Subjects -> ENVIRONMENTAL STUDIES (Total: 913 journals)
    - ENVIRONMENTAL STUDIES (810 journals)
    - POLLUTION (31 journals)
    - TOXICOLOGY AND ENVIRONMENTAL SAFETY (54 journals)
    - WASTE MANAGEMENT (18 journals)

ENVIRONMENTAL STUDIES (810 journals)            First | 1 2 3 4 5     

Showing 201 - 378 of 378 Journals sorted alphabetically
Energy and Environment Research     Open Access   (Followers: 13)
Energy and Environmental Engineering     Open Access   (Followers: 5)
Energy, Ecology and Environment     Hybrid Journal  
Entrepreneurship and Sustainability Issues     Open Access  
EnviroLab Asia     Open Access  
Environment & Ecosystem Science     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
Environment and Behavior     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 24)
Environment and Development Economics     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 43)
Environment and Ecology Research     Open Access   (Followers: 9)
Environment and Natural Resources Research     Open Access   (Followers: 5)
Environment and Planning A : Economy and Space     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 57)
Environment and Planning B : Urban Analytics and City Science     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 39)
Environment and Planning C : Politics and Space     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 45)
Environment and Planning D : Society and Space     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 76)
Environment and Planning E : Nature and Space     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 4)
Environment and Pollution     Open Access   (Followers: 10)
Environment and Society     Open Access   (Followers: 9)
Environment Conservation Journal     Open Access   (Followers: 6)
Environment International     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 15)
Environment Systems & Decisions     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 1)
Environment, Development and Sustainability     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 39)
Environment, Space, Place     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 9)
Environment: Science and Policy for Sustainable Development     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 40)
Environmental & Engineering Geoscience     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 5)
Environmental & Socio-economic Studies     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Environmental Advances     Open Access  
Environmental and Climate Technologies     Open Access   (Followers: 3)
Environmental and Molecular Mutagenesis     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 4)
Environmental and Sustainability Indicators     Open Access   (Followers: 6)
Environmental and Water Sciences, public Health and Territorial Intelligence Journal     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
Environmental Bioindicators     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 2)
Environmental Challenges     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Environmental Chemistry     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 9)
Environmental Chemistry and Ecotoxicology     Open Access  
Environmental Chemistry Letters     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 4)
Environmental Claims Journal     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 1)
Environmental Communication: A Journal of Nature and Culture     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 16)
Environmental Development     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 3)
Environmental Disease     Open Access   (Followers: 3)
Environmental DNA     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Environmental Economics     Open Access   (Followers: 3)
Environmental Education Research     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 16)
Environmental Engineering Science     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 9)
Environmental Ethics     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 12)
Environmental Evidence     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Environmental Fluid Mechanics     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 11)
Environmental Forensics     Hybrid Journal  
Environmental Geosciences     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 6)
Environmental Geotechnics     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 6)
Environmental Hazards     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 3)
Environmental Health     Open Access   (Followers: 12)
Environmental Health Insights     Open Access   (Followers: 5)
Environmental History     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 29)
Environmental Impact Assessment Review     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 22)
Environmental Innovation and Societal Transitions     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 9)
Environmental Justice     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 12)
Environmental Law Review     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 23)
Environmental Management     Open Access   (Followers: 54)
Environmental Management and Sustainable Development     Open Access   (Followers: 9)
Environmental Microbiology Reports     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 9)
Environmental Modeling & Assessment     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 18)
Environmental Modelling & Software     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 35)
Environmental Monitoring and Assessment     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 39)
Environmental Nanotechnology, Monitoring and Management     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Environmental Policy and Governance     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 16)
Environmental Pollutants and Bioavailability     Open Access  
Environmental Pollution     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 26)
Environmental Processes : An International Journal     Hybrid Journal  
Environmental Research     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 11)
Environmental Science & Policy     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 19)
Environmental Science & Technology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 191)
Environmental Science & Technology Letters     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 8)
Environmental Science : Atmospheres     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Environmental Science : Water Research & Technology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 8)
Environmental Science and Ecotechnology     Open Access   (Followers: 4)
Environmental Science and Pollution Research     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 11)
Environmental Science and Sustainable Development : International Journal Of Environmental Science & Sustainable Development     Open Access   (Followers: 12)
Environmental Science: Advances     Open Access   (Followers: 3)
Environmental Sciences     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 5)
Environmental Sciences Europe     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
Environmental Skeptics and Critics     Open Access  
Environmental Smoke     Open Access  
Environmental Sociology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 2)
Environmental Sustainability     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 1)
Environmental Systems Research     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
Environmental Technology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 2)
Environmental Technology & Innovation     Full-text available via subscription  
Environmental Technology Reviews     Hybrid Journal  
Environmental Toxicology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 11)
Environmental Toxicology & Chemistry     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 22)
Environmental Toxicology and Pharmacology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 9)
Environmental Values     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 10)
Environments     Open Access  
Erwerbs-Obstbau     Hybrid Journal  
eScience     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
Estuaries and Coasts     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 23)
Ethics & the Environment     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 7)
Ethics in Science and Environmental Politics     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 5)
Ethics, Policy & Environment     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 11)
Ethiopian Journal of Environmental Studies and Management     Open Access   (Followers: 3)
Études caribéennes     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Euro-Mediterranean Journal for Environmental Integration     Hybrid Journal  
European Energy and Environmental Law Review     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 14)
European Environment: The Journal of European Environmental Policy     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 5)
European Journal of Ecology     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
European Journal of Environmental and Civil Engineering     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 5)
European Journal of Environmental Sciences     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
European Spatial Research and Policy     Open Access   (Followers: 9)
Evolutionary Ecology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 25)
Expert Opinion on Environmental Biology     Hybrid Journal  
Exposure and Health     Hybrid Journal  
Facta Universitatis, Series : Working and Living Environmental Protection     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
FIGEMPA : Investigación y Desarrollo     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Fire Ecology     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
Food and Chemical Toxicology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 18)
Food and Ecological Systems Modelling Journal     Open Access  
Food and Environment Safety     Open Access   (Followers: 3)
Fordham Environmental Law Review     Open Access   (Followers: 4)
Forest Ecology and Management     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 61)
Foresta Veracruzana     Open Access  
Forestry Chronicle     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 9)
Freshwater Biology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 32)
Fronteiras : Journal of Social, Technological and Environmental Science     Open Access  
Frontier of Environmental Science     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
Frontiers in Climate     Open Access   (Followers: 4)
Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 72)
Frontiers in Environmental Science     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Frontiers in Water     Open Access  
Frontiers of Environmental Science & Engineering     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 3)
Future Cities and Environment     Open Access   (Followers: 6)
FUTY Journal of the Environment     Full-text available via subscription  
Geo : Geography and Environment     Open Access   (Followers: 7)
Geo-Image     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Geoacta     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
Geochemical Transactions     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
Geochronometria     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Geoenvironmental Disasters     Open Access   (Followers: 3)
Geoforum     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 25)
GeoHealth     Open Access  
Geology, Geophysics and Environment     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
Géomorphologie : relief, processus, environnement     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
GeoScience Engineering     Open Access  
Geospatial Health     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Geosystems and Geoenvironment     Open Access  
Global Challenges     Open Access  
Global Environment     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 1)
Global Environmental Change     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 45)
Global Journal of Environmental Science and Management     Open Access   (Followers: 6)
Global Journal of Environmental Sciences     Full-text available via subscription  
Global Sustainability     Open Access   (Followers: 3)
Golden Gate University Environmental Law Journal     Open Access   (Followers: 3)
Grassland Science     Hybrid Journal  
Green Energy & Environment     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
Greenhouse Gas Measurement and Management     Hybrid Journal  
Groundwater for Sustainable Development     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 5)
Harvard Environmental Law Review     Free   (Followers: 13)
Health Services Management Research     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 16)
Health, Safety and Environment     Open Access   (Followers: 34)
Hereditas     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Hidrobiológica     Open Access  
Historia Ambiental Latinoamericana y Caribeña     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
História, Natureza e Espaço - Revista Eletrônica do Grupo de Pesquisa NIESBF     Open Access  
Home Health Care Management & Practice     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 1)
Horticulture, Environment, and Biotechnology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 11)
Human & Experimental Toxicology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 8)
Human Ecology     Open Access   (Followers: 24)
Hydrology: Current Research     Open Access   (Followers: 9)
Ideas in Ecology and Evolution     Open Access   (Followers: 9)
IMA Journal of Management Mathematics     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 1)
Indonesian Green Technology Journal     Open Access  
Indonesian Journal of Conservation     Open Access  
Indonesian Journal of Sustainability Accounting and Management     Open Access  
Indoor Air     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 2)
Information Systems Management     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 10)
Informs Journal on Applied Analytics:     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 15)
Ingeniería Hidráulica y Ambiental     Open Access  
Inhalation Toxicology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 8)
Innovative Infrastructure Solutions     Hybrid Journal  
Integrated Environmental Assessment and Management     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 8)
Interdisciplinary Environmental Review     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 3)
International Aquatic Research     Open Access   (Followers: 4)
International Archives of Occupational and Environmental Health     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 7)
International Electronic Journal of Environmental Education     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
International Environmental Agreements: Politics, Law and Economics     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 14)
International Journal of Acarology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 1)
International Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Information Systems     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 1)
International Journal of Alternative Propulsion     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 23)
International Journal of Applied Earth Observations and Geoinformation     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
International Journal of Corrosion     Open Access   (Followers: 10)
International Journal of Critical Infrastructures     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 2)
International Journal of Disaster Risk Reduction     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 18)
International Journal of Disaster Risk Science     Open Access   (Followers: 14)
International Journal of Ecological Economics and Statistics     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 5)
International Journal of Ecology & Development     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 2)
International Journal of Energy and Environmental Engineering     Open Access   (Followers: 3)
International Journal of Energy and Water Resources     Hybrid Journal  
International Journal of Environment     Open Access   (Followers: 3)
International Journal of Environment and Climate Change     Open Access   (Followers: 22)
International Journal of Environment and Geoinformatics     Open Access   (Followers: 4)
International Journal of Environment and Health     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 5)

  First | 1 2 3 4 5     

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Environments
Number of Followers: 0  

  This is an Open Access Journal Open Access journal
ISSN (Online) 2076-3298
Published by MDPI Homepage  [84 journals]
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 65: Simplified Procedures for Managing
           Insecticidal Waste: A Case Report of KCMUCo-PAMVERC Vector Control Product
           Testing Facility in North-Eastern Tanzania

    • Authors: Agness Msapalla, Salum Azizi, Menan Jangu, Njelembo J. Mbewe, Johnson Matowo, Magreth F. Shayo, Robert Kaaya, Benson Mawa, Amandus Joram, Mathew J. Kirby, Mark W. Rowland, Franklin Mosha
      First page: 65
      Abstract: Insecticide testing facilities that evaluate a variety of vector control products may generate a large number of hazardous wastes from routine operations. These wastes originate from degraded technical grade materials, sprayed substrates with Indoor Residual Spraying (IRS), and redundant stock or working insecticidal solutions. The washing of Long-Lasting Insecticidal Nets (LLINs) during preparation for laboratory and experimental hut trials also contribute to wastewater with insecticide content. Human and environmental exposure to insecticidal waste can occur during transport, categorization, storage, and disposal, resulting in environmental pollution and potential health effects. Various national and international guidelines have been devised for safe disposal and should be strictly followed to avoid adverse effects on humans or environment. To facilitate proper insecticidal waste management, this paper outlines simple but safe practices derived from international and national guidelines that can be adopted by other similar facilities. National and international policies related to chemical management were reviewed and translated into Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs), training pathways, and manuals. National Environmental Management Council (NEMC) assessed the test facility and recommended disposal procedures. NEMC recommendations were followed to construct the soak pits for liquid waste disposal while chemical transporters and incinerators were contracted for solid waste disposal. An environmental expert was contracted for environmental audit and annual monitoring. Studies and activities at the facility were evaluated for their waste generation index. Safety manual and SOPs on risk assessment, waste management and disposal, handling hazardous materials, health and safety procedures, and chemical usage were written. At KCMUCo-PAMVERC, an annual average of 0.02 and 24.9 cubic meters of liquid waste, which mainly includes a mixture of water, insecticides, and solvents, were generated from laboratory experiments (phase I) and semi-field LLIN experiments (phase II), respectively, while the IRS semi-field experiments generated an annual average of 88 L of liquid waste and 6.3 tons of solid waste. An annual average of 0.18 cubic meters of liquid waste results from other sources, including expired laboratory reagents. Well-translated national and international policies/regulations may be adopted by insecticide test facilities for proper and effective waste disposal.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-05-25
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9060065
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 6 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 66: Environmental Gamma Dose Rate Monitoring
           and Radon Correlations: Evidence and Potential Applications

    • Authors: Alessandro Rizzo, Giuseppe Antonacci, Enrico Borra, Francesco Cardellini, Luca Ciciani, Luciano Sperandio, Ignazio Vilardi
      First page: 66
      Abstract: Gamma emitting radionuclides naturally present in the Earth’s crust and the radon exhaled by soil in the atmosphere with its short-lived progeny are two of the main contributors to the environmental gamma dose rate that typically characterizes an outdoor measurement site. The present work aims to investigate variations in the environmental dose-rate time series originated by different natural phenomena, such as weather and seismic events, which can modify the radon concentration in the air. The data analyzed here were acquired over a five-year period using a Reuter–Stokes high-pressure ionization chamber placed in the ENEA Casaccia Research Center (Rome, Italy), from November 2013 to December 2018. The detector was set to take a single measurement of the equivalent ambient dose H*(10) every 15 min, thereby collecting more than 184,000 values over the five-year period under consideration. The detector’s sensitivity to the short-lived radon progeny was verified in a preparatory study performed by means of simultaneous radon flux measurement on field. Variations induced by meteorological events as well as variations potentially induced by seismic events were investigated by implementing different data analysis techniques. In the latter case, a retrospective preliminary study was conducted, applying the ARFIMA class of models in order to test the method’s potential. The analysis techniques, results and potential applications are presented and discussed in this article.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-05-26
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9060066
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 6 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 67: Simulation of Traffic-Born Pollutant
           Dispersion and Personal Exposure Using High-Resolution Computational Fluid
           Dynamics

    • Authors: Sadjad Tajdaran, Fabrizio Bonatesta, Byron Mason, Denise Morrey
      First page: 67
      Abstract: Road vehicles are a large contributor to nitrogen oxides (NOx) pollution. The routine roadside monitoring stations, however, may underrepresent the severity of personal exposure in urban areas because long-term average readings cannot capture the effects of momentary, high peaks of air pollution. While numerical modelling tools historically have been used to propose an improved distribution of monitoring stations, ultra-high resolution Computational Fluid Dynamics models can further assist the relevant stakeholders in understanding the important details of pollutant dispersion and exposure at a local level. This study deploys a 10-cm-resolution CFD model to evaluate actual high peaks of personal exposure to NOx from traffic by tracking the gases emitted from the tailpipe of moving vehicles being dispersed towards the roadside. The investigation shows that a set of four Euro 5-rated diesel vehicles travelling at a constant speed may generate momentary roadside concentrations of NOx as high as 1.25 mg/m3, with a 25% expected increase for doubling the number of vehicles and approximately 50% reduction when considering Euro 6-rated vehicles. The paper demonstrates how the numerical tool can be used to identify the impact of measures to reduce personal exposure, such as protective urban furniture, as traffic patterns and environmental conditions change.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-05-30
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9060067
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 6 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 68: Evaluation of the Terrestrial 222Rn Flux
           from 210Pb Deposition Measurements

    • Authors: Mauro Magnoni, Luca Bellina, Stefano Bertino, Brunella Bellotto, Enrico Chiaberto
      First page: 68
      Abstract: The study of the 222Rn terrestrial flux (Bq/(m2·s) or Bq/(m2·h)) is a complex issue involving both radiation-protection and environmental aspects. While the radiation-protection aspects are quite obvious—it has been well known for several decades that soil is the major source of indoor radon—environmental issues such as the correlation with conventional pollutants (PM2.5, PM10, NOX, etc.) and the use of radon for the esmation of the natural component of GHG (CO2) emissions are relatively less discussed in spite of their growing relevance. In this work we present a method for the estimation of the average value of 222Rn flux from HPGe γ-spectrometry 210Pb measurements performed on wet and dry deposition samples gathered monthly in the period 2006–2020. The results obtained with this technique give an average radon flux in the period Φ = 57 ± 27 Bq/(m2·h), the value of which is comparable with those coming from other methods and direct radon flux measurements as well. The method can thus be used to obtain a worldwide map of the radon flux.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-05-31
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9060068
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 6 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 69: Model for Health Risk Assessment in
           Portuguese Housing Spaces

    • Authors: Manuel Pinto, M. Ramiro Pastorinho, João Lanzinha, Marisa Monteiro
      First page: 69
      Abstract: Currently, people spend most of their time inside their homes. However, poor conditions in terms of comfort and quality of the indoor environment can pose high risks to the inhabitants’ health. Therefore, a good quality environment is essential, since, in addition to the hazards present in indoor air (e.g., particles, (S)VOCs, CO, radon and tobacco smoke), extreme temperatures, relative humidity levels, pests (e.g., mold, dust mites and bioaerosols), noise, airborne infectious agents (e.g., SARS-CoV-2) and contamination through water and soil can cause physical injuries, respiratory diseases, damage to multiple organ systems as well as harmful effects on the mental health of the occupants. Faced with this requirement, housing evaluation models were studied together with the main types of risk that could affect the health of the inhabitants, with the objective of proposing a new evaluation model for housing health and safety risks, fitted to the occupants, and especially suitable for Portuguese dwellings, although applicable in other geographical contexts. As a result of this analysis, this article proposes a new model for evaluating health and safety risks in housing, applicable in Portugal, supported by an inspection form and, as the main difference from the existing models, parameter measurements, providing complementary data for the evaluation. This model was created based on a set of functional and regulatory requirements that were identified for the healthy use of living spaces. Twenty-eight hazards were identified, and the respective risk factors were assessed using different processes and target demographics, including visual inspection, parameter measurements, occupants’ age and location and age of housing. In order to validate the model and determine its usefulness, it was applied to a set of houses with different construction dates, locations and occupants. This exercise enabled the identification of hazard classes and the calibration and fine tuning of the model application. Finally, proposals for future work are presented in order to create a base of evolution for the model.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-06-06
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9060069
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 6 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 70: Effect of Operational Conditions on
           Ammonia Recovery from Simulated Livestock Wastewater Using Gas-Permeable
           Membrane Technology

    • Authors: Berta Riaño, Beatriz Molinuevo-Salces, Matías B. Vanotti, María Cruz García-González
      First page: 70
      Abstract: Gas-permeable membrane (GPM) technology is a novel alternative to reduce N content in wastewater while recovering N in the form of an ammonium salt solution that can be used as fertilizer. This work aims to elucidate the effects of three operational conditions on the performance of GPM technology for ammonia recovery in batch conditions using synthetic wastewater that simulates livestock wastewater. Firstly, the effect of the ratio of the initial mass of total ammonia nitrogen (TAN) per membrane surface from 197 to 936 g N per m2 of membrane was investigated. The highest ratio presented the highest TAN recovery rate (90 g N m−2 d−1). Secondly, the influence of the ratio of the volume of wastewater per volume of acidic trapping solution in the range from 7.8 to 33.3 L L−1 was studied. In this case, the higher the ratio, the higher the N concentration in the trapping solution, achieving a N concentration of 43,773 mg N L−1 with a ratio of 33.3 L L−1. Finally, two different TAN concentrations (<0.1 and 30 g N L−1) in the acidic trapping solution were evaluated. The use of a trapping solution with a TAN concentration of 30 g N L−1 led to a reduction in the TAN recovery rate, which meant that the diffusion of ammonia through the membrane was more difficult as the trapping solution became saturated with TAN. Overall, the tested conditions highly influence the performance of GPM technology, and therefore, these conditions should be set to optimize the ammonia recovery and reduce nitrogen losses.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-06-06
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9060070
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 6 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 71: Risk Management of a Fusion Facility:
           Radiation Protection and Safety Integrated Approach for the Sorgentina-RF
           Project

    • Authors: Gian Marco Contessa, Nicholas Terranova, Tonio Pinna, Danilo Nicola Dongiovanni, Marco D’Arienzo, Fabio Moro, Paolo Ferrari, Antonino Pietropaolo, The SRF Collaboration The SRF Collaboration
      First page: 71
      Abstract: The Sorgentina-RF project will use fusion neutrons to produce 99Mo, a precursor of 99mTc, by irradiating natural molybdenum. 99Mo is produced by means of the inelastic reaction 100Mo(n, 2n)99Mo on 100Mo, which is an isotope of natural Mo. From a functional point of view, the project consists of two parts: an irradiation neutron source at 14 MeV and a radiochemistry facility dedicated to the extraction of 99Mo from the solid sample irradiated by the neutron source. Given the degree of complexity of such a facility, the risk management strategy is based on an integrated approach that combines the engineering method of safety with that of radiation protection. Therefore, design issues were studied and systems were planned according to both radiation protection and safety criteria already in the preliminary phase, allowing a general strengthening of the safety of the plant. This work discusses the preventive analysis and the related activities to identify the ways in which potential exposures to radiation may occur. In particular, the preliminary safety analysis is presented for the innovative rotating target, developed for the project, and, accordingly, some specific technical solutions are given to refine the initial design of the facility.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-06-14
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9060071
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 6 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 72: Analogue Application of Behaviour and
           Transport of Naturally Occurring Strontium in Cold-Region Aquatic
           Environments to 90Sr

    • Authors: Enisa Zanacic, Dena W. McMartin
      First page: 72
      Abstract: Quantification and scientific observations of the fate and transport of dissolved strontium in water systems, particularly cold climate water systems, are severely lacking. In this work, in an experiment conducted at a temperature of 6 °C, the observation of strontium precipitation along with calcium carbonate minerals from cold wastewater is investigated. ICP-MS is used for metal analyses where the distribution of the species and saturation state of minerals along with a surface complexation model was performed using the public-use USGS geochemical modeling software, PHREEQC (PH Redox Equilibrium (in C language)). Sample media were analyzed using XPS and Raman spectroscopy. The results suggest that the loss of strontium from natural waters is via the process of co-precipitation with calcite, a calcium carbonate polymorph. The observations and findings are intended to be useful to quantify the loss of 90Sr from the water, in the case of an unplanned release from a nuclear reactor-operated facility. The results indicate that the precipitation model is a robust and reliable approach to predicting and monitoring the behaviour and transport of strontium that may occur in natural environments as a result of an accidental nuclear release.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-06-15
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9060072
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 6 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 73: Incorporating Industrial and Climatic
           Covariates into Analyses of Fish Health Indicators Measured in a Stream in
           Canada’s Oil Sands Region

    • Authors: Tim J. Arciszewski, Erin J. Ussery, Mark E. McMaster
      First page: 73
      Abstract: Industrial and other human activities in Canada’s oil sands region (OSR) influence the environment. However, these impacts can be challenging to separate from natural stresses in flowing waters by comparing upstream reference sites to downstream exposure locations. For example, health indicators of lake chub (Couesius plumbeus) compared between locations in the Ells River (Upper and Lower) in 2013 to 2015 and 2018 demonstrated statistical differences. To further examine the potential sources of variation in fish, we also analyzed data at sites over time. When fish captured in 2018 were compared to pooled reference years (2013–2015), results indicated multiple differences in fish, but most of the differences disappeared when environmental covariates were included in the Elastic Net (EN) regularized regression models. However, when industrial covariates were included separately in the EN, the large differences in 2018 also disappeared, also suggesting the potential influence of these covariables on the health of fish. Further ENs incorporating both environmental and industrial covariates along with other variables which may describe industrial and natural influences, such as spring or summer precipitation and summer wind speeds and distance-based penalty factors, also support some of the suspected and potential mechanisms of impact. Further exploratory analyses simulating changes from zero and the mean (industrial) activity levels using the regression equations respectively suggest effects exceeding established critical effect sizes (CES) for fish measurements may already be present or effects may occur with small future changes in some industrial activities. Additional simulations also suggest that changing regional hydrological and thermal regimes in the future may also cause changes in fish measurements exceeding the CESs. The results of this study suggest the wide applicability of the approach for monitoring the health of fish in the OSR and beyond. The results also suggest follow-up work required to further evaluate the veracity of the suggested relationships identified in this analysis.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-06-17
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9060073
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 6 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 74: Calibration and Validation of Calcium
           Carbonate Precipitation Potential (CCPP) Model for Strontium
           Quantification in Cold Climate Aquatic Environments

    • Authors: Enisa Zanacic, Dena W. McMartin
      First page: 74
      Abstract: The ability to robustly quantify the potential for strontium precipitation and scaling in both natural surface waters and water infrastructure systems is limited. In some regions, both surface and ground water supplies contain significant concentrations of naturally occurring radionuclides, such as strontium, that can accumulate in water, soils and sediments, media, and living tissues. Methods for quantifying and predicting the potential for these occurrences are not readily available nor have they been tested and calibrated to cold region aquatic environments. Through extensive literature review, it was determined that a modified calcium carbonate precipitation potential (CCPP) model offered a scientifically credible approach to filling that knowledge gap in both the science and engineering of strontium fate and transport in water. The results from previous field and laboratory experiments were compiled to not only elucidate the fate and transport of strontium in water systems, but also to calculate the logarithmic distribution coefficient, λ, for strontium under co-precipitation conditions. Lambda (λ) is both time- and water-quality sensitive and must be measured as water mixes from source to receiving environment to determine continuous loss of Sr from the water phase. The data were collected to develop the strontium precipitation potential model that can be used in surface water quality assessment. The tool was then applied to pre-existing, publicly available, and extensive datasets for several rivers in Saskatchewan, Canada, to validate the model and produce estimates for strontium precipitation potential in those rivers.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-06-18
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9060074
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 6 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 54: Radiation Protection at the Large Hadron
           Collider: Problematics, Challenges and Advanced Monte Carlo Simulation
           Techniques

    • Authors: Angelo Infantino, Daniel Björkman, Lucie Elie, Maddalena Maietta, Christophe Tromel, Heinz Vincke
      First page: 54
      Abstract: This paper provides an overview of the problems, challenges, and the advanced simulation techniques used to study and plan complex interventions in radiation areas at CERNs Large Hadron Collider and its future upgrade to the High-Luminosity Large Hadron Collider. The operational radiation protection aspects are supported by state of the art simulations by means of the FLUKA Monte Carlo code and estimates conducted via other tools such as ActiWiz and SESAME, used within the HSE-RP group.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-04-25
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9050054
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 5 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 55: Simplified Method for the Determination of
           Total Kjeldahl Nitrogen in Wastewater

    • Authors: Tristan D. Hicks, Caleb M. Kuns, Chandrashekar Raman, Zane T. Bates, Subhalakshmi Nagarajan
      First page: 55
      Abstract: The increase in total Kjeldahl nitrogen (TKN) concentrations is correlated with increases in cyanobacterial bloom biomass. Standard methods for the measurement of TKN are tedious, costly, time-consuming and involve the use of hazardous catalysts, such as mercury, high temperatures and significant amounts of toxic acids and bases. Since TKN plays a pivotal role in influencing algal blooms, there is an urgent need to develop simpler, safer and more accurate methods for the determination of TKN. The simplified TKN method (s-TKN™) developed by Hach® offers several advantages over the traditional TKN method, including eliminating the use of mercury, requiring low sample and reagent volumes and being cost-efficient and user-friendly. This communication presents preliminary results comparing the efficacy of s-TKN™ and the standard method, using commonly used primary standards and waste, estuarine and lake water matrices. For all primary standards analyzed, the s-TKN™ method exhibited good accuracy across a wide range of concentrations. The repeatability for the glycine–para-toluene sulfonic acid (Gly-PTSA) standard using the s-TKN™ method was 4.1% at the highest concentrations analyzed, with overall repeatability across concentrations comparable to the standard EPA method. For wastewater, estuarine and lake matrices, a good correlation (r2 = 0.9917) between the two methods and no statistical difference in the values (p > 0.05) were obtained between two methods. Preliminary studies indicate that the s-TKN™ method has the potential to reduce the expenditure associated with the cost of analysis and has the potential to be a safer and cheaper alternative, while providing comparable analytical results to the standard method.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-04-28
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9050055
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 5 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 56: Riboflavin as a Biodegradable Functional
           Additive for Thermoplastic Polymers

    • Authors: Natalia Puszczykowska, Piotr Rytlewski, Marek Macko, Kacper Fiedurek, Katarzyna Janczak
      First page: 56
      Abstract: With continuous development of biodegradable polymers, new areas of applications are intensively researched. Modifications of these polymers are commonly conducted by an extrusion compounding process. While additives are changing desired properties, biodegradability of such composites can be deteriorated. The aim of the work is to investigate a novel, functional, organic additive, riboflavin (vitamin B-2), in terms of thermal stability, extrusion processability, wettability, surface energy, especially biodegradability, and when compounded with PLA. Additionally, a comparison of unmodified PLA resin, as well as PLA-modified with inorganic talc—which is known for its nucleation promotion in a variety of polymers—to PLA with riboflavin, was presented. Research reveals the outstanding thermal stability of riboflavin and the sufficient extrusion process properties with no significant changes of wettability and, surprisingly, a significant degradation rate as compared to pure PLA or and PLA with talc. The obtained results do not exclude further modifications of PLA depending on the target application, e.g., antimicrobial agents, flame retardants, etc.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-05-01
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9050056
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 5 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 57: Polylactide as a Substitute for
           Conventional Polymers—Biopolymer Processing under Varying Extrusion
           Conditions

    • Authors: Daria Kosmalska, Katarzyna Janczak, Aneta Raszkowska-Kaczor, Andrzej Stasiek, Tomasz Ligor
      First page: 57
      Abstract: The polymer processing industry is paying more attention to biodegradable materials synthesized from renewable sources. One of the most popular of them is polylactide (PLA). Except the material from which a given product is made, particularly important is the process of manufacturing a polymer material, processing, use by the consumer, and finally, recycling it. Neither of these steps is indifferent to the environment. The processing of polymers can often lead to material degradation, which affects the properties of the material and leads to the generation of substantial amounts of post-production waste that cannot be reused by processors. The aim of this work is to evaluate selected properties of PLA subjected to the extrusion process under variable extrusion conditions. This is important due to the large losses of material and energy resulting from the extrusion of biodegradable polymers under poorly selected processing conditions, which, apart from the economic effects, has a negative impact on the environment. The research proved that both the temperature and the structure of the plasticizing system as well as the rotational speed of the screws affect the mechanical properties of the final product. For PLA optimization, this process will directly contribute to the improvement of the PLA processing process, and indirectly help to act for the benefit of the environment by reducing the consumption of energy, raw materials, and the amount of post-production waste. The obtained results allowed for the selection of appropriate parameters depending on the expectations regarding the properties of the final product. The conducted research will help to optimize processing processes and reduce the consumption of raw materials, which in the future will also affect the environment.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-05-07
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9050057
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 5 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 58: COMSOL Modeling of Heat Transfer in SVE
           Process

    • Authors: Yan Shi, Shuwang Rui, Shaofeng Xu, Na Wang, Yixuan Wang
      First page: 58
      Abstract: Non aqueous phase liquid (NAPL) pollution exists in porous media such as soil. SVE technology can be used to remove this pollution in soil. However, few domestic and international studies have paid attention to the changes of soil temperature in the field, which we believe can be useful information to optimize the layout of heating wells. In this research we established partial differential equations of soil heat transfer using the COMSOL multi-field coupling tool to simulate the field distribution of the change in soil internal temperature in the process of SVE to obtain the change of effective heating area with time under certain initial heating conditions. At the same time, we used liquid ethylbenzene to represent NAPL pollutants, and designed a simulation of soil temperature field distribution under the movement of liquid ethylbenzene under external pressure. It was found that under the action of Darcy’s velocity field, the utilization efficiency of the SVE system for the heat source was significantly improved, that is, the temperature distribution of the soil was more uniform. However, the temperature of the heated area increased slowly because the extraction well took away the heat energy. The heat source power should be increased or prolonged to improve the effect of Darcy’s field. Through a coupled simulation, we obtained a variation relationship of the soil temperature field in 1800 min under the action of one extraction well and four heating wells. These data will provide the basis for our next step in designing an algorithm to optimize the distribution of heating wells.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-05-11
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9050058
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 5 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 59: Comparative Assessment of Greenhouse Gas
           Emissions in Pig Farming Using Tier Inventories

    • Authors: Konstantina Akamati, George P. Laliotis, Iosif Bizelis
      First page: 59
      Abstract: Although pig meat accounts for nearly half of total meat production in Europe, less attention has been focused on the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions of pig farming. The aim of this study was to assess and compare the impact of pig livestock on GHG emissions during the period 2015–2020 in major European countries, including Greece, using different computational approaches (Tier 1, Tier 2, Gleam-i software v. 2.0 developed by FAO, Rome, Italy). A semi-extensive pig farm was also used as a small-scale scenario. The ranking of the countries related to GHG emissions was not affected by the applied methodology. Spain had the highest emissions due to the higher number of farming animals. The noted numeric differences in the estimations can be attributed to the elaborated and different equational approach that Tier 2 methodology and Gleam-i followed, considering many livestock parameters. Additionally, the semi-extensive farm had lower emissions/fewer animal compared to the average intensive pig farm in the Greek territory. The Tier 1 approach revealed that breeding animals produces more to the emissions, contrary to Tier 2, which showed that fattening pigs is responsible for the majority of GHG emissions. Therefore, specific animal categories could be targeted (i.e., fattening gilts) in a more specialized manner apart from general strategies (i.e., animal improvement).
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-05-13
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9050059
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 5 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 60: Modified Biochars and Their Effects on
           Soil Quality: A Review

    • Authors: Abdul Hafeez, Taowen Pan, Jihui Tian, Kunzheng Cai
      First page: 60
      Abstract: Biochar (BC) has attracted attention due to its impacts on soil quality by enhancing soil fertility, carbon storage and contaminants immobilization. BC also induces changes in microbial community structure and enhances crop productivity in long term scenarios compared to many other organic amendments. However, information related to the role of modified BCs in altering the soil quality is still scarce. BC can be modified by using physical, chemical and microbial methods. Modified BC can change the functional groups, pore size, pore structure, surface area and chemical properties of soil, which plays a key role in changing the soil quality. The addition of modified BCs as soil amendment increased soil CEC (cation exchange capacity), EC (electron conductivity), pH, organic matter, hydraulic conductivity, soil porosity, infiltration rate, microbial activities (enzymes and community), nutrient profile and gas exchange properties, but it varies according to the soil structure and pervading environmental conditions. This study provides a basis for effective practical approaches to modifying BCs for improving soil quality.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-05-15
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9050060
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 5 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 61: Enhanced As, Pb and Zn Uptake by
           Helianthus annuus from a Heavily Contaminated Mining Soil Amended with
           EDTA and Olive Mill Wastewater Due to Increased Element Mobilization, as
           Verified by Sequential Extraction Schemes

    • Authors: Georgios Kalyvas, Fotis Bilias, Dionisios Gasparatos, Ioannis Zafeiriou, Rania Eissa, Eleftheria Karamountzou, Ioannis Massas
      First page: 61
      Abstract: Soils close to former mines or metallurgical facilities often contain extreme concentrations of potentially toxic elements (PTEs), and among soil remediation actions needed, enhanced phytoextraction techniques using chelating agents could be a very promising option. In this context, a pot experiment was conducted to evaluate the effect of Na2-EDTA, olive mill wastewater (OMW), and their combination (EDTA + OMW) on As, Pb and Zn uptake by Helianthus annuus (sunflower), grown in a heavily contaminated soil from Lavrio, Greece. After harvest, aboveground and belowground biomass and the concentrations of As, Pb and Zn were determined. Additionally, composite soil samples of all treatments were subjected to appropriate sequential extraction procedures for each PTE. Results showed that although nonstatistically significant effects on plant growth and As concentration were observed, Pb and Zn plant concentrations increased by the EDTA addition, alone or combined with OMW. When the total bioavailability parameter was assessed, EDTA treatment was also found to significantly enhance As uptake (50% increase, p ≤ 0.05). These results were further supported by the respective sequential extraction schemes in which both Pb and As showed increased concentration in the corresponding more soluble soil fractions, probably as an outcome of partial Fe–Mn amorphous oxide dissolution. Our study thus suggests that the applied treatments of EDTA, OMW or their combined application could play a key role as reductive agents in enhancing the mobility of these PTEs in the soil environment, triggering their increased uptake by H. annuus.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-05-16
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9050061
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 5 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 62: Assessment of the Role of Nearshore Marine
           Ecosystems to Mitigate Beach Erosion: The Case of Negril (Jamaica)

    • Authors: Pascal Peduzzi, Adonis Velegrakis, Bruno Chatenoux, Marisol Estrella, Theofanis Karambas
      First page: 62
      Abstract: Coastal and marine ecosystems are supplying a wide range of services. With accelerated Sea Level Rise, intensification of waves and storm surge severity and increasing anthropogenic pressures, these areas are under multiple threats and society may not receive the same level of ecosystems services. This study aims at measuring the trend of beach erosion and at identifying and quantifying the role of some coastal and marine ecosystems in mitigating beach erosion in the region of Negril (Jamaica). In this location, the tourism industry provides the main source of economic revenue. Even at the national level, the two beaches are important assets linked with 5% of the national revenue as 25% of the hotel rooms are located around Negril. In Jamaica, the tourism industry is a significant component of national GDP. 25% of hotel rooms are located around the two beaches of Negril, which have lost an average of 23.4 m of width since 1968. Given the importance of Negril’s beaches to their economy, the Government of Jamaica asked UNEP to conduct a study to identify causes of beach erosion in Negril and potential solutions to address trends of beach erosion, in the context of future sea level rise scenarios induced by climate change. This paper addresses the current beach erosion status and future trends under different climate scenarios. We explain how, by using remote sensing, GIS, wave modelling and multiple regressions analysis associated with national, local and community consultations, we were able to identify and quantify the role of ecosystems for mitigating beach erosion. We show that larger widths of coral and seagrass meadows reduce beach erosion.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-05-16
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9050062
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 5 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 63: Commercial Red Food Dyes Preparations
           Modulate the Oxidative State in Three Model Organisms (Cucumis sativus,
           Artemia salina, and Danio rerio)

    • Authors: Gaetana Napolitano, Chiara Maria Motta, Claudio Agnisola, Paola Venditti, Gianluca Fasciolo, Ida Ferrandino, Teresa Capriello, Ermenegilda Vitale, Giulia Costanzo, Bice Avallone, Palma Simoniello, Carmen Arena
      First page: 63
      Abstract: The growing environmental spreading of food synthetic dyes and bio-colors have the potential for altering organisms’ redox states. Here, three model species for aquatic pollution trials, Cucumis sativus seeds, Artemia salina cysts, and Danio rerio embryos, were short-term exposed to a fixed concentration of the artificial red E124, and two red bio-colors, cochineal E120, and vegan red (VEGR). In the animal models, we evaluated the total reactive oxygen species (ROS) and the susceptibility to in vitro oxidative stress, and in C. sativus, H2O2 production and antioxidant capacity. We also measured organismal performance indices (routine oxygen consumption in the animal models, dark oxygen consumption, and photosynthetic efficiency in C. sativus). In C. sativus, only E124 increased ROS and affected dark oxygen consumption and photosynthetic efficiency, while all dyes enhanced the antioxidant defenses. In the A. salina nauplii, all dyes increased ROS, while E120 and E124 reduced the susceptibility to oxidative stress. In D. rerio, treatments did not affect ROS content, and reduced oxidative stress susceptibility. Our data show that red food dyes affect the redox state of the developing organisms, in which ROS plays a significant role. We suggest a potentially toxic role for red food dyes with environmentally relevant consequences.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-05-21
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9050063
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 5 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 64: Creation of Value Chains for the
           Sustainability of Control and Eradication Actions on Ailanthus altissima
           (Mill.) Swingle

    • Authors: Leonel J. R. Nunes
      First page: 64
      Abstract: Actions to control and eradicate Ailanthus altissima (Mill.) Swingle are essential to the prevention of uncontrolled growth and expansion of this species and its competition with native species. This competition leads to biodiversity and productivity losses in forests. The present study evaluated the potential to create value chains to maintain the sustainability of control actions through the energy recovery of collected A. altissima biomass. Other possibilities were also discussed, such as the extraction of allelopathic compounds. For this purpose, and to assess the potential for energy recovery, samples of A. altissima were collected and analyzed in the laboratory to discuss the potential of using extracted compounds in nature-based applications, and a literature review was carried out. It was found that, although there is potential for the use of these biomasses for energy production, the high levels of chlorine and heavy metals pose some obstacles to their large-scale use, mainly due to their corrosive potential. On the other hand, the extraction of allelopathic compounds was shown to be potentially interesting for use in the control of other invasive species. Used in this application, it may be possible to create value chains to sustain, control, and eradicate the actions of this invasive species.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-05-23
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9050064
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 5 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 41: A New Multi-Index Method for the
           Eutrophication Assessment in Transitional Waters: Large-Scale
           Implementation in Italian Lagoons

    • Authors: Andrea Bonometto, Emanuele Ponis, Federica Cacciatore, Elena Riccardi, Silvia Pigozzi, Paolo Parati, Marta Novello, Nicola Ungaro, Alessandro Acquavita, Paola Manconi, Adriano Sfriso, Gianmarco Giordani, Rossella Boscolo Brusà
      First page: 41
      Abstract: Eutrophication represents one of the most impacting threats for the ecological status and related ecosystem services of transitional waters; hence, its assessment plays a key role in the management of these ecosystems. A new multi-index method for eutrophication assessment, based on the ecological index MaQI (Macrophyte Quality Index), the trophic index TWQI (Transitional Water Quality Index), and physicochemical quality elements (sensu Dir. 2000/60/EC), was developed including both driver and impact indicators. The study presents a large-scale implementation of the method, which included more than 100 Italian lagoon sites, covering a wide variability of lagoon typologies and conditions. Overall, 35% of sites resulted in eutrophic status, 45% in mesotrophic, and 25% in oligotrophic status.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-03-24
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9040041
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 4 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 42: Leaf-Level Spectroscopy for Analysis of
           Invasive Pest Impact on Trees in a Stressed Environment: An Example Using
           Emerald Ash Borer (Agrilus planipennis Fairmaire) in Ash Trees (Fraxinus
           spp.), Kansas, USA

    • Authors: Laura M. Moley, Douglas G. Goodin, William P. Winslow
      First page: 42
      Abstract: The most visible symptoms of emerald ash borer (EAB) (Argilus planipennis Fairmaire) infestation do not usually appear until six years after the borer’s arrival, by which time the prognosis is so grim that many communities have resorted to either heavy chemical use that only slows mortality, or clear-cutting the entire ash tree population. We utilized leaf-level spectroscopy for early detection of invasive pest-related stress, focusing on EAB as it reaches the edges of the geographic range for green and white ash trees (Fraxinus pennsylvanica and Fraxinus americana) in North America. Over the course of two full growing seasons, we sampled trees in three study areas with EAB infestation in Johnson County, Kansas, and two sample groups without infestation in Riley County, Kansas. Our method utilizes field spectrometer readings for reflectance, along with lab spectrophotometry for estimation of leaf chlorophyll and carotenoid content at several points during the growing season. Results show significant differences between pigment ratios and hyperspectral indicators between infested and non-infested ash trees, although the extent of the separation varies across the foliar season. This work has the potential to make stress diagnosis more effective, thereby improving response, and decreasing both chemical application and plant loss.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-03-24
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9040042
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 4 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 43: Groundwater Hydrogeochemical and Quality
           Appraisal for Agriculture Irrigation in Greenbelt Area, Iraq

    • Authors: Eman Sh. Awad, Noor S. Imran, Muthanna M. Albayati, Vyacheslav Snegirev, Tamara M. Sabirova, Natalia A. Tretyakova, Qusay F. Alsalhy, Mustafa H. Al-Furaiji, Issam K. Salih, Hasan Sh. Majdi
      First page: 43
      Abstract: This study highlights the groundwater hydrogeochemical characteristics and processes (hydrochemistry characteristics, ion exchange, and salinization) and quality suitability assessment for irrigation purposes from five wells in the Greenbelt area located in northwestern Al-Najaf Governorate, Iraq. The suitability of groundwater for irrigation was assessed based on the irrigation water quality index (IWQI) for thirteen parameters and groundwater quality indices such as total dissolved solids (TDS), electrical conductivity (EC), sodium adsorption ratio (SAR), soluble sodium percent (SSP), residual sodium carbonate (RSC), total hardness (TH), permeability index (PI), potential salinity (PS), Kelley’s ratio (KR), and magnesium hazard ratio (MHR). The IWQI’s average values ranged between 76–139. The results of IWQI for the first and second sampling sites showed values of 139 and 104, respectively, indicating that the groundwater was unsuitable and unsafe for irrigation. In contrast, the IWQI for the third, fourth, and fifth sites were 83, 97, and 76, respectively, indicating that the groundwater was safe and possibly used for irrigation. The EC, TDS, PS, and MHR indices were all found to be unsuitable for irrigation in all five sites, and the KR index was also found to be unsuitable for agricultural irrigation in about 80% of the sites, while it was found that the indices of SAR, SSP, RSC, PI, and TH for all sites were suitable and safe for irrigation. As a result of this study, it has been determined that groundwater in the study area is unsuitable for agricultural irrigation. For sustainable groundwater exploitation, it is advised that a continuous water-quality-monitoring program should be implemented, as well as the development of suitable management practices.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-03-25
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9040043
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 4 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 44: Kinetic Aspects of the Interactions
           between TiO2 Nanoparticles, Mercury and the Green Alga Chlamydomonas
           reinhardtii

    • Authors: Mengting Li, Vera I. Slaveykova
      First page: 44
      Abstract: Aquatic organisms are exposed to mixtures of environmental pollutants, including engineered nanoparticles; however, the interactions underlying cocktails’ effects are poorly understood, in particular, the kinetic aspects. The present study explored the time course of the interactions between nano-sized titanium dioxide (nTiO2) with different primary particle sizes, algae and inorganic mercury (Hg) over 96 h under conditions that were representative of a highly contaminated environment. The results showed that nTiO2 with smaller primary particle size and higher concentrations rapidly reduced the adsorption and internalization of mercury by green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. Such a mitigating effect on mercury bioavailability could be explained by the strong adsorbing capacity of nTiO2 for Hg and the aggregation and sedimentation of nTiO2 and bound Hg. The present study highlighted the key processes determining the bioavailability of mercury to the algae in mixture exposure under conditions representative of a highly contaminated environment, such as industrial wastewater effluents.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-03-26
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9040044
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 4 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 45: Stabilisation of Ozone in Water for
           Microbial Disinfection

    • Authors: Emmanuel I. Epelle, Andrew Macfarlane, Michael Cusack, Anthony Burns, Ngozi Amaeze, Kenny Richardson, William Mackay, Mostafa E. Rateb, Mohammed Yaseen
      First page: 45
      Abstract: In current times of increasing global decontamination concerns, sustainable and environmentally-friendly technologies that possess rapid and effective disinfection capabilities are necessary for public health and safety. In this study, we evaluate the potential of ozone-based technology to reveal its immense potential in disinfection applications. Ozonated water generated by an electrolytic method was utilised to quantify ozone retention as a function of mineralogical composition for microbial decontamination. The impacts of temperature and detergent concentration on ozone concentration are critically analysed, as well as ozone’s decomposition and stain removal characteristics. In addition, fabric swatches inoculated with known concentrations of environmental microbes (Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus aureus, Candida albicans, and Aspergillus fumigatus) are washed with ozonated water to ascertain the impact of wash duration on bacterial removal efficiency. The results show significant improvement in the stability and retention potential of ozone in mineral water at low temperature and in the presence of a detergent. The experiments demonstrate first-order decomposition kinetics of ozone in aqueous formulations. The disinfection potency of ozone is also substantiated by a significant removal of microbiota on the fabric utilised (up to 7 log reduction for the bacteria analysed), thus making it effective for sterilisation applications. This also reduces the need for toxic chemicals or chemicals with toxic by-products (e.g., chlorine) for large-scale decontamination operations in various industries.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-04-01
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9040045
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 4 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 46: Soil Pollution Assessment and Sustainable
           Remediation Strategies

    • Authors: Paula Alvarenga
      First page: 46
      Abstract: When the presence of a chemical in soil affects humans or other living organisms, producing undesired effects, that soil is considered polluted [...]
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-04-04
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9040046
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 4 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 47: Understanding the Accuracy Limitations of
           Quantifying Methane Emissions Using Other Test Method 33A

    • Authors: Robert Heltzel, Derek Johnson, Mohammed Zaki, Aron Gebreslase, Omar I. Abdul-Aziz
      First page: 47
      Abstract: Researchers have utilized Other Test Method (OTM) 33A to quantify methane emissions from natural gas infrastructure. Historically, errors have been reported based on a population of measurements compared to known controlled releases of methane. These errors have been reported as 2σ errors of ±70%. However, little research has been performed on the minimum attainable uncertainty of any one measurement. We present two methods of uncertainty estimation. The first was the measurement uncertainty of the state-of-the-art equipment, which was determined to be ±3.8% of the estimate. This was determined from bootstrapped measurements compared to controlled releases. The second approach of uncertainty estimation was a modified Hollinger and Richardson (H&R) method which was developed for quantifying the uncertainty of eddy covariance measurements. Using a modified version of this method applied to OTM 33A measurements, it was determined that uncertainty of any given measurement was ±17%. Combining measurement uncertainty with that of stochasticity produced a total minimum uncertainty of 17.4%. Due to the current nature of stationary single-sensor measurements and the stochasticity of atmospheric data, such uncertainties will always be present. This is critical in understanding the transport of methane emissions and indirect measurements obtained from the natural gas industry.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-04-06
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9040047
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 4 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 48: Monitoring and Management of Inland Waters

    • Authors: Silvia Quadroni
      First page: 48
      Abstract: Inland waters are important ecosystems for both their biodiversity and the services they provide to humans [...]
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-04-09
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9040048
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 4 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 49: Field Test of Mini Photoionization
           Detector-Based Sensors—Monitoring of Volatile Organic Pollutants in
           Ambient Air

    • Authors: Jiří Bílek, Petr Maršolek, Ondřej Bílek, Pavel Buček
      First page: 49
      Abstract: The determination of the concentrations of the organic compounds in ambient air using reference methods is a time-consuming process. The samples must be collected on a specific sorbent material and analyzed. In the best-case scenario, the analysis may be performed on site by portable chromatography techniques; otherwise, transport and laboratory analysis is necessary. Continuous sensory measurement is advantageous, especially concerning speed, resolution, price and ease of use. On the other hand, questions are raised, especially on the subject of the quality of data obtained by sensory measurements. The authors tested several types of volatile organic compound (VOC) sensors. The chosen type was deployed in a 25-unit sensor network for further testing by parallel measurements with the reference technique within the CLAIRO project.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-04-10
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9040049
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 4 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 50: FMECA Application in Tomotherapy:
           Comparison between Classic and Fuzzy Methodologies

    • Authors: Mariarosa Giardina, Elio Tomarchio, Pietro Buffa, Maurizio Palagonia, Ivan Veronese, Marie Claire Cantone
      First page: 50
      Abstract: Accident analysis in radiotherapy highlighted the need to increase quality assurance (QA) programs by the identification of failures/errors with very low probability (rare event) but very severe consequences. In this field, a Failure Mode, Effects and Criticality Analysis (FMECA) technique, used in various industrial processes to rank critical events, has been met with much interest. The literature describes different FMECA methods; however, it is necessary to understand if these tools are incisive and effective in the healthcare sector. In this work, comparisons of FMECA methodologies in the risk assessment of patients undergoing treatments performed with helical tomotherapy are reported. Failure modes identified for the phases “treatment planning” and “treatment execution” are classified using the Risk Priority Number (RPN) index. Differences and similarities in the classification of failures/errors of the examined FMECA approaches are highlighted.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-04-10
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9040050
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 4 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 51: Tritium: Doses and Responses of Aquatic
           Living Organisms (Model Experiments)

    • Authors: Lydia Bondareva, Nadezhda Kudryasheva, Ivan Tananaev
      First page: 51
      Abstract: Tritium is a byproduct of many radiochemical reactions in the nuclear industry, and its effects on aquatic organisms, particularly low-dose effects, deserve special attention. The low-dose effects of tritium on aquatic microbiota have been intensively studied using luminous marine bacteria as model microorganisms. Low-dose physiological activation has been demonstrated and explained by the signaling role of reactive oxygen species through the “bystander effect” in bacterial suspensions. The activation of microbial functions in natural reservoirs by low tritium concentrations can cause unpredictable changes in food chains and imbalances in the natural equilibrium. The incorporation of tritium from the free form into organically bound compounds mainly occurs in the dark and at a temperature of 25 °C. When tritium is ingested by marine animals, up to 56% of tritium is accumulated in the muscle tissue and up to 36% in the liver. About 50% of tritium in the liver is bound in non-exchangeable forms. Human ingestion of water and food products contaminated with background levels of tritium does not significantly contribute to the total dose load on the human body.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-04-14
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9040051
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 4 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 52: Microbial Involvement in the
           Bioremediation of Total Petroleum Hydrocarbon Polluted Soils: Challenges
           and Perspectives

    • Authors: Ilaria Chicca, Simone Becarelli, Simona Di Gregorio
      First page: 52
      Abstract: Nowadays, soil contamination by total petroleum hydrocarbons is still one of the most widespread forms of contamination. Intervention technologies are consolidated; however, full-scale interventions turn out to be not sustainable. Sustainability is essential not only in terms of costs, but also in terms of restoration of the soil resilience. Bioremediation has the possibility to fill the gap of sustainability with proper knowledge. Bioremediation should be optimized by the exploitation of the recent “omic” approaches to the study of hydrocarburoclastic microbiomes. To reach the goal, an extensive and deep knowledge in the study of bacterial and fungal degradative pathways, their interactions within microbiomes and of microbiomes with the soil matrix has to be gained. “Omic” approaches permits to study both the culturable and the unculturable soil microbial communities active in degradation processes, offering the instruments to identify the key organisms responsible for soil contaminant depletion and restoration of soil resilience. Tools for the investigation of both microbial communities, their degradation pathways and their interaction, will be discussed, describing the dedicated genomic and metagenomic approaches, as well as the interpretative tools of the deriving data, that are exploitable for both optimizing bio-based approaches for the treatment of total petroleum hydrocarbon contaminated soils and for the correct scaling up of the technologies at the industrial scale.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-04-15
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9040052
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 4 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 53: What Is Worth Knowing in Interventional
           Practices about Medical Staff Radiation Exposure Monitoring: A Review of
           Recent Outcomes of EURADOS Working Group 12

    • Authors: Paolo Ferrari, Mercè Ginjaume, Oliver Hupe, Una O’Connor, Filip Vanhavere, Elena Bakhanova, Frank Becker, Lorenzo Campani, Eleftheria Carinou, Isabelle Clairand, Dario Faj, Jan Jansen, Zoran Jovanović, Željka Knežević, Dragana Krstić, Francesca Mariotti, Marta Sans-Merce, Pedro Teles, Milena Živković
      First page: 53
      Abstract: EURADOS (European Radiation Dosimetry Group) Working Group 12 (WG12) SG1 activities are aimed at occupational radiation protection and individual monitoring in X-ray and nuclear medicine practices. In recent years, many studies have been carried out in these fields, especially for interventional radiology and cardiology workplaces (IC/IR). The complexity of the exposure conditions of the medical staff during interventional practices makes the radiation protection and monitoring of the exposed workers a challenging task. The scope of the present work is to review some of the main results obtained within WG12 activities about scattered field characterization and personal dosimetry that could be very useful in increasing the quality of radiation protection of the personnel, safety, and awareness of radiation risk. Two papers on Monte Carlo modelling of interventional theater and three papers on active personal dosimeters (APDs) for personnel monitoring were considered in the review. More specifically, Monte Carlo simulation was used as the main tool to characterize the levels of exposure of the medical staff, allowing to determine how beam energy and direction can have an impact on the doses received by the operators. Indeed, the simulations provided information about the exposure of the operator’s head, and the study concluded with the determination of an eye-lens protection factor when protection goggles and a ceiling shielding are used. Moreover, the review included the results of studies on active personal dosimeters, their use in IC/IR workplaces, and how they respond to calibration fields, with X-ray standard and pulsed beams. It was shown that APDs are insensitive to backscatter radiation, but some of them could not respond correctly to the very intense pulsed fields (as those next to the patient in interventional practices). The measurements during interventional procedures showed the potential capability of the employment of APDs in hospitals.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-04-18
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9040053
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 4 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 31: An Integrated Approach for Evaluating the
           Restoration of the Salinity Gradient in Transitional Waters: Monitoring
           and Numerical Modeling in the Life Lagoon Refresh Case Study

    • Authors: Alessandra Feola, Emanuele Ponis, Michele Cornello, Rossella Boscolo Brusà, Federica Cacciatore, Federica Oselladore, Bruno Matticchio, Devis Canesso, Simone Sponga, Paolo Peretti, Matteo Lizier, Luigi Maniero, Valerio Volpe, Adriano Sfriso, Maurizio Ferla, Andrea Bonometto
      First page: 31
      Abstract: Large lagoons usually show a salinity gradient due to fresh water tributaries with inner areas characterized by lower mean values and higher fluctuation of salinity than seawater-dominated areas. In the Venice Lagoon, this ecotonal environment, characterized in the past by oligo-mesohaline waters and large intertidal areas vegetated by reedbeds, was greatly reduced by historical human environmental modifications, including the diversion of main rivers outside the Venice Lagoon. The reduction of the fresh water inputs caused a marinization of the lagoon, with an increase in salinity and the loss of the related habitats, biodiversity, and ecosystem services. To counteract this issue, conservation actions, such as the construction of hydraulic infrastructures for the introduction and the regulation of a fresh water flow, can be implemented. The effectiveness of these actions can be preliminarily investigated and then verified through the combined implementation of environmental monitoring and numerical modeling. Through the results of the monitoring activity carried out in Venice Lagoon in the framework of the Life Lagoon Refresh (LIFE16NAT/IT/000663) project, the study of salinity is shown to be a successful and robust combination of different types of monitoring techniques. In particular, the characterization of salinity is obtained by the acquisition of continuous data, field campaigns, and numerical modeling.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-03-01
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9030031
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 3 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 32: Soil Contamination by Heavy Metals and
           Metalloids

    • Authors: Dionisios Gasparatos
      First page: 32
      Abstract: Soils are central to life on Earth because they provide food, clean water, and air due to their filtering capacity; raw materials; habitats for living organisms; and climate resilience via carbon sequestration, therefore supporting a variety of ecosystem services [...]
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-03-05
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9030032
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 3 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 33: Environmental Exploration of Ultra-Dense
           Nanobubbles: Rethinking Sustainability

    • Authors: Niall J. English
      First page: 33
      Abstract: Nanobubbles are nanoscopic gaseous domains than can exist on solid surfaces or in bulk liquids. They have attracted significant attention in the last decade due to their long-time (meta)stability and ready potential for real-world applications, especially in environmental engineering and more sustainable ecosystems, water treatment, irrigation, and crop growth. After reviewing important nano-bubble science and activity, with some of the latest promising results in agriculture, we point out important directions in applications of nano-bubble phenomena for boosting sustainability, with viewpoints on how to revolutionise best-practice environmental and green sustainability, taking into account economic drivers and impacts. More specifically, it is pointed out how nanobubbles may be used as delivery vehicles, or “nano-carriers”, for nutrients or other agents to specific targets in a variety of ecosystems of environmental relevance, and how core this is to realising a vision of ultra-dense NBs in shaping a positive and lasting impact on ecosystems and our natural environment.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-03-09
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9030033
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 3 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 34: Digital Twins of the Soil Microbiome for
           Climate Mitigation

    • Authors: Hussnain Mukhtar, Rainer Ferdinand Wunderlich, Yu-Pin Lin
      First page: 34
      Abstract: Recent advances in computation power have enabled the creation of digital twins of the microbiome (DTM) to substantially curb soil greenhouse gases (GHG) emissions under global change conditions [...]
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-03-09
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9030034
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 3 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 35: Precipitation and Temperature Trends and
           Cycles Derived from Historical 1890–2019 Weather Data for the City
           of Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

    • Authors: Carling Ruth Walsh, R. Timothy Patterson
      First page: 35
      Abstract: Patterns in historical climate data were analyzed for Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, for the interval 1890–2019. Variables analyzed included records of annual, seasonal, and extreme temperature and precipitation, diurnal temperature range, and various environmental responses. Using LOWESS regressions, it was found that annual and seasonal temperatures in Ottawa have generally increased through this interval, precipitation has shifted to a less snowy, rainier regime, and diurnal temperature variation has decreased. Furthermore, the annual growing season has lengthened by 23 days to ~163 days, and the annual number of frost-free days increased by 13 days to ~215 days. Despite these substantial climatic shifts, some variables (e.g., extreme weather events per year) have remained largely stable through the interval. Time-series analyses (including multitaper spectral analysis and continuous and cross wavelet transforms) have revealed the presence of several strong cyclical patterns in the instrumental record attributable to known natural climate phenomena. The strongest such influence on Ottawa’s climate has been the 11-year solar cycle, while the influence of the El Niño-Southern Oscillation, Arctic Oscillation, North Atlantic Oscillation, and Quasi-Biennial Oscillation were also observed and linked with the trends in annual, seasonal, and extreme weather. The results of this study, particularly the observed linkages between temperature and precipitation variables and cyclic climate drivers, will be of considerable use to policymakers for the planning, development, and maintenance of city infrastructure as Ottawa continues to rapidly grow under a warmer, wetter climate regime.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-03-09
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9030035
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 3 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 36: Dynamics of Vegetation and Climate Change

    • Authors: Mauro Raposo, Carlos Pinto-Gomes
      First page: 36
      Abstract: A set of climatic events that have occurred throughout the Paleolithic ages and all the way up to the present day have led to profound changes in the biosphere, such as periods of glaciation and global warming [...]
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-03-17
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9030036
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 3 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 37: Alternatives to Enhance the Structural
           Performance of PET-Modified Reinforced Concrete Beams

    • Authors: Joseph J. Assaad, Mario Khalil, Jamal Khatib
      First page: 37
      Abstract: Numerous studies investigated the possibility of incorporating plastic wastes in concrete mixtures, thus contributing to efficient management and sustainable development of the construction industry. This paper investigates the possibility of reducing the water-to-cement ratio and/or incorporating steel fibers or polymeric latexes to mitigate the drop in structural properties of reinforced concrete (RC) beams containing polyethylene terephthalate (PET) additions. The PET was derived from waste plastic bottles that were shredded into small pieces and added during concrete batching at 1.5% to 4.5%, by total volume. Test results showed that the concrete plain and structural properties degrade with PET additions, given their lightweight nature and poor characteristic strength compared to aggregate particles. The reduction of w/c from 0.55 to 0.46 proved efficient to refine the matrix porosity and reinstate the shear and flexural strengths of RC beams. Moreso, the incorporation of 0.8% steel fibers (by volume) or 15% styrene-butadiene rubber latexes (by mixing water) were efficient to enhance the bridging phenomenon and reduce the propagation of cracks during beam testing.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-03-17
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9030037
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 3 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 38: Minimizing the Fluoride Load in Water
           Using the Electrocoagulation Method: An Experimental Approach

    • Authors: Shatha Y. Al-Samarrai, Haneen A. Kh. Karaghool, Ali Abdulridha, Nadhir Al-Ansari, Jasim M. Salman, Osamah J. Al-Sareji
      First page: 38
      Abstract: The abundant presence of fluoride (F-) in surface water bodies is an environmental concern because of its effects on human health; medical reports confirmed that fluoride intake above 1.5 mg/L leads to many health complications, including but not limited to weak bones and enamel fluorosis. Thus, the World Health Organisation (WHO) defines 1.20 mg/L as the maximum permissible F- concentration in drinking water. The electrocoagulation method (EC) is globally practised to remove many pollutants from water due to its cost-effectiveness, safety, and ease of use. However, EC has some drawbacks, such as the lack of reactors’ design. In this study, a new EC reactor, which uses four drilled aluminium electrodes and a variant cross-section section container, was designed and used to remove F- from water. The design of the new EC eliminated the need for water mixers. The ability of the new EC unit to remove F- from synthetic water was evaluated at different current densities (CD) (1–3 mA/cm2), electrode distances (ELD) (5–15 mm), pH of the solution (pHoS) (4–10), and initial F- concentrations (IFC) (5–20 mg/L). The outcomes of this study prove that the new reactor could remove as much as 98.3% of 20 mg/l of F- at CD, ELD, pHoS, and IFC of 2 mA/cm2, 5 mm, and 4 and 10 mg/L, respectively.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-03-17
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9030038
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 3 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 39: Evaluating the Use of Alternative
           Normalization Approaches on SARS-CoV-2 Concentrations in Wastewater:
           Experiences from Two Catchments in Northern Sweden

    • Authors: Frida Isaksson, Lian Lundy, Annelie Hedström, Anna J. Székely, Nahla Mohamed
      First page: 39
      Abstract: The detection of SARS-CoV-2 RNA fragments in feces has paved the way for wastewater-based epidemiology to contribute to COVID-19 mitigation measures, with its use in a public health context still under development. As a way to facilitate data comparison, this paper explores the impact of using alternative normalization approaches (wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) flow, population size estimates (derived using total nitrogen (TN), total phosphorus (TP) and census data) and pepper mild mottle virus (PMMoV)) on the relationship between viral wastewater data and clinical case numbers. Influent wastewater samples were collected at two WWTPs in Luleå, northern Sweden, between January and March 2021. TN and TP were determined upon sample collection, with RNA analysis undertaken on samples after one freeze–thaw cycle. The strength of the correlation between normalization approaches and clinical cases differed between WWTPs (r ≤ 0.73 or r ≥ 0.78 at the larger WWTP and r ≤ 0.23 or r ≥ 0.43 at the smaller WWTP), indicating that the use of wastewater as an epidemiological tool is context-dependent. Depending on the normalization approach utilized, time-shifted analyses imply that wastewater data on SARS-CoV-2 RNA pre-dated a rise in clinical cases by 0–2 and 5–8 days, for the lager and smaller WWTPs, respectively. SARS-CoV-2 viral loads normalized to the population or PMMoV better reflect the number of clinical cases when comparing wastewater data between sewer catchments.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-03-19
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9030039
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 3 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 40: Monitoring Phycocyanin with Landsat
           8/Operational Land Imager Orange Contra-Band

    • Authors: Igor Ogashawara, Lin Li, Chase Howard, Gregory K. Druschel
      First page: 40
      Abstract: The Operational Land Imager (OLI) onboard the Landsat 8 satellite has a panchromatic band (503–676 nm) that has been used to compute a virtual spectral band known as “orange contra-band” (590–635 nm). The major application of the orange contra-band is the monitoring of cyanobacteria which is usually quantified by the measurement of the concentration of phycocyanin (PC) which has an absorption peak around 620 nm. In this study, we evaluated the use of the orange contra-band approach for estimating PC concentration from in situ proximal hyperspectral data from Eagle Creek Reservoir (ECR), in Indiana, USA. We first validated the empirical relationship for the computation of the orange contra-band by using the panchromatic, red, and green spectral bands from ECR. PC concentration retrieval using the orange contra-band were not successful when using the entire dataset (R2 < 0.1) or when using only PC concentrations higher than 50 mg/m3 (R2 < 0.24). Better results were achieved when using samples in which PC was 1.5 times higher than the chlorophyll-a concentration (R2 = 0.84). These results highlighted the need for the development of remote sensing algorithms for the accurate estimation of PC concentration from non-PC dominant waters which could be use to track and/or predict cyanobacteria blooms.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-03-19
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9030040
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 3 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 12: Approaching Quietness as an Urban
           Sustainability Opportunity

    • Authors: Aggelos Tsaligopoulos, Yiannis G. Matsinos
      First page: 12
      Abstract: Quietness in an urban environment is vital for the well-being of city residents. Nevertheless, the ambiguity in the conceptualization of the terms noise and quietness as urban acoustic planning and design objectives, has resulted in two different approaches: the soundscape approach and the noise control approach. The main purpose of this research is to supplement the existing approaches by proposing a new ecological acoustics approach in order to identify quiet areas in the city of Mytilene (Lesbos Island, North Aegean, Greece). The use of the soundscape approach involved the participation of Mytilene’s residents and the collection of subjective and objective eligibility criteria. By means of Multi-Criteria Decision Making two urban green areas were highlighted as potential quiet areas. For the noise control approach, road noise maps have been created through a commercial noise mapping software, validated by trough measurements. As a result, two areas located in the outskirts of the city were highlighted. Finally, the novel ecological acoustics approach involved acoustic recordings and the extraction of the Composite Urban Quietness Index (CUQI). The outcome of this approach converged with the soundscape approach results. Quietness, as an urban acoustic planning and design goal, could be viewed as an opportunity for ecologically sustainable urban environments.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-01-18
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9020012
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 2 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 13: Effect of Tillage Technology Systems for
           Seed Germination Rate in a Laboratory Tests

    • Authors: Jan Winkler, Tomáš Kopta, Vojtěch Ferby, Lubomír Neudert, Magdalena Daria Vaverková
      First page: 13
      Abstract: Reduced and soil-protective tillage technologies may represent certain negatives for cultivated crops associated with the biomass of mulch from intermediate crops and post-harvest residues. Sown crops, as well as field weeds, are exposed to impaired soil conditions. Soil conditions were assessed using biological tests. Eight plant species were chosen for the tests. Germination of tested plant species took place in controlled conditions in climaboxes. Seeds on Petri dishes were watered with soil leachates from three variants of tillage (Conventional, Minimum tillage, Direct sowing). Soil samples were collected from a 15-year field experiment. The soil leachates inhibited the germination rate of the chosen plant species. In the first term, all species exhibited a lower germination capacity in variants watered with the soil leachate. The reduced tillage technologies can apparently significantly slow down the germination rate in field crops and vegetables. Simple biological tests have the potential to assess the condition of arable soils.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-01-19
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9020013
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 2 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 14: Application of Calcified Structures in
           Fish as Indicators of Metal Exposure in Freshwater Ecosystems

    • Authors: Vlatka Filipović Marijić, Tatjana Mijošek, Zrinka Dragun, Anika Retzmann, Andreas Zitek, Thomas Prohaska, Niko Bačić, Zuzana Redžović, Ivana Grgić, Nesrete Krasnići, Damir Valić, Damir Kapetanović, Jakov Žunić, Dušica Ivanković, Irena Vardić Smrzlić, Marijana Erk
      First page: 14
      Abstract: Although there are common and well-established bioindicator organisms and tissues, there is still a need for reliable and sensitive bioindicators in aquatic environments. In the present pilot study, calcified structures in fish were applied as indicators of metal exposure in combination with commonly used fish soft tissues and intestinal parasites, therefore comprising short- and long-term indicators. Patterns of metal accumulation and distribution in soft (muscle, liver) and hard (scales, otoliths) tissues of brown trout (Salmo trutta Linnaeus, 1758) and their intestinal parasites, acanthocephalans (Dentitruncus truttae Sinzar, 1955), from the Krka River influenced by industrial and municipal wastewaters were estimated and compared. Most elements had higher levels in acanthocephalans, scales and liver than muscle and otoliths, possibly reflecting differences in metal uptake routes, tissue function and metabolic activity. Despite the recorded differences in metal contents, all applied bioindicators reflected environmental conditions in a similar way, indicating higher levels of most elements in fish from the contaminated rather than from the reference site. Acanthocephalans were confirmed as sensitive bioindicators due to effective metal accumulation capacity, while the combination of soft and hard tissues provided extended temporal information on metal exposure. Wastewater impact was evidenced as moderate metal pollution by all applied indicators and pointed to present but also long-term disturbances in the Krka River and the importance of continuous monitoring and protective actions.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-01-21
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9020014
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 2 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 15: Environmental and Economic Impacts of
           Mismanaged Plastics and Measures for Mitigation

    • Authors: Avalon Diggle, Tony R. Walker
      First page: 15
      Abstract: The mismanagement of plastic materials has grown to become a mounting global pollution concern that is closely implicated in unsustainable production and consumption paradigms. The ecological, social, and economic impacts of plastic waste mismanagement are currently transboundary in nature and have necessitated numerous methods of government intervention in order to address and mitigate the globalized and multifaceted dilemmas posed by high rates and volumes of plastic waste generation. This review examines the current landscape of a plastics economy which has operated with a linear momentum, employing large quantities of primary resources and disincentivizing the functioning of a robust recycling market for collecting plastic waste and reintegrating it into the consumer market. This contextualizes an increasing plastic pollution crisis that has required global efforts to address and mitigate the ecological risks and socio-economic challenges of mismanaged plastic waste. A timeline of government interventions regarding plastic pollution is described, including numerous international, regional, and local actions to combat plastic waste, and this is followed by an examination of the relevance of the extended producer responsibility principle to improve plastic waste management and obligate industry to assume responsibility in waste collection and recycling.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-01-21
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9020015
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 2 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 16: Waste Management and the Circular Economy
           in Cyprus—The Case of the SWAN Project

    • Authors: Athanasios Angelis-Dimakis, George Arampatzis, Andreas Alexopoulos, Andreas Pantazopoulos, Ioannis Vyrides, Nikolaos Chourdakis, Vasilis Angelis
      First page: 16
      Abstract: The increase in waste volume and greenhouse gas emissions and decrease in raw-material reserves are some of the serious problems that our planet is facing. The measures needed to address these issues cannot be implemented under the prevailing linear economy model; hence, the circular economy model has been introduced. The successful implementation of circularity, whose basic principles include waste reduction, reuse, and recycling, requires a change in the behaviour of all the parties involved and is expected to lead to industrial–urban symbiosis schemes. The present paper looks at the current state and future prospects of the circular economy in Cyprus, based on the evidence drawn from an EU-funded project entitled “a digital Solid Waste reuse plAtform for BalkaN” (Project Acronym: SWAN). The project’s main objective was the design and development of a digital solid waste reuse platform involving four countries: Greece, Albania, Bulgaria, and Cyprus. Using the data collected, in the context of this project, from a sample of Cypriot industries, we looked into the familiarisation of the respondents with the basic concepts of circularity and their willingness to participate in symbiotic value chains. Moreover, we examined the composition of the waste streams produced by those industries and proposed potential waste reuse business models and subsequent symbiotic clusters.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-01-23
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9020016
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 2 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 17: Preliminary Studies of Methylene Blue
           Remotion from Aqueous Solutions by Ocimum basilicum

    • Authors: Haneen A. K. Karaghool, Khalid Hashim, Patryk Kot, Magomed Muradov
      First page: 17
      Abstract: The continuous expansion in the textile industry results in high loads of coloured wastewaters that heavily pollute the limited freshwater sources. Therefore, a wide array of treatment methods has been used to remediate water/wastewater from dyes. One common practice is the use of plants to degrade, absorb, metabolise, and detoxify different types of pollutants, including dyes. This study employs sweet basil (Ocimum basilicum) as a phytoremediation model herb to remove different concentrations (5–25 mg/L) of methylene blue (MB) dye from synthetic water, taking into account the effects of the MB dye concentration (5–25 mg/L) and contact time (up to 10 days). The results showed that the ability of Ocimum basilicum to absorb MB dye decreased with the increase of the MB dye concentration and increased with the increase of the contact time. The best removal of the MB dye was 93% when the concentration of the MB dye was 25 mg/L and the contact time was 10 days. Additionally, it was noticed that the relative growth rate (RGR) of the herbs was adversely influenced by increasing MB dye concentrations and that the best RGR value was 2.2 g/day when the MB dye concentration was 5 mg/L.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-01-23
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9020017
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 2 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 18: Soil Remediation: Towards a Resilient and
           

    • Authors: Martina Grifoni, Elisabetta Franchi, Danilo Fusini, Marco Vocciante, Meri Barbafieri, Francesca Pedron, Irene Rosellini, Gianniantonio Petruzzelli
      First page: 18
      Abstract: Pollution from numerous contaminants due to many anthropogenic activities affects soils quality. Industrialized countries have many contaminated sites; their remediation is a priority in environmental legislation. The aim of this overview is to consider the evolution of soil remediation from consolidated invasive technologies to environmentally friendly green strategies. The selection of technology is no longer exclusively based on eliminating the source of pollution but aims at remediation, which includes the recovery of soil quality. “Green remediation” appears to be the key to addressing the issue of remediation of contaminated sites as it focuses on environmental quality, including the preservation of the environment. Further developments in green remediation reflect the aim of promoting clean-up strategies that also address the effects of climate change. Sustainable and resilient remediation faces the environmental challenge of achieving targets while reducing the environmental damage caused by clean-up interventions and must involve an awareness that social systems and environmental systems are closely connected.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-01-25
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9020018
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 2 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 19: Characterization of the Dynamics of
           Leachate Contamination Plumes in the Surroundings of the Hulene-B Waste
           Dump in Maputo, Mozambique

    • Authors: Bernardino Bernardo, Carla Candeias, Fernando Rocha
      First page: 19
      Abstract: The contamination of areas around solid urban waste dumps is a global challenge for the maintenance of environmental quality in large urban centres in developing countries. This study applied a geophysical method (electrical resistivity) to identify leachate contamination plumes in the subsoil and groundwater, as well as to describe their temporal dynamics (2020 and 2021) in the surroundings of the Hulene-B waste dump, Maputo, Mozambique. Eight 400 m electrical resistivity profiles were performed, four profiles in January 2020 and four profiles in May 2021 overlapped, and the data were inverted with RES2D software. The electrical resistivity models predominantly indicate an E-W movement of large contamination plumes that are successively diluted with saturated media and groundwater, creating zones of less resistive anomalies (<4.2–8.5 Ω·m) possibly contaminated at the two analysed seasons, between 2020–2021. The thickness of the contamination plumes was higher in summer (2020) for profiles 1 and 2, and we associate it with the production and migration mechanisms of leachate that are intense in the hot and rainy season. Southwest of the dump, profile 4b showed the propagation of anomalous areas on the surface and at depth, which are associated with the production of leachate resulting from the continuous decomposition of waste that is continuously deposited in a new area southwest of the dump, thus generating a slow and continuous migration of leachate at depth, mainly in winter (2021). The spatial distribution of contamination plumes during both seasons was reduced significantly farther away from the waste deposit, revealing the attenuating effect of groundwater and lithological substrate (Profile 3).
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-01-26
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9020019
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 2 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 20: Dissolution of Silver Nanoparticles in
           Stratified Estuarine Mesocosms and Silver Accumulation in a Simple
           Planktonic Freshwater Trophic Chain

    • Authors: Camille Guilleux, Zhongzhi Chen, Peter G. C. Campbell, Claude Fortin
      First page: 20
      Abstract: The increasing presence of nanomaterials in consumer products has led the scientific community to study the environmental fate of these contaminants of emerging concern. Silver nanoparticles, used mainly for their antibacterial properties, are among the most common nanomaterials. Understanding their transformations and interactions with living organisms, especially under environmentally relevant conditions that can modify metal bioavailability, is a crucial step in the study of their impacts on aquatic ecosystems. In the present study, citrate-coated silver nanoparticles (20 nm; 10 µg/L) were added to the surface freshwater layer of mesocosms simulating a stratified estuary. The investigation by dialysis of the nanoparticle dissolution showed that a large amount of total silver was found in the freshwater layer (and a very low amount in the seawater layer) and that 5–15% was in the form of dissolved silver. These results indicate that the halocline, separating fresh water from seawater, acted as a strong density barrier limiting the sedimentation of the nanoparticles. A simple trophic chain, composed of the freshwater alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii and the invertebrate Daphnia magna, was used to determine silver bioavailability. This study suggests that citrate-coated silver nanoparticles do not significantly contribute to Ag accumulation by algae but may do so for invertebrates.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-01-28
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9020020
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 2 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 21: Acknowledgment to Reviewers of
           Environments in 2021

    • Authors: Environments Editorial Office Environments Editorial Office
      First page: 21
      Abstract: Rigorous peer-reviews are the basis of high-quality academic publishing [...]
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-01-28
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9020021
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 2 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 22: Assessment of Fish Abundance, Biodiversity
           and Movement Periodicity Changes in a Large River over a 20-Year Period

    • Authors: Jean-Philippe Benitez, Arnaud Dierckx, Gilles Rimbaud, Billy Nzau Matondo, Séverine Renardy, Xavier Rollin, Alain Gillet, Frédéric Dumonceau, Pascal Poncin, Jean-Claude Philippart, Michaël Ovidio
      First page: 22
      Abstract: A river is an ecosystem where fish fauna represents an important structural element. To re-establish connectivity, it is imperative to allow movement between functional habitats. Due to the hydromorphological complexity of large anthropized rivers and the lack of study techniques that can be used in such environments, relevant data with regard to fish ecology are scarce. On the River Meuse, Belgium, at a point 323 km upstream from the North Sea, the Lixhe hydroelectric dam is equipped with two fishways. Both were continuously monitored using capture traps for 20 consecutive years (from 1999 to 2018), representing 4151 monitoring events. The objectives of the present study were to describe the overall abundance and movement indicators of mainly holobiotic potamodromous fish species and to analyse their temporal evolution. We captured 388,631 individuals (n = 35 fish species) during the 20 years of fishway monitoring; 22.7% were adults (>75% of which were cyprinids), and 83.3% juveniles (>90% cyprinids). From 1999 to 2018, the results showed a drastic reduction in yearly captures for some native species as well as the apparent emergence of non-native (e.g., Silurus glanis) and reintroduced species (e.g., Salmo salar). The annual capture periodicities associated with environmental factors were clearly defined and were mostly related to the spring spawning migration of the adult stage. This long-term monitoring demonstrated how the fishways are used by the whole fish community and allowed a better understanding of their movement ecology in a large lowland anthropized river. The appearance of non-native species and the drastic decline in abundance of some common and widespread European fish should prompt river managers to adopt conservation measures.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-01-29
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9020022
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 2 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 23: Structural Selectivity of PAH Removal
           Processes in Soil, and the Effect of Metal Co-Contaminants

    • Authors: Michael E. Deary, Chinedu C. Ekumankama, Stephen P. Cummings
      First page: 23
      Abstract: Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) form a convenient structural series of molecules with which to examine the selectivity exerted on their removal by soil microbiota. It is known that there is an inverse relationship between PAH molecular size and degradation rates in soil. In this paper, we look at how the magnitude of the slope for this relationship, m, can be used as an indicator of the effect of metal co-contaminants on degradation rates across a range of PAH molecular weights. The analysis utilises data collected from our previous microcosm study (Deary, M.E.; Ekumankama, C.C.; Cummings, S.P. Development of a novel kinetic model for the analysis of PAH biodegradation in the presence of lead and cadmium co-contaminants. Journal of Hazard Materials 2016, 307, 240–252) in which we followed the degradation of the 16 US EPA PAHs over 40 weeks in soil microcosms taken from a high organic matter content woodland soil. The soil was amended with a PAH mixture (total concentration of 2166 mg kg−1) and with a range of metal co-contaminant concentrations (lead, up to 782 mg kg−1; cadmium up to 620 mg kg−1; and mercury up to 1150 mg kg−1). It was found that the magnitude of m increases in relation to the applied concentration of metal co-contaminant, indicating a more adverse effect on microbial communities that participate in the removal of higher molecular weight PAHs. We conclude that m is a useful parameter by which we might measure the differential effects of environmental contaminants on the PAH removal. Such information will be useful in planning and implementing remediation strategies.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-01-29
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9020023
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 2 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 24: Impact of Old Pb Mining and Metallurgical
           Production in Soils from the Linares Mining District (Spain)

    • Authors: Carlos Boente, Carlos Sierra, Julián Martínez, Eduardo Rodríguez-Valdés, Elías Afif, Javier Rey, Isabel Margarida Horta Ribeiro Antunes, José Luis Rodríguez Gallego
      First page: 24
      Abstract: Mineral processing and metallurgy production centers may leave a far-reaching fingerprint of soil contamination. This scenario is particularly relevant in the mining district of Linares (Southern Spain), where former industrial sites are now dedicated to other land uses. Within this context, we selected five sectors of concern in Linares region, which are currently used as agricultural and residential areas. The study began with an edaphic characterization, including grain-size fractioning and soil chemical analyses, which were complemented by mineralogical and sequential extraction information. Anomalous soil concentrations of As, Cd, Cu, Pb, and Zn were found, with higher values than the admissible regional guideline limits. Moreover, chemical speciation indicated that in general, Pb, Zn, and Cd were highly available and bound mainly to the carbonate fraction. In addition, health risk assessment evidenced potential threats by Pb and As. Regarding remediation approaches, we observed that, in soils affected by mining and ore dressing activities, the clay and silt size fractions contained the highest pollution load, making them suitable for a size classification treatment. By contrast, in areas affected by metallurgical activity, pollutants were prone to be evenly distributed among all grain sizes, thereby complicating the implementation of such remediation strategies.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-01-31
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9020024
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 2 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 25: Monitoring and Assessment of Environmental
           Quality in Coastal Environments

    • Authors: Sílvia C. Gonçalves
      First page: 25
      Abstract: Coastal ecosystems are presently one of the most impacted environments by contamination and human pressures [...]
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-02-02
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9020025
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 2 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 26: Acute Adverse Effects of Metallic
           Nanomaterials on Cardiac and Behavioral Changes in Daphnia magna

    • Authors: Jihoon Park, Changgyun Park, Yongoh Lee, Changseon Ryu, Jayoung Park, Youngjun Kim
      First page: 26
      Abstract: Nanomaterials are widely believed to induce toxic effects on organisms by evoking oxidative stress. We evaluated the toxic effects of nanomaterials on the cardiac and behavioral changes in Daphnia magna under varying exposure conditions. Titanium dioxide nanoparticles (TiO2 NPs), silver nanoparticles (AgNPs), and silver nitrate (AgNO3) were selected for the acute toxicity tests. The adverse effects of the substances on the neonates including heart rate, swimming speed, and oxidative stress were measured. The heart rate level decreased as the concentration of both NPs and silver ions (Ag+) increased. The average swimming speed was measured to be approximately 15 mm/min for the control group. The swimming speed generally increased with a longer exposure to both NPs although it reached a plateau at the lowest concentration of AgNPs. A similar but less clear trend was observed for Ag+. For all substances, the overall swimming speed exhibited no correlation or weak negative correlations with the exposure concentration. The oxidative stress levels increased after exposure compared with the control group. We conclude that aquatic nanotoxicity tests should consider multilevel physicochemical, physiological, and behavioral parameters for the official guidelines to quantify more robust adverse outcomes.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-02-10
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9020026
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 2 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 27: Monitoring and Management of Inland
           Waters: Insights from the Most Inhabited Italian Region

    • Authors: Silvia Quadroni, Paolo Espa, Serena Zaccara, Giuseppe Crosa, Roberta Bettinetti, Maristella Mastore, Maurizio Francesco Brivio
      First page: 27
      Abstract: Monitoring of freshwaters allows the detection of the impacts of multiple anthropic uses and activities on aquatic ecosystems, and an eco-sustainable management of natural resources could limit these impacts. In this work, we highlighted two main issues affecting inland waters, referring to findings from the most inhabited Italian region (Lombardy, approximately 10 M inhabitants): the first issue is lake pollution by old generation pesticides, the second is river development for hydropower. In both cases, some management strategies reducing the anthropic impacts on freshwaters were discussed: organic farming and biocontrol as an alternative to diffuse pollution by agrochemicals; environmental flows and controlled sediment flushing operations to limit the hydropower impact on rivers. Although the two mentioned issues were discussed separately in this paper, the management of water resources should be carried out in a comprehensive way, accounting for the multiple impacts affecting freshwater ecosystems, including those related to the climate changes.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-02-12
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9020027
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 2 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 28: Bibliographic Coupling Links: Alternative
           Approaches to Carrying Out Systematic Reviews about Renewable and
           Sustainable Energy

    • Authors: Vítor João Pereira Domingues Martinho
      First page: 28
      Abstract: New technologies, specifically the internet, have over the last two decades increased the number of publications in the most diverse fields of science. Subjects related to renewable and sustainable energy are no exception. These frameworks have allowed the main insights produced by the scientific community through literature surveys to be highlighted. Nonetheless, considering the vast quantity of studies, systematic approaches have been proposed by the researchers to better organize and perform the literature review. Considering the subjectivity of some of these methodologies, the main objectives of this research are to conduct a systematic review about renewable and sustainable energy through more objective techniques, based on bibliometric analysis, to provide an alternative or to complement those already available within the literature. For this purpose, a “Biblio4Review” approach was proposed in order to perform systematic reviews about renewable and sustainable energy that may spread into other scientific fields. This methodology is based on bibliographic coupling links from the bibliometric analysis to identify the most relevant studies for the literature review. The results obtained highlight that with this approach it was possible to identify the studies with greater centrality in terms of references shared. In this way, they are among the most relevant documents for these topics. Specifically for the topic considered (renewable and sustainable energy) the main insights were referred to. In any case, the findings obtained show that there is a field for more interdisciplinary approaches.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-02-12
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9020028
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 2 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 29: Teaching Atmospheric Hazards in the
           Climate Change Context—Environmental Didactic Proposals in the
           Mediterranean Region for Secondary Schools

    • Authors: Álvaro-Francisco Morote, Jorge Olcina, María Hernández
      First page: 29
      Abstract: The political sphere is starting to take an interest in how the teaching of atmospheric risks at pre-university stages can be improved. This interest has arisen due to the fact that, as stated in the 2030 Agenda, education is an important factor for reducing the effects of natural hazards within the context of current climate change. However, in developed countries education has not played a prominent role in the design of risk prevention policies. The purpose of this study was to identify the principal deficiencies that characterise the study of natural risks in non-university education and then to propose didactic activities for improving the teaching of the main processes associated with climate change (episodes of intense rains and droughts) that already affect the Spanish Mediterranean region. Their implementation in the classroom seeks, first, to correct the deficiencies in the knowledge of the students in terms of the sources from which they obtain information, and second, to raise awareness about the importance of education in the prevention and mitigation of climate risks. These proposals are intended to serve as a guide to activities to be implemented in classrooms in other international areas, taking into account their geographical characteristics and the availability of data.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-02-13
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9020029
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 2 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 30: Application of Landscape-Ecological
           Approach for Greenways Planning in Rural Agricultural Landscape

    • Authors: Jakub Melicher, Jana Špulerová
      First page: 30
      Abstract: This article presents an innovative approach to the concept of facilitating greenways into sustainable landscape planning. The greenways can be planned by application of a landscape-ecological concept, including analysis and synthesis of selected abiotic, biotic, and socio-economic landscape-ecological factors and recreation conditions, and by reviewing the current landscape structure and condition of linear components of green infrastructure. Determining the landscape ecological stability, visual impact of agricultural lands, potential erosion risks and real erosion processes, and identifying the natural, cultural, and historical values in the landscape, contributes to the design of ideal greenways placement and other linear components of green infrastructure. Applying these proposals to the agricultural landscape would increase the ecological stability and connectivity, decrease soil and water erosion risks, eliminate visual impact, and develop recreational infrastructure. In this way, greenways planning brings about a synergy between sustainable rural development, landscape and nature protection, and landscape aesthetics, which provides optimal landscape utilization and may encourage tourism and economic prosperity in the study area. Finally, in addition to the researched ecological benefits, our greenways proposal represents an alternative connection of settlements in rural agricultural landscapes, and so it can stimulate sustainable mobility and recreation as well as physical activity, health, and well-being.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-02-17
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9020030
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 2 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 6: Environmental Benefit of Alternative
           Binders in Construction Industry: Life Cycle Assessment

    • Authors: Girts Bumanis, Aleksandrs Korjakins, Diana Bajare
      First page: 6
      Abstract: Carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions associated with Portland cement (PC) production is ranked as the highest among the construction materials and it is estimated that 8% of the worlds CO2 discharges is due to PC production. As an average, the production of PC clinker including calcination process generates 0.81 kg of carbon dioxide per one kg of cement. Hence, new approaches which limit the negative environmental impacts of cement production and are aimed at the development of advanced methodologies are introduced. Implementation of lower energy consumption materials in production, which could moderately substitute PC in binders, can be addressed as one of the probable methods in mitigating environmental risks. Therefore, alternative binders fit into the most promising solutions. Present research investigates the environmental impact of the building sector, if an alternative to PC binder is used. Life cycle assessment (LCA) was used in this research to assess the environmental impact of the alternative ternary gypsum-PC-pozzolan binder in the production of mortar, and the environmental benefits were calculated and compared to traditional cement-based building materials. Phosphogypsum was considered as a secondary raw material, as in the current approach it is collected in open stacks bringing environmental concerns. SimaPro LCA software with the Ecoinvent database was used for most of the calculation processes. Results indicate that with alternative binders up to 30% of energy can be saved and 57 wt.% of CO2 emissions can be reduced, bringing positive impact on the construction industries contribution to the environment.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-01-04
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9010006
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 1 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 7: Environmental Policy for the Restriction on
           the Use of Plastic Products in Taiwan: Regulatory Measures, Implementation
           Status and COVID-19’s Impacts on Plastic Products Recycling

    • Authors: Wen-Tien Tsai
      First page: 7
      Abstract: In response to international trends regarding the reduction in plastic waste (or plastic pollution), this work used the official statistics that were recently released, focusing on regulatory actions restricting the use of plastic products and/or the increase in recycling in Taiwan. In addition, the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on plastic waste generation and plastic products’ recycling were also addressed in the present study. The results showed that the plastic compositions in the garbage slightly increased in recent years, suggesting that the effect of restrictions on the use of plastic products in Taiwan was not significant, even though the regulatory measures have been implemented since 2002. However, chlorine contents in the garbage were significantly increased in 2020. The increase could be attributed to the fact that kitchen waste (containing salt), household waste containing disinfectant (e.g., chlorine dioxide, sodium hypochlorite) or PVC-made products were generated more during the COVID-19 pandemic. Furthermore, the data also indicated that the monthly quantities of recycled plastic containers and other plastic products had no significant change since January 2020, especially in the outbreak period from May 2021 to July 2021.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-01-04
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9010007
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 1 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 8: Bond to Bar Reinforcement of PET-Modified
           Concrete Containing Natural or Recycled Coarse Aggregates

    • Authors: Joseph J. Assaad, Jamal M. Khatib, Rawan Ghanem
      First page: 8
      Abstract: The use of post-consumer plastics in concrete production is an ideal alternative to dispose of such wastes while reducing the environmental impacts in terms of pollution and consumption of natural resources and energy. This paper investigates different approaches (i.e., reducing water-to-cement ratio and incorporating steel fibers or polymeric latexes) that compensate for the detrimental effect of waste plastics on the drop in concrete mechanical properties including the bond to embedded steel bars. The polyethylene terephthalate (PET) wastes used in this study were derived from plastic bottles that were shredded into small pieces and added during concrete batching at 1.5% to 4.5%, by total volume. Test results showed that the concrete properties are degraded with PET additions, given their lightweight nature and poor characteristic strength compared to aggregate particles. The threshold PET volumetric rates are 4.5% and 3% for concrete made using natural or recycled aggregates, respectively. The reduction of w/c from 0.55 to 0.46 proved efficient to refine the matrix porosity and reinstate the concrete performance. The incorporation of 0.8% steel fibers (by volume) or 15% polymers (by mixing water) were appropriate to enhance the bridging phenomena and reduce the propagation of cracks during the pullout loading of steel bars.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-01-06
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9010008
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 1 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 9: Two Birds with One Stone: Bioplastics and
           Food Waste Anaerobic Co-Digestion

    • Authors: Sarah Kakadellis, Po-Heng Lee, Zoe M. Harris
      First page: 9
      Abstract: Following the BBC’s Blue Planet II nature documentary series on marine ecosystems, plastic packaging has come under public fire, with consumers demanding greener alternatives. The biodegradable properties of some bioplastics have offered a potential solution to the global challenge of plastic pollution, while enabling the capture of food waste through anaerobic digestion as a circular and energy-positive waste treatment strategy. However, despite their increasing popularity, currently bioplastics are being tested in environments that do not reflect real-life waste management scenarios. Bioplastics find their most useful, meaningful and environmentally-sound application in food packaging—why is there so little interest in addressing their anaerobic co-digestion with food waste' Here, we provide a set of recommendations to ensure future studies on bioplastic end-of-life are fit for purpose. This perspective makes the link between the environmental sustainability of bioplastics and the role of food waste anaerobic digestion as we move towards an integrated food–energy–water–waste nexus. It shines light on a novel outlook in the field of bioplastic waste management while uncovering the complexity of a successful path forward. Ultimately, this research strives to ensure that the promotion of bioplastics within a circular economy framework is supported across waste collection and treatment stages.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-01-07
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9010009
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 1 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 10: Tin and Antimony as Soil Pollutants along
           Railway Lines—A Case Study from North-Western Croatia

    • Authors: Zvjezdana Stančić, Željka Fiket, Andreja Vuger
      First page: 10
      Abstract: The aim of this study was to determine the extent and patterns of antimony and tin contamination in soils along railway lines, as there are very few data in the literature on this subject. The study was conducted in north-western Croatia. Total and bioavailable concentrations of Sn and Sb were detected using high resolution inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (HR-ICP-MS). The following results were obtained: total concentrations of Sb ranged from 0.98 to 52.0 mg/kg and of Sn from 3.04 mg/kg to 97.6 mg/kg. The soil samples showed pronounced Sb and Sn enrichment, up to 87 and 33 times the median value for European soils, respectively. In contrast to the total concentrations, the bioavailable concentrations showed relatively low values. For Sn, the percentage of total content ranged from 0.001 to 0.021%, while for Sb it ranged from 0.001 to 0.136%. Statistical data analysis suggests that the distribution of Sb and Sn in soils near railway lines is influenced by the functional use of the site, distance from the tracks, topography, age of the railway line, and also by soil properties such as soil texture, humus content, and soil pH. This study demonstrates that rail transport is a source of soil pollution with Sn and Sb. The origin of Sb and Sn enrichment is abrasion by brakes, rails, wheels, freight losses, exhaust gasses, etc. Both elements in soils along railway lines pose an environmental risk to humans, agricultural production, and wildlife, and therefore further detailed studies are required.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-01-08
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9010010
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 1 (2022)
       
  • Environments, Vol. 9, Pages 11: Potentially Toxic Elements’
           Contamination of Soils Affected by Mining Activities in the Portuguese
           Sector of the Iberian Pyrite Belt and Optional Remediation Actions: A
           Review

    • Authors: Clarisse Mourinha, Patrícia Palma, Carlos Alexandre, Nuno Cruz, Sónia Morais Rodrigues, Paula Alvarenga
      First page: 11
      Abstract: Both sectors of the Iberian Pyrite Belt, Portuguese and Spanish, have been exploited since ancient times, but more intensively during and after the second half of the 19th century. Large volumes of polymetallic sulfide ore were extracted in open pits or in underground works, processed without environmental concerns, and the generated waste rocks and tailings were simply deposited in the area. Many of these mining sites were abandoned for years under the action of erosive agents, leading to the spread of trace elements and the contamination of soils, waters and sediments. Some of these mine sites have been submitted to rehabilitation actions, mostly using constructive techniques to dig and contain the contaminated tailings and other waste materials, but the remaining soil still needs to be treated with the best available techniques to recover its ecosystem functions. Besides the degraded physical structure and poor nutritional status of these soils, they have common characteristics, as a consequence of the pyrite oxidation and acid drainage produced, such as a high concentration of trace elements and low pH, which must be considered in the remediation plans. This manuscript aims to review the results from studies which have already covered these topics in the Iberian Pyrite Belt, especially in its Portuguese sector, considering: (i) soils’ physicochemical characteristics; (ii) potentially toxic trace elements’ concentration; and (iii) sustainable remediation technologies to cope with this type of soil contamination. Phytostabilization, after the amelioration of the soil’s properties with organic and inorganic amendments, was investigated at the lab and field scale by several authors, and their results were also considered.
      Citation: Environments
      PubDate: 2022-01-12
      DOI: 10.3390/environments9010011
      Issue No: Vol. 9, No. 1 (2022)
       
 
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