Sustainability

Journal Information
ISSN / EISSN : 2071-1050 / 2071-1050
Current Publisher: MDPI AG (10.3390)
Total articles ≅ 32,933
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Published: 14 April 2021
Sustainability, Volume 13; doi:10.3390/su13084344

Abstract:
Nature-based solutions (NbS) provide direct benefits to people who live in areas where these approaches are present. The degree of direct benefits (thermal comfort, reduced flood risk, and mental health) varies across temporal and spatial scales, and it can be modelled and quantified. Less clear are the indirect benefits related to opportunities to learn about the environment and its influence on personal behaviour and action. The present study, based on survey data from 1955 participants across 17 cities worldwide, addressed whether participation in NbS through two types of interactions (a passive learning experience about NbS and a more active experience based on Citizen Science) stimulates motivation and willingness to be more environmentally sustainable. Over 75% of participants improved their understanding of environmental sustainability and were highly motivated and more confident in their ability to improve sustainability in their local environment/nature. Similar percentage improvements arose from both types of activity across all cities. Those NbS that had elements of both blue and green infrastructure rated higher than those that had predominantly green NbS. Interestingly, a large percentage of the participants did not live near the NbS that were the focus of these activities. This indicated that expected spatial limitations between benefit and recipient may be overcome when dedicated programmes involve people in learning or monitoring NbS. Therefore, opportunities have arisen to expand inclusion from the immediately local to the larger community through participation and Citizen Science, with potential benefits to social cohesion and urban sustainability.
Published: 14 April 2021
Sustainability, Volume 13; doi:10.3390/su13084338

Abstract:
Civic agency is acknowledged as a key driver/catalyst for social transformation toward sustainability. Recent environmental citizenship education (EEC) models advocate a transformative approach for addressing environmental unsustainability (addressing underlying structural causes) and the identification of the development of change agents, as both the means for deep social transformation toward sustainability and the outcome of EEC. Given the paucity of studies looking into the psychological attributes of sustainability change agents, this work aims to deepen the theoretical understanding of the motivations that drive individuals to act as change agents and the type and extent of the change that they aspire to effect, with a view to developing competent environmental citizens. To this end, this conceptual work applies Schwartz’s theory of universal values to construct a three-level framework of environmental citizenship (EC) (individual-level, community-level, and socially-transformative-level). Each level reflects an increasing level of change agency that is driven by distinct motivational values and competences. The framework shares affinities with qualitative change agency typologies in the literature but claims that these different qualitative types reflect expanding ‘levels-of-concern’ and an increasing extent of change, as expressed in the EC framework. The paper then discusses curricular implications for the design of meaningful EEC deriving from the framework: Effective EEC entails developing change agency by adapting learning to the EC-level of the learners and the educational organization. The proposed EC/change agency framework provides a scaffold for such curricular adaptation.
Published: 14 April 2021
Sustainability, Volume 13; doi:10.3390/su13084341

Abstract:
Twenty-six water bodies and 10 ponds were selected for this research. Anthropogenic loads were assessed according to pollution sources in individual water catchment basins. It was determined that 50% of the tested water bodies had Ntotal values that did not correspond to the good and very good ecological status classes, and 20% of the tested water bodies had Ptotal values that did not correspond to the good and very good ecological status classes. The lake basins and ponds received the largest amounts of pollution from agricultural sources with total nitrogen at 1554.13 t/year and phosphorus at 1.94 t/year, and from meadows and pastures with total nitrogen at 9.50 t/year and phosphorus at 0.20 t/year. The highest annual load of total nitrogen for lake basins on average per year was from agricultural pollution from arable land (98.85%), and the highest total phosphorus load was also from agricultural pollution from arable land (60%).
Published: 14 April 2021
Sustainability, Volume 13; doi:10.3390/su13084352

Abstract:
Today, sustainability, sustainable development and clean environment come to the fore worldwide. Consequently, the concept of sustainability has been introduced in project management. Sustainability issues have gained particular attention in the real estate sector. However, despite the fact that this sector has a huge impact on the environment and society, real estate projects are most commonly chosen taking into account only their risk and return, and a very limited number of indices and methods are available to assess their sustainability. Moreover, all of the existing indices and models for assessing the sustainability of an investment project take into account only three dimensions of sustainability—environmental, social and economic. Therefore, the novelty of this work lies in constructing a real estate sustainability index (RESI) relying on an additional sustainability aspect—i.e., a technological dimension. The developed sustainability index could be useful in evaluating and comparing real estate projects. It would also promote technological progress and investments in new technologies within projects as sustainability is also considered in a new, technological dimension. A research study was carried out between September 2020 and December 2020. Following an analysis of the literature and different sustainability-related standards relevant for the real estate industry, sustainability criteria were chosen and then grouped into four (environmental, social, economic and technological) categories. The selection and ranking of the most relevant sustainability criteria were performed through a survey. The index was compiled by applying multi-criteria decision making methods.
Published: 14 April 2021
Sustainability, Volume 13; doi:10.3390/su13084353

Abstract:
In light of the coronavirus pandemic, we invite readers to a reflection over the aim and use of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the determination of the new biodiversity targets in relation to health issues. Starting with a brief overview of the initiatives to consider health and the environment in the international arena before the adoption of SDGs, we show how the pandemic shed a new light on the need for research on the interlinkages of human and animal health and environmental changes. We examine underlying elements of the dialogue between science and policy, then we suggest considering SDGs as tool for the service of the environment, wellbeing and justice. We advocate for the translation of planetary health principles into action, together with the consideration of planetary boundaries, to redefine an adaptive environmental law for the sake of social justice and the health of the planet.
Published: 14 April 2021
Sustainability, Volume 13; doi:10.3390/su13084355

Abstract:
The United Arab Emirates is witnessing enormous growth and the sustainability attitude has become one of the most important priorities in this development. This paper aims to optimize the environmental sustainability of the Emirate of Dubai communities by adopting an existing community as a case study. The investigation of the case study is looking at sustainability levels that consists of two major factors in neighborhood sustainable design, such as livability and thermal performance. The strategy of enhancing and optimizing the communities’ sustainability starts with an approach to the applicable modifications and solutions to the existed community master planning, where the modifications cover the two main urban design variables; (a) building design, and (b) open and landscape areas. The effect of the adopted scenarios is analyzed to find the improvement in environmental and thermal performance. The study has adopted two computer software packages, namely CityCAD and Integrated Environmental Solutions—Virtual Environment (IES-VE), to undertake the assessments. Furthermore, factors of urban sustainability are evaluated using the United States Green Building Council (USGBC)’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) neighborhood assessment tool. The results have shown that the environmental sustainability levels can be increased after the adoption of certain suggested scenarios, in order to mitigate the likely weakness indicated in the livability aspects, covering land-use diversity, accessibility, transportation system, green and landscape areas, and energy efficiency, and the case study community can be turned toward “Sustainable Community” by implementing recommended actions and modifications.
Published: 14 April 2021
Sustainability, Volume 13; doi:10.3390/su13084348

Abstract:
The effects of green marketing orientations for increasing the competitive advantage and improving the sustainability of the hospitality industry during the COVID-19 pandemic are receiving more attention. As the hospitality industry attempts to assimilate green marketing and move in the path of sustainable development, administrators need to expand their efforts for improving natural environmental orientation (NEO), market orientation, resource orientation, and brand orientation by applying their green marketing orientations to hospitality’s strategies during the COVID-19 pandemic. Only few studies have examined the improvement of green marketing orientations. The objective of the research is to address this issue, applying the methods of fuzzy mixture MCDM (multiple criteria decision-making), with fuzzy decision-making trials and an evaluation laboratory (DEMATEL), and fuzzy DEMATEL-based ANP (fuzzy DANP) to inspect the feedback and interdependent issues among numerous elements/dimensions of green marketing orientations. In an uncertain environment, an empirical case study of the hospitality industry is shown to demonstrate the recommended combined approaches and, finally, to state the best enhancement approaches for administrators. This result shows that the natural environmental orientation is the most important factor.
Published: 14 April 2021
Sustainability, Volume 13; doi:10.3390/su13084342

Abstract:
Electrospun polymeric nanofibers have attracted great attention in filtration systems and protective clothes. One of them is polyacrylonitrile (PAN) nanofibers, which are a suitable choice for the fabrication of protective clothes in the defense industry, due to their good fiber formation and easy optimization with chemical reagents. They do not possess adequate properties for protection against chemical, biological, and radiological agents. In this research, poly (acrylonitrile-co-methyl methacrylate) (PANMM) nanofibers and PANMM nanofibers containing 10B were fabricated via the electrospinning method. The study of the morphology of nanofibers, using scanning electron microscopy (SEM), revealed that smooth and knotted fibers with an average diameter of 259 ± 64 nm were obtained, using 12% (w/v) of PANMM in the solution as the optimal concentration for the electrospinning process. This sample was doped with boron (10%, 30%, and 50% (w/w)) to fabricate the samples of PANMM + boric acid (BA) nanofibers. The results demonstrated an increasing trend in the diameter of the nanofibers with an increase in BA up to 50%. At this concentration, smooth fibers were formed with lower knots. Furthermore, the presence of B-O and O-H groups was observed using Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy. To study the tensile properties, the nanofibrous web was tested, and the results showed that introducing 10B to PANMM nanofiber structures reduced the strength of the nanofibers. Thermal gravimetric analysis (TGA) showed that BA-modified PANMM nanofibers had lower thermal degradability, as compared with pure PANMM.
Published: 14 April 2021
Sustainability, Volume 13; doi:10.3390/su13084370

Abstract:
Globalization has brought not only advantages but also risks into the supply chains. One lesser studied risk is the effect of consumer behavior in crises. The recent COVID-19 pandemic has shown that the most efficient and optimized supply chains are susceptible to consumer panic buying. There is a severe need to understand the multitude of scenarios that could manifest after a catastrophe due to the change in consumer behavior so that businesses can develop a mitigation plan. The authors have developed an agent-based model that can simulate the various outcomes of a crisis using a consumer panic buying model and a supply chain model. The model quantitatively evaluates the panic purchase intention of a consumer while assessing the impact of panic buying on the supply chain. This paper introduces the implementation of the model, focusing on output analysis of the various situational settings in disaster aftermath. Preliminary study has revealed that implementing quota policy or rationing uniformly is very effective while controlling media reports or panic buying consumers can reduce consumer demand significantly.
Published: 14 April 2021
Sustainability, Volume 13; doi:10.3390/su13084365

Abstract:
This study examines the role of participation effort, focusing on the effect of anthropomorphic messengers’ facial expression on consumers’ perception in the context of corporate social responsibility (CSR). CSR activities requiring consumer participation can elicit their positive responses. Although companies’ interests in participatory CSR are increasing, academic interests in this area are still insufficient. Existing studies have not provided clear results on the effective level of participation effort and its effect on consumers’ perception of CSR activities. In this context, we conducted a study that investigated the effect of participation effort, focusing on the facial expression of an anthropomorphic messenger. The study shows that participation effort has a positive relationship with the intention to participate in CSR because consumers perceive messengers with a sad facial expression as victims. However, they perceive messengers with a happy facial expression as marketing agents. Hence, participation effort decreases participation intention. Finally, we discuss the meaning of the study and propose suggestions for future research.
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