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Sustainability 2017, 9(5), 787; doi:10.3390/su9050787

Assessment of Comprehensive Effects and Optimization of a Circular Economy System of Coal Power and Cement in Kongtong District, Pingliang City, Gansu Province, China

1
Institute of Geographical Sciences and Natural Resources Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100101, China
2
University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Giuseppe Ioppolo and Marc A. Rosen
Received: 6 January 2017 / Revised: 15 March 2017 / Accepted: 22 April 2017 / Published: 11 May 2017
(This article belongs to the Section Economic, Business and Management Aspects of Sustainability)
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Abstract

The idea of a circular economy (CE), which differs from traditional linear economy with a high consumption of natural resources and pollution, has captured much interest and attention. This paper uses a CE system of coal power and cement in Kongtong District, Pingliang City, Gansu Province, China as a case study to analyze the comprehensive effects of CE paradigm. Our simulation results, based on system dynamics (SD) modeling, infer that the transformation of manufacturing towards a CE system can prominently help coal power and cement enterprises reduce waste emission and increase economic profits. Through solid waste exchanges, a power plant can achieve over RMB 80 million of additional revenue per year at the highest level. CE also contributes to the reduction of regional pollution, saves mineral resources, and improves the atmospheric environment, an accumulated total of 14.11 million t of natural gypsum and 22.67 million t of coal can be saved. This sets a promising example for coal power and cement plants worldwide. Effective regulatory measures and further optimization towards a circular economy system are essential in maintaining the stable development of a CE system due to the risk of surplus production of upstream industries and other defects. View Full-Text
Keywords: circular economy; China; coal power; cement; system dynamics; effects assessment circular economy; China; coal power; cement; system dynamics; effects assessment
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Dong, S.; Wang, Z.; Li, Y.; Li, F.; Li, Z.; Chen, F.; Cheng, H. Assessment of Comprehensive Effects and Optimization of a Circular Economy System of Coal Power and Cement in Kongtong District, Pingliang City, Gansu Province, China. Sustainability 2017, 9, 787.

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