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Low Carbon Technologies and Sustainability

A special issue of Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050). This special issue belongs to the section "Sustainable Engineering and Science".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 December 2022) | Viewed by 11509

Special Issue Editor


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Guest Editor
Faculty of Computing, School of Engineering, Engineering and Science, University of South Wales, Pontypridd CF37 1DL, UK
Interests: low-carbon technology; sustainability; cement; concrete; bricks; blocks; geopolymers; soil stabilization; suppression of expansion; freezing and thawing; waste utilization; microstructural analysis; life cycle inventory; ground granulated blastfurnace slag; pulverized fuel ash; silica fume
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

This Special Issue, which is particularly geared towards stimulating the debate on Low-Carbon Technologies and Sustainability, aims to help identify engineering problems, define and implement appropriate solutions, and evaluate their contribution to sustainable development. Sustainability and sustainable development have environmental, social, and economic dimensions and require a multi-disciplinary approach in order to examine, explore, and critically engage with issues and advances in these and related areas. We encourage original research articles on the three pillars of sustainable development, carbon footprints, resilience technologies, energy management, governance and sustainability, sustainability assessment and policies, renewable technologies, infrastructures, life cycle inventories, sustainable solid waste, sustainable construction materials and methods, sustainable transportation infrastructure, and sustainable water infrastructure. Papers submitted to this Special Issue will be subject to a rigorous peer review procedure with the aim of rapid and wide dissemination of research results, developments, and applications.

Dr. Jonathan Oti
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Sustainability is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • environmental sustainability;
  • economical sustainability;
  • social sustainability;
  • carbon footprint;
  • resilience technologies;
  • energy management;
  • governance and sustainability;
  • sustainability assessment and policies;
  • renewable technologies;
  • infrastructures;
  • life cycle inventory;
  • sustainable solid waste;
  • sustainable construction materials and methods
  • sustainable transportation infrastructure
  • sustainable water infrastructure

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

11 pages, 4946 KiB  
Communication
Fine Recycled Concrete Aggregates Treated by Means of Wastewater and Carbonation Pretreatment
by Yury Villagrán-Zaccardi, Lotte Broodcoorens, Philip Van den Heede and Nele De Belie
Sustainability 2023, 15(8), 6386; https://doi.org/10.3390/su15086386 - 07 Apr 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1152
Abstract
Fine recycled concrete aggregate (FRCA) possesses substantial limitations for its use due to its significant porosity. Extensive research on the effect of carbonation on the accessible porosity of coarse recycled concrete aggregate is available in the literature, but FRCA information is scarce. The [...] Read more.
Fine recycled concrete aggregate (FRCA) possesses substantial limitations for its use due to its significant porosity. Extensive research on the effect of carbonation on the accessible porosity of coarse recycled concrete aggregate is available in the literature, but FRCA information is scarce. The present paper presents results of the effect of carbonation on different fractions of FRCA from <0.125 mm to 4 mm previously sprayed with wastewater from mortar production as an additional source of portlandite. The results of water absorption via the electrical conductivity method, TGA, XRD+Rietveld+PONKCS analysis, EDS mapping, and Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) demonstrate that the efficiency of the treatment depends on the particle size range of the FRCA. It was most effective for the extreme size fractions <0.25 mm and >1 mm of FRCA as a result of the relationship between the amount of precipitated calcium carbonate and the initially accessible porosity in each fraction. As a consequence, mortar produced with 30% replacement of natural sand with carbonated FRCA showed no impact on compressive strength. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Low Carbon Technologies and Sustainability)
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23 pages, 706 KiB  
Article
Foreign Direct Investment and Carbon Emission Efficiency: The Role of Direct and Indirect Channels
by Qizhen Wang and Qian Zhang
Sustainability 2022, 14(20), 13484; https://doi.org/10.3390/su142013484 - 19 Oct 2022
Cited by 13 | Viewed by 1501
Abstract
A large number of foreign direct investment inflows not only promote China’s economic development but also bring environmental pollution problems., Improving carbon emission efficiency and cutting carbon emissions while maintaining China’s attractiveness to foreign investment has become a topic of concern in China. [...] Read more.
A large number of foreign direct investment inflows not only promote China’s economic development but also bring environmental pollution problems., Improving carbon emission efficiency and cutting carbon emissions while maintaining China’s attractiveness to foreign investment has become a topic of concern in China. Firstly, this paper measures the carbon emission efficiency of different provinces in China with the super efficiency DEA model and studies the temporal and spatial characteristics of carbon emission efficiency. Secondly, the impact of FDI on carbon emission efficiency is investigated. FDI negatively affects carbon emissions but positively affects carbon emission efficiency. In addition, the interaction term of FDI and each channel negatively affects carbon emission efficiency, indicating that each channel has a negative impact on the relationship between FDI and carbon emission efficiency. Thirdly, the results of the sub-sample analysis show that the impact of FDI on carbon emission efficiency has the feature of regional heterogeneity. Based on the results, policy implications regarding the improvement of carbon emission efficiency are proposed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Low Carbon Technologies and Sustainability)
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23 pages, 13325 KiB  
Article
A Mobile System for the On-Site Assembly of Timber Frame Components: The Development of an Agile, Low-Cost Alternative to Offsite Prefabrication
by Stuart Gee and Andre Brown
Sustainability 2022, 14(2), 651; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14020651 - 07 Jan 2022
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1897
Abstract
Prefabricated timber component-based systems are the most prevalent industrialised system used to build housing. Along with many other countries, the UK has invested in different types of factory-based prefabrication systems as a means of increasing productivity and enhancing quality. In more recent decades, [...] Read more.
Prefabricated timber component-based systems are the most prevalent industrialised system used to build housing. Along with many other countries, the UK has invested in different types of factory-based prefabrication systems as a means of increasing productivity and enhancing quality. In more recent decades, prefabrication has become part of a series of ‘modern methods of construction’ employed for, and aimed at, delivering sustainable and efficient construction. However, certain pragmatic issues remain. The industry is cyclical, and during periods of declining resources, skills and technical development can be lost. Additionally, factory-based prefabrication requires substantial initial investment and an appropriate local workforce. To help address these issues, this paper presents the concept of an alternative method of production and assembly that takes a different approach to traditional industrialised systems that involve large investments and fixed-location factories. The proposition presented in this paper is that it is possible to design and develop a small, low cost, portable micro-factory that can be taken to a temporary location or construction site, where it can then be used to construct prefabricated closed panels. We describe the development of a working prototype, effectively a micro-factory, along with its potential advantages over a fixed facility. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Low Carbon Technologies and Sustainability)
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18 pages, 7341 KiB  
Article
Microstructure and Physical-Mechanical Characteristics of Treated Kaolin-Bentonite Mixture for Application in Compacted Liner Systems
by Eyo Eyo, Samuel Abbey, Jonathan Oti, Samson Ng’ambi, Eshmaiel Ganjian and Eoin Coakley
Sustainability 2021, 13(4), 1617; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13041617 - 03 Feb 2021
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 2216
Abstract
Treated bentonite-rich soils used as liner materials in landfills may provide an effective solution to the problems of increased void ratios upon swelling at reduced suction as well as desiccation cracking when suction is increased during desaturation. Accordingly, this study provides an understanding [...] Read more.
Treated bentonite-rich soils used as liner materials in landfills may provide an effective solution to the problems of increased void ratios upon swelling at reduced suction as well as desiccation cracking when suction is increased during desaturation. Accordingly, this study provides an understanding of the evolution of void ratio of the mixed materials during swelling at three different suction levels upon saturation as well as the soil water retention (SWR) during desaturation. For the treatment process, low quantity of cement binder whose production leverages raw material resources with efficient dry-process kilns and the benefit of lower energy consumption were used. Results indicated increased mixed soils’ strength irrespective of increased fines content due to thixotropy. The mixed soils exhibited almost equal values of void ratios at different hydration stages, suggesting that slightly reduced expansion mostly affects the subsequent phases of moisture ingress at full saturation compared to the natural soils. Lower values of void ratio obtained at full saturation also suggests possible reduced infiltration of water into landfills. The observed increased moisture retention within the osmotic suction zone and a decrease in the same as the fines content increased in the mixed soils can aid contaminant encapsulation while also reducing desiccation cracking. The findings of this research are intended to serve as a benchmark for further studies using other sustainable materials for treatment of mixed soils. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Low Carbon Technologies and Sustainability)
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14 pages, 2498 KiB  
Article
The Strength Characterisation of Concrete Made with Alumina Waste Filler
by Jonathan Oti, John Kinuthia and Blessing Adeleke
Sustainability 2020, 12(24), 10235; https://doi.org/10.3390/su122410235 - 08 Dec 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1569
Abstract
This study covers an in-depth investigation into the properties and practicality of the utilization of up to 40% Alumina Waste Filler (AWF) as a partial Portland Cement (PC) replacement material. AWF is a by-product from the recycling of aluminium, produced when salt slag [...] Read more.
This study covers an in-depth investigation into the properties and practicality of the utilization of up to 40% Alumina Waste Filler (AWF) as a partial Portland Cement (PC) replacement material. AWF is a by-product from the recycling of aluminium, produced when salt slag is smelted and cleaned. Its use in concrete will lessen the landfill requirements for AWF disposal, and reduce the strain of the growing requirements and cost of PC. The results obtained from this study showed that the addition of AWF to the concrete mix caused a reduction in the compressive and tensile splitting strength values, and a less-workable concrete was achieved for every increase in the quantity of AWF added to each mix. The addition of AWF influenced the hydration reaction process and reduced the cumulative production of the heat of hydration over time, whilst the permeability of the concrete decreased. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Low Carbon Technologies and Sustainability)
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14 pages, 3113 KiB  
Article
Strength and Swell Performance of High-Sulphate Kaolinite Clay Soil
by Blessing Adeleke, John Kinuthia and Jonathan Oti
Sustainability 2020, 12(23), 10164; https://doi.org/10.3390/su122310164 - 05 Dec 2020
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 2393
Abstract
Expansion of soils has been found to produce significant negative economic and environmental impact on various civil engineering infrastructure. This impact is more deleterious in soils containing sulphates, when treated with calcium-based stabilizers such as Lime and/or Portland cement (PC). The reported study [...] Read more.
Expansion of soils has been found to produce significant negative economic and environmental impact on various civil engineering infrastructure. This impact is more deleterious in soils containing sulphates, when treated with calcium-based stabilizers such as Lime and/or Portland cement (PC). The reported study investigated the strength and swell characteristics of Kaolinite clay artificially induced with high levels of Gypsum (sulphate) contents after stabilization with CEM I (PC), which is a calcium-based stabilizer. An optimum stabilizer content/Gypsum dosage, aimed at investigating the maximum magnitude of expansion possible using high levels of 10, 15 and 20% Gypsum contents (4.7, 7 and 9.3 wt.% sulphate) stabilized with calcium-based content of 7, 8, 9 and 10 wt.%. This was expected to provide further understanding on the mechanisms behind high sulphate-bearing clay soils, and the impact of sulphate and calcium content on strength and swell characteristics. The research outcomes showed that the introduction of sulphate to a Kaolinite clay soil reduces the compressive strength of the stabilised product by a factor range of 6–47% at 28 days curing age, while the swell behaviour is mainly dependent on both the sulphate content and curing age. Furthermore, the observed result suggests an 8 wt.% binder content to produce maximum magnitude of expansion (swell) with a high Gypsum content of 10% by weight. This finding is of economic importance, as it is expected to serve as a benchmark for further research on the stabilized clay systems, at high sulphate levels using sustainable binder materials. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Low Carbon Technologies and Sustainability)
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