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(1994 - 2018)
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Article 0 Reads 0 Citations EATS: a life cycle-based decision support tool for local authorities and school caterers Published: 16 March 2018
The International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment, doi: 10.1007/s11367-018-1460-x
This paper describes the research that underpins the development of EATS (the Environmental Assessment Tool for School meals), a life cycle-based decision support tool for local authorities and their contractors responsible for providing catering services to schools. The purpose of this tool is to quantify the carbon footprint (CF) and water footprint (WF) of the meals served in order to identify hotspot meals and ingredients, and suggest simple, yet transformative, reduction measures. A case study is used to test the tool, comparing the impacts of 34 school meal recipes. The tool utilises secondary data to calculate values of CF and WF for a school meal from cradle to plate. This includes three phases: (1) food production, (2) transport of each ingredient to a generic school kitchen in the UK, and (3) meal preparation. Considerations for waste along the supply chain are included. After testing the tool against a set of nutritionally compliant meals, a sensitivity analysis was performed to investigate the influence of the origin and seasonality of the ingredients, transport mode and cooking appliances used on the final results. The results of the case study show the predominance of the production phase in the overall carbon footprint and that there is a strong tendency towards lower impacts for meat-free meals; however, this is not always the case, for instance some of the chicken-based meals present lower impacts than vegetarian meals rich in dairy ingredients. The sensitivity analysis performed on one of the meals shows that the highest value of CF is obtained when the horticultural products are out of season and produced in heated greenhouses, whilst the highest value of WF is obtained when the origin of the ingredients is unknown and the global average values of WF are used in the analysis; this defines a crucial data need if accurate analyses are to be uniformly possible. This article focuses on the potential offered by the public food sector for a transformative reduction in the environmental impact of urban food consumption. The results presented prove that careful menu planning and procurement choices can considerably reduce the overall environmental impact of the service provided without compromising quality or variety. This research thus supports those responsible for making these decisions via a user-friendly tool based on robust scientific evidence.
Article 0 Reads 0 Citations Briefing: Resource scarcity and resource security – a suppressed civil engineering challenge Published: 01 May 2017
Proceedings of the Institution of Civil Engineers - Waste and Resource Management, doi: 10.1680/jwarm.17.00008
Article 0 Reads 4 Citations Liveable cities and urban underground space Published: 01 May 2016
Tunnelling and Underground Space Technology, doi: 10.1016/j.tust.2015.11.015
Highlights•Current and future transformative UUS options for cities are discussed.•Implications for achieving more liveable cities are highlighted.•Recommendations for an integrated mapping framework are made. AbstractAs populations grow in dense urban city centres, so too does the demand for space and natural resources. An option to combat this problem, all too often, has been to build denser and taller buildings in addition to transporting an ever-increasing abundance of resources (e.g. raw materials, water, energy and food) into the city whilst moving waste back out. This has major implications for liveable cities (LC), which in future policy terms might be considered to include aspects of (i) wellbeing, (ii) resource security (i.e. ‘one planet’ living) and (iii) carbon reduction (now enshrined in international law). An option that has been overlooked, and one which could add significantly to this LC agenda, is wider adoption of urban underground space (UUS).This paper looks at how UUS has been, or could be, used within cities now, and in the future, and investigates the implications for achieving more liveable cities, which includes cognisance of the potential for radical transformation rather than adaption. It is concluded that wider adoption of UUS brings with it many benefits; however to avoid many of the dis-benefits an improved system of management, planning provision (which includes integrated mapping frameworks that consider more readily the future) and policy application is required.
Article 0 Reads 1 Citation Assessment of the future resilience of sustainable urban sub-surface environments Published: 01 May 2016
Tunnelling and Underground Space Technology, doi: 10.1016/j.tust.2015.11.016
Highlights•A sustainable underground use resilience evaluation (SUURE) framework is presented.•Geoscientific information is presented through fuzzy logic analysis using ARCGIS.•Quantification of spatial and temporal impacts of a Multi Utility Tunnel is assessed.•Flush-fitting MUT was found to be having the highest resilience index ratio (0.739). AbstractUrban sub-surface environments have consistently been used to house a wide variety of urban infrastructure, but often developed in a relatively haphazard way. An important aspect to overcome this is an enriched understanding of the current and potential future uses. Therein Geoscientific information should be considered indispensable, if this space is to be developed in a resilient and sustainable way. This will require a clear understanding of what is or could be located within underground space, together with its properties, in order to assess its true potential as an urban resource. This information will inform urban developmental choices allowing sustainable and resilient development of underground space use to take place regardless of what the future may hold. However, such information needs to be integrated into decision support systems for conventional types of underground construction, in order for any development to occur in a consistent and manageable way.This paper presents the development of a new sustainable underground use resilience evaluation (SUURE) framework that will allow the quantification of both spatial and temporal impacts of today’s underground urban (re)development solutions, in light of future economic, environmental and social changes. The framework uses a broad range of plausible, yet divergent future scenarios in order to ensure core objectives of sustainability and resilience are met. Within this paper it is used to evaluate the utilisation of Multi-Utility-Tunnels – MUT’s (i.e. flush-fitting, shallow and deep) in Birmingham Eastside, UK, as an alternative utility placement technique to traditional (open-cut) trenching. The flush-fitting MUT was found to be having the highest overall baseline (i.e. present-day) performance with a resilience index ratio of 0.739 (mean value), the shallow MUT came second at 0.656, and the deep MUT came last at 0.212.
Article 0 Reads 0 Citations A Novel Methodology for the Application of Middle-Out, Model-Based Systems Engineering Techniques for City Waste Managem... Published: 01 October 2015
INCOSE International Symposium, doi: 10.1002/j.2334-5837.2015.00091.x
A holistic approach to urban development is required to meet global sustainability goals. Part of the challenge involves finding an effective response to the increasing volumes of solid waste being generated in cities. The European Commission has developed a thematic strategy, and issued directives, on the prevention and recycling of waste. The United Kingdom has introduced legislation in line with these, and is working to develop its own waste management strategies against a very complex background. This paper describes a novel methodology for the application of middle-out, model-based systems engineering techniques to help with this, using the city of Birmingham in the United Kingdom as an example. The methodology creates repeatable and objective models of existing waste management systems and links them to city management accounts to provide a foundation for the design of new and improved systems and business models.
CONFERENCE-ARTICLE 1 Read 0 Citations Rainwater Harvesting: Trade-offs Between Pluvial Flood Risk Alleviation and Mains Water Resource Savings Published: 31 October 2014
The 4th World Sustainability Forum, doi: 10.3390/wsf-4-a006
Stormwater run-off generally refers to pluvial, i.e. rainfall related, water that does not soak into the ground at the point at which it falls. The volume and timing of stormwater run-off, specifically from roof tops is highly important to urban flood control and its capture has the potential for non-potable uses within (e.g. for WC flushing and for washing machines) and outside the home (e.g. car washing and garden watering). The former runs a risk of flash floods where local and downstream stormwater (or combined sewer) systems become overburdened in times of extreme rainfall events. The later will influence potential future urban water supplies, which is particularly important at time(s) where mains water availability is scarce (e.g. times of drought or when the national demand for water in the UK increases beyond supply capabilities) population. Rainwater harvesting (RWH) systems can benefit flood risk and water supply however their ability to do either / both is dependent on the subtleties of filling and emptying (i.e. stored water volume or spare storage capacity) which are not fully understood, particularly in peak flow events. Through the use of five years worth of daily rainfall data for Birmingham (2007 - a record breaking year for UK flooding, to 2011) these subtleties are investigated through a sensitivity type analysis of tank size, occupancy rates and technology efficiency. The results show that RWH tanks sized according to BS8515 would not have been capable of capturing rainfall that fell in peak flow events. Moreover not all yearly non-potable demands would have been met. If tanks were over-sized by a factor of 3.0 (i.e. use the larger of 15% yearly non-potable demands or rainfall) this would have been sufficient to meet all demands and eliminate roof-top run-off.