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Environment, Development and Sustainability    [24 followers]  Follow    
  Hybrid Journal Hybrid journal (It can contain Open Access articles)
     ISSN (Print) 1573-2975 - ISSN (Online) 1387-585X
     Published by Springer-Verlag Homepage  [2187 journals]   [SJR: 0.319]   [H-I: 26]
  • How much could a tanker spill cost British Columbians?
    • Abstract: Abstract Ocean-based industries provide employment for nearly 30 % of the population in the North Coast region of British Columbia. Marine resource dependence has raised concerns about the possible economic impacts of a tanker spill along the proposed Enbridge Northern Gateway shipping route, which would export 525,000 barrels (bbls) per day of oil, bitumen, and condensate from Kitimat, British Columbia, to international markets. This study uses current and projected future values of four ocean-based industries and the Enbridge Northern Gateway project to estimate total (i.e., direct, indirect, and induced) economic effects on total output, employment, and gross domestic product (GDP) and impacts on the regional economy over a 50-year period under three potential spill scenarios: no impact (no spill), medium impact (a 63,000-bbl spill), and high impact (a 257,000-bbl spill). The proposed Enbridge Northern Gateway project could produce total positive economic effects of $600 million in output, 5,700–8,400 person years (PYs) of employment, and $300 million in GDP in the North Coast region. A medium impact tanker spill could cause losses of $40–$190 million in output, 400–1,500 PYs of employment, and $20–$100 million in GDP, and a high-impact spill could cause losses of $90–$300 million in output, 1,650–4,500 PYs of employment, and $70–$200 million in GDP.
      PubDate: 2014-02-01
  • Ecological, cultural, and economic approaches to managing artisanal
    • Abstract: Abstract Approaches towards the management of artisanal fisheries have been enlightening the scientific literature for approximately the last 20 years. Coming from diverse disciplines such as anthropology, biology, economy, and ecology (especially human ecology), these approaches have dealt with common theory, strategies for cooperation, decision-making models, cultural contexts, and local knowledge. Fishery management depends on an understanding of the interactions between humans and aquatic resources, and in case of indigenous or of native populations, forestry resources are also considered for livelihoods. Acquiring an understanding of the local knowledge about fish and other resources, of collective local arrangements and institutions, of market interactions, and of the decision-making processes of fishers is fundamental for the management of artisanal fisheries. This review includes historical and current approaches associated with the management of artisanal fisheries. These approaches include the following: (a) cultural and human ecological approaches, including ecological models such as optimal foraging theory; (b) institutional approaches, including processes of cooperation associated with local knowledge and institutions; and (c) current ecological-economic propositions towards fishery management, such as payments for environmental services. This revision is illustrated through examples, in particular, of data collected among coastal artisanal fisheries of the SE Atlantic Forest in Brazil.
      PubDate: 2014-02-01
  • The effects of national culture and human development on environmental
    • Abstract: Abstract While there is considerable research on environmental performance of countries, there is very little that focuses on environmental health as a component of environmental performance and how environmental health is affected by national culture and human development. This study proposes and empirically tests three models that examine the effects of cultural values and human development on environmental health by incorporating different variables from Human Development Index, Hofstede’s Cultural Dimensions, and Environmental Performance Index. Multiple linear regression models were employed to test the hypotheses on a sample of 67 countries. Empirical results conclude that cultural dimensions of individualism and uncertainty avoidance, as well as human development components of life expectancy at birth, education, and income significantly influence environmental health performance of countries when we execute separate models. A combined model of the effects of national culture and human development on environmental health, however, shows only significant effects of human development components. Theoretical and policy implications are discussed.
      PubDate: 2014-02-01
  • Control of industrial air pollution through sustainable development
    • Abstract: Abstract The environmental issue has become a major subject in the last few decades affecting science and technology throughout the world due to the serious environmental impacts caused by industrial air pollution. Consequently, pulse jet filtration has become the preferred choice all around the world. Researchers are continuously striving for new concepts of more energy-efficient and compact particulate collector which can meet future emission limits and operating requirements. The system can also satisfy stringent emission norms and if required, it can be embedded with new technique for simultaneous control of particulate and gaseous pollutants. In the recent past, stress is also being given to having control over the source to reduce or eliminate waste, and finally, on waste management. Prevention is frequently more cost-effective than control. The paper discusses all these methodology toward sustainability in the perspective of effective control of industrial air pollution.
      PubDate: 2014-02-01
  • Housing delivery system, need and demand
    • Abstract: Abstract This paper reviews the past and current housing delivery programmes in Nigeria and analysed the demand and supply issues. The paper examined factors responsible for high housing pricing trends, it state the constraints and challenges in accessing housing. The paper ascertains guiding principles for implementation towards quality housing delivery, and it identifies the various housing delivery mechanisms in current practice and suggests a holistic programme to address the huge housing shortage in Nigeria. The study addresses the problem of housing delivery systems, the supply and the demand issues with a view to inform policy on housing provision structure, want and request towards improving the level of delivery in Nigeria. The methodology adopted for the study includes interviews and analyses of data collected during the field investigations. These investigations were complemented with review of literature. The data required for this study were obtained primarily from secondary source and personal observations. Suggestions were put forward on policy measures that can sustain future planning of housing provision in Nigeria to conform to what is obtain in other part of the world.
      PubDate: 2014-02-01
  • Application of the Eco-Industrial concept to community environmantal
    • Abstract: Abstract This study is aimed at studying the feasibility of applying the Eco-Industrial concept to community environmental management and then investigating factors and appropriate means. In-depth interviewing of scholars and authorities and surveying of five sample communities representing the four different regions in Thailand is carried out to search for the feasibility of applying the concept. The results show that it is feasible, especially in rural areas, where dependence on the local resources and the community members in doing activities in the communities in accordance with the ecological context still exists. Factors and conditions involved in applying the concept include analysis of resources, participation of the people, community leaders, formulation of community development plans, good communication, sharing of knowledge, and provision of appropriate support to create network of communities. The appropriate means of applying the concept to community environmental management entails promoting involvement in the part of the local people and sustainability in the cooperation, with appropriate channels of communication and under the guidance of the leaders, who are the community’s central figures with the determination and ability to motivate and navigate the people in the community. Importantly, there must be analysis on the economic, social, environmental, and health benefits resulting from such application.
      PubDate: 2014-02-01
  • Toward a ‘Sustainable’ land degradation? Vulnerability
           degree and component balance in a rapidly changing environment
    • Abstract: Abstract Land degradation is a process negatively affecting environmental sustainability and requires permanent monitoring for understanding its nonlinear trajectories of change over time and space. Environmental sustainability is linked to a theoretical definition of dynamic balance among various components contributing to the ecosystem quality and functioning. The aim of this study is to develop a diachronic analysis (1960–2010) of the equilibrium/disequilibrium condition of key environmental factors (climate, soil, vegetation, land-use) influencing the vulnerability of land to degradation in a Mediterranean country experiencing processes of desertification at the local scale. Three indicators of components’ balance have been proposed and tested for spatial and temporal coherence. Land classified at high vulnerability and low component’s balance has been identified as a possible target for mitigation strategies against desertification; the surface area of this class increased rapidly during 1960–2010 and concentrated in high-intensity agricultural lowlands of northern Italy.
      PubDate: 2014-02-01
  • Motivations for organic farming in tourist regions: a case study in Nepal
    • Abstract: Abstract An increasing number of individuals and businesses involved in the tourism industry have begun activities related to organic farming and organic agro-products not only in Europe and North America but also in developing countries in Asia. Both organic farming and rural tourism are considered important to socially and economically sustainable rural development. The influences on the establishment of or conversion to organic farming have been much discussed in Europe but not in developing countries. This study focuses on Nepal, where small-scale organic farming occurs in tourism areas, and qualitatively reveals the motivations for organic farming and other factors related to its adoption. It was found that the reasons for introducing organic farming practices varied with the timing of their adoption. Additionally, the kinds of organic-related activities adopted varied depending on how the individual adopter first encountered the term “organic farming.” However, all individuals involved in organic farming shared some common motivations, such as desires for personal health, quality produce and rural development.
      PubDate: 2014-02-01
  • Comparative study of the urban quality of life in Cuban first-level cities
           from an objective dimension
    • Abstract: Abstract The urban quality of life (UQoL) from objective dimension was analyzed in the main Cuban cities. An Urban Quality of Life Index (UQoLI) was developed in collaboration with 60 experts (five in each city). These experts belong to one of two categories: in charge of the planning of the city and members of the Municipal Council of Administration. One hundred and forty-two directors of the Local District Administration also participated in the analysis. The UQoLI includes three dimensions: social services, economic performance, and urban services, the importance of which is weighed according to expert criteria. A Ranking of the studied cities, sorted by the UQoLI, shows a tendency of increase it UQoL in the west even and central regions. This tendency contradicts one of the foundations of the Cuban sustainable development framework, i.e., equity.
      PubDate: 2014-02-01
  • Shifting sands: changes in community perceptions of mining in Ghana
    • Abstract: Abstract The contribution of mining to the Ghanaian economy has been substantial. The mining sector is currently a major foreign exchange earner and contributes to long-term capital formation and fiscal payment to the state. However, the industry continues to have adverse consequences on the lives of local community dwellers, most of whom are often unprepared to deal with these impacts. Often, new mining exploration takes place on land that provides land-based livelihood to many rural people. Ironically, compensation payments seem to worsen poverty in the mining communities and bring about the social conflicts. Hence, whilst communities are highly welcoming of mining companies during exploration, they become resentful during operation of the mine. Using two communities in the Asutifi District of Ghana as case studies, this paper presents a candid assessment of the changes that occur in respondents’ perception of mining during, before and after the inception of mining. It also examines the gender dimensions of the impacts of mining activities as well as the communities’ sources of information. Since public participation is an integral part of the environmental assessment process in Ghana, the paper concludes by recommending among others, precise channels of communication and dialogue before mining begins and during the operation of the mine, to increase awareness among community members.
      PubDate: 2014-02-01
  • ANN-based mapping of monthly reference crop evapotranspiration by using
           altitude, latitude and longitude data in Fars province, Iran
    • Abstract: Abstract The main goal of this study was to evaluate the different feed-forward back-propagation artificial neural networks’ (ANNs) potential to estimate and interpolate the reference crop evapotranspiration (ET0) in Fars province of Iran. ET0 was calculated using the FAO-56 Penman–Monteith method over 24 synoptic stations. Then, altitude, latitude, longitude and the month’s number as inputs and the monthly ET0 as output (target) were used to train the ANNs. In addition, the three-layered ANNs optimized with different training algorithms including gradient descent back-propagation (gd), gradient descent with adaptive learning rate back-propagation (gda), gradient descent with momentum and adaptive learning rate back-propagation (gdx) and scaled conjugate gradient back-propagation (scg). The results indicated that scg algorithm with architecture (4 2 1) had more satisfactory results with the RMSE and R correlation coefficient equal to 18.538 mm and 0.967 in validation phase, respectively. Based on the mentioned architecture of scg algorithm, and input data form different parts of Fars province and surrounding areas, monthly ET0 maps were produced and annual one achieved by summation of monthly maps. The maps particularly annual one showed that highest values of ET0 could be found in the southern and especially southeastern regions, while the lowest values of ET0 could be seen in the northern parts. Contribution of geographic and topographic variables improved the accuracy and spatial details of the resulting maps. It is interesting to note that the fundamental capability of this model is the usage of just a few parameters for ET0 mapping. Since ET0 is a key parameter in water demand planning, therefore, the derived maps could be useful and applicable for many purposes mainly irrigation scheduling in Fars province, Iran.
      PubDate: 2014-02-01
  • Adaptation in a multi-stressor environment: perceptions and responses to
           climatic and economic risks by coffee growers in Mesoamerica
    • Abstract: Abstract While climate change adaptation policy has tended to focus on planned adaptation interventions, in many vulnerable communities, adaptation will consist of autonomous, “unplanned” actions by individuals who are responding to multiple simultaneous sources of change. Their actions are likely not only to affect their own future vulnerability, but, through changes in livelihoods and resource use, the vulnerability of their community and resource base. In this paper, we document the autonomous changes to livelihood strategies adopted by smallholder coffee farmers in four Mesoamerican countries (Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, and Costa Rica). Our aim is to gain insight into the process of autonomous adaptation by proxy: through an assessment of how farmers explain their choices in relation to distinct stressors; and an understanding of the set of choices available to farmers. We find that climatic stress is a feature in decision making, but not the dominant driver. Nevertheless, the farmers in our sample are evidently flexible, adaptive, and experimental in relation to changing circumstances. Whether their autonomous responses to diverse stressors will result in a reduction in risk over time may well depend on the extent to which policy, agricultural research, and rural investments build on the inherent logic of these strategies.
      PubDate: 2014-02-01
  • Neurotoxic and genotoxic effects of methylmercury
    • Abstract: Abstract The toxic form of methylmercury is of concern in terms of its neurotoxicity, genotoxicity and reproductive toxicity. Extensive research has been carried out on the effects of exposure to high levels of this toxic compound, but this is not true for research on exposure to lower levels. The harmful effects of methylmercury are a cause for concern irrespective of the exposure levels. The problem becomes more serious because of biomagnifications of methylmercury. Disorders may develop during neonatal stage and then develop further during the lifetime. The common effects which can be seen are retarded brain development and permanent disorders like cerebral palsy. This can also cause neurogenerative disorders like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. Research on animals has also shown toxicity. Inorganic Hg was found to be present in brains of neonatal rats, in monkeys prenatal exposure to MeHg resulted in a reduced number of births, and birds laid a lesser number of eggs and the infant mortality rate was higher.
      PubDate: 2014-02-01
  • Transhumant pastoralism, sustainable management of natural resources and
           endemic ruminant livestock in the sub-humid zone of West Africa
    • Abstract: Abstract Transhumant pastoralism is one of the dominant livestock production systems in West Africa, and it is characterized by seasonal and cyclical movement of varying degrees between complementary ecological areas. The common pattern of transhumance is moving herds from areas with pasture and water scarcity such as the Sahelian zone to areas where the forage and water are found, often in the sub-humid zone. Whereas the transhumant herds from the Sahel are mainly Zebu breeds, endemic ruminant livestock (ERL) are the dominant breeds in sub-humid zone of West Africa because of their tolerance to tsetse-borne trypanosomosis disease. These livestock fulfill different functions in the livelihood of rural communities in the region. To identify potential areas of interventions for sustainable natural resource management to improve ERL productivity, a desk study that included spatial mapping was performed to review and document the existing knowledge on transhumance in West Africa. Additionally, group discussions were held to analyze the (actual or potential) effects of transhumant herds on natural resource management and ERL in the sub-humid zone. This study covered sub-humid zone in The Gambia, Guinea, Mali and Senegal. The key question we addressed in this study was as follows: What are the key trends and changes in transhumant pastoralism and how do these impact sustainable management of natural resources including endemic livestock? The results of the desk study and group discussions showed that there have been more southerly movements by transhumant pastoralists into the sub-humid zone over the past three decades and this has contributed to growing competition for grazing resources. The presence of transhumant herds in the sub-humid zone has a potential impact on management and conservation of ERL through crossbreeding with transhumant Zebu breeds from the Sahel but only study sites in Mali showed a high risk.
      PubDate: 2014-01-17
  • Technical efficiency of Kenya’s smallholder food crop farmers: do
           environmental factors matter?
    • Abstract: Abstract Smallholder agriculture dominates Kenya’s agricultural landscape, accounting for 75 % of total agricultural output and 70 % of the marketed agricultural produce. As a result, the Government of Kenya, with the support of development partners, has invested in production and dissemination of productivity-enhancing technologies such as high-yielding varieties and inorganic fertilizers targeting the smallholders. Adoption of these technologies has remarkably improved, especially in the maize sub-sector. However, productivity has been declining or, at best, stagnating. Productivity is attributable to not only technological improvements but also technical efficiency. Consequently, this study sought to determine the technical efficiency of the country’s smallholder food crop farmers and establish how it correlates with environmental factors. The study used a two-stage nonparametric approach on household panel data to estimate the efficiency levels of the smallholders and establish the sources of its variation across households. Controlling for endogeneity and incorporating geographic information system-derived measures of environmental factors in the analysis, the study finds that technical efficiency differentials are influenced by environmental factors, production risks and farmer characteristics. The policy implication is that the country has room to improve agricultural productivity by addressing environmental and farm-level constraints. Viable options include switching from rain-fed to irrigated agriculture, entrenching land tenure security, improving transport network among farm communities and setting up smallholder credit schemes.
      PubDate: 2014-01-11
  • Tourism and its impact on livelihood in Manaslu conservation area, Nepal
    • Abstract: Abstract Tourism is an activity of a person which includes traveling and staying in places that are outside of their location for business, vacation and other purpose. Large-scale tourism in developed and developing countries has positive and negative effects on the regional and national economies, local culture, physical infrastructure and environment. There are considerable gaps in research regarding tourism and livelihood in developing countries like Nepal. This research work aims at fulfilling such gap by assessing the impact of tourism on livelihood in Manaslu conservation area (MCA) of Nepal. We interviewed 76 household followed by three focus group discussions and five key informant interviews. The first-hand information collected at the site is complimented by socioeconomic and tourism-related secondary information. Socioeconomic variables such as marital status, size of household, education and landholding status had positive effect on tourism participation while livestock-holding status and occupation of the household had negative effect on tourism participation. Number of visitors is increasing in MCA in recent years, and tourism participation is helping local people to earn more money and improve their living standard. So, awareness and education related to tourism, gender empowerment of women, advertisement and publicity on tourism promotion, adequate subsidy and training on ecotourism and skill development trainings on handicraft are recommended.
      PubDate: 2014-01-05
  • An evidence-based data set on climate changes for developing countries
    • PubDate: 2013-12-22
  • Gilbert Silvius, Ron Schipper, Julia Planko, Jasper van den Brink and Adri
           Kohler: Sustainability in project management
    • PubDate: 2013-12-20
  • A study on forecasting paths of genuine savings and wealth without and
           with carbon dioxide constraints: development of shadow price functions
    • Abstract: Abstract This paper has developed a method for forecasting the future paths of genuine savings (GS) with and without carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions constraints. GS calculations require shadow prices, which can be endogenously determined for variables and constraints in a model. However, in case of a ‘business as usual’ model (BAU), the shadow prices required for calculating GS without constraints show theoretically zero. This research derives the shadow prices required to measure GS for the BAU case as a function of several variables available in the optimal (economically efficient) case. This function is estimated from endogenously obtained variables from a model with environmental constraints. Subsequently, this function is used to calculate shadow prices with and without CO2 constraints, which are further employed to compute future paths of GS according to two methods applied in the papers by Arrow et al. We successfully estimated GS (or GSnt; GS with changes in population and technology) under the BAU case, however, suggest that GS (or GSnt) measures depend, to a great extent, on the time span under consideration (truncation year) for wealth accounting and the accounting methods by Arrows’ papers used for its estimation. In some cases, especially according to the methodology used by Arrow’s paper in 2004 using adjusted consumption in wealth accounting, the sign of GS (or GSnt) changes from negative to positive when changes in total factor productivity are taken into consideration. These aspects should be explored before measuring (un)sustainability of a particular path based on the GS (or GSnt) indicator.
      PubDate: 2013-12-15
  • Biofuel production using food
    • PubDate: 2013-12-06
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