New method for greenhouse gas predictions

Mar 05, 2013

Pulp and paper producers are among Canada's most important industries and also one of the largest producers of wastewater. Estimating the greenhouse gas emissions in this wastewater has become a priority for the industry.

Until now, greenhouse gas emission estimates have been limited by the mathematical models used to predict them. Researchers at Concordia University have recently developed a new dynamic method to better predict the emission content of these gases. Their findings, published in , have implications not only for the pulp and paper industry, but also for any business wishing to reduce its carbon footprint.

"Currently used steady-state models are able to give an overall prediction but dynamic models can estimate the variation in in response to changes in the wastewater management system. Dynamic models are therefore more accurate and provide more information," says Laleh Yerushalmi, an adjunct professor at Concordia's Department of Building, Civil and Environmental Engineering and study co-author.

Knowledge can lead to improved emission control

The study compared steady-state and dynamic mathematical modelling predictions with actual values of greenhouse gas emissions in wastewater systems. Both models gave accurate results of overall gas emissions. However, only the was able to estimate changes in emissions in response to a changing environment. The dynamic model could also be used to predict other outputs, such as and generation.

"With dynamic modeling, we can better understand the behaviour of the treatment plant over time," says senior author Fariborz Haghighat, professor in Concordia's Department of Building, Civil and Environmental Engineering and Concordia Research Chair in Energy and Environment. "With this knowledge, we can then recommend a strategy to reduce the emission of greenhouse gas and also improve ."

"Models such as this are used to simulate the behaviour of a particular management system either in the early stages of system design or in later development to incorporate changes," adds Yerushalmi. "We want to make sure that we use the most accurate method possible and the dynamic model is best predictor yet."

Explore further: Israeli port city closes 5 factories over cancer fears

More information: www.springer.com/environment/journal/11356

Related Stories

Recommended for you

Mountain of electrical waste reaches new peak

11 hours ago

A record amount of electrical and electronic waste hit the rubbish tips in 2014, with the biggest per-capita tallies in countries that pride themselves on environmental consciousness, a report said Sunday.

China's struggle for water security

Apr 18, 2015

Way back in 1999, before he became China's prime minister, Wen Jiabao warned that water scarcity posed one of the greatest threats to the "survival of the nation".

Canada revises upward CO2 emission data since 1990

Apr 18, 2015

Canada revised its greenhouse gas emission data from 1990 to 2013 in a report Friday, showing it had higher carbon dioxide discharges each year, and a doubling of emissions from its oil sands.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.