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Huang X.,Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography
Communications in Computer and Information Science | Year: 2017

Carbon and water cycle of terrestrial ecosystem is the frontier scientific issues of global change and carbon cycle research, the process mechanism of carbon and water coupling analysis is the scientific basis of climate change mechanism, climate change prediction, and climate change adaptation strategy formulation. For the arid and semi arid region, which accounts for 30–50% of the total land area in the earth, the carbon source problem still has a lot of uncertainty, and the combination research of the two processes of carbon and water is very little. The analysis about research results from domestic and foreign related ecosystem carbon and water coupling relations not only can understand the carbon and water coupling effect in different scale and internal relations but also contribute to a profound understanding of the effect of temperature and precipitation patterns change on the water and carbon balance of ecological system in arid area under the context of global change, which will help to grasp the dynamic ecological system in arid area. This paper analyzes the coupling relationship between carbon and water, water use efficiency and carbon and water coupling model, and focus on carbon and water coupling relationship of ecological system in arid area. Meanwhile, this paper studies carbon and water fluxes in different spatial and temporal scales of desert riparian forest ecosystem, compares the water efficiency of desert riparian forest ecosystem system (WUE) in different scales, and explore carbon and water coupling relationship of desert riparian forest ecosystem and water use efficiency change under the background in order to study the coupling model based on process. © Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2017.


Wang Q.,Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography | Chen X.,Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography
Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews | Year: 2012

Investigations before and after the Fukushima nuclear accident revealed nuclear accidents like Fukushima would have unlikely happened in a country with transparency and public participation regarding nuclear issues. However, this lack of transparency and public involvement is unique not only to Japan. China is rushing to build reactors, hosting over 40% of the reactors under construction worldwide, but transparency and public involvement is overlooked and even discouraged. China's nuclear policymaking has relied heavily on closed panels of expert opinions, exclusive of public oversight or awareness. In China, public involvement of nuclear policies has not been welcomed. The lack of public participation has streamlined and simplified building procedures for nuclear reactors, which facilitated building too many reactors too fast. There are currently 27 reactors under construction in China that vary in the use of generations II, III, and IV reactors. No other country in history has experienced nuclear energy expansion with so many different types of reactors under simultaneous construction in such a short time. To prevent the next Fukushima, more efforts are required not to repeat the same mistake made by Japan; China should encourage public participation and awareness regarding nuclear issues by giving high priority to a transparent approach. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All right reserved.


Wang Q.,Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography | Chen X.,Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography
Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews | Year: 2012

Investigation before and after the Fukushima nuclear accident has revealed that the failures of Japan's nuclear regulatory system was also blame to the worst nuclear accident since Chernobyl. The Fukushima nuclear accident has served to remind us that nuclear safety regulatory failure is vulnerable to the potentially deadly combination of natural risk. It should be noted that nuclear regulatory failures are not unique to Japan, given the low efficiency of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). We are living in a nuclear world. We have no alternative but to learn the lessons from the Fukushima. Unfortunately, all signs do not seem to be promising. This was partly due to competing proposals from several countries without clear understanding of which ideas would help, and a lack of sustained leadership focused on building support for key initiatives beforehand. New actions to strengthen the nuclear safety should be derived upon a thorough assessment of the causes for Japan's nuclear regulatory failures, as well as a comparative analysis of the nuclear regulatory systems in Japan, the United States (the owner of most nuclear reactors in operation), and China (the owner of most nuclear reactors under construction). This article is addressed to conduct an analysis of the causes for Japan's nuclear regulatory failure, discuss the key deficits in the nuclear regulatory systems of the U.S. and China, and finally outline two main policy recommendations. Nuclear accident knows no boundaries. Strengthening our nuclear safety regulation is not an option but an imperative, thus ensuring that the 433 operational units of reactor run safely, as well as 65 proposed ones. March 11, 2012 is the first anniversary of the Fukushima accident. This provocative article that calls for action on upgrade nuclear safety regulation over the world is dedicated to commemorate the first anniversary of the Fukushima accident. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


Wang Q.,Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography | Wang Q.,University of California at Riverside | Chen X.,Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography | Jha A.N.,University of Plymouth | Rogers H.,University of Oxford
Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews | Year: 2014

Extraction of natural gas from shale rock in the United States (US) is one of the landmark events in the 21st century. The combination of horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing can extract huge quantities of natural gas from impermeable shale formations, which were previously thought to be either impossible or uneconomic to produce. This review offers a comprehensive insight into US shale gas opportunities, appraising the evolution, evidence and the challenges of shale gas production in the US. The history of US shale gas in this article is divided into three periods and based on the change of oil price (i.e., the period before the 1970s oil crisis, the period from 1970s to 2000, and the period since 2000), the US has moved from being one of the world's biggest importers of gas to being self-sufficient in less than a decade, with the shale gas production increasing 12-fold (from 2000 to 2010). The US domestic natural gas price hit a 10-year low in 2012. The US domestic natural gas price in the first half of 2012 was about $2 per million British Thermal Unit (BTU), compared with Brent crude, the world benchmark price for oil, now about $ 80-100/barrel, or $14-17 per million BTU. Partly due to an increase in gas-fired power generation in response to low gas prices, US carbon emissions from fossil-fuel combustion fell by 430 million ton CO2 - more than any other country - between 2006 and 2011. Shale gas also stimulated economic growth, creating 600,000 new jobs in the US by 2010. However, the US shale gas revolution would be curbed, if the environmental risks posed by hydraulic fracturing are not managed effectively. The hydraulic fracturing is water intensive, and can cause pollution in the marine environment, with implications for long-term environmental sustainability in several ways. Also, large amounts of methane, a powerful greenhouse gas, can be emitted during the shale gas exploration and production. Hydraulic fracturing also may induce earthquakes. These environmental risks need to be managed by good practices which is not being applied by all the producers in all the locations. Enforcing stronger regulations are necessary to minimize risk to the environment and on human health. Robust regulatory oversight can however increase the cost of extraction, but stringent regulations can foster an historic opportunity to provide cheaper and cleaner gas to meet the consumer demand, as well as to usher in the future growth of the industry. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.


Chen Y.,Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography | Mu S.,Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography
Sensors and Actuators, B: Chemical | Year: 2014

In the present paper, core-shell structured Fe3O4 nanoparticles functionalized with rhodamine derived probe were prepared for the detection, adsorption and removal of Hg(II). The core was composed of superparamagnetic Fe3O4 nanoparticles, while the shell consisted of silica molecular sieve MCM-41 and was functionalized by rhodamine derived probe. The nanocomposite was characterized by electron microscopy images, XRD patterns, thermogravimetric analysis and N2 adsorption/desorption isotherms, which confirmed its core-shell structure. Its sensing performance towards Hg(II) was then discussed in detail. Experimental result suggested that the emission of the nanocomposite increased with the increasing Hg(II) concentration, showing emission "Off-On" effect. High sensitivity and good selectivity were observed from the nanocomposite. Owing to the highly ordered tunnels and the large surface-area-to-volume ratio of MCM-41, the nanocomposite showed fast response towards Hg(II). What's more, it was recyclable for practical application. © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.


Wang W.,Inner Mongolia University | Feng Z.,Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography
Earth-Science Reviews | Year: 2013

Based on the review of 26 high-standard Holocene climatic reconstructions (mainly pollen-based) from the Mongolian Plateau and its surrounding areas, temporal and spatial patterns of the Holocene moisture evolution are synthesized. The regionally-averaged moisture history from the summer monsoon-influenced semiarid belt in China (i.e., Region A) demonstrates that the moisture index curve is broadly in agreement with the synthesized East Asian Monsoon Strength curve, both following the general trend of the West Tropical Pacific SST that is in turn the delayed response to the northern hemispheric summer solar insolation. The regionally-averaged moisture indices from the winter monsoon-dominated southern Siberia including Lake Baikal area and the Altai Mountains (i.e., Region B) exhibit a general declining trends since 10.6-9.6. cal. kyr BP, being largely consistent with the trends of the annual precipitation and the warm-season temperature in the Russian Plain. The consistency might be attributable to the Holocene declining trend of the warm-season temperature in North Atlantic region. The predominant feature of the regionally-averaged moisture index from the westerlies-affected northern Xinjiang (i.e., Region C) is a persistent increasing trend since ~. 8. cal. kyr BP. The wetting trend of northern Xinjiang during the past 8000. years might be attributable to the increasing trend of winter insolation and to the associated increasing trend of cold-season temperature in northwestern Europe. The chronological correspondences between dry phases and warm intervals in the arid areas of the Mongolian Plateau (i.e., northern Mongolian Plateau within Mongolia and southern Mongolian Plateau within China, Region D) lend a support to the proposal that the mid-Holocene dry phase was most likely the result of mid-Holocene high warm-season temperature. © 2013 Elsevier B.V.


Wang Y.,Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography | Li Y.,Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography
Catena | Year: 2013

Understanding the process of agricultural land expansion and its impact on soil properties is crucial for land management and environmental health. A desert-oasis ecotone is typically located between an oasis at the lower reach of inland rivers and neighboring desert in arid regions, and acts as an interactive zone between irrigated farmland and the natural desert ecosystem. The arid region of northwest China has experienced dramatic land exploitation since the 1960s and soil salinization has been a serious environmental problem ever since. The objective of this study was to determine the relationship between land exploitation and soil salt accumulation in the topsoil. A typical desert-oasis ecotone, the Fubei region at the lower reach of the Sangong River catchment in arid northwest China, was used as a case study. The results revealed the following: (1) overexploitation of land resources has been astonishing since 1960, with >40% of the area becoming irrigated farmland. There was frequent transition of land-use types from one to another, with about 38% of the area experiencing transitional change during 1982-2009. (2) Comparing soil salt content with land use during 1982-2009 showed an expanding area of soil salinity and an increased degree of salinity in all land-use types. The area with soil salt content>20g/kg increased by 16.4%, while the area with soil salt content of 5-10g/kg decreased by 42% during 1982-2009. In addition, the amount of overall soil salt accumulation was about 21.6×10 10g in the study area during 1982-2009, and soil salt accumulation per unit area increased by 60%, with salt accumulation in farmland, grassland and saline-alkali land higher than for other land-use types (p<0.05). (3) The dramatic salt accumulation was a result of agricultural land exploitation that requires irrigation, and this directly caused a rising groundwater table, and then higher evaporation led to soil salinization. Collectively, the results indicate that overexploitation of land resources had large and prolonged effects on soil salinization, which is a lesson to be learned for integrated land management in similar ecotones in arid zones. © 2012 Elsevier B.V.


Qiang W.,Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography | Xi C.,Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography | Xu Y.-C.,Griffith University
Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews | Year: 2013

The reports from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and the Japanese Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency (NISA) have confirmed that the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant (NPP) survived the initial earthquake impacts, but fell victim to the following tsunami. The 14-m tsunami well exceeded the maximum safety design of 5.7 m. It damaged the pumps, cut off the external power supplies to cool the reactors and spent fuel pool, and directly contributed to the three core meltdowns at the Fukushima Daiichi NPP. These official reports, academic papers, and breaking news also show that five warnings of tsunamis at the Fukushima Daiichi NPP had been ignored by the nuclear operator and regulators since 2000. This article argues that not the natural disaster, but the regulatory failures contributed to the worst nuclear accident since Chernobyl. It explains how the cozy relationship between the government, regulators and nuclear operators, the combined role of NISA as an industry promoter and regulator, and the revolving door between bureaucrats and industries had long undermined the capacity of NISA as a watchdog for nuclear safety. It concludes that upgrading and strengthening a nuclear regulatory system is not optional but imperative to prevent the next core meltdown. Three key recommendations are offered for upgrading nuclear safety regulation. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd.


Xiao W.,Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography | Xiao W.,CAS Institute of Geology and Geophysics | Santosh M.,China University of Geosciences | Santosh M.,Kochi University
Gondwana Research | Year: 2014

The architecture of accretionary orogens is a key to understand continental growth. Here we present an overview of the orogenic components and their amalgamation in the western Central Asian Orogenic Belt (CAOB). The CAOB records the convergence and interactions among various types of orogenic components including the Japan-type, Mariana-type, and Alaska-Aleutian-type arc systems, as well as the active marginal sequences of the Siberia Craton, which incorporated wide accretionary complexes and accreted arcs and terranes. During construction of the CAOB, the Kazakhstan arc chain was characterized by multiple subduction, whereas the northern fringe of the Tarim Craton remained mostly as a passive margin. The multiple convergence and accretions among these various orogenic components generated huge orogenic collages in the late Paleozoic and even in the early Triassic, involving parallel amalgamation, circum-microcontinent amalgamation and oroclinal bending. The preservation of trapped basins played a significant role in orogenesis with some parts of the oceanic plate being subducted and others behaving as rigid units. The orogenesis in the CAOB was long-lived, lasting for more than 800. m.y., involving multiple-subduction and long, continuous accretion, and featuring the complexity of accretionary orogenesis and continent growth. © 2014 International Association for Gondwana Research.


News Article | March 18, 2016
Site: www.nanotech-now.com

Abstract: You probably don't think much of fungi, and especially those that turn bread moldy, but researchers reporting in the Cell Press journal Current Biology on March 17, 2016 have evidence that might just change your mind. Their findings suggest that a red bread mold could be the key to producing more sustainable electrochemical materials for use in rechargeable batteries. The researchers show for the first time that the fungus Neurospora crassa can transform manganese into a mineral composite with favorable electrochemical properties. "We have made electrochemically active materials using a fungal manganese biomineralization process," says Geoffrey Gadd of the University of Dundee in Scotland. "The electrochemical properties of the carbonized fungal biomass-mineral composite were tested in a supercapacitor and a lithium-ion battery, and it [the composite] was found to have excellent electrochemical properties. This system therefore suggests a novel biotechnological method for the preparation of sustainable electrochemical materials." Gadd and his colleagues have long studied the ability of fungi to transform metals and minerals in useful and surprising ways. In earlier studies, the researchers showed that fungi could stabilize toxic lead and uranium, for example. That led the researchers to wonder whether fungi could offer a useful alternative strategy for the preparation of novel electrochemical materials too. "We had the idea that the decomposition of such biomineralized carbonates into oxides might provide a novel source of metal oxides that have significant electrochemical properties," Gadd says. In fact, there have been many efforts to improve lithium-ion battery or supercapacitor performance using alternative electrode materials such as carbon nanotubes and other manganese oxides. But few had considered a role for fungi in the manufacturing process. In the new study, Gadd and his colleagues incubated N. crassa in media amended with urea and manganese chloride (MnCl2) and watched what happened. The researchers found that the long branching fungal filaments (or hyphae) became biomineralized and/or enveloped by minerals in various formations. After heat treatment, they were left with a mixture of carbonized biomass and manganese oxides. Further study of those structures show that they have ideal electrochemical properties for use in supercapacitors or lithium-ion batteries. "We were surprised that the prepared biomass-Mn oxide composite performed so well," Gadd says. In comparison to other reported manganese oxides in lithium-ion batteries, the carbonized fungal biomass-mineral composite "showed an excellent cycling stability and more than 90% capacity was retained after 200 cycles," he says. The new study is the first to demonstrate the synthesis of active electrode materials using a fungal biomineralization process, illustrating the great potential of these fungal processes as a source of useful biomaterials. Gadd says they'll continue to explore the use of fungi in producing various potentially useful metal carbonates. They're also interested in investigating such processes for the biorecovery of valuable or scarce metal elements in other chemical forms. ### The authors acknowledge financial support from the China Scholarship Council and the 1000 Talents Plan with the Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography, Chinese Academy of Sciences. For more information, please click If you have a comment, please us. Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

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