Displaying publications 1 - 20 of 144 in total

  1. Kang K, Nanda S, Lam SS, Zhang T, Huo L, Zhao L
    Environ Res, 2020 07;186:109480.
    PMID: 32302869 DOI: 10.1016/j.envres.2020.109480
    Microwave assisted hydrothermal treatment (MHTC) was compared with torrefaction in terms of carbonization efficiency and physicochemical characteristics of char products. The utilization of produced char was optimized for composite solid biofuel production. The results show that MHTC significantly improved the binding capability of the microwave hydrochar (MHC) particles during co-densification with unprocessed biomass and coal. One possible contributor to the improved binding is the pseudo lignin formed during the MHTC, which led to a better interlocking of the feedstock particles and promoted the solid bridge formation. Composite pellet prepared with 80 wt% of torrefaction char (TC-120), 10 wt% of microwave hydrochar (MHC-30), and 10 wt% of Coal-04 showed a higher heating value of 24.54 MJ/kg and energy density of 26.43 GJ/m3, which is significantly higher than that of the raw cotton stalk pellet (16.77 MJ/kg and 18.76 GJ/m3, respectively), showing great promise as a solid biofuel. The moisture resistance and oxidation reactivity are also significantly improved. The results demonstrate that MHCs provides dual functionalities in acting as binder and fuel promoter in the production of composite biofuel. This study can provide new insight into the unique functions of MHC during fuel application, which demonstrates the great potential of applying MHTC in energy recovery from lignocellulosic biomass.
  2. Munir M, Ahmad M, Rehan M, Saeed M, Lam SS, Nizami AS, et al.
    Environ Res, 2021 02;193:110398.
    PMID: 33127396 DOI: 10.1016/j.envres.2020.110398
    This study focused on producing high quality and yield of biodiesel from novel non-edible seed oil of abundantly available wild Raphnus raphanistrum L. using an efficient, recyclable and eco-friendly copper modified montmorillonite (MMT) clay catalyst. The maximum biodiesel yield of 83% was obtained by base catalyzed transesterification process under optimum operating conditions of methanol to oil ratio of 15:1, reaction temperature of 150 °C, reaction time of 5 h and catalyst loading of 3.5%. The synthesized catalyst and biodiesel were characterized for their structural features and chemical compositions using various state-of-the-art techniques, including x-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy, energy dispersive x-ray spectroscopy, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, nuclear magnetic resonance (1H, 13C) and gas chromatography-mass spectroscopy. The fuel properties of the biodiesel were estimated including kinematic viscosity (4.36 cSt), density (0.8312 kg/L), flash point (72 °C), acid value (0.172 mgKOH/g) and sulphur content (0.0002 wt.%). These properties were compared and found in good agreement with the International Biodiesel Standards of American (ASTM-951, 6751), European Committee (EN-14214) and China GB/T 20828 (2007). The catalyst was re-used in five consecutive transesterification reactions without losing much catalytic efficiency. Overall, non-edible Raphnus raphanistrum L.. seed oil and Cu doped MMT clay catalyst appeared to be highly active, stable, and cheap contenders for future biofuel industry. However, detailed life cycle assessment (LCA) studies of Raphnus raphanistrum L. seed oil biodiesel are highly recommended to assess the technical, ecological, social and economic challenges.
  3. Mohd Ali MA, Gimbun J, Lau KL, Cheng CK, Vo DN, Lam SS, et al.
    Environ Res, 2020 06;185:109452.
    PMID: 32259725 DOI: 10.1016/j.envres.2020.109452
    A synergistic effect of the activated limestone-based catalyst (LBC) and microwave irradiation on the transesterification of waste cooking oil (WCO) was screened using a two-level factorial design and response surface methodology. The catalyst was prepared using a wet-impregnation method and was characterised for its surface element, surface morphology, surface area and porosity. The reaction was performed in a purpose-built continuous microwave assisted reactor (CMAR), while the conversion and yield of biodiesel were measured using a gas chromatography. The results showed that the catalyst loading, methanol to oil molar ratio and the reaction time significantly affect the WCO conversion. The optimum conversion of oil to biodiesel up to 96.65% was achieved at catalyst loading of 5.47 wt%, methanol to oil molar ratio of 12.21:1 and the reaction time of 55.26 min. The application of CMAR in this work reduced the transesterification time by about 77% compared to the reaction time needed for a conventional reactor. The biodiesel produced in this work met the specification of American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM D6751). Engine test results shows the biodiesel has a lower NOx and particulate matters emissions compared to petrodiesel.
  4. Sun Q, Chen WJ, Pang B, Sun Z, Lam SS, Sonne C, et al.
    Bioresour Technol, 2021 Dec;341:125807.
    PMID: 34474237 DOI: 10.1016/j.biortech.2021.125807
    In recent years, visualization and characterization of lignocellulose at different scales elucidate the modifications of its ultrastructural and chemical features during hydrothermal pretreatment which include degradation and dissolving of hemicelluloses, swelling and partial hydrolysis of cellulose, melting and redepositing a part of lignin in the surface. As a result, cell walls are swollen, deformed and de-laminated from the adjacent layer, lead to a range of revealed droplets that appear on and within cell walls. Moreover, the certain extent morphological changes significantly promote the downstream processing steps, especially for enzymatic hydrolysis and anaerobic fermentation to bioethanol by increasing the contact area with enzymes. However, the formation of pseudo-lignin hinders the accessibility of cellulase to cellulose, which decreases the efficiency of enzymatic hydrolysis. This review is intended to bridge the gap between the microstructure studies and value-added applications of lignocellulose while inspiring more research prospects to enhance the hydrothermal pretreatment process.
  5. Sheng Y, Lam SS, Wu Y, Ge S, Wu J, Cai L, et al.
    Bioresour Technol, 2021 Mar;324:124631.
    PMID: 33454445 DOI: 10.1016/j.biortech.2020.124631
    The demands of energy sustainability drive efforts to bio-chemical conversion of biomass into biofuels through pretreatment, enzymatic hydrolysis, and microbial fermentation. Pretreatment leads to significant structural changes of the complex lignin polymer that affect yield and productivity of the enzymatic conversion of lignocellulosic biomass. Structural changes of lignin after pretreatment include functional groups, inter unit linkages and compositions. These changes influence non-productive adsorption of enzyme on lignin through hydrophobic interaction and electrostatic interaction as well as hydrogen bonding. This paper reviews the relationships between structural changes of lignin and enzymatic hydrolysis of pretreated lignocellulosic biomass. The formation of pseudo-lignin during dilute acid pretreatment is revealed, and their negative effect on enzymatic hydrolysis is discussed.
  6. Wu Y, Liang Y, Mei C, Cai L, Nadda A, Le QV, et al.
    Chemosphere, 2022 Jan;286(Pt 3):131891.
    PMID: 34416587 DOI: 10.1016/j.chemosphere.2021.131891
    Nanocellulose based gas barrier materials have become an increasingly important subject, since it is a widespread environmentally friendly natural polymer. Previous studies have shown that super-high gas barrier can be achieved with pure and hierarchical nanocellulose films fabricated through simple suspension or layer-by-layer technique either by itself or incorporating with other polymers or nanoparticles. Improved gas barrier properties were observed for nanocellulose-reinforced composites, where nanocellulose partially impermeable nanoparticles decreased gas permeability effectively. However, for nanocellulose-based materials, the higher gas barrier performance is jeopardized by water absorption and shape deformation under high humidity conditions which is a challenge for maintaining properties in material applications. Thus, numerous investigations have been done to solve the problem of water absorption in nanocellulose-based materials. In this literature review, gas barrier properties of pure, layer-by-layer and composite nanocellulose films are investigated. The possible theoretical gas barrier mechanisms are described, and the prospects for nanocellulose-based materials are discussed.
  7. Feng Y, Feng Y, Liu Q, Chen S, Hou P, Poinern G, et al.
    Environ Pollut, 2022 Feb 01;294:118598.
    PMID: 34861331 DOI: 10.1016/j.envpol.2021.118598
    Biochar has been considered as a potential tool to mitigate soil ammonia (NH3) volatilization and greenhouse gases (GHGs) emissions in recent years. However, the aging effect of biochar on soils remains elusive, which introduces uncertainty on the effectiveness of biochar to mitigate global warming in a long term. Here, a meta-analysis of 22 published works of literature with 217 observations was conducted to systematically explore the aging effect of biochar on soil NH3 and GHGs emissions. The results show that, in comparison with the fresh biochar, the aging makes biochar more effective to decrease soil NH3 volatilization by 7% and less risk to contribute CH4 emissions by 11%. However, the mitigation effect of biochar on soil N2O emissions is decreased by 15% due to aging. Additionally, aging leads to a promotion effect on soil CO2 emissions by 25% than fresh biochar. Our findings suggest that along with aging, particularly the effect of artificial aging, biochar could further benefit the alleviation of soil NH3 volatilization, whereas its potential role to mitigate global warming may decrease. This study provides a systematic assessment of the aging effect of biochar to mitigate soil NH3 and GHGs, which can provide a scientific basis for the sustainable green development of biochar application.
  8. Chen H, Zeng X, Zhou Y, Yang X, Lam SS, Wang D
    J Hazard Mater, 2020 07 15;394:122570.
    PMID: 32244145 DOI: 10.1016/j.jhazmat.2020.122570
    The removal of antibiotics and resistance genes in wastewater treatment plants has attracted widespread attention, but the potential role of residual antibiotics in the disposal of waste activated sludge (WAS) has not been clearly understood. In this study, the effect of roxithromycin (ROX) on volatile fatty acid (VFA) recovery from WAS anaerobic fermentation was investigated. The experimental results showed that ROX made a positive contribution to the production of VFAs. With the increase of ROX dosages from 0 to 100 mg/kg TSS, the maximum accumulation of VFAs increased from 295 to 610 mg COD/L. Mechanism studies revealed that ROX promoted the solubilization of WAS by facilitating the disruption of extracellular polymeric substances. In addition, ROX enhanced the activity of acetate kinase and inhibited the activities of α-glucosidase and coenzyme F420, and showed a stronger inhibitory effect on methane production than the hydrolysis process, thus resulting in an increase in VFA accumulation. These findings provide a new insight for the role of antibiotics in anaerobic fermentation of WAS.
  9. Wijekoon P, Koliyabandara PA, Cooray AT, Lam SS, Athapattu BCL, Vithanage M
    J Hazard Mater, 2021 Jul 12;421:126627.
    PMID: 34343881 DOI: 10.1016/j.jhazmat.2021.126627
    The escalating loads of municipal solid waste (MSW) end up in open dumps and landfills, producing continuous flows of landfill leachate. The risk of incorporating highly toxic landfill leachate into environment is important to be evaluated and measured in order to facilitate decision making for landfill leachate management and treatment. Leachate pollution index (LPI) provides quantitative measures of the potential environmental pollution by landfill leachate and information about the environmental quality adjacent to a particular landfill. According to LPI values, most developing countries show high pollution potentials from leachate, mainly due to high organic waste composition and low level of waste management techniques. A special focus on leachate characterization studies with LPI and its integration to treatment, which has not been focused in previous reviews on landfill leachate, is given here. Further, the current review provides a summary related to leachate generation, composition, characterization, risk assessment and treatment together with challenges and perspectives in the sector with its focus to developing nations. Potential commercial and industrial applications of landfill leachate is discussed in the study to provide insights into its sustainable management which is original for the study.
  10. Jayawardhana Y, Keerthanan S, Lam SS, Vithanage M
    Environ Res, 2021 06;197:111102.
    PMID: 33798520 DOI: 10.1016/j.envres.2021.111102
    The present study investigated adsorptive removal of toluene and ethylbenzene from the aqueous media via using biochar derived from municipal solid waste (termed "MSW-BC") in a single and binary contaminant system at 25-45 °C. The adsorption was evaluated at different pH (3-10), experimental time (up to 24 h), and initial adsorbate concentrations (10-600 μg/L) in single and binary contaminant system. A fixed-bed column experiment was also conducted using MSW-BC (0.25%) and influent concentration of toluene and ethylbenzene (4 mg/L) at 2 mL/min of flow rate. The adsorption of toluene and ethylbenzene on the MSW-BC was mildly dependent on the pH, and the peak adsorption ability (44-47 μg/g) was recorded at a baseline pH of ~8 in mono and dual contaminant system. Langmuir and Hill are the models that match the isotherm results in a single contaminant environment for both toluene (R2 of 0.97 and 0.99, respectively) and ethylbenzene (R2 of 0.99 and 0.99, respectively) adsorption. In the binary system, the isotherm models matched in the order of Langmuir > Hill > Freundlich for toluene, whereas Hill > Freundlich > Langmuir for ethylbenzene. The adsorption in the batch experiment was likely to take place via cooperative and multilayer adsorption onto MSW-BC involving hydrophobic, π- π and n- π attractions, specific interaction such as hydrogen-π and cation-π interactions, and van der Waals interactions. The thermodynamic results indicate exothermic adsorption occurred by physical attractions between toluene and ethylbenzene, and MSW-BC. The breakthrough behavior of toluene and ethylbenzene was successfully described with Yoon-Nelson and Thomas models. The data demonstrate that the low-cost adsorbent derived from the municipal solid waste can be utilized to remove toluene and ethylbenzene in landfill leachate.
  11. Tramice A, Trifuoggi M, Ahmad MF, Lam SS, Iodice C, Velotto G, et al.
    Foods, 2021 Oct 14;10(10).
    PMID: 34681503 DOI: 10.3390/foods10102456
    The aim of this study was to compare the relative nutritional benefit of edible Malaysian fishes from the coast of Terengganu in Malaysia, as well as to perform a taxonomical characterization and metal assessment. Discrimination between species was carried out by a morphological and molecular approach by evaluating the total concentrations of metals by ICP-MS analyses and the fatty acids (FA) composition using the GC-MS approach on the fish fillet tissues. The taxonomical studies detected fishes of 11 families and 13 species. The heavy metal assessment showed that all detected elements did not exceed the regulatory limit stated by Malaysian Food Regulations. The proportion of saturated fatty acids (SFA) ranged from 33 to 58.34%, followed by the polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) values from 24 to 51.8%, and the lowest proportion was of monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFA), ranging from 12.7 to 35.9%. The ω-3/ω-6 PUFA and PUFA/SFA ratios were determined in the range 1.1 to 7.4 and 0.35 to 1.6, respectively. The C20:5 ω-3 and C22:6 ω-3 acids were detected at levels comparable to those found in the corresponding species from similar tropical marine ecosystems. The high FA values can be useful biochemical tools for comparing the relative nutritional benefits of these biodiverse and non-toxic edible Malaysian fishes.
  12. Hosseinzadeh-Bandbafha H, Nazemi F, Khounani Z, Ghanavati H, Shafiei M, Karimi K, et al.
    Sci Total Environ, 2021 Aug 21;802:149842.
    PMID: 34455274 DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2021.149842
    Global environmental awareness has encouraged further research towards biofuel production and consumption. Despite the favorable properties of biofuels, the sustainability of their conventional production pathways from agricultural feedstocks has been questioned. Therefore, the use of non-food feedstocks as a promising approach to ensure sustainable biofuel production is encouraged. However, the use of synthetic solvents/chemicals and energy carriers during biofuel production and the consequent adverse environmental effects are still challenging. On the other hand, biofuel production is also associated with generating large volumes of waste and wastewater. Accordingly, the circular bioeconomy as an innovative approach to ensure complete valorization of feedstocks and generated waste streams under the biorefinery scheme is proposed. In line with that, the current study aims to assess the environmental sustainability of bioethanol production in a safflower-based biorefinery using the life cycle assessment framework. Based on the obtained results, safflower production and its processing into 1 MJ bioethanol under the safflower-based biorefinery led to damage of 2.23E-07 disability-adjusted life years (DALY), 2.35E-02 potentially disappeared fraction (PDF)*m2*yr, 4.76E-01 kg CO2 eq., and 3.82 MJ primary on the human health, ecosystem quality, climate change, and resources, respectively. Moreover, it was revealed that despite adverse environmental effects associated with safflower production and processing, the substitution of conventional products, i.e., products that are the typical products in the market without having environmental criteria, with their bio-counterparts, i.e., products produced in the biorefinery based on environmental criteria could overshadow the unfavorable effects and substantially enhance the overall sustainability of the biorefinery system. The developed safflower-based biorefinery led to seven- and two-time reduction in damage to the ecosystem quality and resources damage categories, respectively. The reductions in damage to human health and climate change were also found to be 52% and 24%, respectively. The weighted environmental impacts of the safflower-based biorefinery decreased by 64% due to the production of bioproducts, mainly biodiesel and biogas, replacing their fossil-based counterparts, i.e., diesel and natural gas, respectively. Finally, although the main focus of the developed safflower-based biorefinery was biofuel production, waste valorization and mainly animal feed played a significant role in improving the associated environmental impacts.
  13. Amid S, Aghbashlo M, Peng W, Hajiahmad A, Najafi B, Ghaziaskar HS, et al.
    Sci Total Environ, 2021 Oct 20;792:148435.
    PMID: 34147796 DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2021.148435
    A diesel engine running on diesel/biodiesel mixtures containing ethylene glycol diacetate (EGDA) was investigated from the exergoeconomic and exergoenvironmental viewpoints. Biodiesel was mixed with petrodiesel at 5% and 20% volume ratios, and the resultant mixtures were then doped with EGDA at 1-3% volume ratios. The exergetic sustainability indicators of the engine operating on the prepared fuel formulations were determined at varying engine loads. The indicators were selected to support decision-making on fuel composition and engine load following thermodynamic, economic, and environmental considerations. The engine load markedly affected all the studied exergetic parameters. The highest engine exergetic efficiency (39.5%) was obtained for petrodiesel doped with 1 v/v% EGDA at the engine load of 50%. The minimum value of the unit cost of brake power exergy (49.6 US$/GJ) was found for straight petrodiesel at full-load conditions, while the minimum value of the unit environmental impact of brake power exergy (29.9 mPts/GJ) was observed for petrodiesel mixed with 5 v/v% biodiesel at the engine load of 75%. Overall, adding EGDA to fuel mixtures did not favorably influence the outcomes of both exergetic methods due to its energy-intensive and cost-prohibitive production process. In conclusion, although petrodiesel fuel improvers such EGDA used in the present study could properly mitigate pollutant emissions, the adverse effects of such additives on thermodynamic parameters of diesel engines, particularly on exergoeconomic and exergoenvironmental indices, need to be taken into account, and necessary optimizations should be made before their real-world application.
  14. Ranjbari M, Esfandabadi ZS, Ferraris A, Quatraro F, Rehan M, Nizami AS, et al.
    Chemosphere, 2022 Feb 15.
    PMID: 35181422 DOI: 10.1016/j.chemosphere.2022.133968
    Investment in biofuels as sustainable alternatives for fossil fuels has gained momentum over the last decade due to the global environmental and health concerns regarding fossil fuel consumption. Hence, effective management of biofuel supply chain (BSC) components, including biomass feedstock production, biomass logistics, biofuel production in biorefineries, and biofuel distribution to consumers, is crucial in transitioning towards a low-carbon and circular economy (CE). The present study aims to render an inclusive knowledge map of the BSC-related scientific production. In this vein, a systematic review, supported by a keywords co-occurrence analysis and qualitative content analysis, was carried out on a total of 1975 peer-reviewed journal articles in the target literature. The analysis revealed four major research hotspots in the BSC literature, including (1) biomass-to-biofuel supply chain design and planning, (2) environmental impacts of biofuel production, (3) biomass to bioenergy, and (4) techno-economic analysis of biofuel production. Besides, the findings showed that the following subject areas of research in the BSC research community have recently attracted more attention: (i) global warming and climate change mitigation, (ii) development of the third-generation biofuels produced from algal biomass, which has recently gained momentum in the CE debate, and (iii) government incentives, pricing, and subsidizing policies. The provided insights shed light on the understanding of researchers, stakeholders, and policy-makers involved in the sustainable energy sector by outlining the main research backgrounds, developments, and tendencies within the BSC arena. Looking at the provided knowledge map, potential research directions in BSCs towards implementing the CE model, including (i) integrative policy convergence at macro, meso, and micro levels, and (ii) industrializing algae-based biofuel production towards the CE transition, were proposed.
  15. Kazemi Shariat Panahi H, Dehhaghi M, Dehhaghi S, Guillemin GJ, Lam SS, Aghbashlo M, et al.
    Bioresour Technol, 2022 Jan;344(Pt A):126212.
    PMID: 34715341 DOI: 10.1016/j.biortech.2021.126212
    Appropriate bioprocessing of lignocellulosic materials into ethanol could address the world's insatiable appetite for energy while mitigating greenhouse gases. Bioethanol is an ideal gasoline extender and is widely used in many countries in blended form with gasoline at specific ratios to improve fuel characteristics and engine performance. Although the bioethanol production industry has long been operational, finding a suitable microbial agent for the efficient conversion of lignocelluloses is still an active field of study. Among available microbial candidates, engineered bacteria may be promising ethanol producers while may show other desired traits such as thermophilic nature and high ethanol tolerance. This review provides the current knowledge on the introduction, overexpression, and deletion of the genes that have been performed in bacterial hosts to achieve higher ethanol yield, production rate and titer, and tolerance. The constraints and possible solutions and economic feasibility of the processes utilizing such engineered strains are also discussed.
  16. Hosseinzadeh-Bandbafha H, Li C, Chen X, Peng W, Aghbashlo M, Lam SS, et al.
    J Hazard Mater, 2022 02 15;424(Pt C):127636.
    PMID: 34740507 DOI: 10.1016/j.jhazmat.2021.127636
    Waste cooking oil (WCO) is a hazardous waste generated at staggering values globally. WCO disposal into various ecosystems, including soil and water, could result in severe environmental consequences. On the other hand, mismanagement of this hazardous waste could also be translated into the loss of resources given its energy content. Hence, finding cost-effective and eco-friendly alternative pathways for simultaneous management and valorization of WCO, such as conversion into biodiesel, has been widely sought. Due to its low toxicity, high biodegradability, renewability, and the possibility of direct use in diesel engines, biodiesel is a promising alternative to mineral diesel. However, the conventional homogeneous or heterogeneous catalysts used in the biodiesel production process, i.e., transesterification, are generally toxic and derived from non-renewable resources. Therefore, to boost the sustainability features of the process, the development of catalysts derived from renewable waste-oriented resources is of significant importance. In light of the above, the present work aims to review and critically discuss the hazardous WCO application for bioenergy production. Moreover, various waste-oriented catalysts used to valorize this waste are presented and discussed.
  17. Aghbashlo M, Amiri H, Moosavi Basri SM, Rastegari H, Lam SS, Pan J, et al.
    Trends Biotechnol, 2022 Dec 17.
    PMID: 36535818 DOI: 10.1016/j.tibtech.2022.11.009
    Chitosan, an amino polysaccharide mostly derived from crustaceans, has been recently highlighted for its biological activities that depend on its molecular weight (MW), degree of deacetylation (DD), and acetylation pattern (AP). More importantly, for some advanced biomaterials, the homogeneity of the chitosan structure is an important factor in determining its biological activity. Here we review emerging enzymes and cell factories, respectively, for in vitro and in vivo preparation of chitosan oligosaccharides (COSs), focusing on advances in the analysis of the AP and structural modification of chitosan to tune its functions. By 'mapping' current knowledge on chitosan's in vitro and in vivo activity with its MW and AP, this work could pave the way for future studies in the field.
  18. Pang B, Lam SS, Shen XJ, Cao XF, Liu SJ, Yuan TQ, et al.
    ChemSusChem, 2020 Sep 07;13(17):4446-4454.
    PMID: 32118355 DOI: 10.1002/cssc.202000299
    The valorization of lignin to replace phenol is significant in the production of phenolic resins. However, a great challenge is to produce lignin-based resin (LR) with a suitable viscosity and high substitution rate of lignin to phenol. In this study, LRs were produced using hardwood technical lignin derived from the pulping industry. Structural analysis of the LRs indicated that the unsubstituted para and ortho carbon atoms of the aromatic ring influenced the curing temperature and activation energy of the resins. The curing kinetics and thermal decomposition study implied that urea and methylene groups in cured LRs were significant factors that affected the thermal stability negatively. The prepared LRs showed desirable features if used as adhesives to make plywood. This is the first approach in which a substitution rate of up to 65 % is achieved for low-reactive-site hardwood lignin, which provides a solution to the challenge of the simultaneous realization of the high addition of lignin and the adaptive viscosity of resins.
  19. Wan Mahari WA, Azwar E, Li Y, Wang Y, Peng W, Ma NL, et al.
    Sci Total Environ, 2020 Nov 10;742:140681.
    PMID: 33167298 DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2020.140681
    The deforestation and burning of the Amazon and other rainforests is having a cascade of effects on global climate, biodiversity, human health and local and regional socioeconomics. This challenging situation demands a sustainable exploitation of the region's resources in accordance with the United Nations (UNs) Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in order to meet Good Environmental Status and reduce poverty. The management of forests sustainability spans across at least eight of the 17 UN SDGs mainly to combat desertification, halt biodiversity loss, and reverse land degradation. Significant changes are needed if we are to sustain the world's rainforests and thereby the global climate and biodiversity. These measures and mitigations are of global responsibility requiring both developed and developing nations such as the United States, EU, and China to change their policies and stand regarding their high demand for meat and hardwood. When possible, non-profit tree-planting internet browsers should be implemented by governments and institutions. So far, there is a lack of active use of the UN SDGs and the countries must therefore need to fully adopt the UN SDGs in order to help the situation. One way to enforce this could be through imposing economic penalties to governments and national institutions that do not adhere to for example publishing open access of data and other important information relevant for the mission of the UN SDGs.
  20. Peng W, Ma NL, Zhang D, Zhou Q, Yue X, Khoo SC, et al.
    Environ Res, 2020 12;191:110046.
    PMID: 32841638 DOI: 10.1016/j.envres.2020.110046
    Locusts differ from ordinary grasshoppers in their ability to swarm over long distances and are among the oldest migratory pests. The ecology and biology of locusts make them among the most devastating pests worldwide and hence the calls for actions to prevent the next outbreaks. The most destructive of all locust species is the desert locust (Schistocerca gregaria). Here, we review the current locust epidemic 2020 outbreak and its causes and prevention including the green technologies that may provide a reference for future directions of locust control and food security. Massive locust outbreaks threaten the terrestrial environments and crop production in around 100 countries of which Ethiopia, Somalia and Kenya are the most affected. Six large locust outbreaks are reported for the period from 1912 to 1989 all being closely related to long-term droughts and warm winters coupled with occurrence of high precipitation in spring and summer. The outbreaks in East Africa, India and Pakistan are the most pronounced with locusts migrating more than 150 km/day during which the locusts consume food equivalent to their own body weight on a daily basis. The plague heavily affects the agricultural sectors, which is the foundation of national economies and social stability. Global warming is likely the main cause of locust plague outbreak in recent decades driving egg spawning of up to 2-400,000 eggs per square meter. Biological control techniques such as microorganisms, insects and birds help to reduce the outbreaks while reducing ecosystem and agricultural impacts. In addition, green technologies such as light and sound stimulation seem to work, however, these are challenging and need further technological development incorporating remote sensing and modelling before they are applicable on large-scales. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations, the 2020 locust outbreak is the worst in 70 years probably triggered by climate change, hurricanes and heavy rain and has affected a total of 70,000 ha in Somalia and Ethiopia. There is a need for shifting towards soybean, rape, and watermelon which seems to help to prevent locust outbreaks and obtain food security. Furthermore, locusts have a very high protein content and is an excellent protein source for meat production and as an alternative human protein source, which should be used to mitigate food security. In addition, forestation of arable land improves local climate conditions towards less precipitation and lower temperatures while simultaneously attracting a larger number of birds thereby increasing the locust predation rates.
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