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      Challenges of Sustainable and Commercial Aquaponics

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      Sustainability
      MDPI AG

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          Reverse osmosis desalination: water sources, technology, and today's challenges.

          Reverse osmosis membrane technology has developed over the past 40 years to a 44% share in world desalting production capacity, and an 80% share in the total number of desalination plants installed worldwide. The use of membrane desalination has increased as materials have improved and costs have decreased. Today, reverse osmosis membranes are the leading technology for new desalination installations, and they are applied to a variety of salt water resources using tailored pretreatment and membrane system design. Two distinct branches of reverse osmosis desalination have emerged: seawater reverse osmosis and brackish water reverse osmosis. Differences between the two water sources, including foulants, salinity, waste brine (concentrate) disposal options, and plant location, have created significant differences in process development, implementation, and key technical problems. Pretreatment options are similar for both types of reverse osmosis and depend on the specific components of the water source. Both brackish water and seawater reverse osmosis (RO) will continue to be used worldwide; new technology in energy recovery and renewable energy, as well as innovative plant design, will allow greater use of desalination for inland and rural communities, while providing more affordable water for large coastal cities. A wide variety of research and general information on RO desalination is available; however, a direct comparison of seawater and brackish water RO systems is necessary to highlight similarities and differences in process development. This article brings to light key parameters of an RO process and process modifications due to feed water characteristics.
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            Environment: The disappearing nutrient.

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              Towards global phosphorus security: a systems framework for phosphorus recovery and reuse options.

              Human intervention in the global phosphorus cycle has mobilised nearly half a billion tonnes of the element from phosphate rock into the hydrosphere over the past half century. The resultant water pollution concerns have been the main driver for sustainable phosphorus use (including phosphorus recovery). However the emerging global challenge of phosphorus scarcity with serious implications for future food security, means phosphorus will also need to be recovered for productive reuse as a fertilizer in food production to replace increasingly scarce and more expensive phosphate rock. Through an integrated and systems framework, this paper examines the full spectrum of sustainable phosphorus recovery and reuse options (from small-scale low-cost to large-scale high-tech), facilitates integrated decision-making and identifies future opportunities and challenges for achieving global phosphorus security. Case studies are provided rather than focusing on a specific technology or process. There is no single solution to achieving a phosphorus-secure future: in addition to increasing phosphorus use efficiency, phosphorus will need to be recovered and reused from all current waste streams throughout the food production and consumption system (from human and animal excreta to food and crop wastes). There is a need for new sustainable policies, partnerships and strategic frameworks to develop renewable phosphorus fertilizer systems for farmers. Further research is also required to determine the most sustainable means in a given context for recovering phosphorus from waste streams and converting the final products into effective fertilizers, accounting for life cycle costs, resource and energy consumption, availability, farmer accessibility and pollution. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                SUSTDE
                Sustainability
                Sustainability
                MDPI AG
                2071-1050
                April 2015
                April 10 2015
                : 7
                : 4
                : 4199-4224
                Article
                10.3390/su7044199
                7a3c0ac5-4031-4870-8efd-3c2f2fcdadfa
                © 2015

                https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

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                Self URI (article page): http://www.mdpi.com/2071-1050/7/4/4199

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