46 research outputs found

    A methodology for the generation and evaluation of biorefinery process chains, in order to identify the most promising biorefineries for the EU

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    The topic of bioenergy, biofuels and bioproducts remains at the top of the current political and research agenda. Identification of the optimum processing routes for biomass, in terms of efficiency, cost, environment and socio-economics is vital as concern grows over the remaining fossil fuel resources, climate change and energy security. It is known that the only renewable way of producing conventional hydrocarbon fuels and organic chemicals is from biomass, but the problem remains of identifying the best product mix and the most efficient way of processing biomass to products. The aim is to move Europe towards a biobased economy and it is widely accepted that biorefineries are key to this development. A methodology was required for the generation and evaluation of biorefinery process chains for converting biomass into one or more valuable products that properly considers performance, cost, environment, socio-economics and other factors that influence the commercial viability of a process. In this thesis a methodology to achieve this objective is described. The completed methodology includes process chain generation, process modelling and subsequent analysis and comparison of results in order to evaluate alternative process routes. A modular structure was chosen to allow greater flexibility and allowing the user to generate a large number of different biorefinery configurations The significance of the approach is that the methodology is defined and is thus rigorous and consistent and may be readily re-examined if circumstances change. There was the requirement for consistency in structure and use, particularly for multiple analyses. It was important that analyses could be quickly and easily carried out to consider, for example, different scales, configurations and product portfolios and so that previous outcomes could be readily reconsidered. The result of the completed methodology is the identification of the most promising biorefinery chains from those considered as part of the European Biosynergy Project

    A methodology for the generation and evaluation of biorefinery process chains, in order to identify the most promising biorefineries for the EU

    Get PDF
    The topic of bioenergy, biofuels and bioproducts remains at the top of the current political and research agenda. Identification of the optimum processing routes for biomass, in terms of efficiency, cost, environment and socio-economics is vital as concern grows over the remaining fossil fuel resources, climate change and energy security. It is known that the only renewable way of producing conventional hydrocarbon fuels and organic chemicals is from biomass, but the problem remains of identifying the best product mix and the most efficient way of processing biomass to products. The aim is to move Europe towards a biobased economy and it is widely accepted that biorefineries are key to this development. A methodology was required for the generation and evaluation of biorefinery process chains for converting biomass into one or more valuable products that properly considers performance, cost, environment, socio-economics and other factors that influence the commercial viability of a process. In this thesis a methodology to achieve this objective is described. The completed methodology includes process chain generation, process modelling and subsequent analysis and comparison of results in order to evaluate alternative process routes. A modular structure was chosen to allow greater flexibility and allowing the user to generate a large number of different biorefinery configurations The significance of the approach is that the methodology is defined and is thus rigorous and consistent and may be readily re-examined if circumstances change. There was the requirement for consistency in structure and use, particularly for multiple analyses. It was important that analyses could be quickly and easily carried out to consider, for example, different scales, configurations and product portfolios and so that previous outcomes could be readily reconsidered. The result of the completed methodology is the identification of the most promising biorefinery chains from those considered as part of the European Biosynergy Project.EThOS - Electronic Theses Online ServiceGBUnited Kingdo

    Sustainability of bioenergy ‚Äď mapping the risks and benefits to inform future bioenergy systems

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    Bioenergy is widely included in energy strategies for its GHG mitigation potential. Bioenergy technologies will likely have to be deployed at scale to meet decarbonisation targets, and consequently biomass will have to be increasingly grown/mobilised. Sustainability risks associated with bioenergy may intensify with increasing deployment and where feedstocks are sourced through international trade. This research applies the Bioeconomy Sustainability Indicator Model (BSIM) to map and analyse the performance of bioenergy across 126 sustainability issues, evaluating 16 bioenergy case studies that reflect the breadth of biomass resources, technologies, energy vectors and bio-products. The research finds common trends in sustainability performance across projects that can inform bioenergy policy and decision making. Potential sustainability benefits are identified for People (jobs, skills, income, energy access); for Development (economy, energy, land utilisation); for Natural Systems (soil, heavy metals), and; for Climate Change (emissions, fuels). Also, consistent trends of sustainability risks where focus is required to ensure the viability of bioenergy projects, including for infrastructure, feedstock mobilisation, techno-economics and carbon stocks. Emission mitigation may be a primary objective for bioenergy, this research finds bioenergy projects can provide potential benefits far beyond emissions - there is an argument for supporting projects based on the ecosystem services and/or economic stimulation they may deliver. Also given the broad dynamics and characteristics of bioenergy projects, a rigid approach of assessing sustainability may be incompatible. Awarding ‚Äėcredit‚Äô across a broader range of sustainability indicators in addition to requiring minimum performances in key areas, may be more effective at ensuring bioenergy sustainability

    Antimicrobial resistance among migrants in Europe: a systematic review and meta-analysis

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    BACKGROUND: Rates of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) are rising globally and there is concern that increased migration is contributing to the burden of antibiotic resistance in Europe. However, the effect of migration on the burden of AMR in Europe has not yet been comprehensively examined. Therefore, we did a systematic review and meta-analysis to identify and synthesise data for AMR carriage or infection in migrants to Europe to examine differences in patterns of AMR across migrant groups and in different settings. METHODS: For this systematic review and meta-analysis, we searched MEDLINE, Embase, PubMed, and Scopus with no language restrictions from Jan 1, 2000, to Jan 18, 2017, for primary data from observational studies reporting antibacterial resistance in common bacterial pathogens among migrants to 21 European Union-15 and European Economic Area countries. To be eligible for inclusion, studies had to report data on carriage or infection with laboratory-confirmed antibiotic-resistant organisms in migrant populations. We extracted data from eligible studies and assessed quality using piloted, standardised forms. We did not examine drug resistance in tuberculosis and excluded articles solely reporting on this parameter. We also excluded articles in which migrant status was determined by ethnicity, country of birth of participants' parents, or was not defined, and articles in which data were not disaggregated by migrant status. Outcomes were carriage of or infection with antibiotic-resistant organisms. We used random-effects models to calculate the pooled prevalence of each outcome. The study protocol is registered with PROSPERO, number CRD42016043681. FINDINGS: We identified 2274 articles, of which 23 observational studies reporting on antibiotic resistance in 2319 migrants were included. The pooled prevalence of any AMR carriage or AMR infection in migrants was 25·4% (95% CI 19·1-31·8; I2 =98%), including meticillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (7·8%, 4·8-10·7; I2 =92%) and antibiotic-resistant Gram-negative bacteria (27·2%, 17·6-36·8; I2 =94%). The pooled prevalence of any AMR carriage or infection was higher in refugees and asylum seekers (33·0%, 18·3-47·6; I2 =98%) than in other migrant groups (6·6%, 1·8-11·3; I2 =92%). The pooled prevalence of antibiotic-resistant organisms was slightly higher in high-migrant community settings (33·1%, 11·1-55·1; I2 =96%) than in migrants in hospitals (24·3%, 16·1-32·6; I2 =98%). We did not find evidence of high rates of transmission of AMR from migrant to host populations. INTERPRETATION: Migrants are exposed to conditions favouring the emergence of drug resistance during transit and in host countries in Europe. Increased antibiotic resistance among refugees and asylum seekers and in high-migrant community settings (such as refugee camps and detention facilities) highlights the need for improved living conditions, access to health care, and initiatives to facilitate detection of and appropriate high-quality treatment for antibiotic-resistant infections during transit and in host countries. Protocols for the prevention and control of infection and for antibiotic surveillance need to be integrated in all aspects of health care, which should be accessible for all migrant groups, and should target determinants of AMR before, during, and after migration. FUNDING: UK National Institute for Health Research Imperial Biomedical Research Centre, Imperial College Healthcare Charity, the Wellcome Trust, and UK National Institute for Health Research Health Protection Research Unit in Healthcare-associated Infections and Antimictobial Resistance at Imperial College London

    Surgical site infection after gastrointestinal surgery in high-income, middle-income, and low-income countries: a prospective, international, multicentre cohort study