Special Issue "Resources Policy and Sustainable Development"

A special issue of Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050). This special issue belongs to the section "Resources and Sustainable Utilization".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 8 April 2022.

Special Issue Editor

Prof. Dr. Giovanni De Feo
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Humankind, to satisfy its needs, creates products and services (technosphere) for which it takes resources from the natural environment (ecosphere). This process does not happen at “zero cost” but determines the release of pollutants in the atmospheric compartment, in surface water and groundwater, and in the soil and subsoil, produces waste, and requires large quantities of energy with the production of inevitable environmental impacts.

Pollution phenomena and major climatic changes represent important issues that affect socioeconomic and environmental dynamics on a global, national, regional, and local level. Therefore, it is necessary to analyze, from different methodological points of view, the key role of resource management policies in the light of the paradigm of sustainable development: meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.

Therefore, experts from academia and industry, designers, architects, engineers, scientists, economists, sociologists, ecologists, communicators, educators, and others are invited to share their theoretical and applied knowledge on the relationships between resource policy and sustainable development. In this sense, collaboration across disciplines is encouraged. This Special Issue will document contributions from all over the world in order to provide a scientific and practical improvement for the understanding of a problem of such great interest and global relevance.

Prof. Dr. Giovanni De Feo
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 papers will be 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 1900 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
  • Environmental Impacts
  • Needs
  • Policy
  • Pollution
  • Products
  • Resources
  • Resources Policy
  • Services
  • Sustainable Development

Published Papers (5 papers)

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Research

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Article
An Innovative Approach to Assess the Ecotoxicological Risks of Soil Exposed to Solid Waste
Sustainability 2021, 13(11), 6141; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13116141 - 29 May 2021
Viewed by 606
Abstract
The adoption of sustainable waste management strategies is a challenge faced by most European countries, mainly due to the need to generate less waste and replace landfills with new methods of waste treatment, associated with increases in the separate collection of waste and [...] Read more.
The adoption of sustainable waste management strategies is a challenge faced by most European countries, mainly due to the need to generate less waste and replace landfills with new methods of waste treatment, associated with increases in the separate collection of waste and recycling rates. This paper highlights the significance of environmental legislation regarding waste removal to protect ecosystems. The aim was to predict ecological responses to heavy metals in soil exposed to hazardous waste and to identify environmental hazards in landfills, small illegal waste dumps, and litter, in addition to identifying if heavy metal accumulation in the investigated soil samples showed a single or cumulative risk. This is an innovative method to predict the ecological risk generated by hazardous waste landfills. The assessment of ecological risks was based on the evaluation of a heavy metal soil contamination factor, pollution index of soil loadings, a geo-accumulation index for heavy metals, and potential ecological risk. The current study is also the first to attempt to identify the dimension of risk based on the type of waste deposit (landfill, small illegal waste dump, and litter) and to identify potential patterns. The geological index corresponding to cadmium Igeo(Cd) showed heavy contamination in the soil samples from the landfill and moderate contamination for those from the illegal waste dumps. These findings indicate that soil contamination is influenced by contamination time, anthropogenic processes, and a history of industrial activity, and not only by waste composition and storage. The present study shows that cadmium might be considered a latent fingerprint for waste disposal, which is correlated to the industrialization level and rehabilitation procedures. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Resources Policy and Sustainable Development)
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Article
Does Income Inequality Exist among Urban Farmers? A Demonstration of Lorenz Curves from Northern Thailand
Sustainability 2021, 13(9), 5119; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13095119 - 03 May 2021
Viewed by 641
Abstract
This study was motivated by the profound disparity of farmers’ income in northern Thailand. We aimed to investigate the inequalities in the distribution of estimated income among urban farmers in the Mueang district area of Nan province using the Lorenz curves and Gini [...] Read more.
This study was motivated by the profound disparity of farmers’ income in northern Thailand. We aimed to investigate the inequalities in the distribution of estimated income among urban farmers in the Mueang district area of Nan province using the Lorenz curves and Gini indices. Approximations of farmers’ incomes were calculated and the Tobit model was applied to identify the determinants of farm income diversification in each sub-district. Results showed that urban farmers had high inequality scores, and there was a wide range of income among farmers. Ownership, land entitlement, and farmland size positively contributed to farmers’ estimated income. Agricultural activities further showed that rice farming significantly raised income disparity, while maize cultivation negatively affected it in nearly all sub-districts. Therefore, this study contributes an important indication that leads farmers to a sustainable livelihood while simultaneously adjusting relevant institutional policies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Resources Policy and Sustainable Development)
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Article
Environmental Assessment of the Recycled Paper Production: The Effects of Energy Supply Source
Sustainability 2021, 13(9), 4841; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13094841 - 26 Apr 2021
Viewed by 560
Abstract
The main aim of the study was to assess the environmental performance, through the application of the life cycle assessment, of a recycled paper production process focusing on the energy aspect. The production process occurred in a paper mill that produces packaging paper [...] Read more.
The main aim of the study was to assess the environmental performance, through the application of the life cycle assessment, of a recycled paper production process focusing on the energy aspect. The production process occurred in a paper mill that produces packaging paper using paper and cardboard from source separation of municipal solid waste as raw materials. Two scenarios (S1 and S2) were defined by their energy supply sources. A cogeneration (CHP) system using natural gas for the combined production of thermal and electric energy was the source in S1. The Italian electricity grid (using the Italian country mix) and a natural gas boiler were the separate sources for electric and thermal energy, respectively, in S2. Finally, in order to evaluate the environmental effects on the results of the study about the variation in the natural gas supply source, four alternative Italian import mixes (M1, M2, M3, and M4) were defined by varying the contribution of the supplier countries. The environmental impacts were evaluated with ReCiPe 2016 (H) using both midpoint and endpoint approaches. The results showed that for both the scenarios, the energy consumption was the main cause of impacts mainly because of the natural gas contribution. The presence of the cogeneration (CHP) system generated significant environmental benefits compared with the use of energy provided by more conventional sources. The production and use of chemicals as well as the disposal of waste produced during the paper production were other environmental hotspots. The variation in the composition of the Italian import mix of natural gas, in terms of the supplier country’s contribution, had a significant influence on the results. The import of natural gas from Russia was the most impactful option. Since Russia is the country that contributes to the Italian import mix the most, in the next years, the use of natural gas in Italy could become increasingly impactful. Therefore, the replacement of natural gas with renewable sources is an urgent priority. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Resources Policy and Sustainable Development)
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Review

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Review
Public-Private Partnership as a Tool of Sustainable Development in the Oil-Refining Sector: Russian Case
Sustainability 2021, 13(9), 5153; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13095153 - 05 May 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 432
Abstract
Dramatic changes in the global energy market due to COVID-19 pandemic, the OPEC+ agreement, and increasing rates of green energy share in the world community have brought negative effects on the oil sector. In the long term, oil will reduce its importance as [...] Read more.
Dramatic changes in the global energy market due to COVID-19 pandemic, the OPEC+ agreement, and increasing rates of green energy share in the world community have brought negative effects on the oil sector. In the long term, oil will reduce its importance as an energy resource, but for many years, it will continue to play a significant role in the world of energy. The oil industry has huge potential in terms of technical expertise, management, and financial resources to reduce its greenhouse emissions and ensuring an affordable availability of predictable energy. However, nowadays this sector has lost investing attractiveness. It is an interdisciplinary problem with a solution at the intersection of different stakeholders’ interests. The article is a review one and devoted to the issue of the implementation a public-private partnership (PPP) as a key tool that allows the use of the state and the business’ available resources to achieve the sector’s sustainable development and investment attractiveness. Research and analysis of PPP were based on foreign and domestic literature, using classification and generalization methods, retrospective and critical analysis. This paper contains identified groups of drivers, constraints, and recommendations for further successful PPP implementation in the Russian case. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Resources Policy and Sustainable Development)
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Review
Sustainable Underground Iron Ore Mining in Ukraine with Backfilling Worked-Out Area
Sustainability 2021, 13(2), 834; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13020834 - 15 Jan 2021
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 533
Abstract
The present paper considers aspects of underground iron ore mining in Ukraine, in particular the level of mine production and reserves of basic ore fields. It analyzes and generalizes the practice of using cemented rockfill under difficult mining and hydrogeological conditions of the [...] Read more.
The present paper considers aspects of underground iron ore mining in Ukraine, in particular the level of mine production and reserves of basic ore fields. It analyzes and generalizes the practice of using cemented rockfill under difficult mining and hydrogeological conditions of the Pivdenno-Bilozerske high-grade iron ore field. The Belozersky iron ore district is the only one in Ukraine that, without any technological cycle of beneficiation, can provide both domestic and foreign consumers with high-quality raw iron ore as required by world markets. The PJSC Zaporizhzhia iron ore plant extracts iron ore from the Pivdenno-Bilozerske field with an iron content of more than 60% using the low-waste, environmentally friendly technology of backfilling the mined-out area with a hardening mixture. The peculiarities of the technology for steep deposit mining and the main processes of backfilling operations in terms of preparation, transportation, and construction of the backfill mass with its stability assessment are explained in detail in this paper. As a result of using cemented rockfill, rock mass stability is provided, a considerable part of industrial waste is disposed of in the mined-out area, and the earth’s surface subsidence within the area is prevented (in comparison with mining enterprises in other fields). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Resources Policy and Sustainable Development)
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