Industrial Ecology

Eco Chains in China The Guitang Group

An important strategy for implementing the Circular Economy was inspired by a Southern China case that evolved over several decades. The term used in CE planning is eco-chain, where resource use is optimized through a chain of uses for any by-product. The Guitang Group (GG) in Guigang City developed a sugar production based eco-chain internally and now extends it to its competitors in the city. China produces 10.5 million tons of sugar annually from 539 sugar mills, the majority from sugar...

Concrete Examples Three Case Studies

Industrial Ecology Examples

We would like to briefly present three case studies that highlight some of these issues (Erkman and Ramaswamy 2003). These case studies were carried out during the period 1996-1998. Although the data has not been updated, the core issues remain unchanged. The case studies of the Tirupur textile industries and the leather industry, illustrate how redefining the problem from a perspective of resource conservation and on the basis of resource flow data could point to totally new directions for...

Hydrogen Fuel Cell Industrial Ecology

Ballard Mk7 Polarization Curve

Depleted oxidant and product gases out FIGURE 7.3. Operating principle of various types of fuel cells. The reversible potential changes with temperature and pressure in general it is lower at higher temperatures (reaching -1.0V at 1,000K), and it is higher at higher pressures or higher concentrations of reactants. The actual voltage of an operational fuel cell is always lower than the reversible potential due to various irreversible losses, such as activation polarization, concentration...

Indicator Pollutants For Drinking Water Supply Source

Nutrients, including phosphorus and nitrogen compounds that can stimulate algae growth in receiving waters. For example, in Florida's fragile Everglade's ecosystem, phosphorus is a pollutant of concern and the South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD) is planning and implementing source controls, treatment facilities, and regional programs to reduce phosphorus loads. Taste and odor compounds that are commonly produced in drinking water reservoirs by blue-green algae. Total organic carbon...

Biographies

Agardy, Ph.D. is President of Forensic Management Associates, a company focused on environmental litigation support and expert witness services. Dr. Agardy received a B.S. in civil engineering from the City College of New York in 1955, an M.S. in sanitary engineering from the University of California at Berkeley in 1958, and a Ph.D. degree in sanitary engineering from the University of California at Berkeley in 1963. He taught civil and sanitary engineering at San Jose State...

Solution Tools

The previous section described how it is important to choose an appropriate environmental strategy for environmental solutions this section examines some of the tools that can be used in the framework of such strategies. The Role of Technology and Techniques In the consumption-production pyramid above it is especially the production, use and residue management stages where technologies play in a major role. Some of the most important applications are discussed below, following the more...

References

The published references of the author's industrial complexes are included here for referral for readers of this book. For further reading, I recommend Chapter 19 in my book Zero Pollution for Industry Waste Minimization Through Industrial Complexes, New York Wiley, 1995. Browning, M. 1996. Glorious riverfronts, Crystal Waters, Florida. Miami Herald, March 3, p. 6B. Clark, B. E. 2000. USA biomes to buy American waste transport. San Diego Union Tribune, February 17, p. C-3. Discover Magazine....

Metadisciplinary Approaches

We have written in the past about the emergence of the new metadiscipline of sustainability science and engineering. The prefix meta refers to after and beyond, thus, a metadiscipline is a higher level discipline. Unlike interdisciplinary approaches that focus on activities at the interface between disciplines, we called this new field a metadiscipline approach because it provides an over-arching framework for adopting and incorporating knowledge across many fields of study to inform human and...

Rotary Kiln Incinerator

The rotary kiln is often used in solid liquid waste incineration because of its versatility in processing solid, liquid, and containerized wastes. The kiln is refractory-lined. The shell is mounted at a slight incline (about 5 degrees) from the horizontal plane to facilitate mixing the waste materials. A conveyor system or a ram usually feeds solid wastes and drummed wastes. Liquid hazardous wastes are injected through a nozzle(s). Noncombustible metal and other residues are discharged as ash...

Biocatalysis

Application of Biocatalysis to Reduce the Impact of the Discharge of Organic Pollution Historically, high-quality water has been readily available throughout most of the United States. The dependence of life on a sufficient quantity of potable water cannot be overstated. As densely populated urban centers have developed in the U.S. over the last two centuries, the availability of high-quality water has been reduced. Dense urban populations release large quantities of highly concentrated...

Introduction

Throughout history, water resources have always been one of the primary receptacles for man's waste. When coupled with an ever-expanding population, it was only a matter of time before the beneficial uses of our water resources e.g., drinking water, aquatic habitat, recreational use, agricultural use, industrial use would be impaired, and in some cases impaired irreversibly. Today, the pollution of potential drinking water resources has led the American Water Works Association to conclude that the boundaries between water and wastewater are already beginning to fade Maxwell 2001 . This result should not be unexpected since the guiding principle for protecting the environment allows man-made chemicals to be intentionally discharged into our water resources as long as established chemical-specific standards are not exceeded. This principle is based on the United States Environmental Protection Agency EPA establishment of water quality standards. These standards, once established,...

Industrial Ecology And Recycling Conclusion

Industrial development and environmental protection cannot be achieved without establishing the concept of industrial ecology. The main tools necessary for establishing industrial ecology are cleaner production, environmental management systems, and zero pollution. The concept of industrial ecology will help the industrial system to be managed and operated more or less like a natural ecosystem hence causing as less damage as possible to the surrounding environment. The 7-Rs golden rule...

Sustainable Development Tools

Concerning environmental issues, there is a common misconception that environmental protection comes at the expense of economic development or vice versa. This is clearly portrayed when communities faced with economic crises settle for alternatives that sacrifice environmental integrity such as incineration, treatment, or the construction of landfills even though these solutions in fact are extremely important but are not sustainable and economically expensive as explained before. Sustainable...

Implications for Economic Development

The fundamental economic initiatives just described seek to convert national, local, and global economies to a sustainable form. This means human needs would be satisfied increasingly with renewable resources, nonrenewable resources would be conserved, natural resources would be restored as sources of natural capital, and both natural and human systems would be restored rather than further degraded. Achieving these worthy goals will have significant financial costs but far greater economic...

Mixing Extrusion and Product Manufacturing Stage

Mandrel For Blow Molding Machine

In the third and last stage of plastic reprocessing, manufacturing processes takes place, which include extrusion, injection molding, blow molding and film blowing. The extrusion processes is similar to the one used in the pelletizing unit except that the die takes the form of the output product. In case of tube production the die is made of a steel plate pierced with a hole. The extruded material has to be cooled to solidify by water bath. Similar to the extrusion, the injection molding...

The Regulatory Environment Air Pollution

Problems related to the release of vapors and gasses from the burning of fuel go back as far as recorded history. If one were to footnote the first environmental insults recognized and addressed, one is likely to focus on smoke and the obnoxious effects of smoke. In 1306 a royal proclamation during the reign of Edward I prohibited the use of sea coales by artificers in their furnaces and set up a commission of inquiry to seek out violators and punish them with great fines and ransomes. In...

Slush Hydrogen

Slush hydrogen is a mixture of liquid and frozen hydrogen in equilibrium with the gas at the triple point, 13.8 K. The density of the ice-like form is about 20 higher than that of the boiling liquid. To obtain the ice-like form, one has to remove the heat content of the liquid at 20.3 K until the triple point is reached and then remove the latent heat of fusion. The cold content of the ice-like form of hydrogen is some 25 higher than that of the saturated vapor at 20.3 K. It is of great...

Protecting the Environment with Technology

The cornerstone of a chemical control program that can be independent of chemical standards must be based on water quality monitoring using existing commercially available state-of-the-art analytical instrumentation to fingerprint wastewater, raw drinking water resources, and treated water products on either a batch or continuous basis. By obtaining the chemical fingerprint of a wastewater or raw drinking water, the pattern of the pollutants can be identified and selectively treated until the...

Recycling Economy Legislation

Germany, closely followed by Japan, has taken a legislative approach to improving their utilization of resources under a banner of waste elimination. Their recycling laws have become organizing frameworks for a wide range of policies, regulations and more specific laws regarding categories of waste such as packaging and electronic products. In 1996 the German Federal Government passed a new act seeking to move Germany toward a recycling economy the Waste Avoidance, Recycling and Disposal Act...

Format of the Debate

Environmental solutions by definition are designed to solve an environmental problem. The problem is one that you, as a professional or an entrepreneur, have been asked to address or that you simply see a better way to make progress on the issue. Under all circumstances the solution will need either approval or acceptance to be implemented. In many cases approval will come in the form of meeting existing regulatory requirements. In other cases it may require a more widespread economic or legal...

Hydrogen Production Methods

While hydrogen is the most plentiful element in the universe, making up about three-quarters of all matter, free hydrogen is scarce. The atmosphere contains trace amounts of it (0.07 ), and it is usually found in small amounts mixed with natural gas in crustal reservoirs. A few wells, however, have been found to contain large amounts of hydrogen, such as some wells in Kansas that contain 40 hydrogen, 60 nitrogen, and trace amounts of hydrocarbons (Goebel et al. 1984). The earth's surface...

Gaseous Hydrogen Storage

Because of hydrogen's low density, its storage always requires relatively large volumes and is associated with either high pressures (thus requiring heavy vessels), or extremely low temperatures, and or combination with other materials (much heavier than hydrogen itself). Table 7.2 shows achievable storage densities with different types of hydrogen storage methods. Some novel hydrogen storage method may achieve even higher storage densities, but have yet to be proven in terms of practicality,...

Hydrogen Transport and Distribution

It is envisaged that from the production plants and or storage, hydrogen will be transmitted to consumers by means of underground pipelines (gaseous hydrogen) and or supertankers (liquid hydrogen). Presently, hydrogen transportation through pipelines is used either in links between nearby production and utilization sites (up to 10 km) or in more extensive networks (roughly 200km). Table 7.4 lists the principal existing hydrogen pipelines (Pottier 1995). Future developments will certainly entail...

Hydrogen Safety

Like any other fuel or energy carrier hydrogen poses risks if not properly handled or controlled. The risk of hydrogen, therefore, must be considered relative to the common fuels such as gasoline, propane, or natural gas. The specific physical characteristics of hydrogen are quite different from those common fuels. Some of those properties make hydrogen potentially less hazardous, while other hydrogen characteristics could theoretically make it more dangerous in certain situations. Since...

Is the World on a Sustainable Path

To address whether the world is on a sustainable path, we will simplify the complexities of the world by investigating one region, the North American Great Lakes. When laid out from east to west, the Great Lakes span more than 1,200 km. They also serve as part of the international border between the United States and Canada. They consist of five lakes Erie, Huron, Michigan, Ontario, and Superior they are the world's largest source of fresh surface water, containing approximately 23,000 km2 of...

Municipal Solid Waste

Compost Metabolic Pathway

Municipal solid waste is considered one of the major environmental problem all over the world, especially in developing countries. Solid waste in general can be classified into industrial solid waste, agricultural solid waste and municipal solid waste. Municipal solid waste (MSW) consists of hazardous and nonhazardous waste. It is a fact that solid waste composition differs from one community to another according to their culture and socioeconomic level. However, solving the problem in rural...

Agricultural Waste

Rural communities have a historical agricultural tradition for thousands of years and future plans for expansions. In order to combine the old traditions with modern technologies to achieve sustainable development, wastes should be treated as a by-product. The main problems facing rural areas nowadays are agricultural wastes, sewage and municipal solid waste as explained before. They represent crisis for sustainable development in rural village and to the national economy. However, few studies...

Solution Concepts

The environmental professional's tool box today contains an impressive array of methodologies, techniques and instruments, with an astounding level of similarity across regions and sectors. We have seen that countries also begin to experiment with new approaches once the limitations of the traditional command and control approach become more evident. The multitude of environmental solutions is nevertheless based on a relatively small number of concepts that are combined and synthesized in...

Product Development

Product development from recycled materials is a must to maximize the benefits. This leads to a number of economic opportunities to remanufacture products with the recovered material. Just as market forces cannot be ignored when introducing a new product, they must also be taken into account when introducing remanufactured products. The market analysis for these products may be more difficult than new ones because customers are more concerned with product durability and cost of maintenance. The...

Applicability of Thermal and Electrical Technologies

Thermal or electrical technologies can eliminate or reduce the undesirable characteristics (e.g., toxicity, flammability, reactivity, infectivity) associated with organic, inorganic and biological contaminants in a wide range of solid, liquid, or gaseous media or wastes. The types of treatment achievable with these technologies range from the removal of relatively low concentrations of contaminants from media such as air, water, or soil, to the destruction or necessary pretreatment prior to...

The Ultimate for Industrial Waste Reuse The EBIC

All of the previous descriptions of combined treatment lead to the main conclusion of this prologue. Because of the aforementioned inadequacies of combined treatment a new solution is evolving. I have designated its terminology as the environmentally balanced industrial complex (EBIC). This new system has evolved not only because the previous solutions were inefficient, but also because industry and society have grown exponentially to a degree that our environmental resources are imperiled...

Collection Sorting Separation and Cleaning Stage

The first step in the initial stage is the collection, which is usually carried in developing countries by the informal sector and small individual enterprises. This stage is labor intensive and requires no technical experience. Collection usually takes place from the final dumping site or the transfer station, since it is the most practical method in developing countries. The next step in the initial stage is sorting of plastics, which depends on the manufacturing demands. It could be sorted...

Review Questions

State the quantity and types of agricultural wastes produced in your community or nearby community. Develop an environmentally bal- anced rural waste complex (EBRWC) for such waste as well as a risk analysis according to demand and need. Compare your complex with Figure 13.30. 2. EMS can be used as a tool to promote the cleaner production concept. Explain this statement and develop a methodology to integrate cleaner production techniques and environment management systems. Compare your...

Limitations of Companyto Company ByProduct Exchange

There are outstanding examples of the effectiveness of the company-to-company by-product exchange strategy, but it may only be feasible in a broader eco-industrial network or region. The original inspiration was the case of Kalundborg in Denmark, where materials, energy, and water exchanges evolved among a group of companies in a region and their host community. Here a large power plant's outputs were the basis for a series of interfirm deals to use by-products economically among a refinery, a...

Recommended Resources

American Water Works Association. 2000. Water Quality and Treatment Handbook. New York McGraw-Hill. Davis, M. L., D. A. Cornell. 1998. Introduction to Environmental Engineering, 3rd ed. New York McGraw-Hill. Design Manual, Municipal Wastewater Stabilization Ponds. October 1983. Center for Environmental Research Information, EPA 625 1-83-015, Cincinnati, OH. Reynolds, T. D., P. A. Richards. 1996. Unit Operations and Processes in Environmental Engineering, 2nd ed. Boston PWS Publishing. Vesiland,...

Solutions Environmental Health Infrastructure

Through the creation of certain agencies and reorganization of others, U.S. federal capability in the protection of environmental quality has been greatly enhanced during the past 40 years. These actions allowed the government to begin to meet, in a substantial and meaningful way, the challenges to public health posed by new hazards in the chemical and physical environments. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) was created in 1970 by Executive Order of President Richard M. Nixon....

City of Guigang Plans to Become an Ecoindustrial City

The Guitang Group's example has inspired the town of Guigang to adopt a 5-year plan to become an Eco-industrial city. The heavy dependence of its economy on the sugar industry makes it important to improve the efficiency of its many processing plants. In fulfillment of the plan smaller sugar producers are sending their by-products to Guitang's eco-industrial complex to achieve higher resource utilization. Targets for the city utilization of sugarcane slag reaches more than 80 , use of spent...

Bioprocess Control

In a conventional suspended growth-activated sludge process, dilute soluble organic pollution is converted into concentrated particulate biomass. Ultimately, this biomass must be separated from the purified wastewater before discharge to the environment can occur. In general, a secondary gravity clarifier is the most commonly employed technology for biomass separation. In a clarifier, the biomass settles to the bottom of the vessel under the influence of gravity while the purified wastewater...

Liquid Hydrogen

At present, liquid hydrogen is primarily used as a rocket fuel and is predestined for supersonic and hypersonic space vehicles primarily because it has the lowest boiling point density and the highest specific thrust of any known fuel. Its favorable characteristics include its high heating value per unit mass, its wide ignition range in hydrogen oxygen or air mixtures, as well as its large flame speed and cooling capacity due to its high specific heat which permits very effective engine cooling...

Potential Industrial Complexes

Diagram Paper Mill Complex

There are many possible examples of potential industrial complexes which may accomplish the objectives set forth in Chapter 4. I list some here and provide brief descriptions of their configuration mostly in schematic ways. The reader may also be aware of others which may also meet our requirements for workable EBICs. Those in this chapter do not contain mass balances nor any other detailed operating data editions. FIGURE 11.4. Schematic diagram of environmentally balanced phosphatic fertilizer...

Procedure for Industry in Attaining Zero Pollution

In planning for an EBIC several subjects and associated steps need to be considered and taken prior to actually starting an EBIC system. They include, at a minimum, the following 11 subject steps. 1. Suren Erkman. Institute for Communication and Analysis of Science and Technology, Geneva, Switzerland. 1. Selecting and educating the EBIC developer 4. Optimizing production sizing of participating plants 5. Informational meeting with participating plants and regulatory officials 6. Designing the...

Solutions Cancer And Other Chronic Diseases

Acute environmental illnesses constitute a minority of all health problems handled by specialists in environmental health. More frequently, chronic diseases are at issue. A particularly common perception or complaint coming to the attention of environmental health practitioners is the concern that a given community has an excessive number of cancer cases. Although the steps required have been clarified in recent years, much time and effort is required to address effectively these concerns (CDC...

Solutions Occupational Environmental Health

The challenge of the occupational environment also received significant new federal attention in the early 1970s. Congress passed the Occupational Safety and Health Act in 1970. This bill created the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) within the U.S. Department of Labor. To provide a scientific basis for the regulatory work of OSHA, the OSH Act also called for the creation of the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH). NIOSH currently operates as a unit...

Industrial Waste

Since the beginning of human history, industry has been an open system of materials flow. People transformed natural materials plants, animals, and minerals into tools, clothing, and other products. When these materials were worn out they were discarded or dumped in the same condition as they are, and when the refuse buildup bothered them, the habitants changed their location, which was easy to do at that time due to the small number of habitants and the vast areas of land. Among the goals of...

The advantages of briquetting

Decrease the volume of waste Efficient solid fuel of high thermal value Low energy consumption for production The raw materials suitable for briquetting are rice straws, wheat straws, cotton stalks, corn stalks, sugar cane waste (baggase), fruit branches, etc. However, in the suggested complex cotton stalks and fruit branches are best utilized by briquetting. The briquetting process starts with collection of wastes followed by size reduction, drying, and compaction by extruder or press. Biogas...

Liquid Feed Incinerator

A large number of hazardous liquid waste incinerators used today are of this type. The waste is burned directly in a burner or injected into a flame zone or combustion zone of the incinerator chamber through atomizing nozzles. The heating value of the waste is the primary determining factor for the location of the injection point of the liquid waste. Liquid injection-type incinerators are usually refractory-lined chambers (horizontal or vertical flow, with up or down options), generally...

The Road Ahead

An organized attempt is urgently needed to re-think environmental priorities and think of new strategies in the developing countries to safeguard the comfortable survival of millions of people in these countries. The legal, social, and the technological issues need to be harmonized to evolve such strategies. The systems approach advocated by industrial ecology is criti- cally necessary to optimize the use of resources in these countries. For a discussion of the use of industrial ecological...

Ground Realities of Developing Countries

Among the many specific aspects of developing countries that have to be born in mind, is the fact that the pattern of resource flows in developing countries and hence the resultant environmental threat could be very different than what it is in the industrialized West. Typically, the flows of materials through the large, organized manufacturing facilities in the developing countries could be very small in relation to the overall material flow. Table 12.1, showing the comparative Fresh Water...

Case Study of Economic Proof of Industrial Complexes

In this section I offer practical data proof, in one instance, that it is substantially less costly to produce two industrial products and reuse all wastes within one complex than to produce the same products at separate locations and discharge the untreated wastes to the surrounding environment. The original researchers2 of this project have attempted to use real data to put a monetary value on the indiscriminate and wanton discharge of these plants' production wastes into the environment....