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Liu G.,Beijing Normal University | Liu G.,Beijing Engineering Research Center for Watershed Environmental Restoration and Integrated Ecological Regulation | Yang Z.,Beijing Normal University | Yang Z.,Beijing Engineering Research Center for Watershed Environmental Restoration and Integrated Ecological Regulation | And 9 more authors.
Applied Energy | Year: 2015

The Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei area, also known as Jing-Jin-Ji region, is the national capital region of China and has established ambitious targets for tackling air pollution and set measures to reach these targets within a rather complicated multi-level institutional architecture. From the perspective of the stages of development of Jing-Jin-Ji, there are significant differences among the regional industrial structures, energy application methods, and main sources of Particulate Matter (PM) and other polluting emissions. Despite the fact that the prevention and control policy for atmospheric pollution, which focuses on coal consumption at its core, has engendered creative efforts, a series of political, economic, and environmental problems has become a new round in the climate debate between national and local governments during climate policy implementation, thus diminishing the effect of the policy on air pollution prevention and control in Jing-Jin-Ji. Based on historical document analysis, a Competition & Cooperation framework of the local governments in the Jing-Jin-Ji region was constructed, and the historical analysis of government cooperation was conducted. The results show that for historical reasons, administrative decentralization and fiscal decentralization strengthen this phenomenon of governmental fragmentation, which led to both promoting economic growth and being an obstacle to the collaborative reduction of air pollutions in the region. Potential problems with the implementation of the control policy are also discussed. This paper provides a reference for how the dust-haze control policy compels the governmental cooperation in the Jing-Jin-Ji region and will help establish more specific and feasible proposals for PM reduction promotion. © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. Source


Buonocore E.,Parthenope University of Naples | Mellino S.,Parthenope University of Naples | De Angelis G.,Beijing Normal University | Liu G.,Beijing Normal University | And 4 more authors.
Ecological Indicators | Year: 2016

The world is facing a water quality crisis resulting from continuous population growth, urbanization, land use change, industrialization, unsustainable water use practices and wastewater management strategies, among others. In this context, wastewater treatment (WWT) facilities are of vital significance for urban systems. Wastewater management clearly plays a central role in achieving future water security in a world where water stress is expected to increase. Life cycle assessment (LCA) can be used as a tool to evaluate the environmental impacts associated to WWTPs and improvement options. In this study, LCA is applied to compare the environmental performance of different scenarios for wastewater and sludge disposal in a WWT plant located in Southern Italy. The first scenario (BAU, Business As Usual) is based on the present sludge management performed within and outside the case-study plant: after mechanical treatment, dewatered sludge is transported by truck to a landfill for final disposal, while treated water is released to a river. The second scenario (B) assumes a partially circular pattern, with anaerobic fermentation of sludge to biogas, biogas use for electricity and heat cogeneration, integrated by additional thermal energy from previously recovered waste cooking oil (WCO), electricity and heat feedback to upstream WWT steps (including sludge drying), and final disposal of dried sludge to landfill and water to river. The third scenario (C) suggests an improved circular pattern with gasification of the dried sludge to further support heat and electricity production (with very small delivery of residues to landfill). The fourth scenario (D) builds on the third scenario in that the volume of treated wastewater is not discharged into local rivers but is partially used for fertirrigation of Salix Alba fields, whose biomass is further used for electricity generation. In doing so, the water P and N content decreases and so does the water eutrophication potential. Finally, a renewable scenario (E) is built assuming that the electricity demand of the WWT plant is met by a green electricity mix, for comparison with previous options. The most impacted categories in all scenarios result to be Freshwater Eutrophication Potential (FEP) and Human Toxicity Potential (HTP). Increased circularity through recycling in scenarios B and C reduces the process contribution to some environmental impact categories such as Global Warming Potential (GWP) and Fossil Depletion Potential (FDP), but does not provide significant improvement to FEP. Fertirrigation in scenario D lowers FEP by about 60% compared to the BAU scenario. Furthermore, HTP is lowered by almost 53%. Finally, other options are discussed that could be also explored in future studies to evaluate if and to what extent they could further improve the overall performance of the WWT plant. © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. Source


Meng F.,Beijing Normal University | Liu G.,Beijing Normal University | Liu G.,Beijing Engineering Research Center for Watershed Environmental Restoration and Integrated Ecological Regulation | Yang Z.,Beijing Normal University | And 6 more authors.
Applied Energy | Year: 2016

An integrated life cycle approach framework, including material flow analysis (MFA), Cumulative Energy Demand (CED), exergy analysis (EXA), Emergy Assessment (EMA), and emissions (EMI) has been constructed and applied to examine the energy efficiency of high speed urban bus transportation systems compared to conventional bus transport in the city of Xiamen, Fujian province, China. This paper explores the consistency of the results achieved by means of several evaluation methods, and explores the sustainability of innovation in urban public transportation systems. The case study dealt with in this paper is a Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system compared to Normal Bus Transit (NBT). All the analyses have been performed based on a common yearly database of natural resources, material, labor, energy and fuel input flows used in all life cycle phases (resource extraction, processing and manufacturing, use and end of life) of the infrastructure, vehicle and vehicle fuel. Cumulative energy, material and environmental support demands of transport are accounted for. Selected pressure indicators are compared to yield a comprehensive picture of the public transportation system. Results show that Bus Rapid Transit system (BRT) shows much better energy and environmental performance than NBT, as indicated by the set of sustainability indicators calculated by means of our integrated approach. This is because of the higher efficiency of such modality (less affected by traffic, higher vehicle occupancy, suitability for large distance transportation). The study suggests that the higher economic and resource investments performed in order to provide dedicated roads, more modern transport technology and higher speed, translated into a better use of resources and lower environmental pressure, also because of the attraction of an increased number of passengers, who would have otherwise used car transportation modalities. This study also provides a clear evidence that more than one criterion is needed to address a fully reliable and sustainable urban transportation policy. An integrated approach is therefore suggested to support decision making in the presence of complex systems and different kinds of concerns to be taken into proper account. © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. Source


Liu G.,Beijing Normal University | Liu G.,Beijing Engineering Research Center for Watershed Environmental Restoration and Integrated Ecological Regulation | Hao Y.,Beijing Normal University | Zhou Y.,Beijing Normal University | And 6 more authors.
Resources, Conservation and Recycling | Year: 2016

The growth in socioeconomic metabolism associated with industrialization is altering the functions of the biosphere, becoming the major drivers of global climate change. An environmental friendly or low-carbon-oriented industrial transition not only would largely improve the patterns and magnitude of physical exchanges among societies and their natural environment, but would also be inextricably linked with regional sustainable development policies which can be effective to achieve post-fossil carbon societies. Above all, several institutional innovations and rules, such as industrial symbiosis and low carbon pathway optimization should be considered in scenario analysis and path selection. In this study, a long term analysis focusing on the industrial system in China is presented. Carbon emission decomposition analysis is used to evaluate the potential of low carbon development, promote policies regarding regional sustainable development and construction of eco-industry. Logarithmic Mean Divisia Index (LMDI) decomposition is applied to carbon emissions in the decomposition of time and space sequence. An analysis of the state of the art of climate change science and of the state of industrial symbiosis attempting to create effective industrial development paths reveals that the LMDI Decomposition method can provide crucial orientation for the negotiations towards a sustainable post fossil carbon societies. Three scenarios are designed for the analysis: the Business as Usual (BaU) scenario, the Carbon Reduction (CR) scenario and the Integrated Low Carbon Economy (ILCE) scenario. Under the assumptions that the share of coal will decline dramatically under the CR and ILCE scenarios from 2009 to 2050 while the share of natural gas and renewable energy will be greatly increased, through the adjustment of energy structure, improvement of energy efficiency and transformation of technical energy merit, energy consumption demand and carbon emission trend in industrial sectors till 2050 in China is simulated, in order to provide the basis for low-carbon industrial transformation in China. © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved. Source

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