In this study, several simple equations are suggested to investigate the effects of size and density on the number, surface area, stiffening efficiency, and specific surface area of nanoparticles in polymer nanocomposites. In addition, the roles of nanoparticle size and interphase thickness in the interfacial/interphase properties and tensile strength of nanocomposites are explained by various equations. The aggregates/agglomerates of nanoparticles are also assumed as large particles in nanocomposites, and their influences on the nanoparticle characteristics, interface/interphase properties, and tensile strength are discussed. The small size advantageously affects the number, surface area, stiffening efficiency, and specific surface area of nanoparticles. Only 2 g of isolated and well-dispersed nanoparticles with radius of 10 nm (R = 10 nm) and density of 2 g/cm3 produce the significant interfacial area of 250 m2 with polymer matrix. Moreover, only a thick interphase cannot produce high interfacial/interphase parameters and significant mechanical properties in nanocomposites because the filler size and aggregates/agglomerates also control these terms. It is found that a thick interphase (t = 25 nm) surrounding the big nanoparticles (R = 50 nm) only improves the B interphase parameter to about 4, while B = 13 is obtained by the smallest nanoparticles and the thickest interphase.
The ultrasound wave assisted synthesis of a novel ZnWO3/rGO hybrid nono composition (ZnWO3/rGO HNC) as a high performance sensor for formaldehyde (FA) has been reported. Different techniques of analysis such as XRD, FE-SEM, TGA, XPS, HRTEM and BET were applied for morphological and spectroscopic characterization of the ZnWO3/rGO HNC. The sensing evaluation of the constructed sensor showed high selectivity, sensitivity and a linear correlation between achieved responses and concentration of target gas (1-10 ppm) with R2 = 0.993 at temperature of 95 °C. The determination of FA was validated and performed using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry combined by solid phase micro-extraction after derivatization with O-(2,3,4,5,6-pentafluoro-benzyl)-hydroxylamine hydrochloride. Validation was carried out in terms of limit of detection linearity, precision, and recovery. The mechanistic evaluation of sensing behavior of the ZnWO3/rGO HNC was interpreted based on large specific surface area (SSA) to volume, mesoporous structure and the heterojunction between rGO and ZnWO3 at the interface between the rGO and ZnWO3.
The Amazon rainforest has sustained human existence for more than 10,000 years. Part of this has been the way that the forest controls regional climate including precipitation important for the ecosystem as well as agroforestry and farming. In addition, the Amazon also affects the global weather systems, so cutting down the rainforest significantly increases the effects of climate change, threatening the world's biodiversity and causing local desertification and soil erosion. The current fire activities and deforestation in the Amazon rainforest therefore have consequences for global sustainability. In the light of this, the current decisions made in Brazil regarding an increase in Amazon deforestation require policy changes if the global ecosystems and biodiversity are not to be set to collapse. There is only one way to move forward and that is to increase efforts in sustainable development of the region including limitation in deforestation and to continuously measure and monitor the development. The G7 countries have offered Brazil financial support for at least 20 million euros for fighting the forest fires but the president denies receiving such financial support and says that it is more relevant to raise new forests in Europe. In fact, this is exactly what is happening in Denmark and China in order to reduce climate change. Such activities should be global and include South America, Europe, Africa and Asia where deforestation is important issue. Forest restoration reduces climate change, desertification, and preserves both the regional tropical and global environment if the wood is not burned at a later stage but instead used in e.g. roads as filling material. Changes are therefore needed through improved international understanding and agreements to better avoid the global climate changes, from cutting down the precious rainforest before it is too late as rainforest cannot be re-planted.
Human livelihood highly depends on applying different sources of energy whose utilization is associated with air pollution. On the other hand, air pollution may be associated with glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) development. Unlike other environmental causes of cancer (e.g., irradiation), air pollution cannot efficiently be controlled by geographical borders, regulations, and policies. The unavoidable exposure to air pollution can modify cancer incidence and mortality. GBM treatment with chemotherapy or even its surgical removal has proven insufficient (100% recurrence rate; patient's survival mean of 15 months; 90% fatality within five years) due to glioma infiltrative and migratory capacities. Given the barrage of attention and research investments currently plowed into next-generation cancer therapy, oncolytic viruses are perhaps the most vigorously pursued. Provision of an insight into the current state of the research and future direction is essential for stimulating new ideas with the potentials of filling research gaps. This review manuscript aims to overview types of brain cancer, their burden, and different causative agents. It also describes why air pollution is becoming a concerning factor. The different opinions on the association of air pollution with brain cancer are reviewed. It tries to address the significant controversy in this field by hypothesizing the air-pollution-brain-cancer association via inflammation and atopic conditions. The last section of this review deals with the oncolytic viruses, which have been used in, or are still under clinical trials for GBM treatment. Engineered adenoviruses (i.e., DNX-2401, DNX-2440, CRAd8-S-pk7 loaded Neural stem cells), herpes simplex virus type 1 (i.e., HSV-1 C134, HSV-1 rQNestin34.5v.2, HSV-1 G207, HSV-1 M032), measles virus (i.e., MV-CEA), parvovirus (i.e., ParvOryx), poliovirus (i.e., Poliovirus PVSRIPO), reovirus (i.e., pelareorep), moloney murine leukemia virus (i.e., Toca 511 vector), and vaccinia virus (i.e., vaccinia virus TG6002) as possible life-changing alleviations for GBM have been discussed. To the best of our knowledge, this review is the first review that comprehensively discusses both (i) the negative/positive association of air pollution with GBM; and (ii) the application of oncolytic viruses for GBM, including the most recent advances and clinical trials. It is also the first review that addresses the controversies over air pollution and brain cancer association. We believe that the article will significantly appeal to a broad readership of virologists, oncologists, neurologists, environmentalists, and those who work in the field of (bio)energy. Policymakers may also use it to establish better health policies and regulations about air pollution and (bio)fuels exploration, production, and consumption.
Salinisation of soil is associated with urban pollution, industrial development and rising sea level. Understanding how high salinity is managed at the plant cellular level is vital to increase sustainable farming output. Previous studies focus on plant stress responses under salinity tolerance. Yet, there is limited knowledge about the mechanisms involved from stress state until the recovery state; our research aims to close this gap. By using the most tolerance genotype (SS1-14) and the most susceptible genotype (SS2-18), comparative physiological, metabolome and post-harvest assessments were performed to identify the underlying mechanisms for salinity stress recovery in plant cells. The up-regulation of glutamine, asparagine and malonic acid were found in recovered-tolerant genotype, suggesting a role in the regulation of panicle branching and spikelet formation for survival. Rice could survive up to 150 mM NaCl (∼15 ds/m) with declined of production rate 5-20% ranged from tolerance to susceptible genotype. This show that rice farming may still be viable on the high saline affected area with the right selection of salt-tolerant species, including glycophytes. The salt recovery biomarkers identified in this study and the adaption underlined could be empowered to address salinity problem in rice field.
There is a global need to use plants to restore the ecological environment. There is no systematic review of phytoremediation mechanisms and the parameters for environmental pollution. Here, we review this situation and describe the purification rate of different plants for different pollutants, as well as methods to improve the purification rate of plants. This is needed to promote the use of plants to restore the ecosystems and the environment. We found that plants mainly use their own metabolism including the interaction with microorganisms to repair their ecological environment. In the process of remediation, the purification factors of plants are affected by many conditions such as light intensity, stomatal conductance, temperature and microbial species. In addition the efficiency of phytoremediation is depending on the plants species-specific metabolism including air absorption and photosynthesis, diversity of soil microorganisms and heavy metal uptake. Although the use of nanomaterials and compost promote the restoration of plants to the environment, a high dose may have negative impacts on the plants. In order to improve the practicability of the phytoremediation on environmental restoration, further research is needed to study the effects of different kinds of catalysts on the efficiency of phytoremediation. Thus, the present review provides a recent update for development and applications of phytoremediation in different environments including air, water, and soil.
The increase in global population size over the past 100 decades has doubled the requirements for energy resources. To mitigate the limited fossil fuel available, new clean energy sources being environmental sustainable for replacement of traditional energy sources are explored to supplement the current scarcity. Biomass containing lignin and cellulose is the main raw material to replace fossil energy given its abundance and lower emission of greenhouse gases and NOx when transformed into energy. Bacteria, fungi and algae decompose lignocellulose leading to generation of hydrogen, methane, bioethanol and biodiesel being the clean energy used for heating, power generation and the automobile industry. Microbial Fuel Cell (MFC) uses microorganisms to decompose biomass in wastewater to generate electricity and remove heavy metals in wastewater. Biomass contains cellulose, hemicellulose, lignin and other biomacromolecules which need hydrolyzation for conversion into small molecules by corresponding enzymes in order to be utilized by microorganisms. This paper discusses microbial decomposition of biomass into clean energy and the five major ways of clean energy production, and its economic benefits for future renewable energy security.
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.
Improper healthcare waste (HCW) management poses significant risks to the environment, human health, and socio-economic sustainability due to the infectious and hazardous nature of HCW. This research aims at rendering a comprehensive landscape of the body of research on HCW management by (i) mapping the scientific development of HCW research, (ii) identifying the prominent HCW research themes and trends, and (iii) providing a research agenda for HCW management towards a circular economy (CE) transition and sustainable environment. The analysis revealed four dominant HCW research themes: (1) HCW minimization, sustainable management, and policy-making; (2) HCW incineration and its associated environmental impacts; (3) hazardous HCW management practices; and (4) HCW handling and occupational safety and training. The results showed that the healthcare industry, despite its potential to contribute to the CE transition, has been overlooked in the CE discourse due to the single-use mindset of the healthcare industry in the wake of the infectious, toxic, and hazardous nature of HCW streams. The findings shed light on the HCW management domain by uncovering the current status of HCW research, highlighting the existing gaps and challenges, and providing potential avenues for further research towards a CE transition in the healthcare industry and HCW management.
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.
Indoor air pollution with toxic volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and fine particulate matter (PM2.5) is a threat to human health, causing cancer, leukemia, fetal malformation, and abortion. Therefore, the development of technologies to mitigate indoor air pollution is important to avoid adverse effects. Adsorption and photocatalytic oxidation are the current approaches for the removal of VOCs and PM2.5 with high efficiency. In this review we focus on the recent development of indoor air pollution mitigation materials based on adsorption and photocatalytic decomposition. First, we review on the primary indoor air pollutants including formaldehyde, benzene compounds, PM2.5, flame retardants, and plasticizer: Next, the recent advances in the use of adsorption materials including traditional biochar and MOF (metal-organic frameworks) as the new emerging porous materials for VOCs absorption is reviewed. We review the mechanism for mitigation of VOCs using biochar (noncarbonized organic matter partition and adsorption) and MOF together with parameters that affect indoor air pollution removal efficiency based on current mitigation approaches including the mitigation of VOCs using photocatalytic oxidation. Finally, we bring forward perspectives and directions for the development of indoor air mitigation technologies.
Hydrogen and gaseous fuel derived from wastes have opened up promising alternative pathways for the production of renewable and sustainable fuels to substitute classical fossil energy resources that cause global warming and pollution. Existing review articles focus mostly on gasification, reforming and pyrolysis processes, with limited information on particularly gaseous fuel production via pyrolysis of various waste products. This review provides an overview on the recent advanced pyrolysis technology used in hydrogen and gaseous fuel production. The key parameters to maximize the production of specific compounds were discussed. More studies are needed to optimize the process parameters and improve the understanding of reaction mechanisms and co-relationship between these advanced techniques. These advanced techniques provide novel environmentally sustainable and commercially procedures for waste-based production of hydrogen and gaseous fuels.
Pollution with pesticides is a widespread global problem and biomonitoring of the environment and human populations is necessary to assess potential harmful biological effects. One of the pesticides that are showing up in vegetables and fruit is chlorpyrifos (CPS). CPS is a nerve-poisoning organophosphorus insecticide, which is in up to 1/3 of all conventionally produced citrus fruits. Our review shows that CPS is a hazardous material that poses risks to human health and also pollutes the environment. There is numerous risk assessment of CPS reported, however, the assessment is easily affected by factors such as climate change, exposure period and CPS concentration. Therefore, rigorous update of the hazardous level of CPS is needed to determine the threshold level safe for humans and animals. There is a need for remediation using for example photoreactive nanoparticle methods and microbial degeneration possessing high degradation efficiency (73-97%). In addition, stringent biomonitoring of food, environment and human exposure should occur to avoid exposure to chemicals via citrus fruits and vegetables. This is necessary to assess health risks and socioeconomic impacts which also require collaboration between private and public sectors to facilitate the growth, sale and manufacturing of biopesticides.
Global warming is reducing the Arctic sea-ice and causing energetic stress to marine key predatory species such as polar bears and narwhals contributing to the ongoing pollution already threatening the biodiversity and indigenous people of the vulnerable region. Now, the opening of the Arctic gateway and in particular the increase in shipping activities causes further stress to marine mammals in the region. These shipping activities are foreseen to happen in the Northwest and Northeast Passage, Northern Sea Route and Transpolar Sea Route in the Arctic Ocean, which could be yet another step towards a crucial tipping point destabilizing global climate, including weathering systems and sea-level rise. This calls for international governance through the establishment of Arctic International National Parks and more Marine Protected Areas through the Arctic Council and UN's Law of the Sea to ensure sustainable use of the Arctic Ocean and adjacent waters.
Used baby diaper consists of a combination of decomposable cellulose, non-biodegradable plastic materials (e.g. polyolefins) and super-absorbent polymer materials, thus making it difficult to be sorted and separated for recycling. Microwave pyrolysis was examined for its potential as an approach to transform used baby diapers into value-added products. Influence of the key operating parameters comprising process temperature and microwave power were investigated. The pyrolysis showed a rapid heating process (up to 43 °C/min of heating rate) and quick reaction time (20-40 min) in valorizing the used diapers to generate pyrolysis products comprising up to 43 wt% production of liquid oil, 29 wt% gases and 28 wt% char product. Microwave power and operating temperature were observed to have impacts on the heating rate, process time, production and characteristics of the liquid oil and solid char. The liquid oil contained alkanes, alkenes and esters that can potentially be used as chemical additives, cosmetic products and fuel. The solid char contained high carbon, low nitrogen and free of sulphur, thus showing potential for use as adsorbents and soil additives. These observations demonstrate that microwave pyrolysis has great prospect in transforming used baby diaper into liquid oil and char products that can be utilised in several applications.