directive on the sustainable use of pesticides (EU, 128/2009/EC) requires European Member States to develop training activities targeting occupational exposure to pesticides. The objective of this study is to develop new training tools for operators, addressing the new legal requirements and taking into account what is already available. For this reason, the outcomes of different European and national research projects developed by the Opera Research Centre were used, involving stakeholders in the decision making process, but also considering the real behaviours and perceptions of the final users. As a result, an e-learning tool able to build personalized training programmes, by collecting and integrating existing training material on Plant Protection Products use was developed, together with an e-learning course, with the aim to help operators, advisors and distributors to get prepared for their national certificate test. This work highlights the opportunity to create long-term added value through enhanced collaboration between educators and researchers, and identifies a common set of priorities that has to be taken into account in order to nudge the changes required to achieve a more sustainable use of pesticide and, more in general, sustainable development.

  4. Recent progress in alkaline direct ethylene glycol fuel cells for sustainable energy production

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    An, L.; Chen, R.

    2016-10-01

    Alkaline direct ethylene glycol fuel cells are one of the most promising power sources for portable, mobile and stationary power applications, primarily because this type of fuel cell runs on a sustainable fuel and the key materials that constitute the fuel cell are relatively inexpensive. This review article summarizes and discusses the past investigations on the development of alkaline direct ethylene glycol fuel cells, including the physical and chemical processes through the fuel cell structure, the electrocatalytic oxidation and electrocatalysts of ethylene glycol, the singe-cell performance, and innovative system designs.

  5. Sustainability of soil fertility and the use of lignocellulosic crop harvest residues for the production of biofuels: a literature review.

    PubMed

    Reijnders, L

    2013-01-01

    Use of lignocellulosic crop harvest residues for liquid or gaseous biofuel production may impact soil quality, long-term soil fertility and the major determinants of the latter, stocks of soil organic carbon and nutrients. When soil organic carbon stocks of mineral cropland soils are to be maintained, there is scope for the removal of lignocellulosic harvest residues in several systems with much reduced tillage or no tillage. The scope for such removal might be increased when suitably treated residues from the conversion of harvest residues into biofuel are returned to cropland soils. For mineral cropland soils under conventional tillage, the scope for the production of liquid biofuels from harvest residues is likely to be less than in the case of no-till systems. When fertility of cropland soils is to be sustainable, nutrients present in suitably treated biofuel production residues have to be returned to these soils. Apparently, the actual return of carbon and nutrients present in residues of biofuel production from crop harvest residues to arable soils currently predominantly concerns the application of digestates of anaerobic digestion. The effects thereof on soil fertility and quality need further clarification. Further clarification about the effects on soil fertility and quality of chars and of co-products of lignocellulosic ethanol production is also needed.

  6. Designing a new cropping system for high productivity and sustainable water usage under climate change

    PubMed Central

    Meng, Qingfeng; Wang, Hongfei; Yan, Peng; Pan, Junxiao; Lu, Dianjun; Cui, Zhenling; Zhang, Fusuo; Chen, Xinping

    2017-01-01

    The food supply is being increasingly challenged by climate change and water scarcity. However, incremental changes in traditional cropping systems have achieved only limited success in meeting these multiple challenges. In this study, we applied a systematic approach, using model simulation and data from two groups of field studies conducted in the North China Plain, to develop a new cropping system that improves yield and uses water in a sustainable manner. Due to significant warming, we identified a double-maize (M-M; Zea mays L.) cropping system that replaced the traditional winter wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) –summer maize system. The M-M system improved yield by 14–31% compared with the conventionally managed wheat-maize system, and achieved similar yield compared with the incrementally adapted wheat-maize system with the optimized cultivars, planting dates, planting density and water management. More importantly, water usage was lower in the M-M system than in the wheat-maize system, and the rate of water usage was sustainable (net groundwater usage was ≤150 mm yr−1). Our study indicated that systematic assessment of adaptation and cropping system scale have great potential to address the multiple food supply challenges under changing climatic conditions. PMID:28155860

  7. Designing a new cropping system for high productivity and sustainable water usage under climate change.

    PubMed

    Meng, Qingfeng; Wang, Hongfei; Yan, Peng; Pan, Junxiao; Lu, Dianjun; Cui, Zhenling; Zhang, Fusuo; Chen, Xinping

    2017-02-03

    The food supply is being increasingly challenged by climate change and water scarcity. However, incremental changes in traditional cropping systems have achieved only limited success in meeting these multiple challenges. In this study, we applied a systematic approach, using model simulation and data from two groups of field studies conducted in the North China Plain, to develop a new cropping system that improves yield and uses water in a sustainable manner. Due to significant warming, we identified a double-maize (M-M; Zea mays L.) cropping system that replaced the traditional winter wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) -summer maize system. The M-M system improved yield by 14-31% compared with the conventionally managed wheat-maize system, and achieved similar yield compared with the incrementally adapted wheat-maize system with the optimized cultivars, planting dates, planting density and water management. More importantly, water usage was lower in the M-M system than in the wheat-maize system, and the rate of water usage was sustainable (net groundwater usage was ≤150 mm yr(-1)). Our study indicated that systematic assessment of adaptation and cropping system scale have great potential to address the multiple food supply challenges under changing climatic conditions.

  8. Designing a new cropping system for high productivity and sustainable water usage under climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meng, Qingfeng; Wang, Hongfei; Yan, Peng; Pan, Junxiao; Lu, Dianjun; Cui, Zhenling; Zhang, Fusuo; Chen, Xinping

    2017-02-01

    The food supply is being increasingly challenged by climate change and water scarcity. However, incremental changes in traditional cropping systems have achieved only limited success in meeting these multiple challenges. In this study, we applied a systematic approach, using model simulation and data from two groups of field studies conducted in the North China Plain, to develop a new cropping system that improves yield and uses water in a sustainable manner. Due to significant warming, we identified a double-maize (M-M; Zea mays L.) cropping system that replaced the traditional winter wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) –summer maize system. The M-M system improved yield by 14–31% compared with the conventionally managed wheat-maize system, and achieved similar yield compared with the incrementally adapted wheat-maize system with the optimized cultivars, planting dates, planting density and water management. More importantly, water usage was lower in the M-M system than in the wheat-maize system, and the rate of water usage was sustainable (net groundwater usage was ≤150 mm yr‑1). Our study indicated that systematic assessment of adaptation and cropping system scale have great potential to address the multiple food supply challenges under changing climatic conditions.

  9. Mediating effect of sustainable product development on relationship between quality management practices and organizational performance: Empirical study of Malaysian automotive industry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ahmad, Mohd Akhir; Asaad, Mohd Norhasni; Saad, Rohaizah; Iteng, Rosman; Rahim, Mohd Kamarul Irwan Abdul

    2016-08-01

    Global competition in the automotive industry has encouraged companies to implement quality management practices in all managerial aspects to ensure customer satisfaction in products and reduce costs. Therefore, guaranteeing only product quality is insufficient without considering product sustainability, which involves economic, environment, and social elements. Companies that meet both objectives gain advantages in the modern business environment. This study addresses the issues regarding product quality and sustainability in small and medium-sized enterprises in the Malaysian automotive industry. A research was carried out in 91 SMEs automotive suppliers in throughout Malaysia. The analyzed using SPSS ver.23 has been proposed in correlation study. Specifically, this study investigates the relationship between quality management practices and organizational performance as well as the mediating effect of sustainable product development on this relationship.

  10. New advances in the integrated management of food processing by-products in Europe: sustainable exploitation of fruit and cereal processing by-products with the production of new food products (NAMASTE EU).

    PubMed

    Fava, Fabio; Zanaroli, Giulio; Vannini, Lucia; Guerzoni, Elisabetta; Bordoni, Alessandra; Viaggi, Davide; Robertson, Jim; Waldron, Keith; Bald, Carlos; Esturo, Aintzane; Talens, Clara; Tueros, Itziar; Cebrián, Marta; Sebők, András; Kuti, Tunde; Broeze, Jan; Macias, Marta; Brendle, Hans-Georg

    2013-09-25

    By-products generated every year by the European fruit and cereal processing industry currently exceed several million tons. They are disposed of mainly through landfills and thus are largely unexploited sources of several valuable biobased compounds potentially profitable in the formulation of novel food products. The opportunity to design novel strategies to turn them into added value products and food ingredients via novel and sustainable processes is the main target of recently EC-funded FP7 project NAMASTE-EU. NAMASTE-EU aims at developing new laboratory-scale protocols and processes for the exploitation of citrus processing by-products and wheat bran surpluses via the production of ingredients useful for the formulation of new beverage and food products. Among the main results achieved in the first two years of the project, there are the development and assessment of procedures for the selection, stabilization and the physical/biological treatment of citrus and wheat processing by-products, the obtainment and recovery of some bioactive molecules and ingredients and the development of procedures for assessing the quality of the obtained ingredients and for their exploitation in the preparation of new food products.

  11. Biofertilizers function as key player in sustainable agriculture by improving soil fertility, plant tolerance and crop productivity

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Current soil management strategies are mainly dependent on inorganic chemical-based fertilizers, which caused a serious threat to human health and environment. The exploitation of beneficial microbes as a biofertilizer has become paramount importance in agriculture sector for their potential role in food safety and sustainable crop production. The eco-friendly approaches inspire a wide range of application of plant growth promoting rhizobacteria (PGPRs), endo- and ectomycorrhizal fungi, cyanobacteria and many other useful microscopic organisms led to improved nutrient uptake, plant growth and plant tolerance to abiotic and biotic stress. The present review highlighted biofertilizers mediated crops functional traits such as plant growth and productivity, nutrient profile, plant defense and protection with special emphasis to its function to trigger various growth- and defense-related genes in signaling network of cellular pathways to cause cellular response and thereby crop improvement. The knowledge gained from the literature appraised herein will help us to understand the physiological bases of biofertlizers towards sustainable agriculture in reducing problems associated with the use of chemicals fertilizers. PMID:24885352

  12. Biofertilizers function as key player in sustainable agriculture by improving soil fertility, plant tolerance and crop productivity.

    PubMed

    Bhardwaj, Deepak; Ansari, Mohammad Wahid; Sahoo, Ranjan Kumar; Tuteja, Narendra

    2014-05-08

    Current soil management strategies are mainly dependent on inorganic chemical-based fertilizers, which caused a serious threat to human health and environment. The exploitation of beneficial microbes as a biofertilizer has become paramount importance in agriculture sector for their potential role in food safety and sustainable crop production. The eco-friendly approaches inspire a wide range of application of plant growth promoting rhizobacteria (PGPRs), endo- and ectomycorrhizal fungi, cyanobacteria and many other useful microscopic organisms led to improved nutrient uptake, plant growth and plant tolerance to abiotic and biotic stress. The present review highlighted biofertilizers mediated crops functional traits such as plant growth and productivity, nutrient profile, plant defense and protection with special emphasis to its function to trigger various growth- and defense-related genes in signaling network of cellular pathways to cause cellular response and thereby crop improvement. The knowledge gained from the literature appraised herein will help us to understand the physiological bases of biofertlizers towards sustainable agriculture in reducing problems associated with the use of chemicals fertilizers.

  13. MicroCameras and Photometers (MCP) instrument on board TARANIS satellite: scientific objectives, design, characterization results and products

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Farges, T.; Hébert, P.; Le Mer-Dachard, F.; Cansot, E.; Offroy, M.; Ravel, K.; Gaillac, S.; Sato, M.; Blanc, E.

    2015-12-01

    TARANIS (Tool for the Analysis of Radiations from lightNings and Sprites) is a CNES micro satellite. Its main objective is to study impulsive transfers of energy between the Earth atmosphere and the space environment. It will be sun-synchronous at an altitude of 700 km. It will be launched from late 2017 for at least 2 years. Its payload is composed of several electromagnetic instruments in different wavelengths (from gamma-rays to radio waves including optical). TARANIS instruments are currently in calibration and qualification phase. The purpose of this poster is to present the MicroCameras and Photometers (MCP) scientific objectives and the sensor design, to show the performances of this instrument using the recent characterization, and at last to promote its products. The MicroCameras, developed by Sodern, are dedicated to the spatial description of TLEs and their parent lightning. They are able to differentiate sprite and lightning thanks to two narrow bands ([757-767 nm] and [772-782 nm]) that provide simultaneous pairs of images of an Event. The calibration results will be detailed. Simulation results of the differentiation method will be shown. Photometers, developed by Bertin Technologies, will provide temporal measurements and spectral characteristics of TLEs and lightning. It is a key instrument because of its on-board detection of the TLEs which can trigger the whole payload. Photometers use four spectral bands in the [170-260 nm], [332-342 nm], [757-767 nm] and [600-900 nm] and have the same field of view as cameras. The calibration results will also be detailed. The on-board TLE detection algorithm remote-controlled parameters will be tuned before launch using the electronic board and simulated or real events waveforms. Automatic classification tools are now tested to produce for the Scientific Mission Center some lists of elves, sprites or lightning without TLE following the recent work of Offroy et al. [2015] using ISUAL spectrophotometer data.

  14. Forest products industry of the future: Building a sustainable technology advantage for America`s forest products industry

    SciTech Connect

    1999-02-01

    The US forest, wood, and paper industry ranks as one of the most competitive forest products industries in the world. With annual shipments valued at nearly $267 billion, it employs over 1.3 million people and is currently among the top 10 manufacturing employers in 46 out of 50 states. Retaining this leadership position will depend largely on the industry`s success in developing and using advanced technologies. These technologies will enable manufacturing plants and forestry enterprises to maximize energy and materials efficiency and reduce waste and emissions, while producing high-quality, competitively priced wood and paper products. In a unique partnership, leaders in the forest products industry have teamed with the US Department of Energy`s Office of Industrial Technologies (OIT) to encourage cooperative research efforts that will help position the US forest products industry for continuing prosperity while advancing national energy efficiency and environmental goals.

  15. Production of micro- and nanosilica from soil inhabiting Folsomia candida fed with treated rice husk.

    PubMed

    Moreno-Murguía, Barbara; Soto-Mercado, Jorge R; Morales-Malacara, Juan B; Castaño, Victor M

    2015-08-01

    Rice husk was employed as a source for producing silica micro- and nanoparticles through its digestion by soil fauna. Although many physicochemical methods for producing nanostructures have been studied, the biological processes remain mostly unexplored. Alkaline hydrogen peroxide with continuous control of reaction pH allowed removal of lignin bonds while preserving most of the cell wall and the silica present in the rice husk. The accessibility of lignocellulose was achieved without removing appreciable amounts of lignin, so this agricultural byproduct can be employed as feeding material for microarthropods Folsomia candida (Collembola). When these microarthropods are placed on a substrate of treated rice husk, more than 85% of degraded material is obtained, as compared to the untreated rice husk substrate, while the silica particles obtained show a slight decrease in average size.

  16. Inside HOLMES experiment: 163Ho metallic target production for the micro-calorimeter absorber

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pizzigoni, G.; Alpert, B.; Balata, M.; Bennett, D.; Biasotti, M.; Boragno, C.; Brofferio, C.; De Gerone, M.; Dressler, R.; Faverazani, M.; Ferri, E.; Folwer, J.; Gatti, F.; Giachero, A.; Heinitz, S.; Hilton, G.; Köster, U.; Lusignoli, M.; Maino, M.; Mates, J.; Nisi, S.; Nizzolo, R.; Nucciotti, A.; Pessina, G.; Puiu, A.; Ragazzi, S.; Reintsema, C.; Ribeiro Gomes, M.; Shmidt, D.; Schumann, D.; Sisti, M.; Swetz, D.; Terranova, F.; Ullom, J.; Day, P. K.

    2016-07-01

    The main goal in the HOLMES experiment is the neutrino mass measurement using an array of 1000 micro-calorimeters with standard metallic absorber. A good isotope for such measurement is the 163Ho, those isotopes embedded in the metallic absorber will be 1011-1013. Since 163Ho is not available in nature, a dedicated process must be set up to produce the amount needed for this neutrino mass experiment. The process with the highest born-up cross-section is the neutron irradiation of Er2O3 enriched in 162Er: 162Er(n,γ)163Er →163Ho+νe, where the decay is an EC with half-life of about 75 min and the (n,γ) is about 20 barns for thermal neutron. After the neutron irradiation in the oxide powder there are several radioactive isotopes which are potentially disturbing because of the background that they cause below 5 keV. The chemical separation of holmium from the irradiation enriched Er2O3 powder is therefore mandatory and will be performed by means of ion exchange chromatography. On the end of those processes the oxide powder enriched in 162Er will have the 163Ho isotope number required. The holmium chemical state influences the end point of the EC spectrum, in order to avoid such effect it is necessary to embed in the absorber only the metallic isotope. Reduction and distillation technique allowed us to obtain a pure metallic holmium, starting from natural oxide holmium. This technique will be applied on the irradiated oxide powder to obtain the metallic 163Ho, ready to be embedded in the micro-calorimeter absorber.

  17. Evaluation of sweet sorghum as a feedstock by multiple harvests for sustainable bioenergy production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Sweet sorghum has become an important feedstock for bioethanol production. Total sugar yield and multiple harvests can directly affect ethanol production cost. Little is known about stem traits and multiple harvests that contribute to sugar yield in sweet sorghum. Stem traits were evaluated from 25 ...

  18. The National Biofuels Strategy - Importance of sustainable feedstock production systems in regional-based supply chains

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Region-based production systems are needed to produce the feedstocks that will be turned into the biofuels required to meet Federal mandated targets. Executive and Legislative actions have put into motion significant government responses designed to advance the development and production of domestic...

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

    EPA Science Inventory

    The movement to buy "environmentally-friendly" products was recently reinvigorated by the signing of the 2002 Farm Act that requires all federal agencies to give preference to products that are made (in whole or significant part) from bio-based material. This paper add...

  20. Integrated approaches for improving efficiency and sustainability of low-salinity marine aquaculture production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Aquaculture in the U.S. must expand to meet the needs of a growing demand for seafood when productivity of capture fisheries is declining. In the U.S., production of marine finfish is underrepresented in the overall aquaculture industry output. Several factors challenge the large-scale adoption of...

  1. Nitrogen balance as an indicator of the environmental impact: towards sustainable agricultural production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Economics is a principle driver impacting management decisions in agricultural production systems. While increasing concern has focused on preserving the natural resource base to ensure continued support for future production, little emphasis has been placed on examining how drivers alter management...

  2. Sustainability: The capacity of smokeless biomass pyrolysis for energy production, global carbon capture and sequestration

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Application of modern smokeless biomass pyrolysis for biochar and biofuel production is potentially a revolutionary approach for global carbon capture and sequestration at gigatons of carbon (GtC) scales. A conversion of about 7% of the annual terrestrial gross photosynthetic product (120 GtC y-1) i...

  3. Sustainable multipurpose biorefineries for third-generation biofuels and value-added co-products

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Modern biorefinery facilities conduct many types of processes, including those producing advanced biofuels, commodity chemicals, biodiesel, and value-added co-products such as sweeteners and bioinsecticides, with many more co-products, chemicals and biofuels on the horizon. Most of these processes ...

  4. Toward agricultural sustainability through integrated crop–livestock systems. II. Production responses

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Intensification of cropping and animal production as two separately specialized agricultural systems has led to unacceptable deterioration of the environment due to (i) excessive concentration of nutrients and pathogens in livestock production systems and (ii) loss of natural biodiversity and excess...

  5. Soil memory as a potential mechanism for encouraging sustainable plant health and productivity.

    PubMed

    Lapsansky, Erin R; Milroy, Arwen M; Andales, Marie J; Vivanco, Jorge M

    2016-04-01

    The unspecified components of plant-microbe and plant-microbiome associations in the rhizosphere are complex, but recent research is simplifying our understanding of these relationships. We propose that the strong association between hosts, symbionts, and pathogens could be simplified by the concept of soil memory, which explains how a plant could promote their fecundity and protect their offspring through tightly associated relationships with the soil. Although there are many questions surrounding the mechanisms of this phenomenon, recent research has exposed evidence of its existence. Along with evidence from observations and mechanisms related to soil memory, we report means to utilize our understanding as sustainable protection for agricultural crops and propose future research questions.

  6. Transport phenomena in alkaline direct ethanol fuel cells for sustainable energy production

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    An, L.; Zhao, T. S.

    2017-02-01

    Alkaline direct ethanol fuel cells (DEFC), which convert the chemical energy stored in ethanol directly into electricity, are one of the most promising energy-conversion devices for portable, mobile and stationary power applications, primarily because this type of fuel cell runs on a carbon-neutral, sustainable fuel and the electrocatalytic and membrane materials that constitute the cell are relatively inexpensive. As a result, the alkaline DEFC technology has undergone a rapid progress over the last decade. This article provides a comprehensive review of transport phenomena of various species in this fuel cell system. The past investigations into how the design and structural parameters of membrane electrode assemblies and the operating parameters affect the fuel cell performance are discussed. In addition, future perspectives and challenges with regard to transport phenomena in this fuel cell system are also highlighted.

  7. Fertilisers production from ashes after sewage sludge combustion - A strategy towards sustainable development.

    PubMed

    Gorazda, Katarzyna; Tarko, Barbara; Wzorek, Zbigniew; Kominko, Halyna; Nowak, Anna K; Kulczycka, Joanna; Henclik, Anna; Smol, Marzena

    2017-04-01

    Sustainable development and circular economy rules force the global fertilizer industry to develop new phosphorous recovery methods from alternative sources. In this paper a phosphorus recovery technology from Polish industrial Sewage Sludge Ashes was investigated (PolFerAsh - Polish Fertilizers form Ash). A wet method with the use of mineral acid and neutralization was proposed. Detailed characteristic of SSA from largest mono-combustion plans were given and compared to raw materials used on the market. The technological factors associated with such materials were discussed. The composition of the extracts was compared to typical industrial phosphoric acid and standard values characterizing suspension fertilizers. The most favorable conditions for selective precipitation of phosphorus compounds were revealed. The fertilizers obtained also meet EU regulations in the case of the newly discussed Cd content. The process was scaled up and a flow mass diagram was defined.

  8. Sustaining the Productivity and Function of Intensively Managed Forests - Final Report

    SciTech Connect

    Burger, James A.; Xu, Yi-Jun

    2001-03-23

    The main goal of this study is to ensure sustainable management of wetland forests in the southeastern United States. The study is projected to measure soil, hydrology, and forest responses to several management scenarios across a complete forest cycle. From August 1997 to August 2000 the study has received funding as one of the Agenda 2020 projects, from the U.S. Department of Energy (Cooperative Agreement Number DE-FC07-97ID13551), the National Council of the Paper Industry for Air and Stream Improvement, and Westvac Corporation. Quarterly progress reports were submitted regularly to the Department and all project participants. This final report summarizes the project results and progress achieved during this 3-year period. Over the past three years all research objectives planned for this project were completed.

  9. Production of hydrogen, ethanol and volatile fatty acids through co-fermentation of macro- and micro-algae.

    PubMed

    Xia, Ao; Jacob, Amita; Tabassum, Muhammad Rizwan; Herrmann, Christiane; Murphy, Jerry D

    2016-04-01

    Algae may be fermented to produce hydrogen. However micro-algae (such as Arthrospira platensis) are rich in proteins and have a low carbon/nitrogen (C/N) ratio, which is not ideal for hydrogen fermentation. Co-fermentation with macro-algae (such as Laminaria digitata), which are rich in carbohydrates with a high (C/N) ratio, improves the performance of hydrogen production. Algal biomass, pre-treated with 2.5% dilute H2SO4 at 135°C for 15min, effected a total yield of carbohydrate monomers (CMs) of 0.268g/g volatile solids (VS). The CMs were dominating by glucose and mannitol and most (ca. 95%) were consumed by anaerobic fermentative micro-organisms during subsequent fermentation. An optimal specific hydrogen yield (SHY) of 85.0mL/g VS was obtained at an algal C/N ratio of 26.2 and an algal concentration of 20g VS/L. The overall energy conversion efficiency increased from 31.3% to 54.5% with decreasing algal concentration from 40 to 5 VS g/L.

  10. Comparing Kaolin and Pinolene to Improve Sustainable Grapevine Production during Drought

    PubMed Central

    Belfiore, Nicola; Gaiotti, Federica; Lovat, Lorenzo; Sansone, Luigi; Poni, Stefano; Tomasi, Diego

    2016-01-01

    Viticulture is widely practiced in dry regions, where the grapevine is greatly exposed to water stress. Optimizing plant water use efficiency (WUE) without affecting crop yield, grape and wine quality is crucial to limiting use of water for irrigation and to significantly improving viticulture sustainability. This study examines the use in vineyards of particle film technology (engineered kaolin) and compares it to a film-forming antitranspirant (pinolene), traditionally used to limit leaf water loss, and to an untreated control. The trial was carried out under field conditions over three growing seasons, during which moderate to very severe plant water stress (down to -1.9 MPa) was measured through stem water potential. Leaf stomatal conductance (gs) and photosynthesis rate (An) were measured during the seasons and used to compute intrinsic WUE (WUEi, defined as An/gs ratio). Leaf temperature was also recorded and compared between treatments. Bunch quantity, bunch and berry weight, sugar accumulation, anthocyanin and flavonoid contents were measured. Finally, microvinifications were performed and resultant wines subjected to sensory evaluation.Results showed that the use of kaolin increased grapevine intrinsic WUE (+18% on average as compared to unsprayed vines) without affecting berry and bunch weight and quantity, or sugar level. Anthocyanin content increased (+35%) in kaolin treatment, and the wine was judged more attractive (p-value <0.05) and slightly more appreciated (p-value < 0.1) than control. Pinolene did not increase WUEi, limiting An more than gs; grapes with this treatment contained lower sugar and anthocyanin content than control, and the obtained wine was the least appreciated. This study demonstrates that particle film technology can improve vine WUEi and wine quality at the same time, while traditional antitranspirants were not as effective for these purposes. This positive effect can be used in interaction with other already-demonstrated uses of

  11. Can microbes compete with cows for sustainable protein production - A feasibility study on high quality protein

    PubMed Central

    Vestergaard, Mike; Chan, Siu Hung Joshua; Jensen, Peter Ruhdal

    2016-01-01

    An increasing population and their increased demand for high-protein diets will require dramatic changes in the food industry, as limited resources and environmental issues will make animal derived foods and proteins, gradually more unsustainable to produce. To explore alternatives to animal derived proteins, an economic model was built around the genome-scale metabolic network of E. coli to study the feasibility of recombinant protein production as a food source. Using a novel model, we predicted which microbial production strategies are optimal for economic return, by capturing the tradeoff between the market prices of substrates, product output and the efficiency of microbial production. A case study with the food protein, Bovine Alpha Lactalbumin was made to evaluate the upstream economic feasibilities. Simulations with different substrate profiles at maximum productivity were used to explore the feasibility of recombinant Bovine Alpha Lactalbumin production coupled with market prices of utilized materials. We found that recombinant protein production could be a feasible food source and an alternative to traditional sources. PMID:27824148

  12. Can microbes compete with cows for sustainable protein production - A feasibility study on high quality protein

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vestergaard, Mike; Chan, Siu Hung Joshua; Jensen, Peter Ruhdal

    2016-11-01

    An increasing population and their increased demand for high-protein diets will require dramatic changes in the food industry, as limited resources and environmental issues will make animal derived foods and proteins, gradually more unsustainable to produce. To explore alternatives to animal derived proteins, an economic model was built around the genome-scale metabolic network of E. coli to study the feasibility of recombinant protein production as a food source. Using a novel model, we predicted which microbial production strategies are optimal for economic return, by capturing the tradeoff between the market prices of substrates, product output and the efficiency of microbial production. A case study with the food protein, Bovine Alpha Lactalbumin was made to evaluate the upstream economic feasibilities. Simulations with different substrate profiles at maximum productivity were used to explore the feasibility of recombinant Bovine Alpha Lactalbumin production coupled with market prices of utilized materials. We found that recombinant protein production could be a feasible food source and an alternative to traditional sources.

  13. Is Sustainability Sustainable?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bonevac, Daniel

    2010-01-01

    The most important concept in current environmental thinking is "sustainability". Environmental policies, economic policies, development, resource use--all of these things, according to the consensus, ought to be sustainable. But what is sustainability? What is its ethical foundation? There is little consensus about how these questions…

  14. A sustainable use of Ricotta Cheese Whey for microbial biodiesel production.

    PubMed

    Carota, Eleonora; Crognale, Silvia; D'Annibale, Alessandro; Gallo, Anna Maria; Stazi, Silvia Rita; Petruccioli, Maurizio

    2017-04-15

    The increasing demand of plant oils for biodiesel production has highlighted the need for alternative strategies based either on non-food crops or agro-industrial wastes that do not compete with food and feed production. In this context, the combined use of wastewater and oleaginous microorganisms could be a valuable production option. Ricotta cheese whey (RCW), one of the major byproducts of the dairy industry, is produced in very high and steadily increasing amounts and, due to its high organic load, its disposal is cost-prohibitive. In the present study, in order to assess the adequacy of RCW as a growth medium for lipid production, 18 strains of oleaginous yeasts were investigated in shaken flask for their growth and lipid-producing capabilities on this substrate. Among them, Cryptococcus curvatus NRRL Y-1511 and Cryptococcus laurentii UCD 68-201 adequately grew therein producing substantial amounts of lipids (6.8 and 5.1gL(-1), respectively). A high similarity between the percent fatty acid methyl esters (FAME) composition of lipids from the former and the latter strain was found with a predominance of oleic acid (52.8 vs. 48.7%) and of total saturated fatty acids (37.9 vs. 40.8%). The subsequent scale transfer of the C. laurentii UCD 68-201 lipid production process on RCW to a 3-L STR led to significantly improved biomass and total lipid productions (14.4 and 9.9gL(-1), respectively) with the biodiesel yield amounting to 32.6%. Although the C. laurentii FAME profile was modified upon process transfer, it resembled that of the Jatropha oil, a well established feedstock for biodiesel production. In conclusion, C. laurentii UCD 68-201, for which there is very limited amount of available information, turned out to be a very promising candidate for biodiesel production and wide margins of process improvement might be envisaged.

  15. Direct impact of the sustained decline in the photosystem II efficiency upon plant productivity at different developmental stages.

    PubMed

    Tian, Yonglan; Ungerer, Petra; Zhang, Huayong; Ruban, Alexander V

    2017-02-11

    The impact of chronic photoinhibition of photosystem II (PSII) on the productivity of plants remains unknown. The present study investigated the influences of persistent decline in the PSII yield on morphology and productivity of Arabidopsis plants that were exposed to lincomycin at two different developmental stages (seedling and rosette stage). The results indicated that, although retarded, the lincomycin treated plants were able to accomplish the entire growth period with only 50% of the maximum quantum yield of primary photochemistry (Fv/Fm) of the control plants. The decline in quantum yield limited the electron transport rate (ETR). The impact of lincomycin on NPQ was not significant in seedlings, but was pronounced in mature plants. The treated plants produced an above ground biomass of 50% compared to control plants. Moreover, a linear relationship was found between the above ground biomass and total rosette leaf area, and the slope was decreased due to photoinhibition. The starch accumulation was highly inhibited by lincomycin treatment. Lincomycin induced a significant decrease in seed yield with plants treated from the rosette state showing higher yield than those treated from the seedling stage. Our data suggest that the sustained decline of PSII efficiency decreases plant productivity by constraining the ETR, leaf development and starch production.

  16. Characterization of U(VI)-phases in corroded cement products by micro(μ)-spectroscopic methods

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rothe, J.; Brendebach, B.; Bube, C.; Dardenne, K.; Denecke, M. A.; Kienzler, B.; Metz, V.; Prüßmann, T.; Rickers-Appel, K.; Schild, D.; Soballa, E.; Vitova, T.

    2013-04-01

    Cementation is an industrial scale conditioning method applied to fix and solidify liquid low and intermediate level radioactive wastes (LLW/ILW) prior to underground disposal in geological formations.To assist prognosis of the long-term safety of cemented waste, alteration of uranium doped cement productswas studied in chloride-rich solutions relevant for final LLW/ILW disposal in rock salt. After long-time exposure of the full-scale LLW/ILW simulates to concentrated NaCl and MgCl2 brines, solid samples were retrieved for chemical and mineralogical analysis with an emphasis on uranium speciation in the corroded cement matrix.Bulk and recent spatially resolved micro(μ) U L3-XAFS measurements point to the occurrence of a diuranate type U(VI) phase forming throughout the corroded cement monoliths. U-enriched hot spots with dimensions up to several tens of μm turn out to be generally X-ray amorphous.

  17. Indomethacin Treatment of Mice with Premalignant Oral Lesions Sustains Cytokine Production and Slows Progression to Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, Sara D.; Young, M. Rita I.

    2016-01-01

    Current treatment options for head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) patients are often ineffective due to tumor-localized and systemic immunosuppression. Using the 4-NQO mouse model of oral carcinogenesis, this study showed that premalignant oral lesion cells produce higher levels of the immune modulator, PGE2, compared to HNSCC cells. Inhibiting prostaglandin production of premalignant lesion cells with the pan-cyclooxygenase inhibitor indomethacin stimulated their induction of spleen cell cytokine production. In contrast, inhibiting HNSCC prostaglandin production did not stimulate their induction of spleen cell cytokine production. Treatment of mice bearing premalignant oral lesions with indomethacin slowed progression of premalignant oral lesions to HNSCC. Flow cytometric analysis of T cells in the regional lymph nodes of lesion-bearing mice receiving indomethacin treatment showed an increase in lymph node cellularity and in the absolute number of CD8+ T cells expressing IFN-γ compared to levels in lesion-bearing mice receiving diluent control treatment. The cytokine-stimulatory effect of indomethacin treatment was not localized to regional lymph nodes but was also seen in the spleen of mice with premalignant oral lesions. Together, these data suggest that inhibiting prostaglandin production at the premalignant lesion stage boosts immune capability and improves clinical outcomes. PMID:27713748

  18. Capacity Takes Flight: A Vehicle-Centered Approach to Sustainable Airspace Productivity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wing, David J.; Ballin, Mark G.; Barmore, Bryan E.

    2005-01-01

    The National Airspace System (NAS) faces a significant challenge. With the nation's economy growing stronger, and passengers returning to the skies, the demand for air transportation is steadily rising once again. The capacity of the current airspace system will struggle to keep pace in the near term, and with demand expected to double within a decade, air traffic delays are likely to escalate, soon becoming intolerable for aviation businesses. Recognition in the aviation community is forming that retaining a growing, thriving air transportation system for the benefit of the traveling public and the world economy will likely require implementing transformational ideas in air traffic management. This video illustrates an approach NASA is pursuing to this end: the notion that a major untapped resource available to air traffic management can be leveraged, the aircraft itself. The thesis presented is that implementation of vehicle-centric air traffic management capabilities into the NAS could have a profound, positive, and sustainable impact on system capacity, individual aircraft operators, and the economy through its dependency on air.

  19. Sustainable biobutanol production from pineapple waste by using Clostridium acetobutylicum B 527: Drying kinetics study.

    PubMed

    Khedkar, Manisha A; Nimbalkar, Pranhita R; Gaikwad, Shashank G; Chavan, Prakash V; Bankar, Sandip B

    2017-02-01

    Present investigation explores the use of pineapple peel, a food industry waste, for acetone-butanol-ethanol (ABE) production using Clostridium acetobutylicum B 527. Proximate analysis of pineapple peel shows that it contains 35% cellulose, 19% hemicellulose, and 16% lignin on dry basis. Drying experiments on pineapple peel waste were carried out in the temperature range of 60-120°C and experimental drying data was modeled using moisture diffusion control model to study its effect on ABE production. The production of ABE was further accomplished via acid hydrolysis, detoxification, and fermentation process. Maximum total sugar release obtained by using acid hydrolysis was 97g/L with 95-97% and 10-50% removal of phenolics and acetic acid, respectively during detoxification process. The maximum ABE titer obtained was 5.23g/L with 55.6% substrate consumption when samples dried at 120°C were used as a substrate (after detoxification).

  20. An economic, sustainability, and energetic model of biodiesel production from microalgae.

    PubMed

    Delrue, F; Setier, P-A; Sahut, C; Cournac, L; Roubaud, A; Peltier, G; Froment, A-K

    2012-05-01

    A new process evaluation methodology of microalgae biodiesel has been developed. Based on four evaluation criteria, i.e. the net energy ratio (NER), biodiesel production costs, greenhouse gases (GHG) emission rate and water footprint, the model compares various technologies for each step of the process, from cultivation to oil upgrading. An innovative pathway (hybrid raceway/PBR cultivation system, belt filter press for dewatering, wet lipid extraction, oil hydrotreating and anaerobic digestion of residues) shows good results in comparison to a reference pathway (doubled NER, lower GHG emission rate and water footprint). The production costs are still unfavourable (between 1.94 and 3.35 €/L of biodiesel). The most influential parameters have been targeted through a global sensitivity analysis and classified: (i) lipid productivity, (ii) the cultivation step, and (iii) the downstream processes. The use of low-carbon energy sources is required to achieve significant reductions of the biodiesel GHG emission rate compared to petroleum diesel.

  1. Numerical assessment of residual formability in sheet metal products: towards design for sustainability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Falsafi, Javad; Demirci, Emrah; Silberschmidt, Vadim. V.

    2016-08-01

    A new computational scheme is presented to addresses cold recyclability of sheet- metal products. Cold recycling or re-manufacturing is an emerging area studied mostly empirically; in its current form, it lacks theoretical foundation especially in the area of sheet metals. In this study, a re-formability index was introduced based on post-manufacture residual formability in sheet metal products. This index accounts for possible levels of deformation along different strain paths based on Polar Effective Plastic Strain (PEPS) technique. PEPS is strain-path independent, hence provides a foundation for residual formability analysis. A user- friendly code was developed to implement this assessment in conjunction with advanced finite- element (FE) analysis. The significance of this approach is the advancement towards recycling of sheet metal products without melting them.

  2. Biohydrogen and biomethane production sustained by untreated matrices and alternative application of compost waste.

    PubMed

    Arizzi, Mariaconcetta; Morra, Simone; Pugliese, Massimo; Gullino, Maria Lodovica; Gilardi, Gianfranco; Valetti, Francesca

    2016-10-01

    Biohydrogen and biomethane production offers many advantages for environmental protection over the fossil fuels or the existing physical-chemical methods for hydrogen and methane synthesis. The aim of this study is focused on the exploitation of several samples from the composting process: (1) a mixture of waste vegetable materials ("Mix"); (2) an unmatured compost sample (ACV15); and (3) three types of green compost with different properties and soil improver quality (ACV1, ACV2 and ACV3). These samples were tested for biohydrogen and biomethane production, thus obtaining second generation biofuels and resulting in a novel possibility to manage renewable waste biomasses. The ability of these substrates as original feed during dark fermentation was assayed anaerobically in batch, in glass bottles, in order to determine the optimal operating conditions for hydrogen and/or methane production using "Mix" or ACV1, ACV2 or ACV3 green compost and a limited amount of water. Hydrogen could be produced with a fast kinetic in the range 0.02-2.45mLH2g(-1)VS, while methane was produced with a slower kinetic in the range 0.5-8mLCH4g(-1)VS. It was observed that the composition of each sample influenced significantly the gas production. It was also observed that the addition of different water amounts play a crucial role in the development of hydrogen or methane. This parameter can be used to push towards the alternative production of one or another gas. Hydrogen and methane production was detected spontaneously from these matrices, without additional sources of nutrients or any pre-treatment, suggesting that they can be used as an additional inoculum or feed into single or two-stage plants. This might allow the use of compost with low quality as soil improver for alternative and further applications.

  3. Ultraclean Fuels Production and Utilization for the Twenty-First Century: Advances toward Sustainable Transportation Fuels

    SciTech Connect

    Fox, Elise B.; Liu, Zhong-Wen; Liu, Zhao-Tie

    2013-11-21

    Ultraclean fuels production has become increasingly important as a method to help decrease emissions and allow the introduction of alternative feed stocks for transportation fuels. Established methods, such as Fischer-Tropsch, have seen a resurgence of interest as natural gas prices drop and existing petroleum resources require more intensive clean-up and purification to meet stringent environmental standards. This review covers some of the advances in deep desulfurization, synthesis gas conversion into fuels and feed stocks that were presented at the 245th American Chemical Society Spring Annual Meeting in New Orleans, LA in the Division of Energy and Fuels symposium on "Ultraclean Fuels Production and Utilization".

  4. Additive effects of microRNAs and transcription factors on CCL2 production in human white adipose tissue.

    PubMed

    Kulyté, Agné; Belarbi, Yasmina; Lorente-Cebrián, Silvia; Bambace, Clara; Arner, Erik; Daub, Carsten O; Hedén, Per; Rydén, Mikael; Mejhert, Niklas; Arner, Peter

    2014-04-01

    Adipose tissue inflammation is present in insulin-resistant conditions. We recently proposed a network of microRNAs (miRNAs) and transcription factors (TFs) regulating the production of the proinflammatory chemokine (C-C motif) ligand-2 (CCL2) in adipose tissue. We presently extended and further validated this network and investigated if the circuits controlling CCL2 can interact in human adipocytes and macrophages. The updated subnetwork predicted that miR-126/-193b/-92a control CCL2 production by several TFs, including v-ets erythroblastosis virus E26 oncogene homolog 1 (avian) (ETS1), MYC-associated factor X (MAX), and specificity protein 12 (SP1). This was confirmed in human adipocytes by the observation that gene silencing of ETS1, MAX, or SP1 attenuated CCL2 production. Combined gene silencing of ETS1 and MAX resulted in an additive reduction in CCL2 production. Moreover, overexpression of miR-126/-193b/-92a in different pairwise combinations reduced CCL2 secretion more efficiently than either miRNA alone. However, although effects on CCL2 secretion by co-overexpression of miR-92a/-193b and miR-92a/-126 were additive in adipocytes, the combination of miR-126/-193b was primarily additive in macrophages. Signals for miR-92a and -193b converged on the nuclear factor-κB pathway. In conclusion, TF and miRNA-mediated regulation of CCL2 production is additive and partly relayed by cell-specific networks in human adipose tissue that may be important for the development of insulin resistance/type 2 diabetes.

  5. Water productivity, yield, and berry composition in sustained versus regulated deficit irrigation of Merlot grapevines

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The wine grape cultivar Merlot (Vitis vinifera L.) was irrigated at incremental fractions of estimated crop evapotranspiration or a regulated deficit (RDI) regime to identify which practice best optimized water productivity and berry composition without compromising yield. Three severities of susta...

  6. Fast-growing species and sustainability (productivity and site dynamics of three fast-growing species)

    SciTech Connect

    Reddy, A.N.; Sugur, G.V.

    1992-12-31

    Growth of three fast-growing species, raised in a high rainfall zone (2000-2500 mm per annum) has been compared, and the associated site dynamics studies in the Western Ghat area of Karnataka State. Two fast-growing exotics, Acacia auriculiformis and Castuarina equisitifolia, were planted on degraded, open sites at high planting densities (5000 plants ha{sup {minus}1}), and one native fast-growing species. Dendrocalamus strictus, was planted on a good site under seasonal irrigation and wider spacing (500 plants ha{sup {minus}1}). These were studies at the age of 5 years for their comparative productivity, quantity of litter fall and changes in nutrient and microbial status. Among these species, A. auriculiformis recorded the highest total productivity closely followed by D. strictus. However, the MAI after 5 years indicated a higher productivity for D. strictus, when culm production attained harvestable size. C. equisitifolia was a close third. It was also found that D. strictus produced higher biomass at lower planting densities, under better sites and management. The litter fall and changes in nutrient status indicated the highest efficiency in A. auriculiformis, followed by C. equisitifolia. It was concluded that the higher planting density was the major contributing factor; the values were comparatively low for D. strictus mainly owing to a lower stocking density of plants.

  7. Sustainability through increased utilization of Alaska's fish and agricultural by-products

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Alaska salmon by-products, (such as heads, viscera, and frames), were estimated at 110,000 metric tons of waste in 2005, creating major disposal issues for fish processors. Discarded salmon tissues are currently receiving attention as an underutilized source of protein and omega-3 fatty acids. Howev...

  8. Sustainability and Productivity Indicators with Sensitivity Truth Table for Unskilled Thai Labour Reverse Migration

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Panaingvait, Poj; Chakpitak, Nopasit; Yodmongkol, Pitipong; Sureephong, Paradorn; Nimmonrat, Acrapol

    2014-01-01

    Thailand, a developing country, had labours migrating from the agriculture into the industrial due to higher pay in the past. However the economic force has made the government policy to focus on creativity and developing technology towards automatic production. Unskilled Thai labours are facing a big challenge after retirement, which is called…

  9. Increased Light-Use Efficiency Sustains Net Primary Productivity of Shaded Coffee Plants In Agroforestry System.

    PubMed

    Charbonnier, Fabien; Roupsard, Olivier; le Maire, Guerric; Guillemot, Joannès; Casanoves, Fernando; Lacointe, André; Vaast, Philippe; Allinne, Clémentine; Audebert, Louise; Cambou, Aurélie; Clément-Vidal, Anne; Defrenet, Elsa; Duursma, Remko A; Jarri, Laura; Jourdan, Christophe; Khac, Emmanuelle; Leandro, Patricia; Medlyn, Belinda E; Saint-André, Laurent; Thaler, Philippe; Van den Meersche, Karel; Barquero Aguilar, Alejandra; Lehner, Peter; Dreyer, Erwin

    2017-04-06

    In agroforestry systems, shade trees strongly affect the physiology of the undergrown crop. However, a major paradigm is that the reduction in absorbed photosynthetically active radiation is, to a certain extent, compensated by an increase in light-use efficiency, thereby reducing the difference in net primary productivity between shaded and non-shaded plants. Due to the large spatial heterogeneity in agroforestry systems and the lack of appropriate tools, the combined effects of such variables have seldom been analysed, even though they may help understand physiological processes underlying yield dynamics. In this study, we monitored net primary productivity, during two years, on scales ranging from individual coffee plants to the entire plot. Absorbed radiation was mapped with a 3D-model (MAESPA). Light-use efficiency and net assimilation rate were derived for each coffee plant individually. We found that although irradiance was reduced by 60% below crowns of shade trees, coffee light-use efficiency increased by 50%, leaving net primary productivity fairly stable across all shade levels. Variability of aboveground net primary productivity of coffee plants was caused primarily by the age of the plants and by intraspecific competition among them (drivers usually overlooked in the agroforestry literature) rather than by the presence of shade trees.

  10. Agroecology and the Sustainable Production of Food and Fiber: Emergy Evaluation of Agriculture in the Montado

    EPA Science Inventory

    The silvopastoral, agricultural system of the montado in Southern Portugal is an example of the self-organization of an agroecological system adapted to the climate and soil conditions of the Mediterranean basin. This system with its consistent production of food, fiber, and ecos...

  11. Fluid fertilizer's role in sustaining soils used for bio-energy feedstock production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The use of corn (Zea mays L.) as a bio-energy feedstock has attracted the attention of many producers. Recently, the focus has shifted from grain-based to cellulose-based ethanol production. In addition to biological conversion of corn stover to ethanol, thermal conversion (pyrolysis) of stover is b...

  12. Green Net Regional Product for the San Luis Basin, Colorado: An Economic Measure of Regional Sustainability

    EPA Science Inventory

    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). GNRP is equal to aggregate consumption minus the depreciation of man-made and natural capital. We measure the move...

  13. Environmentally sustainable production of food, feed and fuel from natural resources in the tropics.

    PubMed

    Preston, T Reg

    2009-08-01

    Responding to the challenges posed by global warming, peak oil and biofuels will require a paradigm shift in the practice of agriculture and in the role of live stock within the farming system. Farming systems should aim at maximizing plant biomass production from locally available diversified resources, processing of the biomass on farm to provide food, feed and energy and recycling of all waste materials. The approach that is the subject of this paper is that the generation of electricity can be a by-product of food/feed production. The concept is the fractionation of biomass into inedible cell wall material that can be converted to an inflammable gas by gasification, the gas in turn being the source of fuel for internal combustion engines driving electrical generators. The cell contents and related structures such as tree leaves are used as human food or animal feed. As well as providing food and feed the model is highly appropriate for decentralized small scale production of electricity in rural areas. It also offers opportunities for sequestration of carbon in the form of biochar the solid residue remaining after gasification of the biomass.

  14. Bacterial symbionts: prospects for the sustainable production of invertebrate-derived pharmaceuticals.

    PubMed

    Piel, J

    2006-01-01

    Invertebrate animals, such as sponges, tunicates and bryozoans, are among the most important sources of biomedically relevant natural products. However, as these animals generally contain only low quantities of the compounds, further pharmacological development is in most cases difficult. There is increasing evidence that many metabolites, in particular polyketides and nonribosomally synthesized peptides, are not produced by the animals themselves but by associated bacterial symbionts. This symbiont hypothesis currently attracts considerable interest, since it implicates that animal-independent production systems based on bacterial fermentation processes could be created. This review gives an overview about recent developments in the research on natural product symbiosis. Different techniques will be discussed that have been employed to pinpoint the actual producer. Since bacterial symbionts are highly fastidious and have been generally resistant to cultivation attempts, emphasis will be laid on culture-independent strategies, such as cell separation approaches and the cloning of biosynthetic genes. These strategies have provided insights into possible sources of several natural products, e.g. the bryostatins, pederin, the onnamides, swinholide A and theopalauamide. Finally, potential techniques for the generation of renewable supplies of symbiont-derived drug candidates will be discussed. Cultivation approaches and the heterologous expression of cloned biosynthesis genes from uncultured symbionts could in future provide access to several important marine drug candidates, including bryostatin 1, halichondrin or ET-743.

  15. Environmentally sustainable production of food, feed and fuel from natural resources in the tropics.

    PubMed

    Preston, T Reg

    2009-10-01

    Responding to the challenges posed by global warming, peak oil and biofuels will require a paradigm shift in the practice of agriculture and in the role of live stock within the farming system. Farming systems should aim at maximizing plant biomass production from locally available diversified resources, processing of the biomass on farm to provide food, feed and energy and recycling of all waste materials. The approach that is the subject of this paper is that the generation of electricity can be a by-product of food/feed production. The concept is the fractionation of biomass into inedible cell wall material that can be converted to an inflammable gas by gasification, the gas in turn being the source of fuel for internal combustion engines driving electrical generators. The cell contents and related structures such as tree leaves are used as human food or animal feed. As well as providing food and feed the model is highly appropriate for decentralized small scale production of electricity in rural areas. It also offers opportunities for sequestration of carbon in the form of biochar the solid residue remaining after gasification of the biomass.

  16. Ameliorating soil acidity of tropical Oxisols by liming for sustainable crop production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The greatest potential for expanding the world’s agricultural frontier lies in the savanna regions of the tropics, which are dominated by Oxisols. Soil acidity and low native fertility, however, are major constraints for crop production on tropical Oxisols. Soil acidification is an ongoing natural p...

  17. Sustainability of US organic beef and dairy production systems: soil, plant and cattle interactions

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    In 2010, the National Organic Program implemented a rule stating that pasture must be a significant source of feed in organic ruminant systems. This article will focus on how this rule has impacted the management, economics and nutritional value of products derived from organic ruminant systems and ...

  18. Effects of Mountain Ultra-Marathon Running on ROS Production and Oxidative Damage by Micro-Invasive Analytic Techniques

    PubMed Central

    Mrakic-Sposta, Simona; Gussoni, Maristella; Moretti, Sarah; Pratali, Lorenza; Giardini, Guido; Tacchini, Philippe; Dellanoce, Cinzia; Tonacci, Alessandro; Mastorci, Francesca; Borghini, Andrea; Montorsi, Michela; Vezzoli, Alessandra

    2015-01-01

    Purpose Aiming to gain a detailed insight into the physiological mechanisms involved under extreme conditions, a group of experienced ultra-marathon runners, performing the mountain Tor des Géants® ultra-marathon: 330 km trail-run in Valle d’Aosta, 24000 m of positive and negative elevation changes, was monitored. ROS production rate, antioxidant capacity, oxidative damage and inflammation markers were assessed, adopting micro-invasive analytic techniques. Methods Forty-six male athletes (45.04±8.75 yr, 72.6±8.4 kg, 1.76±0.05 m) were tested. Capillary blood and urine were collected before (Pre-), in the middle (Middle-) and immediately after (Post-) Race. Samples were analyzed for: Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) production by Electron Paramagnetic Resonance; Antioxidant Capacity by Electrochemistry; oxidative damage (8-hydroxy-2-deoxy Guanosine: 8-OH-dG; 8-isoprostane: 8-isoPGF2α) and nitric oxide metabolites by enzymatic assays; inflammatory biomarkers (plasma and urine interleukin-6: IL-6-P and IL-6-U) by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISA); Creatinine and Neopterin by HPLC, hematologic (lactate, glucose and hematocrit) and urine parameters by standard analyses. Results Twenty-five athletes finished the race, while twenty-one dropped out of it. A significant increase (Post-Race vs Pre) of the ROS production rate (2.20±0.27 vs 1.65±0.22 μmol.min-1), oxidative damage biomarkers (8-OH-dG: 6.32±2.38 vs 4.16±1.25 ng.mg-1 Creatinine and 8-isoPGF2α: 1404.0±518.30 vs 822.51±448.91 pg.mg-1Creatinine), inflammatory state (IL-6-P: 66.42±36.92 vs 1.29±0.54 pg.mL-1 and IL-6-U: 1.33±0.56 vs 0.71±0.17 pg.mL1) and lactate production (+190%), associated with a decrease of both antioxidant capacity (-7%) and renal function (i.e. Creatinine level +76%) was found. Conclusions The used micro-invasive analytic methods allowed us to perform most of them before, during and immediately after the race directly in the field, by passing the need of storing and

  19. On-farm research in Western Siberia: Potential of adapted management practices for sustainable intensification of crop production systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kühling, Insa; Trautz, Dieter

    2015-04-01

    Western Siberia is of global significance in terms of agricultural production, carbon sequestration and biodiversity preservation. Abandonment of arable land and changes in the use of permanent grasslands were triggered by the dissolution of the Soviet Union in and the following collapse of the state farm system. The peatlands, forests and steppe soils of Western Siberia are one of the most important carbon sinks worldwide. These carbon stocks are, if deteriorated, an important source of radiative forcing even in comparison to anthropogenic emissions. This situation is aggravated by recent and future developments in agricultural land use in the southern part of Western Siberia, in particular in Tyumen province. The increase of drought risk caused by climate change will led to more challenges in these water-limited agricultural production systems. The German-Russian interdisciplinary research project "SASCHA" aims to provide sustainable land management practices to cope with these far-reaching changes for Tyumen province. In particular, on farm scale agricultural strategies are being developed for increased efficiencies in crop production systems. Therefore a 3-factorial field trial with different tillage and seeding operations was installed with spring wheat on 10 ha under practical conditions in 2013. Within all combinations of tillage (no-till/conventional), seed rate (usual/reduced) and seed depth (usual/shallower) various soil parameters as well as plant development and yield components were intensively monitored during the growing seasons. Results after 2-years show significant impacts of the tillage operation on soil moisture and soil temperature. Also a higher trend in nitrogen mineralization could be observed without tillage. Plant development in terms of phenological growth stages took place simultaneously in all variants. Under no-till regime we measured slightly higher grain yields and significant advantages in protein yields. In conjunction with

  20. Dynamics of production of iodine atoms by dissociation of iodides in a pulsed self-sustained discharge

    SciTech Connect

    Vagin, Nikolai P; Kochetov, Igor' V; Napartovich, A P; Yuryshev, Nikolai N

    2013-07-31

    Absorption at the laser transition has been used for the first time to assess the evolution of concentration of iodine atoms in a pulsed self-sustained discharge in mixtures of iodides with a buffer gas such as molecular nitrogen and helium. Dynamics of the iodine atom production is studied by the method of absorption spectroscopy. The dissociation of C{sub n}F{sub 2n+1}I and CnH{sub 2n+1}I (n = 1, 2) iodides is investigated. The energy required to produce atomic iodine is evaluated. The experimental data obtained for CF{sub 3}I are compared with the results of numerical simulations, their reasonable agreement being demonstrated. (active media)

  1. Biochar as potential sustainable precursors for activated carbon production: Multiple applications in environmental protection and energy storage.

    PubMed

    Tan, Xiao-Fei; Liu, Shao-Bo; Liu, Yun-Guo; Gu, Yan-Ling; Zeng, Guang-Ming; Hu, Xin-Jiang; Wang, Xin; Liu, Shao-Heng; Jiang, Lu-Hua

    2017-03-01

    There is a growing interest of the scientific community on production of activated carbon using biochar as potential sustainable precursors pyrolyzed from biomass wastes. Physical activation and chemical activation are the main methods applied in the activation process. These methods could have significantly beneficial effects on biochar chemical/physical properties, which make it suitable for multiple applications including water pollution treatment, CO2 capture, and energy storage. The feedstock with different compositions, pyrolysis conditions and activation parameters of biochar have significant influences on the properties of resultant activated carbon. Compared with traditional activated carbon, activated biochar appears to be a new potential cost-effective and environmentally-friendly carbon materials with great application prospect in many fields. This review not only summarizes information from the current analysis of activated biochar and their multiple applications for further optimization and understanding, but also offers new directions for development of activated biochar.

  2. Utilization of oil extracted from spent coffee grounds for sustainable production of polyhydroxyalkanoates.

    PubMed

    Obruca, Stanislav; Petrik, Sinisa; Benesova, Pavla; Svoboda, Zdenek; Eremka, Libor; Marova, Ivana

    2014-07-01

    Spent coffee grounds (SCG), an important waste product of the coffee industry, contain approximately 15 wt% of coffee oil. The aim of this work was to investigate the utilization of oil extracted from SCG as a substrate for the production of poly(3-hydroxybutyrate) (PHB) by Cupriavidus necator H16. When compared to other waste/inexpensive oils, the utilization of coffee oil resulted in the highest biomass as well as PHB yields. Since the correlation of PHB yields and the acid value of oil indicated a positive effect of the presence of free fatty acids in oil on PHB production (correlation coefficient R (2) = 0.9058), superior properties of coffee oil can be probably attributed to the high content of free fatty acids which can be simply utilized by the bacteria culture. Employing the fed-batch mode of cultivation, the PHB yields, the PHB content in biomass, the volumetric productivity, and the Y P/S yield coefficient reached 49.4 g/l, 89.1 wt%, 1.33 g/(l h), and 0.82 g per g of oil, respectively. SCG are annually produced worldwide in extensive amounts and are disposed as solid waste. Hence, the utilization of coffee oil extracted from SCG is likely to improve significantly the economic aspects of PHB production. Moreover, since oil extraction decreased the calorific value of SCG by only about 9 % (from 19.61 to 17.86 MJ/kg), residual SCG after oil extraction can be used as fuel to at least partially cover heat and energy demands of fermentation, which should even improve the economic feasibility of the process.

  3. Examining the ecosystem health and sustainability of the world's largest mangrove forest using multi-temporal MODIS products.

    PubMed

    Ishtiaque, Asif; Myint, Soe W; Wang, Chuyuan

    2016-11-01

    Sweeping across Bangladesh and India, the Sundarbans forest is the world's largest contiguous mangrove forest. Although the human population density is high at the edge, Sundarbans has not encountered significant areal transformation in the last four decades. However, we argue that forest degradation can occur discontinuously within the forest without alteration of the entire forest area. In this paper, we used MODIS land products to compare the spatiotemporal ecological dynamics of the Bangladesh and Indian part of this mangrove forest between 2000 and 2010. We used the following 5 ecological parameters for our analysis: the Percent Tree Cover (PTC), Enhanced Vegetation Index (EVI), Net Primary Productivity (NPP), Leaf Area Index (LAI), and Evapotranspiration (ET). Our pixel-based time-series trend analysis for each MODIS image stack, using an ordinary least square (OLS) regression method, showed that forest degradation is happening in fragmented parcels within the forest. The degradation rate is comparatively higher in the Bangladesh part than in the Indian part of Sundarbans. Compartments 8, 10, 12, and 15 in the Bangladesh part, in particular, show high degradation, while compartment 48 and the southern edge of 45 show slight increases in PTC or EVI. Forest degradation in the Indian part of the forest is evident in the National Park and Reserve Forest blocks; however, no substantial degradation is evident in the western section. We have identified certain anthropogenic stressors (i.e., oil pollution, shrimp farming) and natural stressors (i.e., increased salinity, cyclones, forest fire) which might be responsible for the observed degradation. We have provided sustainable planning options and policy transformation alternatives for those areas under pressure from these stressors. We anticipate that our analysis of forest degradation will help management agencies, conservators, and policy makers achieve better management of this world's largest mangrove forest for

  4. Modelling changes in nitrogen cycling to sustain increases in forest productivity under elevated atmospheric CO2 and contrasting site conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grant, R. F.

    2013-11-01

    If increases in net primary productivity (NPP) caused by rising concentrations of atmospheric CO2 (Ca) are to be sustained, key N processes such as soil mineralization, biological fixation, root uptake and nutrient conservation must also be increased. Simulating the response of these processes to elevated Ca is therefore vital for models used to project the effects of rising Ca on NPP. In this modelling study, hypotheses are proposed for changes in soil mineralization, biological fixation, root nutrient uptake and plant nutrient conservation with changes in Ca. Algorithms developed from these hypotheses were tested in the ecosystem model ecosys against changes in N and C cycling measured over several years under ambient vs. elevated Ca in Free Air CO2 Enrichment (FACE) experiments in the USA at the Duke Forest in North Carolina, the Oak Ridge National Laboratory forest in Tennessee, and the USDA research forest in Wisconsin. More rapid soil N mineralization was found to be vital for simulating sustained increases in NPP measured under elevated vs. ambient Ca at all three FACE sites. This simulation was accomplished by priming decomposition of N-rich humus from increases in microbial biomass generated by increased litterfall modelled under elevated Ca. Greater nonsymbiotic N2 fixation from increased litterfall, root N uptake from increased root growth, and plant N conservation from increased translocation under elevated Ca were found to make smaller contributions to simulated increases in NPP. However greater nutrient conservation enabled larger increases in NPP with Ca to be modelled with coniferous vs. deciduous plant functional types. The effects of these processes on productivity now need to be examined over longer periods under transient rises in Ca and a greater range of site conditions.

  5. Differentiated Products Demand Systems from a Combination of Micro and Macro Data: The New Car Market

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Berry, Steven; Levinsohn, James; Pakes, Ariel

    2004-01-01

    In this paper, we consider how rich sources of information on consumer choice can help to identify demand parameters in a widely used class of differentiated products demand models. Most important, we show how to use "second-choice" data on automotive purchases to obtain good estimates of substitution patterns in the automobile industry. We use…

  6. Sustainable source of omega-3 eicosapentaenoic acid from metabolically engineered Yarrowia lipolytica: from fundamental research to commercial production.

    PubMed

    Xie, Dongming; Jackson, Ethel N; Zhu, Quinn

    2015-02-01

    The omega-3 fatty acids, cis-5, 8, 11, 14, and 17-eicosapentaenoic acid (C20:5; EPA) and cis-4, 7, 10, 13, 16, and 19-docosahexaenoic acid (C22:6; DHA), have wide-ranging benefits in improving heart health, immune function, mental health, and infant cognitive development. Currently, the major source for EPA and DHA is from fish oil, and a minor source of DHA is from microalgae. With the increased demand for EPA and DHA, DuPont has developed a clean and sustainable source of the omega-3 fatty acid EPA through fermentation using metabolically engineered strains of Yarrowia lipolytica. In this mini-review, we will focus on DuPont's technology for EPA production. Specifically, EPA biosynthetic and supporting pathways have been introduced into the oleaginous yeast to synthesize and accumulate EPA under fermentation conditions. This Yarrowia platform can also produce tailored omega-3 (EPA, DHA) and/or omega-6 (ARA, GLA) fatty acid mixtures in the cellular lipid profiles. Fundamental research such as metabolic engineering for strain construction, high-throughput screening for strain selection, fermentation process development, and process scale-up were all needed to achieve the high levels of EPA titer, rate, and yield required for commercial application. Here, we summarize how we have combined the fundamental bioscience and the industrial engineering skills to achieve large-scale production of Yarrowia biomass containing high amounts of EPA, which led to two commercial products, New Harvest™ EPA oil and Verlasso® salmon.

  7. Sustainability and energy development: influences of greenhouse gas emission reduction options on water use in energy production.

    PubMed

    Cooper, D Craig; Sehlke, Gerald

    2012-03-20

    Climate change mitigation strategies cannot be evaluated solely in terms of energy cost and greenhouse gas (GHG) mitigation potential. Maintaining GHGs at a "safe" level will require fundamental change in the way we approach energy production, and a number of environmental, economic, and societal factors will come into play. Water is an essential component of energy production, and water resource constraints will limit our options for meeting society's growing demand for energy while also reducing GHG emissions. This study evaluates these potential constraints from a global perspective by revisiting the climate wedges proposal of Pacala and Socolow (Science2004, 305 (5686), 968-972) and evaluating the potential water-use impacts of the wedges associated with energy production. GHG mitigation options that improve energy conversion or use efficiency can simultaneously reduce GHG emissions, lower energy costs, and reduce energy impacts on water resources. Other GHG mitigation options (e.g., carbon capture and sequestration, traditional nuclear, and biofuels from dedicated energy crops) increase water requirements for energy. Achieving energy sustainability requires deployment of alternatives that can reduce GHG emissions, water resource impacts, and energy costs.

  8. Smart investments in sustainable food production: revisiting mixed crop-livestock systems.

    PubMed

    Herrero, M; Thornton, P K; Notenbaert, A M; Wood, S; Msangi, S; Freeman, H A; Bossio, D; Dixon, J; Peters, M; van de Steeg, J; Lynam, J; Parthasarathy Rao, P; Macmillan, S; Gerard, B; McDermott, J; Seré, C; Rosegrant, M

    2010-02-12

    Farmers in mixed crop-livestock systems produce about half of the world's food. In small holdings around the world, livestock are reared mostly on grass, browse, and nonfood biomass from maize, millet, rice, and sorghum crops and in their turn supply manure and traction for future crops. Animals act as insurance against hard times and supply farmers with a source of regular income from sales of milk, eggs, and other products. Thus, faced with population growth and climate change, small-holder farmers should be the first target for policies to intensify production by carefully managed inputs of fertilizer, water, and feed to minimize waste and environmental impact, supported by improved access to markets, new varieties, and technologies.

  9. Green Innovation Design of Products under the Perspective of Sustainable Development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    yi-fei, Guo

    2017-01-01

    with the continuous development and progress of productivity, product design spans with the age now and forms a diversified formation. But when there is a progress of science and technology, the speed of consumption of resources is also increasing, the relationship between mankind and the nature further worsens, resources will be exhausted, pollution is increasingly serious and shocking public nuisance events occur frequently. People pay more attention to the environment due to the harms to the nature caused by the development of industry, science and technology. Nowadays, people have clearly recognized the important role of design in environmental protection. The ecological research on constructing a new aesthetic relationship between human and nature has drawn wide attention from all circles of the society. Green innovation design has become the focus of global concern.

  10. Improving rice production sustainability by reducing water demand and greenhouse gas emissions with biodegradable films

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yao, Zhisheng; Zheng, Xunhua; Liu, Chunyan; Lin, Shan; Zuo, Qiang; Butterbach-Bahl, Klaus

    2017-01-01

    In China, rice production is facing unprecedented challenges, including the increasing demand, looming water crisis and on-going climate change. Thus, producing more rice at lower environmental cost is required for future development, i.e., the use of less water and the production of fewer greenhouse gas (GHG) per unit of rice. Ground cover rice production systems (GCRPSs) could potentially address these concerns, although no studies have systematically and simultaneously evaluated the benefits of GCRPS regarding yields and considering water use and GHG emissions. This study reports the results of a 2-year study comparing conventional paddy and various GCRPS practices. Relative to conventional paddy, GCRPSs had greater rice yields and nitrogen use efficiencies (8.5% and 70%, respectively), required less irrigation (‑64%) and resulted in less total CH4 and N2O emissions (‑54%). On average, annual emission factors of N2O were 1.67% and 2.00% for conventional paddy and GCRPS, respectively. A cost-benefit analysis considering yields, GHG emissions, water demand and labor and mulching costs indicated GCRPSs are an environmentally and economically profitable technology. Furthermore, substituting the polyethylene film with a biodegradable film resulted in comparable benefits of yield and climate. Overall, GCRPSs, particularly with biodegradable films, provide a promising solution for farmers to secure or even increase yields while reducing the environmental footprint.

  11. The central role of agricultural water-use productivity in sustainable water management (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gleick, P. H.

    2013-12-01

    As global and regional populations continue to rise for the next several decades, the need to grow more food will worsen old -- and produce new -- challenges for water resources. Expansion of irrigated agriculture is slowing due to constraints on land and water, and as a result, some have argued that future new food demands will only be met through improvements in agricultural productivity on existing irrigated and rainfed cropland, reductions in field losses and food waste, and social changes such as dietary preferences. This talk will address the central role that improvements in water-use productivity can play in the food/water/population nexus. In particular, the ability to grow more food with less water will have a great influence on whether future food demands will be met successfully. Such improvements can come about through changes in technology, regulatory systems, economic incentives and disincentives, and education of water users. Example of potential savings from three different strategies to improve agricultural water productivity in California. (From Pacific Institute).

  12. Cyanobacteria: Photoautotrophic Microbial Factories for the Sustainable Synthesis of Industrial Products.

    PubMed

    Lau, Nyok-Sean; Matsui, Minami; Abdullah, Amirul Al-Ashraf

    2015-01-01

    Cyanobacteria are widely distributed Gram-negative bacteria with a long evolutionary history and the only prokaryotes that perform plant-like oxygenic photosynthesis. Cyanobacteria possess several advantages as hosts for biotechnological applications, including simple growth requirements, ease of genetic manipulation, and attractive platforms for carbon neutral production process. The use of photosynthetic cyanobacteria to directly convert carbon dioxide to biofuels is an emerging area of interest. Equipped with the ability to degrade environmental pollutants and remove heavy metals, cyanobacteria are promising tools for bioremediation and wastewater treatment. Cyanobacteria are characterized by the ability to produce a spectrum of bioactive compounds with antibacterial, antifungal, antiviral, and antialgal properties that are of pharmaceutical and agricultural significance. Several strains of cyanobacteria are also sources of high-value chemicals, for example, pigments, vitamins, and enzymes. Recent advances in biotechnological approaches have facilitated researches directed towards maximizing the production of desired products in cyanobacteria and realizing the potential of these bacteria for various industrial applications. In this review, the potential of cyanobacteria as sources of energy, bioactive compounds, high-value chemicals, and tools for aquatic bioremediation and recent progress in engineering cyanobacteria for these bioindustrial applications are discussed.

  13. Cyanobacteria: Photoautotrophic Microbial Factories for the Sustainable Synthesis of Industrial Products

    PubMed Central

    Lau, Nyok-Sean; Matsui, Minami; Abdullah, Amirul Al-Ashraf

    2015-01-01

    Cyanobacteria are widely distributed Gram-negative bacteria with a long evolutionary history and the only prokaryotes that perform plant-like oxygenic photosynthesis. Cyanobacteria possess several advantages as hosts for biotechnological applications, including simple growth requirements, ease of genetic manipulation, and attractive platforms for carbon neutral production process. The use of photosynthetic cyanobacteria to directly convert carbon dioxide to biofuels is an emerging area of interest. Equipped with the ability to degrade environmental pollutants and remove heavy metals, cyanobacteria are promising tools for bioremediation and wastewater treatment. Cyanobacteria are characterized by the ability to produce a spectrum of bioactive compounds with antibacterial, antifungal, antiviral, and antialgal properties that are of pharmaceutical and agricultural significance. Several strains of cyanobacteria are also sources of high-value chemicals, for example, pigments, vitamins, and enzymes. Recent advances in biotechnological approaches have facilitated researches directed towards maximizing the production of desired products in cyanobacteria and realizing the potential of these bacteria for various industrial applications. In this review, the potential of cyanobacteria as sources of energy, bioactive compounds, high-value chemicals, and tools for aquatic bioremediation and recent progress in engineering cyanobacteria for these bioindustrial applications are discussed. PMID:26199945

  14. Improving rice production sustainability by reducing water demand and greenhouse gas emissions with biodegradable films

    PubMed Central

    Yao, Zhisheng; Zheng, Xunhua; Liu, Chunyan; Lin, Shan; Zuo, Qiang; Butterbach-Bahl, Klaus

    2017-01-01

    In China, rice production is facing unprecedented challenges, including the increasing demand, looming water crisis and on-going climate change. Thus, producing more rice at lower environmental cost is required for future development, i.e., the use of less water and the production of fewer greenhouse gas (GHG) per unit of rice. Ground cover rice production systems (GCRPSs) could potentially address these concerns, although no studies have systematically and simultaneously evaluated the benefits of GCRPS regarding yields and considering water use and GHG emissions. This study reports the results of a 2-year study comparing conventional paddy and various GCRPS practices. Relative to conventional paddy, GCRPSs had greater rice yields and nitrogen use efficiencies (8.5% and 70%, respectively), required less irrigation (−64%) and resulted in less total CH4 and N2O emissions (−54%). On average, annual emission factors of N2O were 1.67% and 2.00% for conventional paddy and GCRPS, respectively. A cost-benefit analysis considering yields, GHG emissions, water demand and labor and mulching costs indicated GCRPSs are an environmentally and economically profitable technology. Furthermore, substituting the polyethylene film with a biodegradable film resulted in comparable benefits of yield and climate. Overall, GCRPSs, particularly with biodegradable films, provide a promising solution for farmers to secure or even increase yields while reducing the environmental footprint. PMID:28054647

  15. Sustainable options for the utilization of solid residues from wine production.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Nansen; Hoadley, Andrew; Patel, Jim; Lim, Seng; Li, Chao'en

    2017-02-01

    The efficient use of solid organic waste materials is an issue of particular importance for the wine industry. This paper focuses on the valorization of grape marc, the major component of winery organic waste (60-70%). Two methods were designed and compared: combustion to generate electricity, and the pyrolysis for the production of bio-char, bio-oil, and bio-gas. Each of these processes was analysed to determine their economic and environmental viability. The flow-sheeting software, ASPEN PLUS, was used to model the two cases. Data from the simulations was used to inform techno-economic and environmental analyses. Pyrolysis was found to be the superior method of utilizing grape marc from both economic and environmental perspectives. Both pyrolysis and combustion exploit the energy content of the waste, which is not recovered by the traditional treatments, composting or distillation. In addition to the production of energy, pyrolysis yielded 151kg of bio-char and 140kg of bio-oil per tonne of grape marc. These products may be used in place of fossil fuels, resulting in a net reduction of carbon dioxide emissions. However, the potential deleterious effects resulting from the replacement of the traditional treatments was not considered. Investment in either pyrolysis or combustion had a negligible impact on the price of the wine produced for wineries with an annual grape crush larger than 1000 tonnes. Composting has significant economic advantages in wineries with a small grape crush of less than 50 tonnes.

  16. An economical device for carbon supplement in large-scale micro-algae production.

    PubMed

    Su, Zhenfeng; Kang, Ruijuan; Shi, Shaoyuan; Cong, Wei; Cai, Zhaoling

    2008-10-01

    One simple but efficient carbon-supplying device was designed and developed, and the correlative carbon-supplying technology was described. The absorbing characterization of this device was studied. The carbon-supplying system proved to be economical for large-scale cultivation of Spirulina sp. in an outdoor raceway pond, and the gaseous carbon dioxide absorptivity was enhanced above 78%, which could reduce the production cost greatly.

  17. Standalone ethanol micro-reformer integrated on silicon technology for onboard production of hydrogen-rich gas.

    PubMed

    Pla, D; Salleras, M; Morata, A; Garbayo, I; Gerbolés, M; Sabaté, N; Divins, N J; Casanovas, A; Llorca, J; Tarancón, A

    2016-08-07

    A novel design of a silicon-based micro-reformer for onboard hydrogen generation from ethanol is presented in this work. The micro-reactor is fully fabricated with mainstream MEMS technology and consists of an active low-thermal-mass structure suspended by an insulating membrane. The suspended structure includes an embedded resistive metal heater and an array of ca. 20k vertically aligned through-silicon micro-channels per square centimetre. Each micro-channel is 500 μm in length and 50 μm in diameter allowing a unique micro-reformer configuration that presents a total surface per projected area of 16 cm(2) cm(-2) and per volume of 320 cm(2) cm(-3). The walls of the micro-channels become the active surface of the micro-reformer when coated with a homogenous thin film of Rh-Pd/CeO2 catalyst. The steam reforming of ethanol under controlled temperature conditions (using the embedded heater) and using the micro-reformer as a standalone device are evaluated. Fuel conversion rates above 94% and hydrogen selectivity values of ca. 70% were obtained when using operation conditions suitable for application in micro-solid oxide fuel cells (micro-SOFCs), i.e. 750 °C and fuel flows of 0.02 mlL min(-1) (enough to feed a one watt power source).

  18. Exergy sustainability.

    SciTech Connect

    Robinett, Rush D. III; Wilson, David Gerald; Reed, Alfred W.

    2006-05-01

    Exergy is the elixir of life. Exergy is that portion of energy available to do work. Elixir is defined as a substance held capable of prolonging life indefinitely, which implies sustainability of life. In terms of mathematics and engineering, exergy sustainability is defined as the continuous compensation of irreversible entropy production in an open system with an impedance and capacity-matched persistent exergy source. Irreversible and nonequilibrium thermodynamic concepts are combined with self-organizing systems theories as well as nonlinear control and stability analyses to explain this definition. In particular, this paper provides a missing link in the analysis of self-organizing systems: a tie between irreversible thermodynamics and Hamiltonian systems. As a result of this work, the concept of ''on the edge of chaos'' is formulated as a set of necessary and sufficient conditions for stability and performance of sustainable systems. This interplay between exergy rate and irreversible entropy production rate can be described as Yin and Yang control: the dialectic synthesis of opposing power flows. In addition, exergy is shown to be a fundamental driver and necessary input for sustainable systems, since exergy input in the form of power is a single point of failure for self-organizing, adaptable systems.

  19. Sophorolipids production from rice straw via SO3 micro-thermal explosion by Wickerhamiella domercqiae var. sophorolipid CGMCC 1576.

    PubMed

    Liu, Xin-Ge; Ma, Xiao-Jing; Yao, Ri-Sheng; Pan, Chun-Yu; He, Hua-Bing

    2016-12-01

    A novel lignocellulose material, holocellulose from rice straw via the pretreatment of SO3 micro-thermal explosion, was developed to produce sophorolipids (SLs) with Wickerhamiella domercqiae var. sophorolipid CGMCC 1576. The influence factors of inoculum dose, yeast extract concentration and pH regulators (chemical regents used for adjusting/influencing pH) was investigated and discussed. Results showed that W. domercqiae can grow in the rice straw holocellulose hydrolysate, and acquire relative high SL yield of 53.70 ± 2.61 g/L in shake flask culture. Inoculum dose, yeast extract concentration and pH regulator made obvious influence on fermentation parameters, especially on final broth pH and SLs production. Furthermore, there is a strong negative linear correlation existing between final broth pH and lactonic SL or ratio of lac SL/tot SL. Additionally, comparison between SL production and non-glucose carbon sources, culture methods, microbes in previous reports was carried out. These results will be benefit for acquiring SL mixture with suitable lac SL/tot SL ratio for specific purpose and scope economically.

  20. Algal photosynthesis as the primary driver for a sustainable development in energy, feed, and food production.

    PubMed

    Anemaet, Ida G; Bekker, Martijn; Hellingwerf, Klaas J

    2010-11-01

    High oil prices and global warming that accompany the use of fossil fuels are an incentive to find alternative forms of energy supply. Photosynthetic biofuel production represents one of these since for this, one uses renewable resources. Sunlight is used for the conversion of water and CO₂ into biomass. Two strategies are used in parallel: plant-based production via sugar fermentation into ethanol and biodiesel production through transesterification. Both, however, exacerbate other problems, including regional nutrient balancing and the world's food supply, and suffer from the modest efficiency of photosynthesis. Maximizing the efficiency of natural and engineered photosynthesis is therefore of utmost importance. Algal photosynthesis is the system of choice for this particularly for energy applications. Complete conversion of CO₂ into biomass is not necessary for this. Innovative methods of synthetic biology allow one to combine photosynthetic and fermentative metabolism via the so-called Photanol approach to form biofuel directly from Calvin cycle intermediates through use of the naturally transformable cyanobacterium Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803. Beyond providing transport energy and chemical feedstocks, photosynthesis will continue to be used for food and feed applications. Also for this application, arguments of efficiency will become more and more important as the size of the world population continues to increase. Photosynthetic cells can be used for food applications in various innovative forms, e.g., as a substitute for the fish proteins in the diet supplied to carnivorous fish or perhaps--after acid hydrolysis--as a complex, animal-free serum for growth of mammalian cells in vitro.

  1. Algal Photosynthesis as the Primary Driver for a Sustainable Development in Energy, Feed, and Food Production

    PubMed Central

    Anemaet, Ida G.; Bekker, Martijn

    2010-01-01

    High oil prices and global warming that accompany the use of fossil fuels are an incentive to find alternative forms of energy supply. Photosynthetic biofuel production represents one of these since for this, one uses renewable resources. Sunlight is used for the conversion of water and CO2 into biomass. Two strategies are used in parallel: plant-based production via sugar fermentation into ethanol and biodiesel production through transesterification. Both, however, exacerbate other problems, including regional nutrient balancing and the world's food supply, and suffer from the modest efficiency of photosynthesis. Maximizing the efficiency of natural and engineered photosynthesis is therefore of utmost importance. Algal photosynthesis is the system of choice for this particularly for energy applications. Complete conversion of CO2 into biomass is not necessary for this. Innovative methods of synthetic biology allow one to combine photosynthetic and fermentative metabolism via the so-called Photanol approach to form biofuel directly from Calvin cycle intermediates through use of the naturally transformable cyanobacterium Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803. Beyond providing transport energy and chemical feedstocks, photosynthesis will continue to be used for food and feed applications. Also for this application, arguments of efficiency will become more and more important as the size of the world population continues to increase. Photosynthetic cells can be used for food applications in various innovative forms, e.g., as a substitute for the fish proteins in the diet supplied to carnivorous fish or perhaps—after acid hydrolysis—as a complex, animal-free serum for growth of mammalian cells in vitro. PMID:20640935

  2. Frontal White Matter Tracts Sustaining Speech Production in Primary Progressive Aphasia

    PubMed Central

    Caverzasi, Eduardo; Binney, Richard J.; Henry, Maya L.; Lobach, Iryna; Block, Nikolas; Amirbekian, Bagrat; Dronkers, Nina; Miller, Bruce L.; Henry, Roland G.; Gorno-Tempini, Maria Luisa

    2014-01-01

    In primary progressive aphasia (PPA), speech and language difficulties are caused by neurodegeneration of specific brain networks. In the nonfluent/agrammatic variant (nfvPPA), motor speech and grammatical deficits are associated with atrophy in a left fronto-insular-striatal network previously implicated in speech production. In vivo dissection of the crossing white matter (WM) tracts within this “speech production network” is complex and has rarely been performed in health or in PPA. We hypothesized that damage to these tracts would be specific to nfvPPA and would correlate with differential aspects of the patients' fluency abilities. We prospectively studied 25 PPA and 21 healthy individuals who underwent extensive cognitive testing and 3 T MRI. Using residual bootstrap Q-ball probabilistic tractography on high angular resolution diffusion-weighted imaging (HARDI), we reconstructed pathways connecting posterior inferior frontal, inferior premotor, insula, supplementary motor area (SMA) complex, striatum, and standard ventral and dorsal language pathways. We extracted tract-specific diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) metrics to assess changes across PPA variants and perform brain–behavioral correlations. Significant WM changes in the left intrafrontal and frontostriatal pathways were found in nfvPPA, but not in the semantic or logopenic variants. Correlations between tract-specific DTI metrics with cognitive scores confirmed the specific involvement of this anterior–dorsal network in fluency and suggested a preferential role of a posterior premotor-SMA pathway in motor speech. This study shows that left WM pathways connecting the speech production network are selectively damaged in nfvPPA and suggests that different tracts within this system are involved in subcomponents of fluency. These findings emphasize the emerging role of diffusion imaging in the differential diagnosis of neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:25031413

  3. Frontal white matter tracts sustaining speech production in primary progressive aphasia.

    PubMed

    Mandelli, Maria Luisa; Caverzasi, Eduardo; Binney, Richard J; Henry, Maya L; Lobach, Iryna; Block, Nikolas; Amirbekian, Bagrat; Dronkers, Nina; Miller, Bruce L; Henry, Roland G; Gorno-Tempini, Maria Luisa

    2014-07-16

    In primary progressive aphasia (PPA), speech and language difficulties are caused by neurodegeneration of specific brain networks. In the nonfluent/agrammatic variant (nfvPPA), motor speech and grammatical deficits are associated with atrophy in a left fronto-insular-striatal network previously implicated in speech production. In vivo dissection of the crossing white matter (WM) tracts within this "speech production network" is complex and has rarely been performed in health or in PPA. We hypothesized that damage to these tracts would be specific to nfvPPA and would correlate with differential aspects of the patients' fluency abilities. We prospectively studied 25 PPA and 21 healthy individuals who underwent extensive cognitive testing and 3 T MRI. Using residual bootstrap Q-ball probabilistic tractography on high angular resolution diffusion-weighted imaging (HARDI), we reconstructed pathways connecting posterior inferior frontal, inferior premotor, insula, supplementary motor area (SMA) complex, striatum, and standard ventral and dorsal language pathways. We extracted tract-specific diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) metrics to assess changes across PPA variants and perform brain-behavioral correlations. Significant WM changes in the left intrafrontal and frontostriatal pathways were found in nfvPPA, but not in the semantic or logopenic variants. Correlations between tract-specific DTI metrics with cognitive scores confirmed the specific involvement of this anterior-dorsal network in fluency and suggested a preferential role of a posterior premotor-SMA pathway in motor speech. This study shows that left WM pathways connecting the speech production network are selectively damaged in nfvPPA and suggests that different tracts within this system are involved in subcomponents of fluency. These findings emphasize the emerging role of diffusion imaging in the differential diagnosis of neurodegenerative diseases.

  4. Measuring trends and signals of sustainability in oyster population and production data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wouters, N.; Valayer, P. J.; Pickerel, T.; Vanstaen, K. R.; Palmer, D. W.; Mills, G.; Cabral, H. N.

    2013-09-01

    Resilience research often includes time series analysis in search of trend shifts. Recently statistical signals including changes in variance and autocorrelation, were proven to be universal indicators of stability. In this paper the suitability of those early warning signals was tested on two case studies: oysters production of France (case study 1) and catch rates of the native oyster in the Solent, UK (case study 2). First, trend analyses were performed and their association to the evolution of the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) index was assessed. For the French oyster production, two sinusoidal waves were found in the first and second order residuals with periods of 33 and 8 years. In the Solent, the trend depiction showed after an initial increase, the catch rates of oysters declined over time from West to East. A positive relationship was apparent between NAO and both the production and population data, with a significant correlation in case study 2. Furthermore, a high and significant spectral coherency in the 8 year period of case study 1 revealed a near phase opposition between the influence of NAO and the French oyster production. For the first and second case study, the early warning signals calculated were lag-1 autocorrelation and variance, respectively. In case study 1, the stability of the low frequency wave of the first order residuals could not be assed, the trend of lag 1 autocorrelation was thus not conclusive. However the high but stable lag-1 autocorrelation of the second residuals, revealed a probable underlying stability. In case study 2 significant increase in variance reflected the instability prior to the decline. It is discussed that in periodic signals the number of residual fluctuations needs to be sufficient to allow the generation of an autocorrelation trend within the limits of the sliding window, used for its calculation. The importance of time scale and appropriate de-trending is also questioned when calculating and interpreting

  5. New Acid Stimulation Treatment to Sustain Production - Los Angeles Downtown Oil Field

    SciTech Connect

    Russell, Richard C.

    2003-03-10

    Hydrochloric acid stimulation was successfully used on several wells in the Los Angeles Downtown Field, in the past. The decline rates after stimulation were relatively high and generally within six months to a year, production rates have returned to their prestimulation rates. The wells in Los Angeles Downtown Field have strong scale producing tendencies and many wells are treated for scale control. Four wells were carefully selected that are representative of wells that had a tendency to form calcium carbonate scale and had shown substantial decline over the last few years.

  6. METHOD OF INITIATING AND SUSTAINING AN ENERGETIC PLASMA FOR NEUTRON PRODUCTION

    DOEpatents

    Bell, P.R.; Mackin, R.J. Jr.; Simon, A.

    1961-08-22

    A method for producing an energetic plasma for neutron production and for faeling this plasma once it is formed is described. The plasma is initially fonmed as set forth in U. S. Patent No. 2,969,308. After the plasma is formed, cold neutral particles with an energy of at least 1 Kev are injected in a radial directinn and transverse to the axis of the device. These cold particles are substituted for the molecular ion injection and are used for fueling the plasma device on a continuous regulated basis in order to maintain a reaction temperature of about 60 Kev for producing neutrons. (AE C)

  7. Papermill industrial waste as a sustainable source for high efficiency absorbent production.

    PubMed

    Likon, M; Cernec, F; Svegl, F; Saarela, J; Zimmie, T F

    2011-06-01

    Papermill sludge (PMS) is generated during the wastewater treatment process of paper production. Its handling and disposal techniques are of great concern for the environment. It can be landfilled as a waste, or it can be recycled and converted into useful products of high value. It has a very promising application as an absorbing agent for the cleaning of water surfaces polluted with hydrophobic substances (vegetable, synthetic and mineral oils, animal fats, fuels, organic chemicals and even coal dust). Here, we present the pretreatment procedure (hydrophobation, mechanical and thermal treatments) of PMS that produces a lightweight absorbent material (HAWSC - high efficiency absorbent for water surface cleaning), which floats on the water surface and binds hydrophobic pollutants with considerably higher efficiency than commercially available mineral and synthetic absorbents. After its application, it can be incinerated, due to its high caloric value, to produce energy. The incineration residues can then be formed into granules that can be used as an efficient absorbent for fluids spilled onto solid surfaces.

  8. Bioprospecting for hyper-lipid producing microalgal strains for sustainable biofuel production.

    PubMed

    Mutanda, T; Ramesh, D; Karthikeyan, S; Kumari, S; Anandraj, A; Bux, F

    2011-01-01

    Global petroleum reserves are shrinking at a fast pace, increasing the demand for alternate fuels. Microalgae have the ability to grow rapidly, and synthesize and accumulate large amounts (approximately 20-50% of dry weight) of neutral lipid stored in cytosolic lipid bodies. A successful and economically viable algae based biofuel industry mainly depends on the selection of appropriate algal strains. The main focus of bioprospecting for microalgae is to identify unique high lipid producing microalgae from different habitats. Indigenous species of microalgae with high lipid yields are especially valuable in the biofuel industry. Isolation, purification and identification of natural microalgal assemblages using conventional techniques is generally time consuming. However, the recent use of micromanipulation as a rapid isolating tool allows for a higher screening throughput. The appropriate media and growth conditions are also important for successful microalgal proliferation. Environmental parameters recorded at the sampling site are necessary to optimize in vitro growth. Identification of species generally requires a combination of morphological and genetic characterization. The selected microalgal strains are grown in upscale systems such as raceway ponds or photobireactors for biomass and lipid production. This paper reviews the recent methodologies adopted for site selection, sampling, strain selection and identification, optimization of cultural conditions for superior lipid yield for biofuel production. Energy generation routes of microalgal lipids and biomass are discussed in detail.

  9. A sustainable pathway of cellulosic ethanol production integrating anaerobic digestion with biorefining.

    PubMed

    Yue, Zhengbo; Teater, Charles; Liu, Yan; Maclellan, James; Liao, Wei

    2010-04-15

    Anaerobic digestion (AD) of animal manure is traditionally classified as a treatment to reduce the environmental impacts of odor, pathogens, and excess nutrients associated with animal manure. This report shows that AD also changes the composition of manure fiber and makes it suitable as a cellulosic feedstock for ethanol production. Anaerobically digested manure fiber (AD fiber) contains less hemicellulose (11%) and more cellulose (32%) than raw manure, and has better enzymatic digestibility than switchgrass. Using the optimal dilute alkaline pretreatment (2% sodium hydroxide, 130 degrees C, and 2 h), enzymatic hydrolysis of 10% (dry basis) pretreated AD fiber produces 51 g/L glucose at a conversion rate of 90%. The ethanol fermentation on the hydrolysate has a 72% ethanol yield. The results indicate that 120 million dry tons of cattle manure available annually in the U.S. can generate 63 million dry tons of AD fiber that can produce more than 1.67 billion gallons of ethanol. Integrating AD with biorefining will make significant contribution to the cellulosic ethanol production.

  10. Whipping Instability of Electrodriven Jets and Production of Micro- and Nano-fibers.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fridrikh, Sergey; Yu, Jian; Brenner, Michael; Rutledge, Gregory

    2003-03-01

    Electrodriven jets of polymeric fluids undergo a set of hydrodynamic instabilities causing either breaking of the jet into the droplets (electrospraying) or dramatic thinning of the jet and resulting in production of superfine fibers with diameters ranging form 10nm to 10micron (electrospinning). We present here a theoretical analysis of the whipping instability responsible for the thinning of the jet. The model tackles non-linear aspects or whipping behavior and predicts several important features of unstable electrodriven jet such as the final diameter. We find the model predictions to agree well with our experimental data.

  11. In-situ transesterification of wet spent coffee grounds for sustainable biodiesel production.

    PubMed

    Park, Jeongseok; Kim, Bora; Lee, Jae W

    2016-12-01

    This work addresses in-situ transesterification of wet spent coffee grounds (SCGs) for the production of biodiesel. For in-situ transesterification process, the methanol, organic solvent and acid catalyst were mixed with wet SCG in one pot and the mixture was heated for simultaneous lipid extraction and transesterification. Maximum yield of fatty acid methyl esters (FAME) was 16.75wt.% based on the weight of dry SCG at 95°C. Comprehensive experiments were conducted with varying temperatures and various amounts of moisture, methanol, co-solvent and acid catalyst. Moderate polar and alcohol-miscible organic solvent is suitable for the high FAME yield. Unsaturated FAMEs are subject to oxidative cleavage by nitric acid and shorter chain (C6 and C10) FAMEs were mainly produced while sulfuric acid yielded long chain unsaturated FAMEs (C16 and C18). Utilization of wet SCGs as a biodiesel feedstock gives economic and environmental benefits by recycling the municipal waste.

  12. The Role of Symbiotic Nitrogen Fixation in Sustainable Production of Biofuels

    PubMed Central

    Biswas, Bandana; Gresshoff, Peter M.

    2014-01-01

    With the ever-increasing population of the world (expected to reach 9.6 billion by 2050), and altered life style, comes an increased demand for food, fuel and fiber. However, scarcity of land, water and energy accompanied by climate change means that to produce enough to meet the demands is getting increasingly challenging. Today we must use every avenue from science and technology available to address these challenges. The natural process of symbiotic nitrogen fixation, whereby plants such as legumes fix atmospheric nitrogen gas to ammonia, usable by plants can have a substantial impact as it is found in nature, has low environmental and economic costs and is broadly established. Here we look at the importance of symbiotic nitrogen fixation in the production of biofuel feedstocks; how this process can address major challenges, how improving nitrogen fixation is essential, and what we can do about it. PMID:24786096

  13. Technology targeting for sustainable intensification of crop production in the Delta region of Bangladesh

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schulthess, U.; Krupnik, T. J.; Ahmed, Z. U.; McDonald, A. J.

    2015-04-01

    Remote sensing data are nowadays being acquired within short intervals and made available at a low cost or for free. This opens up opportunities for new remote sensing applications, such as the characterization of entire regions to identify most suitable areas for technology targeting. Increasing population growth and changing dietary habits in South Asia call for higher cereal production to ensure future food security. In the Delta area of Bangladesh, surface water is considered to be available in quantities large enough to support intensification by adding an irrigated dry season crop. Fuel-efficient, low lift axial flow pumps have shown to be suitable to carry water to fields that are within a buffer of four hundred meters of the rivers. However, information on how and where to target surface water irrigation efforts is currently lacking. We describe the opportunities and constraints encountered in developing a procedure to identify cropland for which axial flow pumps could be successfully deployed upon in a 43'000 km2 area. First, we isolated cropland and waterways using Landsat 5 and 7 scenes using image segmentation followed by classification with the random forest algorithm. Based on Landsat 7 and 8 scenes, we extracted maximum dry season enhanced vegetation index (EVI) values, which we classified into fallow, low-, and high-intensity cropland for the last three years. Last, we investigated the potential for surface water irrigation on fallow and low-intensity land by applying a cropping risk matrix to address the twin threats of soil and water salinity. Our analysis indicates that there are at least 20,000 ha of fallow land under the low-risk category, while more than 100,000 ha of low-intensity cropland can be brought into intensified production. This information will aid in technology targeting for the efficient deployment of surface water irrigation as a tool for intensification.

  14. Participatory approach: from problem identification to setting strategies for increased productivity and sustainability in small scale irrigated agriculture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Habtu, Solomon; Ludi, Eva; Jamin, Jean Yves; Oates, Naomi; Fissahaye Yohannes, Degol

    2014-05-01

    Practicing various innovations pertinent to irrigated farming at local field scale is instrumental to increase productivity and yield for small holder farmers in Africa. However the translation of innovations from local scale to the scale of a jointly operated irrigation scheme is far from trivial. It requires insight on the drivers for adoption of local innovations within the wider farmer communities. Participatory methods are expected to improve not only the acceptance of locally developed innovations within the wider farmer communities, but to allow also an estimation to which extend changes will occur within the entire irrigation scheme. On such a base, more realistic scenarios of future water productivity within an irrigation scheme, which is operated by small holder farmers, can be estimated. Initial participatory problem and innovation appraisal was conducted in Gumselassa small scale irrigation scheme, Ethiopia, from Feb 27 to March 3, 2012 as part of the EAU4FOOD project funded by EC. The objective was to identify and appraise problems which hinder sustainable water management to enhance production and productivity and to identify future research strategies. Workshops were conducted both at local (Community of Practices) and regional (Learning Practice Alliance) level. At local levels, intensive collaboration with farmers using participatory methods produced problem trees and a "Photo Safari" documented a range of problems that negatively impact on productive irrigated farming. A range of participatory methods were also used to identify local innovations. At regional level a Learning Platform was established that includes a wide range of stakeholders (technical experts from various government ministries, policy makers, farmers, extension agents, researchers). This stakeholder group did a range of exercise as well to identify major problems related to irrigated smallholder farming and already identified innovations. Both groups identified similar problems

  15. How to Sustainably Feed a Microbe: Strategies for Biological Production of Carbon-Based Commodities with Renewable Electricity

    PubMed Central

    Butler, Caitlyn S.; Lovley, Derek R.

    2016-01-01

    As interest and application of renewable energy grows, strategies are needed to align the asynchronous supply and demand. Microbial metabolisms are a potentially sustainable mechanism for transforming renewable electrical energy into biocommodities that are easily stored and transported. Acetogens and methanogens can reduce carbon dioxide to organic products including methane, acetic acid, and ethanol. The library of biocommodities is expanded when engineered metabolisms of acetogens are included. Typically, electrochemical systems are employed to integrate renewable energy sources with biological systems for production of carbon-based commodities. Within these systems, there are three prevailing mechanisms for delivering electrons to microorganisms for the conversion of carbon dioxide to reduce organic compounds: (1) electrons can be delivered to microorganisms via H2 produced separately in a electrolyzer, (2) H2 produced at a cathode can convey electrons to microorganisms supported on the cathode surface, and (3) a cathode can directly feed electrons to microorganisms. Each of these strategies has advantages and disadvantages that must be considered in designing full-scale processes. This review considers the evolving understanding of each of these approaches and the state of design for advancing these strategies toward viability. PMID:27965629

  16. How to Sustainably Feed a Microbe: Strategies for Biological Production of Carbon-Based Commodities with Renewable Electricity.

    PubMed

    Butler, Caitlyn S; Lovley, Derek R

    2016-01-01

    As interest and application of renewable energy grows, strategies are needed to align the asynchronous supply and demand. Microbial metabolisms are a potentially sustainable mechanism for transforming renewable electrical energy into biocommodities that are easily stored and transported. Acetogens and methanogens can reduce carbon dioxide to organic products including methane, acetic acid, and ethanol. The library of biocommodities is expanded when engineered metabolisms of acetogens are included. Typically, electrochemical systems are employed to integrate renewable energy sources with biological systems for production of carbon-based commodities. Within these systems, there are three prevailing mechanisms for delivering electrons to microorganisms for the conversion of carbon dioxide to reduce organic compounds: (1) electrons can be delivered to microorganisms via H2 produced separately in a electrolyzer, (2) H2 produced at a cathode can convey electrons to microorganisms supported on the cathode surface, and (3) a cathode can directly feed electrons to microorganisms. Each of these strategies has advantages and disadvantages that must be considered in designing full-scale processes. This review considers the evolving understanding of each of these approaches and the state of design for advancing these strategies toward viability.

  17. Seed coating with arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi as an ecotechnologicalapproach for sustainable agricultural production of common wheat (Triticum aestivum L.).

    PubMed

    Oliveira, Rui S; Rocha, Inês; Ma, Ying; Vosátka, Miroslav; Freitas, Helena

    2016-01-01

    The exploitation of arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi has become of great interest in agriculture due to their potential roles in reducing the need for agrochemicals, while improving plant growth and nutrition. Nevertheless, the application of AM fungi by dispersing inocula in granular form to open agricultural fields is not feasible because nontargeted spreading of inocula over large surface areas results in high cost per plant. Seed coating has the potential to significantly reduce the amount of inoculum needed, resulting in cost reduction and increased efficiency. The aim of this study was to assess whether seed coating with AM fungal inoculum is a feasible delivery system for production of common wheat (Triticum aestivum L.). Wheat seeds were coated with inoculum of Rhizophagus irregularis BEG140 and grown under different fertilization conditions: (1) none, (2) partial, or (3) complete. Data indicated that mycorrhizal inoculation via seed coating significantly increased the dry weight of shoot and seed spikes of wheat associated with reduced fertilization. Assessment of nutritional status of wheat showed that plants inoculated with R. irregularis via seed coating displayed enhanced stem concentrations of potassium (K), sulfur (S), and zinc (Zn). There were no significant differences in root colonization between plants conventionally inoculated with R. irregularis in soil and those inoculated via seed coating. Seed coating with AM fungi may be as effective as conventional soil inoculation and may contribute to reduce the utilization of chemical fertilizers. The application of AM via seed coating is proposed as an ecotechnological approach for sustainable agricultural wheat production.

  18. Modelling changes in nitrogen cycling to sustain increases in forest productivity under elevated atmospheric CO2 and contrasting site conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grant, R. F.

    2013-04-01

    If increases in net primary productivity (NPP) caused by rising concentrations of atmospheric CO2 (Ca) are to be sustained, key N processes such as soil mineralization, biological fixation, root uptake and plant translocation must be hastened. Simulating the response of these processes to elevated Ca is therefore vital for models used to project the effects of rising Ca on NPP. In this modelling study, hypotheses are proposed for changes in soil mineralization, biological fixation, root uptake and plant translocation with changes in Ca. Algorithms developed from these hypotheses were tested in the ecosystem model ecosys against changes in N and C cycling measured over several years under ambient vs. elevatedCa in Free Air CO2 Enrichment (FACE) experiments at the Duke Forest in North Carolina, the Oak Ridge National Laboratory forest in Tennessee, and the USDA research forest in Wisconsin, USA. Simulating more rapid soil N mineralization was found to be vital for modelling sustained increases in NPP measured under elevated vs. ambient Ca at all three FACE sites. This simulation was accomplished by priming decomposition of N-rich humus from increases in microbial biomass generated by increased litterfall modelled under elevated Ca. Simulating more rapid nonsymbiotic N2 fixation, root N uptake and plant N translocation under elevated Ca was found to make much smaller contributions to modelled increases in NPP, although such contributions might be greater over longer periods and under more N-limited conditions than those simulated here. Greater increases in NPP with Ca were also modelled with increased temperature and water stress, and with coniferous vs. deciduous plant functional types. These increases were also associated with changes in N cycling.

  19. microRNA-132/212 deficiency enhances Aβ production and senile plaque deposition in Alzheimer's disease triple transgenic mice.

    PubMed

    Hernandez-Rapp, Julia; Rainone, Sara; Goupil, Claudia; Dorval, Véronique; Smith, Pascal Y; Saint-Pierre, Martine; Vallée, Maxime; Planel, Emmanuel; Droit, Arnaud; Calon, Frédéric; Cicchetti, Francesca; Hébert, Sébastien S

    2016-08-03

    The abnormal regulation of amyloid-β (Aβ) metabolism (e.g., production, cleavage, clearance) plays a central role in Alzheimer's disease (AD). Among endogenous factors believed to participate in AD progression are the small regulatory non-coding microRNAs (miRs). In particular, the miR-132/212 cluster is severely reduced in the AD brain. In previous studies we have shown that miR-132/212 deficiency in mice leads to impaired memory and enhanced Tau pathology as seen in AD patients. Here we demonstrate that the genetic deletion of miR-132/212 promotes Aβ production and amyloid (senile) plaque formation in triple transgenic AD (3xTg-AD) mice. Using RNA-Seq and bioinformatics, we identified genes of the miR-132/212 network with documented roles in the regulation of Aβ metabolism, including Tau, Mapk, and Sirt1. Consistent with these findings, we show that the modulation of miR-132, or its target Sirt1, can directly regulate Aβ production in cells. Finally, both miR-132 and Sirt1 levels correlated with Aβ load in humans. Overall, our results support the hypothesis that the miR-132/212 network, including Sirt1 and likely other target genes, contributes to abnormal Aβ metabolism and senile plaque deposition in AD. This study strengthens the importance of miR-dependent networks in neurodegenerative disorders, and opens the door to multifactorial drug targets of AD by targeting Aβ and Tau.

  20. Micro hydrogel tubes for culture of oil production microbes in an open environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mikami, K.; Onoe, H.; Miki, N.

    2014-11-01

    This paper proposes a microbe culture technology in an open environment using hydrogel microtubes. Oil production microbes, such as Aurantiochytrium, have been discovered and are currently studied to produce fuels instead of fossil fuels. Scale-up of the culture systems of such microbes is critical for practical applications. The microbe culture in a nutrition-rich open environment, such as lakes and sewage plants, is preferable in terms of scales and cost, however, contamination of other native microbes is often fatal to the target microbes. Hydrogel microtubes that can be manufactured by microfluidic devices can encapsulate the microbes and allow oxygen and nutrition to diffuse through the tube walls while preventing other microbes from intruding inside. Therefore, the microbes can be cultured in any environments and scale-up is also possible. In this paper, we demonstrate that the contamination of microbes was prevented and target microbes were successfully cultured inside the microtube.

  1. Biochemical conversions of lignocellulosic biomass for sustainable fuel-ethanol production in the upper Midwest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brodeur-Campbell, Michael J.

    Biofuels are an increasingly important component of worldwide energy supply. This research aims to understand the pathways and impacts of biofuels production, and to improve these processes to make them more efficient. In Chapter 2, a life cycle assessment (LCA) is presented for cellulosic ethanol production from five potential feedstocks of regional importance to the upper Midwest — hybrid poplar, hybrid willow, switchgrass, diverse prairie grasses, and logging residues — according to the requirements of Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). Direct land use change emissions are included for the conversion of abandoned agricultural land to feedstock production, and computer models of the conversion process are used in order to determine the effect of varying biomass composition on overall life cycle impacts. All scenarios analyzed here result in greater than 60% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions relative to petroleum gasoline. Land use change effects were found to contribute significantly to the overall emissions for the first 20 years after plantation establishment. Chapter 3 is an investigation of the effects of biomass mixtures on overall sugar recovery from the combined processes of dilute acid pretreatment and enzymatic hydrolysis. Biomass mixtures studied were aspen, a hardwood species well suited to biochemical processing; balsam, a high-lignin softwood species, and switchgrass, an herbaceous energy crop with high ash content. A matrix of three different dilute acid pretreatment severities and three different enzyme loading levels was used to characterize interactions between pretreatment and enzymatic hydrolysis. Maximum glucose yield for any species was 70% of theoretical for switchgrass, and maximum xylose yield was 99.7% of theoretical for aspen. Supplemental β-glucosidase increased glucose yield from enzymatic hydrolysis by an average of 15%, and total sugar recoveries for mixtures could be predicted to within 4% by linear interpolation of the pure

  2. Using TRACI for Sustainability Metrics

    EPA Science Inventory

    TRACI, the Tool for the Reduction and Assessment of Chemical and other environmental Impacts, has been developed for sustainability metrics, life cycle impact assessment, and product and process design impact assessment for developing increasingly sustainable products, processes,...

  3. Microphytobenthos sustain intertidal fish production in the Persian Gulf (Northern Indian Ocean)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shahraki, Maryam; Krumme, Uwe; Rixen, Tim

    2014-05-01

    In order to better understand the role of mangroves for fish production, we assessed the relative importance of potential food sources to fish diet in the mangrove-lined and un-vegetated intertidal creeks of Qeshm Island at the Strait of Hormuz, Persian Gulf, Northern Indian Ocean (26° N). The most abundant feeding guilds, stable carbon (δ13C) and nitrogen (δ15N) isotopic ratios of food sources and fishes as well as nutrient concentrations were determined in both sites. Detritivores were the most abundant feeding guild in both the mangrove and un-vegetated sites (41% and 81% relative abundance, respectively), followed by zooplanktivores (32%; 8%) and macrobenthivores (18%; 7%). At both sites, organic matter formed by mangrove trees contributed only up to 20% to the fish diet whereas organic carbon produced by microphytobenthos and plankton played a major role in the diet of the dominant fish species. Compared to the mangrove-lined creek, the pelagic and benthic food webs of the un-vegetated creeks were enriched in the heavier 13C and lighter 14N indicating an enhanced proportion of organic matter originally produced by benthic nitrogen-fixing cyanobacteria within food web of the un-vegetated creeks. The dominant role of cyanobacteria was also reflected in the nutrient concentrations. Relatively high nitrate and low phosphate concentrations showed the preferential capturing of phosphates that is leached from the sediments by the cyanobacteria mats leading to phosphate-limiting conditions in the un-vegetated intertidal creeks. Higher phosphate and lower nitrate concentrations suggest in turn that nitrate is, as in many other ecosystems, the factor limiting productivity of the pelagic food web in the mangrove-lined creek. Since the species richness in mangrove creeks was higher than in un-vegetated site, it is furthermore assumed that mangrove trees play an indirect role in the food web by providing a more heterogeneous substrate for associated biota, besides

  4. Nitrogen uptake, assimilation and remobilization in plants: challenges for sustainable and productive agriculture

    PubMed Central

    Masclaux-Daubresse, Céline; Daniel-Vedele, Françoise; Dechorgnat, Julie; Chardon, Fabien; Gaufichon, Laure; Suzuki, Akira

    2010-01-01

    Background Productive agriculture needs a large amount of expensive nitrogenous fertilizers. Improving nitrogen use efficiency (NUE) of crop plants is thus of key importance. NUE definitions differ depending on whether plants are cultivated to produce biomass or grain yields. However, for most plant species, NUE mainly depends on how plants extract inorganic nitrogen from the soil, assimilate nitrate and ammonium, and recycle organic nitrogen. Efforts have been made to study the genetic basis as well as the biochemical and enzymatic mechanisms involved in nitrogen uptake, assimilation, and remobilization in crops and model plants. The detection of the limiting factors that could be manipulated to increase NUE is the major goal of such research. Scope An overall examination of the physiological, metabolic, and genetic aspects of nitrogen uptake, assimilation and remobilization is presented in this review. The enzymes and regulatory processes manipulated to improve NUE components are presented. Results obtained from natural variation and quantitative trait loci studies are also discussed. Conclusions This review presents the complexity of NUE and supports the idea that the integration of the numerous data coming from transcriptome studies, functional genomics, quantitative genetics, ecophysiology and soil science into explanatory models of whole-plant behaviour will be promising. PMID:20299346

  5. Microalgal biofactories: a promising approach towards sustainable omega-3 fatty acid production.

    PubMed

    Adarme-Vega, T Catalina; Lim, David K Y; Timmins, Matthew; Vernen, Felicitas; Li, Yan; Schenk, Peer M

    2012-07-25

    Omega-3 fatty acids eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) provide significant health benefits and this has led to an increased consumption as dietary supplements. Omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA are found in animals, transgenic plants, fungi and many microorganisms but are typically extracted from fatty fish, putting additional pressures on global fish stocks. As primary producers, many marine microalgae are rich in EPA (C20:5) and DHA (C22:6) and present a promising source of omega-3 fatty acids. Several heterotrophic microalgae have been used as biofactories for omega-3 fatty acids commercially, but a strong interest in autotrophic microalgae has emerged in recent years as microalgae are being developed as biofuel crops. This paper provides an overview of microalgal biotechnology and production platforms for the development of omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA. It refers to implications in current biotechnological uses of microalgae as aquaculture feed and future biofuel crops and explores potential applications of metabolic engineering and selective breeding to accumulate large amounts of omega-3 fatty acids in autotrophic microalgae.

  6. Regeneration of Aqueous Periodate Solutions by Ozone Treatment: A Sustainable Approach for Dialdehyde Cellulose Production.