Preprints

Filtering by Subject: Sustainability

Groundwater resource allocation in British Columbia: challenges and ways forward

Tom Gleeson, Diana M Allen

Published: 2022-06-24
Subjects: Environmental Engineering, Hydrology, Sustainability, Water Resource Management

Groundwater allocation in British Columbia is facing a number of important challenges as groundwater is licensed under the Water Sustainability Act and potentially included in modern treaties. These challenges include acknowledging the importance of groundwater in supporting environmental flow needs and human water use, the uncertainty and irrelevance of annual recharge estimates, and the [...]

Potential for Perceived Failure of Stratospheric Aerosol Injection Deployment

Patrick W Keys, Elizabeth A Barnes, Noah S Diffenbaugh, et al.

Published: 2022-06-18
Subjects: Atmospheric Sciences, Climate, Sustainability

As anthropogenic activities continue to warm the Earth, the fundamental solution of reducing greenhouse gas emissions remains elusive. Given this mitigation gap, global warming may lead to intolerable climate changes as local adaptive capacity is exceeded. Thus, there is emerging interest in solar radiation management, which is the process of deliberately increasing Earth's albedo to cool the [...]

Exploration of urban sustainability of India through the lens of sustainable development goals

Ajishnu Roy, Nandini Garai, Jayanta Kumar Biswas

Published: 2022-05-23
Subjects: Sustainability

Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) index is a recognized metric for measuring progress in the UN SDGs. However, national or multinational-level analyses are more prevalent than sub-national types. We analysed the performance of 14 SDGs for 56 Indian cities (grouped into 6 regions) with available 77 indicators (2020-2021). Pearson’s correlation, hierarchical clustering, data envelopment analysis [...]

Quantifying excess heavy metal concentrations in drainage basins using conservative mixing modelling

Jonas Alexander Eschenfelder, Alex G. Lipp, Gareth G Roberts

Published: 2022-05-14
Subjects: Earth Sciences, Environmental Sciences, Geochemistry, Geomorphology, Physical Sciences and Mathematics, Sustainability, Water Resource Management

High concentrations of heavy metals and other pollutants in river sediments can have detrimental effects on the health of ecosystems and humans. As such, determining the composition of river sediments throughout drainage basins is an essential aspect of environmental monitoring. Well characterised natural baseline concentrations are important information with which observations can be compared [...]

Pipeline availability limits on the feasibility of global coal-to-gas switching in the power sector

Shuting Yang, Sara Hastings Simon, Arvind Ravikumar

Published: 2022-05-02
Subjects: Oil, Gas, and Energy, Sustainability

Coal-to-gas switching in the power sector, as happened in the US, has been a key driver of near-term greenhouse gas emissions reductions. Can this success be replicated around the world? Here, we explore the limits of a global, plant-level, coal-to-gas transition arising from pipeline availability constraints. Globally, only 43% of coal capacity is within 14 km of a nearby pipeline, the median [...]

Groundwater in complex adaptive social-ecological systems

Xander Huggins, Tom Gleeson, Juan Castilla-Rho, et al.

Published: 2022-04-09
Subjects: Dynamical Systems, Hydrology, Natural Resources and Conservation, Natural Resources Management and Policy, Nature and Society Relations, Sustainability, Water Resource Management

Groundwater is embedded in social and ecological systems but the complexity of these interactions is not well represented in conventional approaches to study and promote groundwater sustainability. We argue an important shift is necessary in groundwater sustainability thinking: towards prioritizing the functions of groundwater, and the services that make it a critical resource, and away from [...]

Co-designing an integrated socio-ecological systems model for the Sustainable Development Goals

Katrina Szetey, Enayat A. Moallemi, Brett A. Bryan

Published: 2022-04-08
Subjects: Human Geography, Nature and Society Relations, Sustainability

The UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) encompass environmental, social, and economic dimensions which are linked to the characteristics of place and have a strong local dimension. They are interconnected at local scales in complex ways which makes progress difficult to predict. To understand how these interconnections play out at the local scale, we co-designed a systems model of the SDGs [...]

Economic and biophysical limits to seaweed-based climate solutions

Julianne DeAngelo, Benjamin Saenz, Isabella Arzeno-Soltero, et al.

Published: 2022-02-12
Subjects: Earth Sciences, Environmental Sciences, Natural Resource Economics, Other Earth Sciences, Other Environmental Sciences, Sustainability

Net-zero greenhouse gas emissions targets are driving interest in opportunities for biomass-based negative emissions and bioenergy, including from marine sources such as seaweed. Yet the biophysical and economic limits to farming seaweed at scales relevant to the global carbon budget have not been assessed in detail. We use coupled seaweed growth and technoeconomic models to estimate the costs of [...]

Quantifying Streamflow Depletion from Groundwater Pumping: A Practical Review of Past and Emerging Approaches for Water Management

Sam Zipper, William H Farmer, Andrea Brookfield, et al.

Published: 2022-01-07
Subjects: Environmental Indicators and Impact Assessment, Hydrology, Natural Resources Management and Policy, Sustainability, Water Resource Management

Groundwater pumping can cause reductions in streamflow (“streamflow depletion”) that must be quantified for conjunctive management of groundwater and surface water resources. However, streamflow depletion cannot be measured directly and is challenging to estimate because pumping impacts are masked by streamflow variability due to other factors. Here, we conduct a management-focused review of [...]

Evaluating essential features of proppant transport at engineering scales combining field measurements with machine learning algorithms

Xiaoyu Wang, Lei Hou, Xueyu Geng, et al.

Published: 2021-12-06
Subjects: Civil and Environmental Engineering, Earth Sciences, Engineering, Environmental Sciences, Geology, Hydraulic Engineering, Oil, Gas, and Energy, Sustainability

The characterization of the proppant transport at a field-engineering scale is still challenging due to the lack of direct subsurface measurements. Features that control the proppant transport may link the experimental and numerical observations to the practical operations at a field scale. To improve the numerical and laboratory simulations, we propose a machine-learning-based workflow to [...]

Thresholds in road network functioning on US Atlantic and Gulf barrier islands

Sofia Aldabet, Evan B Goldstein, Eli Lazarus

Published: 2021-12-04
Subjects: Analysis, Geomorphology, Nature and Society Relations, Sustainability

Barrier islands predominate the Atlantic and Gulf coastlines of the USA, where development exceeds national trends. Forward-looking models of barrier island dynamics often include feedbacks with management practices – particularly those aimed at mitigating damage to buildings from natural hazards – and how real estate markets may be linked to barrier island dynamics. However, models thus far do [...]

Can machine learning improve carbon storage? Synergies of deep learning, uncertainty quantification and intelligent process control

Thilo Wrona, Indranil Pan

Published: 2021-12-02
Subjects: Earth Sciences, Geology, Geophysics and Seismology, Sustainability

As we transition from fossil fuel to renewable energy, negative emission technologies, such ascarbon capture and storage (CCS), can help us reduce CO2 emissions. Effective CO2 storage requires: (1) detailed site characterization, (2) regular, integrated risk assessment, and (3) flexible design and operation. We believe that recent advances in machine learning coupled with uncertainty [...]

A review of model-based scenario analysis of poverty for informing sustainability

QI LIU, Zhaoxia Guo, Lei Gao, et al.

Published: 2021-11-22
Subjects: Applied Mathematics, Dynamic Systems, Environmental Sciences, Natural Resources Management and Policy, Physical Sciences and Mathematics, Sustainability

Ending poverty in all its forms everywhere is the first goal being targeted by the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Poverty eradication is a long-term process that faces the challenges of many uncertainties and complex interactions with other Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). In order to better understand poverty and contribute to addressing poverty in a sustainable [...]

Geographically-resolved social cost of anthropogenic emissions accounting for both direct and climate-mediated effects

Jennifer Burney, Geeta G Persad, Jonathan Proctor, et al.

Published: 2021-11-17
Subjects: Atmospheric Sciences, Climate, Environmental Sciences, Physical and Environmental Geography, Sustainability

The magnitude and distribution of physical and societal impacts from long-lived greenhouse gases are insensitive to the emission source location; the same is not true for major co-emitted short-lived pollutants like aerosols. Here we combine novel global climate model simulations with established response functions to show that identical aerosols emitted from different regions (Brazil, China, [...]

Reproducibility in subsurface geoscience

Michael J. Steventon, Chris Jackson, Mark Ireland, et al.

Published: 2021-10-27
Subjects: Biogeochemistry, Cosmochemistry, Earth Sciences, Environmental Education, Environmental Health and Protection, Environmental Indicators and Impact Assessment, Environmental Monitoring, Environmental Sciences, Geochemistry, Geology, Geomorphology, Geophysics and Seismology, Glaciology, Hydrology, Mineral Physics, Natural Resource Economics, Natural Resources and Conservation, Natural Resources Management and Policy, Oil, Gas, and Energy, Other Earth Sciences, Other Environmental Sciences, Paleobiology, Paleontology, Sedimentology, Soil Science, Speleology, Stratigraphy, Sustainability, Tectonics and Structure, Volcanology, Water Resource Management

Reproducibility, the extent to which consistent results are obtained when an experiment or study is repeated, sits at the foundation of science. The aim of this process is to produce robust findings and knowledge, with reproducibility being the screening tool to benchmark how well we are implementing the scientific method. However, the re-examination of results from many disciplines has caused [...]

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