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Engstrom K.,Lund University | Ameer S.,Lund University | Bernaudat L.,United Nations Industrial Development Organization | Drasch G.,Ludwig Maximilians University of Munich | And 5 more authors.
Environmental Health Perspectives | Year: 2013

Background: Elemental mercury (Hg0) is widely used in small-scale gold mining. Persons working or living in mining areas have high urinary concentrations of Hg (U-Hg). Differences in genes encoding potential Hg-transporters may affect uptake and elimination of Hg. Objective: We aimed to identify single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in Hg-transporter genes that modify U-Hg. Methods: Men and women (1,017) from Indonesia, the Philippines, Tanzania, and Zimbabwe were classified either as controls (no Hg exposure from gold mining) or as having low (living in a gold-mining area) or high exposure (working as gold miners). U-Hg was analyzed by cold-vapor atomic absorption spectrometry. Eighteen SNPs in eight Hg-transporter genes were analyzed. Results: U-Hg concentrations were higher among ABCC2/MRP2 rs1885301 A-allele carriers than among GG homozygotes in all populations, though differences were not statistically significant in most cases. MRP2 SNPs showed particularly strong associations with U-Hg in the subgroup with highest exposure (miners in Zimbabwe), whereas rs1885301 A-allele carriers had higher U-Hg than GG homozygotes [geometric mean (GM): 36.4 μg/g creatinine vs. 21.9; p = 0.027], rs2273697 GG homozygotes had higher U-Hg than A-allele carriers (GM: 37.4 vs. 16.7; p = 0.001), and rs717620 A-allele carriers had higher U-Hg than GG homozygotes (GM: 83 vs. 28; p = 0.084). The SLC7A5/LAT1 rs33916661 GG genotype was associated with higher U-Hg in all populations (statistically significant for all Tanzanians combined). SNPs in SLC22A6/OAT1 (rs4149170) and SLC22A8/OAT3 (rs4149182) were associated with U-Hg mainly in the Tanzanian study groups. Conclusions: SNPs in putative Hg-transporter genes may influence U-Hg concentrations. Source


Grant
Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: JTI-CP-FCH | Phase: SP1-JTI-FCH.2009.4.1 | Award Amount: 4.68M | Year: 2011

Materials handling vehicles are currently powered by either electric motors based on lead-acid batteries or combustion engines employing diesel or liquefied petroleum gas. A number of disadvantages have been encountered with these current power systems and many efforts have been undertaken to find new ways to power the vehicles.. Here, fuel cells offer advantages over the competing electrochemical technology, including sustained high performance over the operating period and faster time to return the system to a full state. The overall purpose of the SHEL project is to demonstrate the market readiness of the technology and to develop a template for future commercialization of hydrogen powered fuel cell based materials handling vehicles for demanding, high intensity logistics operations. This project will demonstrate 10 FC forklift trucks and associated hydrogen refuelling infrastructure across 4 sites in Europe. Real time information will be gathered to demonstrate the advantages of using fuel cells to current technologies and fast procedures will be developed to reduce the time required for product certification and infrastructural build approval. Moreover, to ensure the widest dissemination of the results, the project will build a comprehensive Stake Holder Group of partners to pave the way for wider acceptance of the technology.


Grant
Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: JTI-CP-FCH | Phase: SP1-JTI-FCH.2009.4.2 | Award Amount: 5.29M | Year: 2010

A total of 19 market-ready fuel cell systems from 2 suppliers (ElectroPS, FutureE) will be installed as UPS/ backup power sources in selected sites across the EU. Real-world customers from the telecommunications and hotel industry will utilize these fuel cell-based systems, with power levels in the 1-10kW range, in their sites. These units will demonstrate a level of technical performance (start-up time, reliability, durability, number of cycles) that qualifies them for market entry, thereby accelerating the commercialisation of this technology in Europe and elsewhere. The demonstration project will involve the benchmarking of units from both fuel cell suppliers according to a test protocol to be developed within the project. It will employ this test protocol to conduct extensive tests in field trials in sites selected by final users in Italy, Switzerland and Turkey. The performance will be logged and analysed to draw conclusions regarding commercial viability and degree to which they meet customer requirements, as well as suggesting areas for improvement. A lifecycle cost analysis using data from the project will be carried out to determine economic value proposition over incumbent technologies such as batteries or diesel generators. The system producers use the results to obtain valuable first hand feedback from customers, optimise their systems as needed, and demonstrate commercial viability. On the other hand, final users from the telecommunications and hotel industry will experience first-hand the advantages of fuel cells for their applications under real world conditions. The optimisation potential is expected from the production process itself, from the installation of a significant amount of fuel cell systems and from the testing. The project will also develop a certification procedure valid in the EU27 under the lead of TV Sd.


News Article | March 29, 2016
Site: http://www.theenergycollective.com/rss/all

Igor Volodin introduces a programme demonstrating the benefits of adopting best available techniques, cleaner production technology, and appropriate environmental management and accounting practices Green industry is an approach that realizes the potential for industries to decouple economic growth from excessive and increasing resource use, thereby reducing pollution and generating additional revenues. It foresees a world where industrial sectors will minimize waste in every form, use renewable resources as input materials and fuels, and take every possible precaution to avoid harming workers, communities, climate, or the environment. Green industries will be creative and innovative, constantly developing new ways of improving their economic, environmental and social performance. Enterprises in developing countries and countries with economies in transition are facing numerous challenges in their effort to maintain or increase their competitiveness on the local market and access to international markets with good-quality products, comply with environmental standards and reduce operational costs. In order to assist companies in dealing with such challenges and to direct them towards the “green industry” paradigm, the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) designed a specific methodology, the Transfer of Environmentally Sound Technology (TEST), which exists as both an integrated approach and a global programme. TEST combines the essential elements of tools like Resource Efficiency and Cleaner Production, Environmental Management Systems and Environmental Management Accounting, and applies them on the basis of a comprehensive diagnosis of enterprise performance. As a result of the customized integration and implementation of these tools and their elements, the key output is the adoption of best practices, and new skills and management culture, as well as corporate social responsibility, enabling the company to carry on the improvement journey towards sustainable entrepreneurship. The first TEST pilot programme was launched in 2000 in the Danube River Basin. Since then, TEST has been replicated in several regions worldwide within industrial hot spot areas, contributing to the prevention of the discharge of industrial effluents into international waters (rivers, lakes, wetlands and coastal areas) and thereby protecting water resources for future generations. In 2009, UNIDO launched the MEDTEST initiative with the financial support of the Global Environment Facility (GEF) and the Italian government to promote the transfer and adoption of cleaner technology in industries in three countries of the Southern Mediterranean region: Egypt, Morocco and Tunisia. The project aimed to demonstrate the effectiveness of introducing best practices and integrated management systems in terms of cost reduction, productivity increase and environmental performance. A pool of 43 manufacturing sites – mostly small and medium-sized enterprises – across seven industrial sectors in Egypt, Morocco and Tunisia actively participated in MED TEST during 2010-2011. A core objective of the MED TEST initiative was building national capacity. This was achieved by extensive training and a technical assistance programme that targeted six national institutions and service providers and 30 local professionals, in addition to the staff of the 43 demonstration companies. As a result, a network of local resources is now engaged in promoting the TEST approach and will be able to extend the experience gained to other industries in the region. The active participation of the staff of the demonstration companies in the training and in the implementation of the project ensures the sustainability of all identified actions at company level, as well as that of newly developed projects. IGOR VOLODIN is Deputy to the Director of the Environment Branch at the United Nations Industrial Development Organization. Original article


Bazilian M.,United Nations Industrial Development Organization | Bazilian M.,International Institute For Applied Systems Analysis | Onyeji I.,United Nations Industrial Development Organization | Onyeji I.,African Institute for Applied Economics | And 8 more authors.
Renewable Energy | Year: 2013

This paper briefly considers the recent dramatic reductions in the underlying costs and market prices of solar photovoltaic (PV) systems, and their implications for decision-makers. In many cases, current PV costs and the associated market and technological shifts witnessed in the industry have not been fully noted by decision-makers. The perception persists that PV is prohibitively expensive, and still has not reached 'competitiveness'. The authors find that the commonly used analytical comparators for PV vis a vis other power generation options may add further confusion. In order to help dispel existing misconceptions, some level of transparency is provided on the assumptions, inputs and parameters in calculations relating to the economics of PV. The paper is aimed at informing policy makers, utility decision-makers, investors and advisory services, in particular in high-growth developing countries, as they weigh the suite of power generation options available to them. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. Source

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