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Article
Publication date: 8 January 2018

Ying Guo, Dongpo Xia, Binghua Sun, Xi Wang, Dao Zhang and Jinhua Li

Because natural resource utilization is a predictor of sustainable development, an evaluation of the efficiency of resource utilization is critical for assessing…

Abstract

Purpose

Because natural resource utilization is a predictor of sustainable development, an evaluation of the efficiency of resource utilization is critical for assessing developmental potentiality. The purpose of this paper is to apply three-dimensional (3D) ecological footprint theory to assess the effects of production and consumption on ecological systems in Hefei, China.

Design/methodology/approach

Using data for Hefei for the period 2005-2014, an ecological footprint model (EFM) was developed to calculate the area’s ecological footprint (EF), ecological carrying (EC) capacity and obtain two indices, namely, footprint depth and size. The relationship between economic development and natural resource utilization was subsequently evaluated based on the calculated ecological deficit and the EF demand per Renminbi 10,000 of gross domestic product (GDP).

Findings

Over the last decade, Hefei’s EF per capita evidenced a 9.87 percent growth rate, increasing from 1.16 hm2/person in 2005 to 2.70 hm2/person in 2014. EC capacity per capita increased from 0.21 hm2/person in 2005 to 0.36 hm2/person in 2014, evidencing a gradually increasing trend at an average annual growth rate of 6.24 percent. Thus, between 2005 and 2014, the ecological deficit increased annually by three times. The amplification of footprint depth significantly exceeded that of footprint size. Between 2005 and 2014, Hefei’s EF per capita Renminbi 10,000 of GDP decreased annually by 4.68 percent. Thus, energy consumption in Hefei exceeded the natural regeneration capacity of energy resources, with excessive development and resource utilization impacting on the regional ecological system.

Practical implications

The application of a 3D EFM sheds light on natural resource utilization within regional development. Moreover, footprint depth and size are significant predictors of the impacts of natural resource utilization. These findings will also benefit other countries or cities.

Originality/value

This is one of the first empirical studies to apply a 3D EFM to evaluate the relationship between natural resource utilization and economic development. Adopting a sustainable development framework, it provides insights into the effects of natural resource utilization in relation to the balance between the natural ecological system and economic development. This has far-reaching implications beyond Hefei and China.

Details

Management of Environmental Quality: An International Journal, vol. 29 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1477-7835

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 14 September 2011

P. Zak, J. Lelito, J. Suchy, W. Krajewski, K. Haberl and P. Schumacher

The aim of this paper was to determine fitting parameters in grain density of the magnesium primary phase function in AZ91/SiC composite heterogeneous nucleation model…

Abstract

The aim of this paper was to determine fitting parameters in grain density of the magnesium primary phase function in AZ91/SiC composite heterogeneous nucleation model. Nucleation models have parameters, which exact values are usually not known and sometimes even their physical meaning is under discussion. Those parameters can be obtained after statistical analyze of the experimental data. Specimens of fourteen different composites were prepared. The matrix of the composite was AZ91 and the reinforcement was SiC particles. The specimens differs in SiC particles size (10 μm, 40 μm, 76 μm) and content (0 wt.%, 0.1 wt.%, 0.5 wt.%, 2 wt.%, 3.5 wt.%). They were taken from the region near to the thermocouple, to analyze the undercooling for different composites and its influence on the grain size. The specimens were polished and etched. The mean grain size for each specimen was measured. Specific undercooling for each composite was found from characteristic points on cooling rate curve. Microstructure and thermal analyze gave set of values that connect SiC particles content, their size and alloy undercooling with grain size. Those values were used to approximate nucleation model adjustment parameters. Obtained model can be very useful in modelling composites microstructure.

Details

World Journal of Engineering, vol. 8 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1708-5284

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 August 1999

Helmut Haberl and Heinz Schandl

Proposes two concepts for the empirical analysis of society‐nature interrelations: first, socio‐economic metabolism – the material and energy flows between societies and…

1426

Abstract

Proposes two concepts for the empirical analysis of society‐nature interrelations: first, socio‐economic metabolism – the material and energy flows between societies and their natural environment and second, the colonization of nature – the sum of deliberate interventions into natural systems aimed at their “improvement” with respect to socio‐economic goals. Discusses empirical examples for sustainability indicators, focusing on landscape processes, and relates land use to the analysis of material and energy flows.

Details

Environmental Management and Health, vol. 10 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0956-6163

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 25 May 2021

Emilia Mary Bălan, Laura Mariana Cismaș and Cristina Georgiana Zeldea

Introduction: Climate change and the limiting nature of fossil natural resources are compelling elements that have driven the search for environmentally friendly…

Abstract

Introduction: Climate change and the limiting nature of fossil natural resources are compelling elements that have driven the search for environmentally friendly alternatives to the traditional economy. In this context, as the main pillar of bioeconomy, biomass can contribute to energy sustainability, temper effects of climate change, and make the use of natural resources more efficiently. Central and Eastern European (CEE) countries have a relatively common economic history of agriculture playing a pivotal role in the former centralized economy. Purpose: This chapter analyzed the importance of biomass produced from residues of crops in CEE countries. This analysis is regarded as incentive to take a deeper look at biomass in CEE countries with acknowledged agricultural potential. CEE countries have been part of the former European socialist bloc, with agriculture being a core component of the centralized economy. Even though their economies have been undergoing a lengthy transition process to the market economy, this sector of activity still holds a significant share. Therefore, CEE countries provide a suitable ground for our analysis. Methodology: The authors selected characteristics of the agricultural sectors and development, and assess their relationship with biomass production in the CEE countries, using an Ordinary Least Squares method. Then, the authors investigate the environmental implications of crop biomass production in a similar framework. Findings: The results reveal that the agricultural biomass sector contributes to economic development, and it does not have negative implications for environmental indicators. These results show that biomass production is a sustainable target to be pursued.

Article
Publication date: 23 August 2015

Lixia Yin, Shunxing Liang and Liyun Zheng

Effects of major factors, such as alloy composition, crystal structure and grain size, on mechanical properties of TiZr based alloys are investigated and summarized in…

Abstract

Effects of major factors, such as alloy composition, crystal structure and grain size, on mechanical properties of TiZr based alloys are investigated and summarized in this work. The microhardness of TC4 alloy obviously increases 15.3% and 17.6% after 30 wt.% and 47 wt.% Zr additions, respectively. Nanoindentation results show that the average nanoindentation hardness of α phase in annealed 30 Zr is approximately 18% higher than that of retained β phase. Tensile test results show that variation in strength of basketweave microstructural 30 Zr alloy with original β grain size from 100 to 203 μm is less than 2%.

Details

World Journal of Engineering, vol. 12 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1708-5284

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 14 December 2015

Michelle V. Stirk

This chapter investigates the awareness of consumers to the water supply chain and if the introduction of water labelling information increases the degree of…

Abstract

This chapter investigates the awareness of consumers to the water supply chain and if the introduction of water labelling information increases the degree of accountability. This research examines how fresh water can be traded as a direct physical entity or indirectly as part of the supply chain of a product. With greater pressure put on finite global resources, demand for this natural commodity is slowly overtaking supply. Fresh water is essential to life and its equitable management is critical in protecting the long-term survival of the World’s inhabitants.

This research uses a case study basis for the research undertaken and analyses what factors business decision-makers consider when making their choices. A bookshop has been used as the business context for this investigation. The research is based on a qualitative methodology and uses semi-structured interviews to gather the data. The findings indicate that water awareness is low amongst consumers and that water labelling information whilst being endorsed by consumers would only yield modest changes in buying behaviour patterns.

This research has been gathered using a small sample of the population, but in order to draw general conclusions it is recommended that the study be extended to include a variety of organisations located in different countries that are motivated by profit and not for profit objectives.

Details

Sustainability After Rio
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78560-444-7

Keywords

Content available
Book part
Publication date: 12 July 2021

Giulia Romano, Claudio Marciano and Maria Silvia Fiorelli

Abstract

Details

Best Practices in Urban Solid Waste Management
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-80043-889-7

Article
Publication date: 5 August 2014

Glen Barry

The purpose of this paper is to propose a measurable terrestrial ecosystem boundary to answer the question: what extent of landscapes, bioregions, continents, and the…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to propose a measurable terrestrial ecosystem boundary to answer the question: what extent of landscapes, bioregions, continents, and the global Earth System must remain as connected and intact core ecological areas and agro-ecological buffers to sustain local and regional ecosystem services as well as the biosphere commons?

Design/methodology/approach

This observational study reviews planetary boundary, biosphere, climate, ecosystems, and ecological tipping point science. It presents a refinement to planetary boundary science to include a measurable terrestrial ecosystem boundary based on landscape ecology and percolation theory. The paper concludes with discussion of the urgency posed by ecosystem collapse.

Findings

A new planetary boundary threshold is proposed based on ecology's percolation theory: that across scales 60 percent of terrestrial ecosystems must remain, setting the boundary at 66 percent as a precaution, to maintain key biogeochemical processes that sustain the biosphere and for ecosystems to remain the context for human endeavors. Strict protection is proposed for 44 percent of global land, 22 percent as agro-ecological buffers, and 33 percent as zones of sustainable human use.

Research limitations/implications

It is not possible to carry out controlled experiments on Earth's one biosphere, removing landscape connectivity to see long-term effects results upon ecological well-being.

Practical implications

Spatially explicit goals for the amount and connectivity of natural and agro-ecological ecosystems to maintain ecological connectivity across scales may help in planning land use, including protection and placement of ecological restoration activities.

Originality/value

This paper proposes the first measureable and spatially explicit terrestrial ecosystem loss threshold as part of planetary boundary science.

Details

Management of Environmental Quality: An International Journal, vol. 25 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1477-7835

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 8 April 2014

Laura Kainiemi, Sanni Eloneva and Mika Järvinen

The purpose of this paper is to identify the most significant uncertainties for bioenergy applications, in order to identify factors determining the success of introducing…

252

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to identify the most significant uncertainties for bioenergy applications, in order to identify factors determining the success of introducing bioenergy into the current energy system.

Design/methodology/approach

A framework is built for identifying the most significant uncertainties based on studies exploring the positive potentials as well as possible negative effects of bioenergy. The framework is applied to explore uncertainties of bioenergy-based transport fuels and heat and power generation through two real life case studies.

Findings

The results indicate that the most significant uncertainties are environmental and economic. Bioenergy applications have potential to mitigate climate change, but also come with negative environmental effects. Case studies show that operations in developing nations contain higher political/institutional and social uncertainty than those in developed countries, due to weaker regulations and enforcement.

Research limitations/implications

The paper is part of an on-going research project. Results will be verified with stakeholder interviews and analysis. Further institutional analysis of the country settings is necessary.

Practical implications

The use of a feedstock with high environmental, social and institutional uncertainties will lower public acceptance. Acting in accordance to the law is not sufficient to ensure sustainability and additional, voluntary measures should be undertaken.

Originality/value

The paper identifies the most significant uncertainties for bioenergy. Uncertainties from social acceptance and institutional settings are higher in developing countries and acceptability requires more than following regulations.

Details

Management of Environmental Quality: An International Journal, vol. 25 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1477-7835

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 23 March 2020

Massimo Cane and Carmen Parra

The reduction of food waste is still a pending issue that governments have still not resolved. In response to this problem mobile platforms are emerging that follow food…

1653

Abstract

Purpose

The reduction of food waste is still a pending issue that governments have still not resolved. In response to this problem mobile platforms are emerging that follow food ecology and the responsible consumption of food, and self-management of their access to allow the communication between people and their use of food. In this paper, the authors will analyze the main digital platforms that deal with solving this problem, especially those that fulfill a social commitment through the distribution and reduction of waste.

Design/methodology/approach

To provide solutions, the authors will address the importance of new technologies in the fight against waste, using digital platforms to manage food and to eliminate the loss in surplus products. To do this, the authors will first analyze from a theoretical point of view the concepts of “loss”, “waste” and “surplus product”, incorporating data of their impact between Spain and Italy. Next, the authors will analyze the influence of new technologies in the detection and distribution of products destined to become food waste. To carry out this qualitative research, the authors will apply the research strategy of theory building from multiple case studies (particularly 16 different digital platforms against food waste were analyzed), which is a methodological approach that uses cases as the basis to develop theory inductively.

Findings

The authors must make the public aware of the importance of being responsible consumers. To this end, the authors must disclose the problems associated with food waste and surplus product, presenting alternatives and new consumption habits. For this, it is necessary to collaborate and build synergies with organizations of different origins (consumers, producers and activists) involved in sustainable agrifood models. In this sense, digital platforms are essential tools to fight against food waste, preventing certain products from being considered unfit for human consumption. In this study, the authors suggest that, based on the review of the literature and the analysis of apps and blogs, the authors look for solutions to surplus and food waste both from the environment of the entrepreneur and the consumer and all using the new technologies.

Research limitations/implications

The research has raised different limitations. On the one hand, it is a subject that has not been analyzed from a doctrinal point of view, so it is not easy to find bibliographic references. On the other hand, digital platforms that act on food waste are not cataloged. This has made it difficult to search for elements of analysis to obtain results in the work. Finally, the sample can vary in a short period of time since the digital platforms are in a boom, which means that they constantly change.

Practical implications

This work allows a theoretical approach to the concepts of “loss”, “wastage” and “surplus product”, incorporating data on its impact in Spain and Italy, comparing it with the rest of Europe while providing figures and data on their impact. On the other hand, it allows us to know how new technologies can help the detection and distribution of products destined to become food waste. Finally, there are examples of platforms that are offering service in different areas, incorporating a novel classification that allows us to know the differences depending on their origin and destination.

Originality/value

The originality of the work can be summarized in the following points: There are no doctrinal works that analyze in a combined way the food waste with the new technologies; The relationship with the 2030 Agenda in which responsible consumption is one of the achievements pursued by the United Nations, and the authors position the study’s research as an evidence of platforms that are currently working in the interest of reducing food waste. Furthermore, the authors provide an early classification of platforms based on their usability and objectives of reducing, reusing and recycling food.

Details

British Food Journal, vol. 122 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0007-070X

Keywords

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