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Sustainability, Volume 14, Issue 11 (June-1 2022) – 566 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): The Assiniboine River Basin (ARB) is subject to the exceptionally variable precipitation regime of the Canadian Prairies, ranging between record droughts and unprecedented flooding. Climate change could intensify hydrological extremes, changing not just the magnitude but also the timing of flood and drought events. Changes in the severity of extreme hydrological events and seasonal distribution of runoff will have major impacts on terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems, and on the availability of municipal and industrial water supplies in the ARB. These large uncertainties highlight the value of adaptive management and a risk-based approach to climate resilience to reduce future risks while considering the range of uncertainties. View this paper
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15 pages, 4098 KiB  
Article
Research on the Realization Path of Railway Intelligent Construction Based on System Engineering
by You Wang, Ziwei Wang, Tingting Ma, Guowei Li and Huixia Tie
Sustainability 2022, 14(11), 6945; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14116945 - 6 Jun 2022
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 3183
Abstract
The implementation of railway intelligent construction is the need of national strategic development and the demand of society. Based on the idea of system engineering, this paper proposes a three-dimensional railway intelligent construction system architecture composed of a full life cycle, management level [...] Read more.
The implementation of railway intelligent construction is the need of national strategic development and the demand of society. Based on the idea of system engineering, this paper proposes a three-dimensional railway intelligent construction system architecture composed of a full life cycle, management level and technical support. Based on this architecture, a “three-step” implementation path is proposed. Then, it analyzes the technology support framework required in the architecture based on Building Information Modeling (BIM), incorporating Global Positioning System (GPS) and Geographic Information System (GIS), algorithmic prediction and machine learning technology, Internet of Things (IoT) and artificial intelligence technology, big data and cloud computing technology, and the application of railway intelligent construction system architecture is analyzed by taking a railway tunnel project in Zhejiang Province of China as an example. Finally, it discusses the problems that may be encountered in the implementation of railway intelligent construction and puts forward relevant suggestions. The results show that railway intelligent construction is an essential way. At present, China’s railway intelligent construction is still in the primary stage. The design organization should do a good job in the top-level design and accumulate sufficient data for the later stage. All parties in the middle stage of construction should do a good job in the induction and integration of information and accumulate sufficient experience. In this way, we can integrate into the advanced stage and give full play to the advantages of software and hardware integrated applications such as BIM, IoT, big data, cloud computing and intelligent devices so as to truly realize the intellectualization and modernization of railway construction. Full article
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12 pages, 2526 KiB  
Article
Nanogenerator-Based Wireless Intelligent Motion Correction System for Storing Mechanical Energy of Human Motion
by Yupeng Mao, Fengxin Sun, Yongsheng Zhu, Changjun Jia, Tianming Zhao, Chaorui Huang, Caixia Li, Ning Ba, Tongtong Che and Song Chen
Sustainability 2022, 14(11), 6944; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14116944 - 6 Jun 2022
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 2126
Abstract
As it is urgently needed to address the energy consumption and health care problems caused by population growth, the field of sustainable energy collection and storage equipment as well as intelligent health care for monitoring human motion behavior has received wide attention and [...] Read more.
As it is urgently needed to address the energy consumption and health care problems caused by population growth, the field of sustainable energy collection and storage equipment as well as intelligent health care for monitoring human motion behavior has received wide attention and achieved rapid development. However, the portable intelligent systems that integrate them have not been widely discussed. In this work, we propose a design of a nanogenerator-based wireless intelligent motion correction system, combining triboelectric nanogenerator technology with wireless intelligent host computer signal processing and visualization systems. Under the condition of no external power supply, a noninvasive triboelectric nanogenerator (FL-TENG) sensor integrated system stores the mechanical energy due to human movement behavior and drives wireless micro-electronic devices to realize the human–computer interaction application of the intelligent system. In the conducted test, the reported instantaneous output of an ordinary clap action was around 241V. For a variety of physical exercise types being monitored, it can accurately determine human movement behavior and perform error correction and scoring for movement techniques. Additionally, using hydrogel as an electrode improves the service life and stability of the device. Therefore, this flexible and convenient design concept is beneficial to the development and utilization of sustainable energy and sports activities. In addition, it extends the application prospects of FL-TENG in self-powered sensing systems. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Semiconductor Materials for Energy, Electronics and Sensors)
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19 pages, 5194 KiB  
Article
The Half-Truth Effect and Its Implications for Sustainability
by Alberto Barchetti, Emma Neybert, Susan Powell Mantel and Frank R. Kardes
Sustainability 2022, 14(11), 6943; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14116943 - 6 Jun 2022
Viewed by 3458
Abstract
Misinformation on sustainability has become a widespread phenomenon in many different contexts. However, relatively little is known about several important determinants of belief in misinformation, and even less is known about how to debias that belief. The present research proposes and investigates a [...] Read more.
Misinformation on sustainability has become a widespread phenomenon in many different contexts. However, relatively little is known about several important determinants of belief in misinformation, and even less is known about how to debias that belief. The present research proposes and investigates a new effect, the half-truth effect, to explain how message structure can influence belief in misinformation. Two survey-based experiments were conducted to show that people exhibit greater belief in a false claim when it is preceded by a true claim, even if the two claims are logically unrelated. Conversely, when a false claim is presented before the true claim, it reduces the belief in the entire statement. Experiment 1 shows the basic half-truth effect. Experiment 2 investigates an individual difference, propensity to believe meaningless statements are profound, which impacts the half-truth effect. Both experiments also investigate debiasing of the false information. The results of the experiments were analyzed using analysis of variance and regression-based mediation analysis. Results show that belief in misinformation is dependent on message structure, and show that the order in which true and false elements are presented has a strong influence on belief in sustainability misinformation. Finally, we present a discussion of how policy makers can use these findings to identify those people who are most likely to be swayed by the misinformation, and then design responses to debias sustainability misinformation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue On the Psychology of Sustainable Consumption)
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17 pages, 5173 KiB  
Article
PLUS-Model Based Multi-Scenario Land Space Simulation of the Lower Yellow River Region and Its Ecological Effects
by Chang Lu, Xiao Qi, Zhongsen Zheng and Kun Jia
Sustainability 2022, 14(11), 6942; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14116942 - 6 Jun 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2124
Abstract
The rapid urbanization in recent years as a vehicle for social growth and ecological construction has resulted in a significant transformation of the spatial structure of the land in the lower reaches of the Yellow River. Based on this, the current study used [...] Read more.
The rapid urbanization in recent years as a vehicle for social growth and ecological construction has resulted in a significant transformation of the spatial structure of the land in the lower reaches of the Yellow River. Based on this, the current study used the PLUS model to simulate the future territorial spatial pattern of the lower reaches of the Yellow River in various development scenarios to reveal differences in the ecosystem’s spatial distribution and provide a reference for optimizing territorial spatial usage and ecological protection. The results show that the overall accuracy of the Patch-generating Land Use Simulation (PLUS) model’s simulation results was 0.748, the Kappa coefficient was 0.812, and the simulation effect was good. The simulation results for each land space in various situations reveal a preferential spatial development trend model. In the territorial and spatial priority scenario, development was reasonably balanced, which is consistent with the status of the quantitative structure of the territorial space of the study area during 2015. From 2015 to 2035, the value of ecosystem services will change in different ways depending on the scenario and the set priorities. The ecosystem service value decreased in the production space and living space priority development scenarios, while it increased in the ecological space and national space priority development scenarios. The PLUS model has a high degree of applicability to the spatial pattern development simulation of the lower Yellow River region, and the results of this multi-scenario simulation and ecological environmental effect study may be used as a reference for future territorial spatial planning and policy formulation in the region. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bringing Ecosystem Services into Decision-Making)
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15 pages, 2923 KiB  
Article
Spatio-Temporal Dynamic and Structural Characteristics of Land Use/Cover Change Based on a Complex Network: A Case Study of the Middle Reaches of Yangtze River Urban Agglomeration
by Zhao Wang, Tao Li, Shan Yang and Daili Zhong
Sustainability 2022, 14(11), 6941; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14116941 - 6 Jun 2022
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1681
Abstract
Due to the rapid urbanization and industrialization, urban agglomeration has become the area with the most drastic and concentrated land use change. The research on the evolution law and structural characteristics of urban agglomeration land use system is of great significance for the [...] Read more.
Due to the rapid urbanization and industrialization, urban agglomeration has become the area with the most drastic and concentrated land use change. The research on the evolution law and structural characteristics of urban agglomeration land use system is of great significance for the sustainable development. Taking the middle reaches of the Yangtze River urban agglomeration (MRYRUA) of China as the study area, we analyzed the phasic changes from 1980 to 2018 in land use/cover in the MRYRUA as well as the spatial differences between the three core regions. Furthermore, the transfer matrix of land use/cover change (LUCC) was converted to network, with land use types as nodes and conversion relationships between different land types as network connecting lines. Complex network indexes such as centrality, diffusion, and dominant flow were applied to identify the major changes in land use types, key change paths, and transformation patterns. The results show that: (1) in the past 40 years, the building land area in the MRYRUA has increased significantly, while the area of crop land and forest has, and still is, decreasing at an accelerated rate; (2) in terms of the scale, structure, and spatial distribution of land use transfer, there are distinct differences among the three core regions. The Wuhan metropolitan area has the largest intensity of land use transfer and the most drastic structural adjustment; (3) in all four periods, the land use transition network, crop land, and water bodies are the key land use types. Over time, the influence of building land and forest in the land use transition network has increased; and (4) the first transfer direction of each land use type was stable during different periods, such as the transfer of crop land to water bodies and building land, the transfer of water bodies to crop land, and the mutual transformations among crop land and forest, indicating a stable transfer pattern in the MRYRUA. Full article
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19 pages, 3316 KiB  
Article
A Comprehensive Framework for Comparing Textbooks: Insights from the Literature and Experts
by Ronghuai Huang, Ahmed Tlili, Xiangling Zhang, Tianyue Sun, Junyu Wang, Ramesh C. Sharma, Saida Affouneh, Soheil Salha, Fahriye Altinay, Zehra Altinay, Jako Olivier, Mohamed Jemni, Yiping Wang, Jialu Zhao and Daniel Burgos
Sustainability 2022, 14(11), 6940; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14116940 - 6 Jun 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 4227
Abstract
Textbooks are essential components in the learning process. They assist in achieving educational learning outcomes and developing social and cultural values. However, limited studies provide comprehensive frameworks for comparing textbooks. Most have focused on a specific textbook perspective within a particular discipline. Therefore, [...] Read more.
Textbooks are essential components in the learning process. They assist in achieving educational learning outcomes and developing social and cultural values. However, limited studies provide comprehensive frameworks for comparing textbooks. Most have focused on a specific textbook perspective within a particular discipline. Therefore, this study used a triangulation method to develop a comprehensive framework for textbook comparison. Through a systematic literature review and a two-round Fuzzy Delphi method with 155 textbook experts, a textbook comparison framework with four indicators (structure, content, expectations, and language) was developed. Additionally, some of the developed framework indicators and sub-indicators could be relevant for comparing textbooks in a particular discipline. For example, the page count sub-indicator was proven to be useful for comparing humanities and social science textbooks but not natural science textbooks. The findings of this study could facilitate the process of comparing textbooks, hence promoting the understanding of knowledge design and acquisition in different contexts, such as when comparing textbooks from different countries. Full article
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15 pages, 1877 KiB  
Article
Systems Accounting for Carbon Emissions by Hydropower Plant
by Yuwen Chu, Yunlong Pan, Hongyi Zhan, Wei Cheng, Lei Huang, Zi Wu and Ling Shao
Sustainability 2022, 14(11), 6939; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14116939 - 6 Jun 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 3391
Abstract
Hydropower is the largest renewable source of electricity generation, the carbon emissions of which have attracted a lot attention. However, the system boundaries of existing studies are either incomplete or inaccurate. Therefore, this study provides a systems accounting framework for evaluating both the [...] Read more.
Hydropower is the largest renewable source of electricity generation, the carbon emissions of which have attracted a lot attention. However, the system boundaries of existing studies are either incomplete or inaccurate. Therefore, this study provides a systems accounting framework for evaluating both the direct and indirect carbon emissions from a hydropower plant. It is based on the hybrid method as a combination of the process analysis and the input-output analysis. To demonstrate the framework, a case study for a typical pumped storage hydropower plant (NPSHP) is carried out. The total carbon emissions are estimated as 5828.39 kt in the life-cycle of the case system. The end-of-use stage causes the largest carbon emissions (38.4%), followed by the construction stage (34.5%), the operation stage (25.6%), and the preparation stage (1.5%). The direct carbon emissions are mainly released from sediments in the end-of-use stage and the surface of reservoirs in the operation stage (94.8%). The indirect carbon emissions are 2.8 times higher than the direct carbon emissions. The material, machinery, energy, and service inputs respectively account for 7.1%, 14.7%, 15.9%, and 62.3% of the total indirect carbon emissions by the case system. The indicator of EGOC (electricity generation on carbon emission) for the NPSHP is calculated as 26.06 g CO2-eq./kWh, which is lower than that of most other power plants. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Renewable Energy: Pathways towards Sustainable Development)
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32 pages, 16092 KiB  
Article
Contractor’s Risk Analysis of Engineering Procurement and Construction (EPC) Contracts Using Ontological Semantic Model and Bi-Long Short-Term Memory (LSTM) Technology
by So-Won Choi and Eul-Bum Lee
Sustainability 2022, 14(11), 6938; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14116938 - 6 Jun 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 5384
Abstract
The development of intelligent information technology in the era of the fourth industrial revolution requires the EPC (engineering, procurement, and construction) industry to increase productivity through a digital transformation. This study aims to automatically analyze the critical risk clauses in the invitation to [...] Read more.
The development of intelligent information technology in the era of the fourth industrial revolution requires the EPC (engineering, procurement, and construction) industry to increase productivity through a digital transformation. This study aims to automatically analyze the critical risk clauses in the invitation to bid (ITB) at the bidding stage to strengthen their competitiveness for the EPC contractors. To this end, we developed an automated analysis technology that effectively analyzes a large amount of ITB documents in a short time by applying natural language processing (NLP) and bi-directional long short-term memory (bi-LSTM) algorithms. This study proposes two models. First, the semantic analysis (SA) model is a rule-based approach that applies NLP to extract key risk clauses. Second, the risk level ranking (RLR) model is a train-based approach that ranks the risk impact for each clause by applying bi-LSTM. After developing and training an artificial intelligent (AI)-based ITB analysis model, its performance was evaluated through the actual project data. As a result of validation, the SA model showed an F1 score of 86.4 percent, and the RLR model showed an accuracy of 46.8 percent. The RLR model displayed relatively low performance because the ITB used in the evaluation test included the contract clauses that did not exist in the training dataset. Therefore, this study illustrated that the rule-based approach performed superior to the training-based method. The authors suggest that EPC contractors should apply both the SA and RLR modes in the ITB analysis, as one supplements the other. The two models were embedded in the Engineering Machine-learning Automation Platform (EMAP), a cloud-based platform developed by the authors. Rapid analysis through applying both the rule-based and AI-based automatic ITB analysis technology can contribute to securing timeliness for risk response and supplement possible human mistakes in the bidding stage. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Digital Transformation Applications in Construction and Engineering)
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23 pages, 971 KiB  
Article
What Is the Link between Strategic Innovation and Organizational Sustainability? Historical Review and Bibliometric Analytics
by Chi-Yen Yin and Hsiao-Hsin Chang
Sustainability 2022, 14(11), 6937; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14116937 - 6 Jun 2022
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 3640
Abstract
The academic and practical are very acquainted with both strategic innovation (SI) and organizational sustainability (OS) at present, but a literature review revealed that there are few studies discussing the correlation between SI and OS in these two subjects. This study attempts to [...] Read more.
The academic and practical are very acquainted with both strategic innovation (SI) and organizational sustainability (OS) at present, but a literature review revealed that there are few studies discussing the correlation between SI and OS in these two subjects. This study attempts to identify and classify these articles (SI and OS) in publications. Seven spotlights are noted in this paper in terms of the (1) published year, (2) citation report, (3) country/territory, (4) affiliation name, (5) document type, (6) Web of Science (WoS) categories, and (7) publication titles. A total of 125 (SI = 70 and OS = 55) articles were retrieved from the Social Sciences Citation Index (Web of Science). We applied a bibliometric analytics technique to depict a panorama among the core journals, document characteristics, and research trends over thirty years (1991–2021) by setting the article titled as “strategic innovation” or “organizational sustainability” in the SSCI electronic database. In this study, Bradford’s law was necessarily adapted to examine how many journal papers were frequently cited. These journals could be an exceptional reference for rising researchers to swiftly detect relevant information. The Kolmogorov–Smirnov (abbreviation: K–S) test was also conducted to survey whether the author’s productivity complied with Lotka’s law. The benchmarks were broadened to evaluate the capability and academic standing of different authors in a certain subject area. The results unveiled that comparing the expansionary scope of SI and OS research can fit well with industry, government, academia, and research for their various requirements, functions, and schemes. According to the above analysis, these findings simultaneously constitute an adequate preparation and represent a blueprint for those who need to refer to the collections to formulate an appropriate research platform in the near future. Full article
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16 pages, 6778 KiB  
Article
Mixed-Unit-Model-Based and Quantitative Studies on Groundwater Recharging and Discharging between Aquifers of Aksu River
by Jiyu Huang, Yanyan Ge and Sheng Li
Sustainability 2022, 14(11), 6936; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14116936 - 6 Jun 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1783
Abstract
The confined aquifer in the Aksu River Basin is the main aquifer for drinking water within the area. In this study, the unconfined aquifer and the confined aquifer in the Aksu River Basin were divided into different water circulation units through analysis of [...] Read more.
The confined aquifer in the Aksu River Basin is the main aquifer for drinking water within the area. In this study, the unconfined aquifer and the confined aquifer in the Aksu River Basin were divided into different water circulation units through analysis of their flow field. After the hydrochemistry and isotope characteristics of each unit were analyzed, these data were used as water volume quantitative information of the aquifer according to the mixed-unit model. With this quantitative information, the transformation relationship between the unconfined aquifer and the confined aquifer, the recharging source, recharging amount, recharging proportion, and discharging amount of the confined aquifer were revealed. The results showed that the confined aquifer receives a recharge of 21.48 × 106 m3/a from the unconfined aquifer. The recharging sources of the confined aquifer in the middle and upper stream of the Aksu River mainly included side recharging and leakage recharging from the unconfined aquifer, while the confined aquifer received little recharging from unconfined aquifer downstream of the Aksu River and did not receive recharging from the unconfined aquifer in the southeast of the basin. Additionally, drainage methods of the confined aquifer were mainly lateral flowing and artificial well-group pumping. The side discharging volume through the whole area was 15.67 × 106 m3/a, and the artificial pumping volume was 21.20 × 106 m3/a. The confined aquifer was in a negative balance state from the middle-upper stream to the downstream. The downstream confined aquifer and its unconfined aquifer had a plane laminar flow movement, and the unconfined aquifer provided very little recharging to the confined one, which was further enhanced by the artificial well pumping and caused an accumulating negative balance state of the downstream aquifer. Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Water Management in the Era of Climatic Change)
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19 pages, 6262 KiB  
Article
Spatiotemporal Analysis of Fire Foci and Environmental Degradation in the Biomes of Northeastern Brazil
by José Francisco de Oliveira-Júnior, Munawar Shah, Ayesha Abbas, Washington Luiz Félix Correia Filho, Carlos Antonio da Silva Junior, Dimas de Barros Santiago, Paulo Eduardo Teodoro, David Mendes, Amaury de Souza, Elinor Aviv-Sharon, Vagner Reis Silveira, Luiz Claudio Gomes Pimentel, Elania Barros da Silva, Mohd Anul Haq, Ilyas Khan, Abdullah Mohamed and El-Awady Attia
Sustainability 2022, 14(11), 6935; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14116935 - 6 Jun 2022
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 2728
Abstract
Forest fires destroy productive land throughout the world. In Brazil, mainly the Northeast of Brazil (NEB) is strongly affected by forest fires and bush fires. Similarly, there is no adequate study of long-term data from ground and satellite-based estimation of fire foci in [...] Read more.
Forest fires destroy productive land throughout the world. In Brazil, mainly the Northeast of Brazil (NEB) is strongly affected by forest fires and bush fires. Similarly, there is no adequate study of long-term data from ground and satellite-based estimation of fire foci in NEB. The objectives of this study are: (i) to evaluate the spatiotemporal estimation of fires in NEB biomes via environmental satellites during the long term over 1998–2018, and (ii) to characterize the environmental degradation in the NEB biomes via orbital products during 1998–2018, obtained from the Burn Database (BDQueimadas) for 1794 municipalities. The spatiotemporal variation is estimated statistically (descriptive, exploratory and multivariate statistics) from the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI), Enhanced Vegetation Index (EVI) and Standardized Precipitation Index (SPI) through the Climate Hazards Group InfraRed Precipitation Station (CHIRPS). Moreover, we identify 10 homogeneous groups of fire foci (G1–G10) with a total variance of 76.5%. The G1 group is the most extended group, along with the G2 group, the exception being the G3 group. Similarly, the G4–G10 groups have a high percentage of hotspots, with more values in the municipality of Grajaú, which belongs to the agricultural consortium. The gradient of fire foci from the coast to the interior of the NEB is directly associated with land use/land cover (LULC) changes, where the sparse vegetation category and areas without vegetation are mainly involved. The Caatinga and Cerrado biomes lose vegetation, unlike the Amazon and Atlantic Forest biomes. The fires detected in the Cerrado and Atlantic Forest biomes are the result of agricultural consortia. Additionally, the two periods 2003–2006 and 2013–2018 show periods of severe and prolonged drought due to the action of El Niño. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dynamics of Heat Spots and Sustainable Agriculture)
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33 pages, 480 KiB  
Article
Disaster Risk Management, Ventilated Improved Pit Latrines, and Sanitation Challenges in South Africa
by Phindile Madikizela, Shafick Hoossein, Richard K. Laubscher, Kevin Whittington-Jones, Mushtaque Ahmed, Nhamo Mutingwende, Jozef Ristvej and Roman Tandlich
Sustainability 2022, 14(11), 6934; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14116934 - 6 Jun 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2687
Abstract
The current paper provides a review and meta-analysis of the practical implications of disaster risk management related to the ventilated improved latrines in South Africa. This technology is evaluated through its legacy and novel challenges of disaster risk reduction. In the current article, [...] Read more.
The current paper provides a review and meta-analysis of the practical implications of disaster risk management related to the ventilated improved latrines in South Africa. This technology is evaluated through its legacy and novel challenges of disaster risk reduction. In the current article, the methodology adopted was a literature review and meta-analyses. The results indicate that the in-situ treatment and breakdown of faecal sludge in the ventilated improved pit latrines is not always taking place and that anaerobic digestion might not always be feasible. New strategies are proposed to manage the sanitation-related risks in South Africa by specifying more exact dimensions for the newly built ventilated improved pit latrines by suggesting the use of novel sanitation additives such as fly ash to enhance on-site and in situ treatment, as well as ex situ treatment of the pit latrine faecal sludge. Regular maintenance can lead to prevention of the dysfunctional character of the ventilated improved pit latrines as a functional sanitation technology and a user-friendly hygiene barrier to the spread of sanitation/WASH-related epidemics or infectious diseases. The implementation of the novel strategies should be enhanced by the application of the (Environmental) Technology Assessment in sanitation service delivery in South Africa. Full article
17 pages, 2674 KiB  
Article
Reactive Power Management Based Hybrid GAEO
by Mahmoud Hemeida, Tomonobu Senjyu, Salem Alkhalaf, Asmaa Fawzy, Mahrous Ahmed and Dina Osheba
Sustainability 2022, 14(11), 6933; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14116933 - 6 Jun 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1707
Abstract
Electrical power networks are expanded regularly to meet growing energy requirements. Reactive power dispatch (RPD) optimization is a powerful tool to enhance a system’s efficiency, reliability, and security. RPD optimization is classified as a non-linear and non-convex problem. In this paper, the RPD [...] Read more.
Electrical power networks are expanded regularly to meet growing energy requirements. Reactive power dispatch (RPD) optimization is a powerful tool to enhance a system’s efficiency, reliability, and security. RPD optimization is classified as a non-linear and non-convex problem. In this paper, the RPD optimization problem is solved based on novel hybrid genetic algorithms—equilibrium optimizer (GAEO) optimization algorithms. The control variables are determined in such a way that optimizes RPD and minimizes power losses. The efficiency of the proposed optimization algorithms is compared to other techniques that have been used recently to solve the RPD problem. The proposed algorithm has been tested for optimization RPD for three test systems, IEEE14-bus, IEEE-30bus, and IEEE57-bus. The obtained results show the superiority of GAEO over other techniques for small test systems, IEEE14-bus and IEEE-30bus. GAEO shows good results for large system, IEEE 57-bus. Full article
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15 pages, 2611 KiB  
Article
Application of Visitor Eye Movement Information to Museum Exhibit Analysis
by Yu-Ling Hsieh, Ming-Feng Lee, Guey-Shya Chen and Wei-Jie Wang
Sustainability 2022, 14(11), 6932; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14116932 - 6 Jun 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2392
Abstract
The motivation of this study is that after the COVID-19 epidemic, museum exhibition visits have also been significantly affected. The purpose of this research is to better understand the visual cognition of visitors, so as to improve the application of physical field or [...] Read more.
The motivation of this study is that after the COVID-19 epidemic, museum exhibition visits have also been significantly affected. The purpose of this research is to better understand the visual cognition of visitors, so as to improve the application of physical field or online exhibitions. Currently, no research is available on the differences in the visitor’s viewing and cognitive process with eye movements sequence analysis that stem from the exhibition planning and design of different museums. This study tracks and analyzes the eye movement trajectories of visitors and studies its relation to learning and cognition and finds the key to influencing cognition through behavioral sequence analysis of displayed content. The results show that those interested in the displayed content have better cognitive performance, are immersed in reading text, and have a substantial shift in eye movement. Contrarily, those not interested in the displayed content are distracted and often turn their attention back to the title of the content. In this study, eye movement and fixation are indicators that can be used as a reference for the future design of displays to improve the effectiveness of presenting information to a visitor. Furthermore, this research can also provide future applications in integrating the virtual world and cognitive information, in the application of AR, VR, or metaverse environment, to provide people’s cognition of rapid information in the virtual environment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable and Human-Centric E-Commerce)
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16 pages, 5889 KiB  
Article
Evaluating the Sustainable Traffic Flow Operational Features of U-turn Design with Advance Left Turn
by Shengneng Hu, Zhen Jia, Anping Yang, Kui Xue and Guoqi He
Sustainability 2022, 14(11), 6931; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14116931 - 6 Jun 2022
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2093
Abstract
Median U-turn intersection treatment (MUIT) has been considered as an alternative measure to reduce congestion and traffic conflict at intersection areas, but the required spacing between the U-turn opening and the intersection limits its applicability. In this paper, a U-turn design with Advance [...] Read more.
Median U-turn intersection treatment (MUIT) has been considered as an alternative measure to reduce congestion and traffic conflict at intersection areas, but the required spacing between the U-turn opening and the intersection limits its applicability. In this paper, a U-turn design with Advance Left Turn (UALT) is proposed with the aim of addressing the disadvantages of insufficient intersection spacing and difficulty in the continuous vehicle lane change. UALT provides a dedicated lane to advance the turning vehicle out of the intersection and directly to the U-turn opening without interacting with through traffic. The effectiveness and traffic volume applicability of UALT was demonstrated through field data investigation, simulation and analysis with VISSIM software. The proposed design was evaluated in terms of three parameters: delay, queue length and the number of stops. The results show that when the traffic volume range of the main road is (1900, 2200) pcu/h and the traffic volume of the secondary road is more than 900 pcu/h, the optimization effect of UALT on both conventional intersections and MUIT is very significant. Taking a signal-controlled intersection in Zhengzhou City, China, as an example to build a simulation model, compared with the conventional intersection and MUIT, the delay drop is reduced by 73.48% and 41.48%, the queue length is reduced by 84.85% and 41.66%, and the operation efficiency is significantly improved. Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Sustainable Transportation)
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22 pages, 8416 KiB  
Article
Design and Parametric Optimization of the High-Speed Pico Waterwheel for Rural Electrification of Pakistan
by Muhammad Asim, Shoaib Muhammad, Muhammad Amjad, Muhammad Abdullah, M. A. Mujtaba, M. A. Kalam, Mohamed Mousa and Manzoore Elahi M. Soudagar
Sustainability 2022, 14(11), 6930; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14116930 - 6 Jun 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2334
Abstract
This research study presents an approach for analysis of pico hydro waterwheels by both experimental and numerical methods. The purpose of this research is to harness the energy efficiently from flowing water of irrigation channels and other shallow water sources in rural areas [...] Read more.
This research study presents an approach for analysis of pico hydro waterwheels by both experimental and numerical methods. The purpose of this research is to harness the energy efficiently from flowing water of irrigation channels and other shallow water sources in rural areas because the electrification of rural areas through connection to grid electricity is very costly. The novelty of this research work lies in testing of the waterwheel as a high-speed device, which is not usually explored. The review of existing literature reveals that pico waterwheels have been extensively studied but without changing the blade profile immersed in the water stream ot the inclination angle of the water stream. In this study, a pico scale waterwheel was tested with three different types of blade profiles, namely a C-shape blade, V-shape blade and straight blade, through computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations for different tip speed ratios (TSR), varying the immersed depth of the blade in the stream and changing the angle of the water conduit while keeping the number of blades and the diameter of the wheel constant. The numerical and experimental results were validated for the C-shape blade profile. A substantial improvement in performance is observed with a C-shape blade profile at a TSR of 0.88. The results show that by varying the angle of the water conduit, the maximum performance is achieved at inclination φ = 45°, with an overall improvement of 4.87% in the efficiency. Full article
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20 pages, 2466 KiB  
Article
A Study on Cost Allocation in Renovation of Old Urban Residential Communities
by Xiaoyan Zhuo and Hongbing Li
Sustainability 2022, 14(11), 6929; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14116929 - 6 Jun 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2091
Abstract
The renovation of old residential communities not only meets the people’s aspirations for a better life, but also promotes the image of a city. However, unreasonable cost allocation in the renovation of old residential communities seriously impedes the multi-channel fundraising and progress of [...] Read more.
The renovation of old residential communities not only meets the people’s aspirations for a better life, but also promotes the image of a city. However, unreasonable cost allocation in the renovation of old residential communities seriously impedes the multi-channel fundraising and progress of renovation. The general aim of this study was to construct a cost allocation model for the renovation of old residential communities, so as to address unreasonable cost allocation and speed up the renovation. With the government, home owners, and private sectors as the main participants and stakeholders, we constructed a cost allocation model for the renovation of old residential communities based on the structural equation model and the Shapley value. The structural equation model is used for indicator screening and weight computing, while the Shapley value is used for cost allocation. Then, we improved the cost allocation model based on the influencing factors that were screened out. This discovery will increase the cooperation between the government, home owners, and private sectors to fund the renovation of old residential communities, and further improve the progress of renovation of old residential communities. The study results show that by fully taking into account the degree of participation, the degree of risk sharing, the degree of value-added return, and the degree of resource input of participants, the improved cost allocation model makes the cost allocation more reasonable and fairer. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Regeneration of Degraded Urban Structures and Fabric)
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13 pages, 943 KiB  
Article
Shore Power Deployment Problem—A Case Study of a Chinese Container Shipping Network
by Jingwen Qi, Hans Wang and Jianfeng Zheng
Sustainability 2022, 14(11), 6928; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14116928 - 6 Jun 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2005
Abstract
Shipping emissions, especially those in port areas, have become one of the main concerns of the maritime industry. Shore power has been recognized as a promising way to alleviate the problem. However, shore power has not been extensively adopted in China. Therefore, from [...] Read more.
Shipping emissions, especially those in port areas, have become one of the main concerns of the maritime industry. Shore power has been recognized as a promising way to alleviate the problem. However, shore power has not been extensively adopted in China. Therefore, from the government’s point of view, this paper conducts a case study of the shore power deployment problem based on the real container shipping network of China, including the Port of Hong Kong. In addition to the basic case, we, also, conduct numerical experiments with different budgets, to analyze its influence on the optimal subsidy plan and cost–benefit analysis. The results give two useful managerial insights: (i) it might be unnecessary to spend a large amount of the budget on subsidization, and (ii) the subsidy expenditure needs to be considered together with the final bunker reduction, while creating the budget. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Sustainable Transportation)
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15 pages, 1508 KiB  
Article
Prisoners of Scale: Downscaling Community Resilience Measurements for Enhanced Use
by Sahar Derakhshan, Leah Blackwood, Margot Habets, Julia F. Effgen and Susan L. Cutter
Sustainability 2022, 14(11), 6927; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14116927 - 6 Jun 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2738
Abstract
As improved data availability and disaster resilience knowledge help progress community resilience quantification schemes, spatial refinements of the associated empirical methods become increasingly crucial. Most existing empirically based indicators in the U.S. use county-level data, while qualitatively based schemes are more locally focused. [...] Read more.
As improved data availability and disaster resilience knowledge help progress community resilience quantification schemes, spatial refinements of the associated empirical methods become increasingly crucial. Most existing empirically based indicators in the U.S. use county-level data, while qualitatively based schemes are more locally focused. The process of replicating resilience indices at a sub-county level includes a comprehensive study of existing databases, an evaluation of their conceptual relevance in the framework of resilience capitals, and finally, an analysis of the statistical significance and internal consistency of the developed metrics. Using the U.S. Gulf Coast region as a test case, this paper demonstrates the construction of a census tract-level resilience index based on BRIC (Baseline Resilience Indicators for Communities), called TBRIC. The final TBRIC construct gathers 65 variables into six resilience capitals: social, economic, community, institutional, infrastructural, and environmental. The statistical results of tract- and county-level BRIC comparisons highlight levels of divergence and convergence between the two measurement schemes and find higher reliability for the fine-scale results. Full article
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31 pages, 4201 KiB  
Systematic Review
Integrating Land Use, Ecosystem Service, and Human Well-Being: A Systematic Review
by Mengxue Liu, Hejie Wei, Xiaobin Dong, Xue-Chao Wang, Bingyu Zhao and Ying Zhang
Sustainability 2022, 14(11), 6926; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14116926 - 6 Jun 2022
Cited by 26 | Viewed by 5084
Abstract
Global change, population growth, and urbanization have been exerting a severe influence on the environment, including the social system and ecosystem. To find solutions based on nature, clarifying the complicated mechanisms and feedback among land use/land cover changes, ecosystem services, and human well-being, [...] Read more.
Global change, population growth, and urbanization have been exerting a severe influence on the environment, including the social system and ecosystem. To find solutions based on nature, clarifying the complicated mechanisms and feedback among land use/land cover changes, ecosystem services, and human well-being, is increasingly crucial. However, the in-depth linkages among these three elements have not been clearly and systematically illustrated, present research paths have not been summarized well, and the future research trends on this topic have not been reasonably discussed. In this sense, the purpose of this paper is to provide an insight into how land use/land cover changes, ecosystem services, and human well-being are linked, as well as their relationships, interacting ways, applications in solving ecological and socioeconomic problems, and to reveal their future research trends. Here, we use a systematic literature review of the peer-reviewed literature to conclude the state of the art and the progress, emphasize the hotspot, and reveal the future trend of the nexus among the three aspects. Results show that (1) ecosystem services are generally altered by the changes in land use type, spatial pattern, and intensity; (2) the nexus among land use change, ecosystem services, and human well-being is usually used for supporting poverty alleviation, ecosystem health, biodiversity conservation, and sustainable development; (3) future research on land use/land cover changes, ecosystem services, and human well-being should mainly focus on strengthening multiscale correlation, driving force analysis, the correlation among different group characteristics, land use types and ecosystem service preferences, and the impact of climate change on ecosystem services and human well-being. This study provides an enhanced understanding of the nexus among the three aspects and a reference for future studies to mitigate the relevant problems. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Soil Conservation and Sustainability)
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17 pages, 642 KiB  
Article
Profiles of Mathematics Teachers’ Job Satisfaction and Stress and Their Association with Dialogic Instruction
by Sunghwan Hwang
Sustainability 2022, 14(11), 6925; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14116925 - 6 Jun 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2365
Abstract
High-quality mathematics instruction is a primary element for quality education and the sustainable development of society. Some studies have highlighted the critical role of teacher job satisfaction and stress on their instruction. However, limited research has focused on the combinational influence of job [...] Read more.
High-quality mathematics instruction is a primary element for quality education and the sustainable development of society. Some studies have highlighted the critical role of teacher job satisfaction and stress on their instruction. However, limited research has focused on the combinational influence of job satisfaction and stress on mathematics teachers’ dialogic instruction. This study aims to examine their combinational influence on mathematic teachers’ dialogic instruction using latent profile analysis and draws three conclusions. First, this study found three profiles: high job satisfaction and very low stress, very low job satisfaction and high stress, and moderately high job satisfaction and slightly high stress. Second, latent profile membership was differentially related to self-efficacy and leadership support. Third, mathematics teachers with very low job satisfaction and high stress were less likely to implement dialogic instruction compared to teachers in other profiles. This study also provides implications based on these results. Full article
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18 pages, 11568 KiB  
Article
Finite Element Modeling Approaches, Experimentally Assessed, for the Simulation of Guided Wave Propagation in Composites
by Alessandro De Luca, Donato Perfetto, Antonio Polverino, Antonio Aversano and Francesco Caputo
Sustainability 2022, 14(11), 6924; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14116924 - 6 Jun 2022
Cited by 13 | Viewed by 2247
Abstract
Today, structural health monitoring (SHM) systems based on guided wave (GW) propagation represent an effective methodology for understating the structural integrity of primary and secondary structures, also made of composite materials. However, the sensitivity to damage detection promoted by these systems can be [...] Read more.
Today, structural health monitoring (SHM) systems based on guided wave (GW) propagation represent an effective methodology for understating the structural integrity of primary and secondary structures, also made of composite materials. However, the sensitivity to damage detection promoted by these systems can be altered by such factors as the geometry of the monitored parts, as well as the environmental and operational conditions (EOCs). Experimental investigations are fundamental but require a long time period and are costly, especially for tests in real-life scenarios. Experimentally validated simulations can help designers to improve SHM effectiveness due to the possibility of further broadening study on the different geometries, load cases, and material types with less effort. From this point of view, this paper presents two finite element (FE) modeling approaches for the simulation of GW propagation in composite panels. The case study consists of a flat and a curved composite panel. The two approaches herein investigated are based on implicit and explicit finite element analysis (FEA) formulations. The comparison of the predicted measures against the experimental dataset allowed the assessment of the levels of accuracy provided by both modeling approaches with respect to the dispersion curves. Furthermore, to assess the different curvature sensitivities of the proposed numerical and experimental approaches, the extracted dispersion curves for both flat and curved panels were compared. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Structural Health Monitoring for a Sustainable Built Environment)
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18 pages, 5451 KiB  
Article
Multi-Scenario Simulation Analysis of Land Use Impacts on Habitat Quality in Tianjin Based on the PLUS Model Coupled with the InVEST Model
by Xiang Li, Zhaoshun Liu, Shujie Li and Yingxue Li
Sustainability 2022, 14(11), 6923; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14116923 - 6 Jun 2022
Cited by 30 | Viewed by 3725
Abstract
Land use change is an important cause of habitat quality change. In order to reveal the impact of urban land use change on habitat quality, and to explore sustainable development planning, this paper uses the city of Tianjin, China, as a case study. [...] Read more.
Land use change is an important cause of habitat quality change. In order to reveal the impact of urban land use change on habitat quality, and to explore sustainable development planning, this paper uses the city of Tianjin, China, as a case study. Based on land use data from 2000, 2010, and 2020, the PLUS model was first used to predict land use in 2030 under three scenarios, and the InVEST model was then used to assess habitat quality from 2000 to 2030. This study showed that habitat quality was highly correlated with land use change. The rapid expansion of construction land was the main reason for the year-by-year decline in habitat quality. From 2000 to 2030, habitat quality in Tianjin declined year-by-year according to the average habitat quality values for 2030 for the three scenarios: the Ecological Protection Scenario (EPS) > Natural Development Scenario (NPS) > Economic Construction Scenario (ECS). In the EPS, habitat quality will deteriorate and improve. It would be ecologically beneficial to continue to work on the revegetation of the Jizhou area. In the ECS, habitat quality will decline sharply. In Tianjin, urbanization will continue to accelerate. This is a threat to the sustainable development of the city. Full article
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17 pages, 1910 KiB  
Article
How Positive and Negative Environmental Behaviours Influence Sustainable Tourism Intentions
by Li-Yao Shien, Chih-Hsing Liu and Yi-Min Li
Sustainability 2022, 14(11), 6922; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14116922 - 6 Jun 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2692
Abstract
This study developed and examined a theoretical model of moderated mediation in which positive and negative environmental behaviours (e.g., attitudes, destruction, conservation, and eco-friendliness) serve as a moderating mechanism that explains the link between the two critical mediating effects of escape and sustainable [...] Read more.
This study developed and examined a theoretical model of moderated mediation in which positive and negative environmental behaviours (e.g., attitudes, destruction, conservation, and eco-friendliness) serve as a moderating mechanism that explains the link between the two critical mediating effects of escape and sustainable experiences on revisit intentions. The results of a study of 483 foreign tourists provide support for our hypothesized model. First, the results showed that motivations have indirect and positive effects on revisit intentions through sustainable experiences and escape-seeking. Second, the moderating effects of positive environmental behaviours were found to be positive, while negative environmental behaviours had negative effects on the dimensions of escape and experience on revisit intentions for sustainable tourism. Third, we discussed how this interesting pattern of the moderated mediation setting could be explained by using the theoretical background and considering previous studies on sustainable tourism. Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Climate Change and Environmental Sustainability)
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15 pages, 272 KiB  
Article
Renewable Energy and Carbon Emissions: New Empirical Evidence from the Union for the Mediterranean
by Burak Erkut
Sustainability 2022, 14(11), 6921; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14116921 - 6 Jun 2022
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 1537
Abstract
This approach focuses on the renewable energy-carbon emission nexus by delivering new empirical evidence from 37 members of the Union for the Mediterranean. The approach makes use of panel data for the period 2002–2018 and uses panel data econometrical approaches, which are panel [...] Read more.
This approach focuses on the renewable energy-carbon emission nexus by delivering new empirical evidence from 37 members of the Union for the Mediterranean. The approach makes use of panel data for the period 2002–2018 and uses panel data econometrical approaches, which are panel random effects regression, feasible generalized least squares regression, and the difference-generalized method of moments estimation, to understand how agricultural activity, economic growth, and renewable energy use impact carbon emissions. The results indicate that economic growth increases carbon emissions, whereas renewable energy use decreases them. In addition, separate analyses for EU and non-EU members indicate that agricultural activity has a significant negative effect only for the non-EU countries, which is further discussed with some relevant empirical evidence. The approach utilizes three fields of policy action. Firstly, economic growth comes to the Union countries with a cost-carbon emissions. Policymaking needs to include strategies to turn growth into sustainable growth. Secondly, the magnitude of the impact of economic growth on carbon emissions is greater than the magnitude of the impact of renewable energy. Research and development efforts need to improve this situation. Thirdly, the use of appropriate tools and technologies can decrease the carbon footprint of agricultural activity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Economic and Business Aspects of Sustainability)
13 pages, 750 KiB  
Article
Social Cost-Benefit Analysis of Bottom-Up Spatial Planning in Shrinking Cities: A Case Study in The Netherlands
by Samira Louali, Maja Ročak and Jol Stoffers
Sustainability 2022, 14(11), 6920; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14116920 - 6 Jun 2022
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2646
Abstract
In current research, the social return to citizens initiatives is important but often under-evaluated. Within this work, we collected the information that has emerged from measuring the social value of regenerative projects in shrinking cities. We used a case study of the regenerative [...] Read more.
In current research, the social return to citizens initiatives is important but often under-evaluated. Within this work, we collected the information that has emerged from measuring the social value of regenerative projects in shrinking cities. We used a case study of the regenerative project Gebrookerbos, a socio-spatial regeneration project in the shrinking city of Heerlen, the Netherlands. To assess the project’s monetary and immaterial aspects, a social cost–benefit analysis (SCBA) was used to understand the complexities of the costs and benefits associated with citizens in regeneration projects in a shrinking area. Drawing from the literature on urban shrinkage, citizen involvement, and social cost–benefit analyses, a theoretical framework was proposed. The case study included primary (i.e., interviews) and secondary (i.e., document analysis) data to identify the social value of the Gebrookerbos project, with results suggesting that the project has been meaningful to diverse stakeholders. Based on experiences with the SCBA of Gebrookerbos, one finding was the complexity of measuring citizens’ initiatives in terms of social return due to their process, organisation, and goals, in combination with the dynamics of shrinking cities. We discuss why research on social return to citizens’ initiatives is important and with this study we draw attention to the tendencies, opportunities, and future potential of citizens’ initiatives, which contribute to vacant open spaces and quality of life in shrinking cities. Full article
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23 pages, 4996 KiB  
Article
Geotechnology Applied to Analysis of Vegetation Dynamics and Occurrence of Forest Fires on Indigenous Lands in Cerrado-Amazonia Ecotone
by Felipe Gimenes Rodrigues Silva, Alexandre Rosa dos Santos, Nilton Cesar Fiedler, Juarez Benigno Paes, Rodrigo Sobreira Alexandre, Plinio Antonio Guerra Filho, Rosane Gomes da Silva, Marks Melo Moura, Evandro Ferreira da Silva, Samuel Ferreira da Silva, Saira G. de Oliveira Santos Rodrigues Silva, Raphael Maia Aveiro Cessa, Washington Amaral Ferreira and Fabio Gonçalves Marinho
Sustainability 2022, 14(11), 6919; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14116919 - 6 Jun 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2275
Abstract
The Cerrado-Amazonia Ecotone is one of the largest ecosystems in Brazil and is internationally considered a biodiversity hotspot. The occurrence of fires is common in these areas, directly affecting biomass losses and the reduction of vegetative vigor of forest typologies. Information obtained through [...] Read more.
The Cerrado-Amazonia Ecotone is one of the largest ecosystems in Brazil and is internationally considered a biodiversity hotspot. The occurrence of fires is common in these areas, directly affecting biomass losses and the reduction of vegetative vigor of forest typologies. Information obtained through remote sensing and geoprocessing can assist in the evaluation of vegetation behavior and its relation to the occurrence of forest fires. In this context, the objective of the present study was to analyze temporal vegetation dynamics, as well as their relationship with rainfall and fire occurrence on Indigenous lands, located in the Cerrado-Amazonia Ecotone of Mato Grosso state, Brazil. Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) images of the MOD13Q1 MODIS product and burnt area of the MCD45A1 MODIS product, and rainfall images from the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) sensor were used. The period analyzed was from 2007 to 2016. After pre-processing the NDVI, TRMM and burnt area images, correlation analyses were performed between the rainfall, vegetation index and burnt area images, considering different lags (−3 to 3), to obtain the best response time for the variables. The analyses of inter-annual vegetation index trends were carried out following Mann–Kendall monotonic trend and seasonal trend analysis methodologies. Significant correlations were observed between NDVI and rainfall (R = 0.84), in grass regions and between NDVI and burnt area (R = −0.74). The Mann–Kendall monotonic trend indicates vegetation index stability with positive variations in grass regions. The analysis of seasonal trends identified different vegetation responses, with this biome presenting a diverse phytophysiognomy and seasonal vegetation with different phases for amplitudes. This variation is evidenced by the various phytophysiognomies and their responses in relation to biomass gains and losses. The correlation and regression of the NDVI and rainfall in the vegetation type of grass areas show that the burnt area tends to increase with the reduction of NDVI. Finally, no defined pattern of vegetation cycles or phases was observed in terms of seasonality and the proposed methodology can be adapted to other world biomes. Full article
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13 pages, 2685 KiB  
Article
Rhyolite as a Naturally Sustainable Thermoluminescence Material for Dose Assessment Applications
by Elsayed Salama, Dalal A. Aloraini, Sara A. El-Khateeb and Mohamed Moustafa
Sustainability 2022, 14(11), 6918; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14116918 - 6 Jun 2022
Viewed by 1539
Abstract
Thermoluminescence characteristics of natural rhyolite have been studied. Dose response at a wide dose range of 0.5–2000 Gy has been determined. Minimum detectable dose and thermal fading rate are evaluated. Glow curve deconvolution is conducted after determining the best read-out conditions. The repeated [...] Read more.
Thermoluminescence characteristics of natural rhyolite have been studied. Dose response at a wide dose range of 0.5–2000 Gy has been determined. Minimum detectable dose and thermal fading rate are evaluated. Glow curve deconvolution is conducted after determining the best read-out conditions. The repeated initial rise (RIR) method is used to detect the overlapping peaks, and a glow curve deconvolution procedure is used to extract the thermoluminescence parameters of rhyolite. According to the findings, rhyolite glow curves show five interfering peaks corresponding to five electron trap levels at 142, 176, 221, 298, and 355 °C, respectively, at a heating rate of 3 °C/s. The obtained kinetic order for the deconvoluted peaks showed mixed-order kinetic. The reported results might be useful to introduce rhyolite as a natural sustainable material for radiation dosimetry applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Radioactivity: Sustainable Materials and Innovative Techniques)
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23 pages, 1229 KiB  
Article
A Model for Understanding the Mediating Association of Transparency between Emerging Technologies and Humanitarian Logistics Sustainability
by Muhammad Khan, Gohar Saleem Parvaiz, Abbas Ali, Majid Jehangir, Noor Hassan and Junghan Bae
Sustainability 2022, 14(11), 6917; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14116917 - 6 Jun 2022
Cited by 14 | Viewed by 3457
Abstract
There has been considerable worldwide attention to the Internet of Things (IoT), blockchain technology (BCT), and artificial intelligence (AI) in all sectors of the economy. Despite still being in the expansion phase, the application of the IoT, BCT, and AI to humanitarian logistics [...] Read more.
There has been considerable worldwide attention to the Internet of Things (IoT), blockchain technology (BCT), and artificial intelligence (AI) in all sectors of the economy. Despite still being in the expansion phase, the application of the IoT, BCT, and AI to humanitarian logistics (HL) has drawn a lot of interest due to their significant success in other industries. Commercial and noncommercial organizations are both under growing universal pressure for transparency. Therefore, this study offers a model for understanding the mediating association of transparency between emerging technologies and HL sustainability. The partial least squares structural equation modeling (PLS-SEM) approach was used in conjunction with SmartPLS3. The software was applied to information acquired via questionnaires from 434 disaster relief workers (DRWs) chosen using the snowball sampling approach. The findings suggest that in disaster relief operations (DROs), where corruption and mismanagement in HL have been key concerns for all stakeholders, emerging technologies could be a way forward to achieving system transparency and HL sustainability. The ultimate beneficiaries of transparent and sustainable HL will be all of society, especially the victims of catastrophes. Such victims can receive proper aid on time if the appropriate technology is used in DROs, and early warnings can save many lives. This study adds to the body of knowledge by providing the first empirical evidence assessing the role of emerging technologies in HL transparency and sustainability. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainability in Emergency Supply Chain Management)
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24 pages, 2013 KiB  
Article
Assessing the Effectiveness of the Actuaries Climate Index for Estimating the Impact of Extreme Weather on Crop Yield and Insurance Applications
by Qimeng Pan, Lysa Porth and Hong Li
Sustainability 2022, 14(11), 6916; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14116916 - 6 Jun 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2327
Abstract
This paper investigates the effectiveness of the Actuaries Climate Index (ACI), a climate index jointly launched by multiple actuarial societies in North America in 2016, on predicting crop yields and (re)insurance ratemaking. The ACI is created using a variety of climate variables reflecting [...] Read more.
This paper investigates the effectiveness of the Actuaries Climate Index (ACI), a climate index jointly launched by multiple actuarial societies in North America in 2016, on predicting crop yields and (re)insurance ratemaking. The ACI is created using a variety of climate variables reflecting extreme weather conditions in 12 subregions in the US and Canada. Using data from eight Midwestern states in the US, we find that the ACI has significant predictive power for crop yields. Moreover, allowing the constituting variables of the ACI to have data-driven rather than pre-determined weights could further improve the predictive accuracy. Furthermore, we create the county-level ACI index using high-resolution climate data and investigate its predictive power on county-level corn yields, which are more relevant to insurance practices. We find that although the self-constructed ACI index leads to a slightly worse fit due to noisier county-specific yield data, the predictive results are still reasonable. Our findings suggest that the ACI index is promising for crop yield forecasting and (re)insurance ratemaking, and its effectiveness could be further improved by allowing for the data-driven weights of the constituting variables and could be created at higher resolution levels. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Risk Management and Actuarial Science for Sustainable Agribusiness)
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