sustainability-logo

Journal Browser

Journal Browser

Energy Efficiency and Circular Economy: Strategies towards Sustainability

A special issue of Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050). This special issue belongs to the section "Energy Sustainability".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 July 2024 | Viewed by 2376

Special Issue Editor


E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Chemical Engineering Department, Instituto Superior de Engenharia do Porto (ISEP), 4249-015 Porto, Portugal
Interests: sustainability; environment; energy; LCA; optimization
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Energy is used in every sector of human activity and is crucial for attaining quality of life and sustainability. Energy systems are still based on fossil fuels, which cause pollution problems, climate change, and health problems, reducing quality of life. Additionally, they are unevenly distributed which makes countries more externally energy-dependent. Two measures are being implemented: the use of renewable resources and energy efficiency. Improving energy efficiency can be very important in order to reduce energy consumption. On the other hand, the circular economy intends to eliminate waste and pollution by closing loops and using specific strategies (such as sustainable design, industrial symbiosis, etc.). The circulation of products and materials at their highest value is prioritized in order to reduce, for example, the need for virgin materials, the pressure on natural resources, and the contribution to prices’ stability. Works on these two areas can be very important since they are transversal and can have a huge potential in significantly impacting society and increasing sustainability.

  • Energy efficiency in households
  • Energy efficiency in industry (e.g., textile, etc.)
  • Energy efficiency in waste management/treatment
  • Energy efficiency in water management/treatment
  • Energy efficiency in supply chains
  • Energy efficiency and renewables
  • Energy efficiency and environment
  • Energy efficiency and sustainability
  • Circular economy and the water sector
  • Circular economy and industry
  • Circular economy and regulation
  • Circular economy and wastes
  • Circular economy and resources

I look forward to receiving your contributions.

Prof. Dr. Florinda Martins
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Sustainability is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • energy efficiency
  • circular economy
  • sustainability
  • renewables
  • resources

Published Papers (2 papers)

Order results
Result details
Select all
Export citation of selected articles as:

Research

16 pages, 1577 KiB  
Article
Aqueous Phase Reforming of Dairy Wastewater for Hydrogen Production: An Experimental and Energetic Assessment
by Giuseppe Pipitone, Raffaele Pirone and Samir Bensaid
Sustainability 2024, 16(5), 1743; https://doi.org/10.3390/su16051743 - 20 Feb 2024
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 710
Abstract
The treatment of dairy industry effluents poses a significant challenge from the environmental point of view because of its high organic load. In this work, the aqueous phase reforming of lactose was investigated as a representative model compound for the production of renewable [...] Read more.
The treatment of dairy industry effluents poses a significant challenge from the environmental point of view because of its high organic load. In this work, the aqueous phase reforming of lactose was investigated as a representative model compound for the production of renewable hydrogen. The tests were conducted using two different scenarios: the first one is referred to as direct aqueous phase reforming (APR); the second one proposed a pre-hydrogenation step, followed by APR. The implementation of this reactive pretreatment allowed for minimizing the solid by-product formation with respect to the direct APR, where most of the initial carbon ended up as solid residue. The pre-hydrogenation was investigated in the range of 180–220 °C, using Ru-based catalysts. In the best scenario (using 5% Ru/C), the carbon to solid was reduced by 95%, and up to 70% of the initial carbon was converted into gaseous compounds, hence contributing to the removal of the organic content of the wastewater while producing an energy carrier. Moreover, the hydrogen selectivity increased up to 70% (with respect to 2.5% for direct APR), thanks to hindering homogeneous reaction pathways that do not lead to hydrogen production. Finally, an energetic analysis was conducted to assess the possibility of coupling the APR with the dairy industry and quantifying the percentage of energy which may be produced in situ to satisfy industrial duties. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

19 pages, 5370 KiB  
Article
Energy and Circular Economy: Nexus beyond Concepts
by Florinda F. Martins, Hélio Castro, Miroslava Smitková, Carlos Felgueiras and Nídia Caetano
Sustainability 2024, 16(5), 1728; https://doi.org/10.3390/su16051728 - 20 Feb 2024
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 783
Abstract
Energy and materials are increasingly important in industrialized countries, and they impact the economy, sustainability, and people’s future. The purpose of this work was to study the relationship between energy and the circular economy using methods such as Pearson’s correlation and a principal [...] Read more.
Energy and materials are increasingly important in industrialized countries, and they impact the economy, sustainability, and people’s future. The purpose of this work was to study the relationship between energy and the circular economy using methods such as Pearson’s correlation and a principal component analysis. Thus, 12 strong correlations were found, with 5 of them between the following relevant variables from two different subjects: the correlations of the raw material consumption, the domestic material consumption, and the material import dependency with the final energy consumption in transport (0.81, 0.92, and 0.81); the correlation of the circular material use rate with the final energy consumption in households (0.70); and the correlation of the material import dependency with the final energy consumption in industry (0.89). The time series forecast was only conclusive for the waste generated, showing that it will increase in the next 10 years. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Back to TopTop