Topic Review
Black Soldier Fly
The black soldier fly (BSF), Hermetia illucens Linnaeus, is a large Stratiomyidae fly (13-20 mm size) found worldwide, but it is believed to have originated in the Americas. It is frequently found in the tropics and temperate regions throughout the world. Although adapted primarily to these regions, it can tolerate wide extremes of temperature except when ovipositing. They are generally considered a beneficial insect and non-pest. The adult fly does not have mouthparts, stingers, or digestive organs; thus, they do not bite or sting and do not feed during its short lifespan. They feed only as larvae and are, therefore, not associated with disease transmission. BSF larvae (BSFL) are voracious eaters of a wide range of organic wastes, decomposing and returning nutrients to the soil. Additionally, BSFL is an alternative  protein source for aquaculture, pet food, livestock feed, and human nutrition.
  • 7446
  • 28 Feb 2021
Topic Review
Environmental Risk Factors
Environmental health is a growing area of knowledge, continually increasing and updating the body of evidence linking the environment to human health.
  • 3851
  • 28 Jan 2021
Topic Review
The term macroplastics describes plastic items with a diameter ≥ 5 mm. With this size definition macroplastics can be directly distinguished from microplastics (diameter < 5 mm). Plastic items ≥ 5 mm are commonly considered to be macroplastics once they are released into the environment. Other terminologies used synonymous to macroplastic are “macro litter", “anthropogenic litter”, “plastic litter”, “marine litter”, “marine plastic” and “plastic debris”. 
  • 3794
  • 09 Oct 2020
Topic Review
Water Literacy
Water literacy may be considered generally as the culmination of water-related knowledge, attitudes and behaviors.  It holds growing importance for sustainable water resource use and management.  While use and definitions of the concept of water literacy vary broadly in the literature, the synthesis of these identifies common elements and themes in a holistic framework.
  • 3344
  • 03 Feb 2022
Topic Review
Soil Bioremediation
Petroleum hydrocarbons, heavy metals and agricultural pesticides have mutagenic, carcinogenic, immunotoxic and teratogenic effects and cause drastic changes in soil physicochemical and microbiological characteristics, thereby representing a serious danger to health and environment. Therefore, soil pollution urgently requires the application of a series of physicochemical and biological techniques and treatments to minimize the extent of damage. Among them, bioremediation has been shown to be an alternative that can offer an economically viable way to restore polluted areas.
  • 2346
  • 27 Oct 2020
Topic Review
       The Driving force – Pressure – Status – Impact - Response (DPSIR) framework has been widely used in literature to analyse environmental problems. The DPSIR facilitates the investigation of all the possible cause-effect relationships and to plan appropriate technological responses.  This contribution shows an application of the DPSIR to the remediation of contaminated sites, exploiting the case study of the Mar Piccolo di Taranto (Southern Italy). Methodologically, several references were considered, whose information was classified according to the logical scheme of the DPSIR. Among the results it is interesting to observe how, due to its natural hydrogeological network conformation, the Mar Piccolo represents the final receptor of pollutants from industrial, anthropic and agricultural activities. The mobility of contaminants from sediments to the water column and the subsequent bioaccumulation into marine organisms pose a serious threat of unacceptable magnitude to human safety. Responses may concern restriction of area use, control of pollution fonts as well as the implementation of suitable contaminated marine sediment remediation measures. It is noted that the preliminary organization of the existing data can lead to the development of a DPSIR-based Environmental Decision Support System (EDSS). 
  • 2271
  • 30 Oct 2020
Topic Review
Acid Rain
Acid rain has an acidity that is higher than that of normal rainwater. Normal rainwater is not neutral (which would be pH 7) but slightly acidic (it has a pH < 5.5), because some of the carbon dioxide CO2 dissolved in the water is present as carbonic acid H2CO3. In acid rain, chemicals from pollution and natural causes such as volcanic eruptions and emissions from vegetation increase the acidity of the water to as low as pH 4.4 to 4 (as measured in the 1990s in various places). Such acidic rainwater is dangerous for people, vegetation, water bodies including the oceans and its inhabitants, buildings and soil. Since the pH scale is logarithmic, a change from 5.5 to 4.5 means a tenfold increase in acidity. The three main pollutants that cause acid rain are the nitric oxides NO and NO2 (summarized as NOx) and sulfur dioxide SO2. These substances react with water to nitric acid HNO3 and sulfuric acid H2SO4. In the 1980s, in nearly all of Northern Europe and in the Northern United States, suddenly and unexpectedly, whole forests began to die (this effect got to be known as forest dieback). German forests especially experienced severe damage: from 8% in 1982 it increased to 50% in 1984, and stayed as such till 1987. The damage occurred amongst various tree species. Researchers established connections of this damage to acid rain. The mandatory installment of sulfur filters in coal power plants and of catalytic converters in cars in various industrialized countries reduced air pollution with the chemicals related to the formation of acid rain, and, although the forests are still not in perfect shape (about 20% are heavily impaired) a complete death was prevented.
  • 2063
  • 11 Jan 2022
Topic Review
Environmental Awareness and Individual’s Altruism
Environmental awareness is the level of how much people are interested in or care about environmental issues. Environmental awareness can be either local or global one depending on the type of environmental problem. Studies have argued that this awareness tends to be related to an individual’s altruism, which is one’s action that benefits others without expecting some kind of external reward. The connection between environmental awareness and altruism is getting attention from scholars since both concepts are prosocial ones but it is uncertain if people who are highly aware of environmental issues may not be always acting altruistically. However, it is likely that altruistic people are more likely to have high environmental awareness.
  • 1890
  • 28 Oct 2020
Topic Review
Greenery Systems
Urbanization, when it is not planned carefully, are highly effecting the urban heat island. To mitigate the problem, urbanization planning must take into consideration the implementation of greenery systems and sustainable ecosystems for buildings as part of the solution in addition to the outer space. The mitigation techniques that are influencing the urban heat index may be the greenery systems applied on buildings, or urban green spaces that include large land and large scale systems, such as lakes and parks. The objective of the current article is to compile, discusses and compare the previous studies on greenery systems, like green roofs and green walls, how they are supporting the energy saving and improve thermal conditions in the building sector, as well as improving the urban heat index. The fundamental  of greenery systems, which are thermal insulation, evapotranspiration, and shading effect, are also discussed. The benefits of greenery systems are including the improvement of stormwater management,  improvement of air quality, the reduction of sound pollution, the reduction of carbon dioxide, and the improvement of aesthetic building value. 
  • 1227
  • 29 Oct 2020
Topic Review Video Peer Reviewed
Three Kinds of Butterfly Effects within Lorenz Models
Within Lorenz models, the three major kinds of butterfly effects (BEs) are the sensitive dependence on initial conditions (SDIC), the ability of a tiny perturbation to create an organized circulation at large distances, and the hypothetical role of small-scale processes in contributing to finite predictability, referred to as the first, second, and third kinds of butterfly effects (BE1, BE2, and BE3), respectively. A well-accepted definition of the butterfly effect is the BE1 with SDIC, which was rediscovered by Lorenz in 1963. In fact, the use of the term “butterfly” appeared in a conference presentation by Lorenz in 1972, when Lorenz introduced the BE2 as the metaphorical butterfly effect. In 2014, the so-called “real butterfly effect”, which is based on the features of Lorenz’s study in 1969, was introduced as the BE3. 
  • 1201
  • 06 Jul 2022
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