Zimmerer K.S.,United Environment & Energy, Llc
Geoforum | Year: 2015
This research addresses recent environmental governance in Bolivia through its relations to indigeneity and respatializations. It introduces and develops the concept of "speaking like an indigenous state" to examine the Bolivian state's recent use of a pair of indigenous linguistic concepts, Living Well and Earth Mother, representing the identities of citizens and their rights to resources and livelihoods. State relations to indigenous social movements highlight the use of Living Well and Earth Mother concepts through accommodation, resistance, and protaganism. Six active issues of environmental governance are examined: (1) climate change and justice movement; (2) agrarian reform, agrobiodiversity, and food justice; (3) water resources; (4) indigenous territories; (5) Protected Areas; and (6) extractive industries (mining, hydrocarbons). The usages of Living Well and Earth Mother show versatility as they have been mobilized in the respatializing of the politics and social-power dynamics of environmental issues at scales of the state, global and international institutions, and community and local levels. Analysis also reveals deployment of Living Well and Earth Mother that is discursively influential and yet conceptually reduced and unevenly applied, thus suggesting a characteristic of verisimilitude. My analysis determines that respatialization at various levels, including territorial transitions of sub-national regional spaces, are associated with the heightened articulation of environmental governance through indigeneity and "speaking like an indigenous state" amid resource nationalism. Linkages and logics operating within this conjuncture differ from the prevailing interpretation of the Bolivian state's use of Living Well and Earth Mother as solely an unwitting contradiction or instrumentalist camouflage. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.
Zimmerer K.S.,United Environment & Energy, Llc
Ecology and Society | Year: 2014
I examined agrobiodiversity in smallholder cultural landscapes with the goal of offering new insights into management and policy options for the resilience-based in situ conservation and social-ecological sustainability of local, food-producing crop types, i.e., landraces. I built a general, integrative approach to focus on both land use and livelihood functions of crop landraces in the context of nontraditional, migration-related livelihoods amid global change. The research involved a multimethod, case-study design focused on a cultural landscape of maize, i.e., corn, growing in the Andes of central Bolivia, which is a global hot spot for this crop's agrobiodiversity. Central questions included the following: (1) What are major agroecological functions and food-related services of the agrobiodiversity of Andean maize landraces, and how are they related to cultural landscapes and associated knowledge systems? (2) What are new migration-related livelihood groups, and how are their dynamic livelihoods propelled through global change, in particular international and national migration, linked to the use and cultural landscapes of agrobiodiversity? (3) What are management and policy options derived from the previous questions? Combined social-ecological services as both cultivation and food resources are found to function in relation to the cultural landscape. Results demonstrated major variations of maturation-based, phenologic traits and food-use properties that are cornerstones of the landrace-level agrobiodiversity of Andean maize. Knowledge of these parameters is widespread. Linkage of these production and consumption functions yields a major insight into dynamics of Andean maize agrobiodiversity. Concurrently, this smallholder cultural landscape has become increasingly dependent on new rural conditions, especially increased livelihood diversification and migration amid growing peri-urban influences. Viability of landrace-level maize agrobiodiversity between 2006 and 2012 is shown to have occurred amid a transition toward the integral roles of multiple migrationrelated groups, namely women farmers, consumers, and local business owners; migrants; field caretakers; and local in-migrant laborers. The nontraditional social networks among these livelihood groups must be incorporated into analysis and planning of the design, participation, and monitoring of management and policy options for cultural landscapes ensuring the use, in situ conservation, and sustainability, including ecosystem services, of food plant landraces in global agrobiodiversity hot spots. © 2014 by the author(s).
Greening L.A.,United Environment & Energy, Llc
Energy | Year: 2010
Demand response resources (DRR) have potential to offer substantial benefits in the form of improved economic efficiency in wholesale electricity markets. Those benefits include better capacity factors for existing capacity, reductions in requirements for new capacity, enhanced reliability, relief of congestion and transmission constraints, reductions in price volatility, mitigation of market power and lower electricity prices for consumers. However, DRR has been slow to penetrate. There has been substantial disagreement as to which entities in a restructured market should promote the expanded implementation of DRR. This paper contends that no single entity can perform this function. But rather, wider implementation will need to accrue from coordinated actions along the electricity supply chain. © 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
United Environment & Energy, Llc | Date: 2011-07-08
A bio-based adhesive and method of making the adhesive replaces or serves as additives for asphalt, sealant, and polymers such as styrene-butadiene-styrene and atactic polypropylene in the manufacture of building or paving materials. The method includes steps of forming a mixture of oil comprising fatty acids group and optionally a powdered material; maintaining the oil-to-powdered-material weight ratio in the mixture between 1 to 0.00001 and 1 to 20; heating the mixture to a reaction temperature greater than 55 degrees Centigrade; maintaining the reaction temperature until the oil is polymerized; and, injecting air into the mixture while polymerizing the oil. The adhesive of this method comprises a renewable polymer and the powdered material.
Agency: Department of Agriculture | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 80.00K | Year: 2013
This Phase I project aims at converting the biodiesel plant waste crude glycerol to a low cost and high value biobased green gasoline using a novel technology. In biodiesel production, crude glycerol comprises around 10 weight % of the products. Crude glycerolisa waste stream and afinancial and environmental liability in the biodiesel industry. The research in this Phase I study will mainly focus on the technical feasibility of converting the waste crude glycerol tobiobased gasoline. Once this proof of concept is established, the work in Phase II will focus on transferring this glycerol based green gasoline production technology from the bench-scale to a pilot plant andproducing biobased gasoline for engine performance testing. The development of a highly efficient andcost-effective one-step process for high value biobased gasoline production from waste glycerol is of significant importance to realize the goal of a diverse and cost-effective integrated biorefinery. It will have significant implications for biodiesel plants, the petroleum industry, and end users. This technology will also expedite the substitution of petroleum gasoline with domestically produced alternative fuel and reduce U.S. dependence on foreign oil imports.
Agency: Department of Energy | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 999.99K | Year: 2010
Cool roofs have been used on commercial, industrial, and residential buildings to reduce their interior temperature and energy use. However, cool roofs have a winter time heating penalty because they reflect solar heat that would help warm the building, thereby increasing the heating load. To maximize the energy savings by reducing both heating and cooling loads, an intelligent roof coating that can tune the reflectance and transmittance of solar light based on the environmental temperature will be developed. This proposed technology concerns the development and commercialization of a waste cooking oil based thermochromic intelligent roof coating that can autonomously respond to temperature changes by adjusting the light transmission. In Phase I, this bio-based coating was successfully prepared, coated asphalt shingles were fully evaluated, the optimal operating conditions were determined, and an economic analysis was conducted. The technical feasibility of this technology has been successfully established. The overall objectives of Phase II are to bring this proven and viable technology from a laboratory scale to a pilot scale, produce coated shingles for field tests and for evaluations at other companies, and demonstrate its commercial viability. Commercial Applications and Other Benefits: The success of this project will bring an energy efficient, cost effective, environmentally friendly technology to the roof market that will bring significant energy and cost savings to the end-users, protect the environment and improve human health, and reduce the use of petroleum based fuel. This bio-based roof coating technology is innovative and practical. Compared to conventional cool roofs, this coating not only reflects solar light when the temperature is high, but also it transmits solar light when the temperature is low, thereby reducing both the heating and cooling loads of the buildings. The use of a renewable and agriculture based coating product will also eliminate the odor and volatile organic compounds (VOC) emissions associated with traditional roof coating products and generate more economic opportunity for the agricultural sector.
Agency: Department of Energy | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 1.01M | Year: 2013
About 1,700 million tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) were emitted from 572 coal-fired power plants in 2012 in the U.S. To reduce the CO2 emissions, CO2 capture and sequestration processes need to be implemented. In addition to CO2, these plants produce more than 72 million tons of fly ash per year, among which 40 million tons are disposed of in landfills or surface impoundments with disposal costs of $222 million per year. Any beneficial, practical utilization of CO2 and fly ash to produce high value and high volume products would greatly relieve the pressure on the power industry. This proposed project concerns a novel and beneficial CO2 utilization technology concurrent with fly ash application. In the presence of fly ash, flue gas CO2 interacts with renewable oils to produce a high performance, low cost, highly energy efficient, and environmentally friendly biopolymer building material. Classified as a non-hazardous material, this biopolymer can be used to replace or serve as an additive to petroleum based asphalt, sealant, and polymers in the manufacture of building materials. Compared to petroleum based products, this biopolymer has significant advantages, including substantially lower production costs, direct use of flue gas CO2 without compression, utilization of renewable and recycled materials, a water- and solvent-free production process with no waste streams, improved thermal durability and low temperature performance, improved fungal resistance, high energy efficiency, and elimination of the odor and volatile organic compounds emissions associated with petroleum products. In Phase I, the biopolymer was successfully produced, and its properties were fully characterized. The optimal biopolymer production conditions were determined. The technical feasibility of this technology has been successfully established. An economic analysis was conducted and demonstrated the economic viability of this technology. The overall objectives of Phase II are to bring this proven and viable CO2 based biopolymer production technology from a laboratory scale to a pilot scale process, produce biopolymer for industrial scale evaluations at other companies, and demonstrate its commercial viability. Commercial Applications and Other Benefits: An efficient transformation of CO2 and recycled waste into a high value biopolymer is of significant importance for resource utilization and pollution prevention. The success of this project will result in a high performance biopolymer for sustainable building and infrastructure construction that will bring significant cost savings to the end-users, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and waste disposal, protect the environment, reduce the use of petroleum based products, and meet the future building and infrastructure needs.
Agency: Department of Energy | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 149.82K | Year: 2012
This proposed technology concerns a high performance, low cost, and high value renewable bioasphalt polymer technology for roofing and other infrastructure construction applications. The bioasphalt is made from coal-fired power plant byproducts flue gas CO2 and fly ash and recycled agricultural byproducts waste cooking oils, animal fats, or trap grease. In the presence of flue gas containing CO2, the waste cooking oils are polymerized and then interact with the fly ash to produce an asphalt-like material bioasphalt. Compared to petroleum asphalt, this bioasphalt has significant advantages, including substantially lower production costs, utilization of renewable and recycled materials, better performance, non-hazardous materials, and elimination of the odor and volatile organic compounds (VOC) emissions associated with petroleum asphalt. In addition to reducing CO2 emissions and providing an alternative to fly ash disposal in a landfill, this bioaspahlt production process has no water requirement and does not produce any waste streams. This Phase I project will demonstrate the technical feasibility of this bioasphalt production technology. The role of CO2 in the bioasphalt production will be studied; the optimal reaction conditions for bioasphalt production using power plant flue gas will be determined; an accelerated weathering test will be conducted; and the economic viability of this technology will be verified. Once this proof of concept is established, the work in Phase II will focus on transferring this bioasphalt production technology to a pilot plant, further optimizing the bioasphalt production conditions, and preparing for commercial production. The success of this project will provide premium quality renewable material based building solutions through the use of cutting edge bio-based renewable technology. This high performance, environmentally friendly, and economically sound bioasphalt technology will bring significant cost savings to the end-users, reduce CO2 emissions, protect the environment and improve human health, and reduce the use of petroleum based fuel. This bioasphalt technology is innovative and practical. The use of a renewable and agriculture based product will reduce the odor and volatile organic compounds (VOC) emissions from petroleum based products and generate more economic opportunities for the agricultural sector.
Agency: Department of Energy | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 999.97K | Year: 2011
5,790 million metric tons of CO2 were emitted from fossil fuels in the U.S. in 2008. A beneficial, practical application of captured CO2 would bring significant economic and environmental benefits to CO2 generating industries. Meanwhile, biodiesel production yields around 10 weight % of byproduct glycerol. 230,000 tons of crude glycerol were produced in 2008, and 986,000 tons of glycerol are expected in 2018. With the rapid increases in crude glycerol generation from biodiesel plants, glycerol has become a waste stream and a financial and environmental liability to the biodiesel producers. To advance the production of biodiesel and realize the biodiesel economy, advanced development and commercialization of innovative technologies for the conversion of crude glycerol into value-added products is imperative. This proposed project concerns a novel and beneficial CO2 and crude glycerol application technology. In the presence of a low cost and highly active catalyst, greenhouse gas CO2 reacts with crude glycerol, a biodiesel plant waste, to produce a bio-based high value renewable industrial product glycerol carbonate. In Phase I, glycerol carbonate was successfully prepared from CO2 and glycerol under different reaction conditions and using different raw material sources, and the optimal operating conditions were determined. The technical feasibility of this technology has been successfully established. An economic analysis was conducted and demonstrated the economic viability of this technology. The overall objectives of Phase II are to bring this proven and viable CO2 based glycerol carbonate production technology from a laboratory scale to a pilot scale process, produce glycerol carbonate using crude glycerol from different biodiesel plants, and evaluate coal-fired power plant flue gas as a CO2 source for glycerol carbonate production. The success of this project will bring a one-step, environmentally friendly, cost-effective, energy-efficient, and easy to operate CO2 based renewable glycerol carbonate production technology into commercialization. This technology can be easily scaled up and will have substantial environmental, economic, and energy benefits. An efficient transformation of CO2 and crude glycerol into a high value chemical is of significant importance for resource utilization and pollution prevention. It will offset the biodiesel production cost and CO2 capture cost and play an important role in the advancement of the integrated biorefinery concept for biofuel and renewable chemical production concurrent with CO2 emissions reduction, leading to substantial cost savings and environmental benefits. The success of this technology will have significant implications for biodiesel plants, industrial sectors with CO2 emissions, and glycerol carbonate producers and users.
Agency: NSF | Branch: Standard Grant | Program: | Phase: SMALL BUSINESS PHASE II | Award Amount: 463.64K | Year: 2011
This Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase II project proposes to develop a high performance, environmentally benign, and low cost renewable bioasphalt from recycled agricultural byproduct. The availability issue of petroleum based asphalt, along with the high cost of petroleum and the fuel price to transport the asphalt from a centralized refinery plant to distribution sites, has increased the price of asphalt substantially. The use of the petroleum asphalt also generates hydrocarbon fumes, which irritate workers and create a nuisance for the surrounding community. Because of concerns over dependence on foreign oil, a high asphalt price and unstable supply, and air emissions, non-petroleum based bioasphalt made from renewable sources needs to be studied and developed. In this Phase II research, the bioasphalt production technology developed in Phase I will be scaled up to produce samples for evaluation in the field. The commercial viability of this technology will be demonstrated.
The broader impacts of this research are the use of a renewable and agricultural based product to reduce the use of petroleum asphalt, eliminate the odor and emissions associated with traditional petroleum asphalt, and improve the product performance.