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ASU Electronic Theses and Dissertations


This collection includes most of the ASU Theses and Dissertations from 2011 to present. ASU Theses and Dissertations are available in downloadable PDF format; however, a small percentage of items are under embargo. Information about the dissertations/theses includes degree information, committee members, an abstract, supporting data or media.

In addition to the electronic theses found in the ASU Digital Repository, ASU Theses and Dissertations can be found in the ASU Library Catalog.

Dissertations and Theses granted by Arizona State University are archived and made available through a joint effort of the ASU Graduate College and the ASU Libraries. For more information or questions about this collection contact or visit the Digital Repository ETD Library Guide or contact the ASU Graduate College at gradformat@asu.edu.




A methodology is developed that integrates institutional analysis with Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) to identify and overcome barriers to sustainability transitions and to bridge the gap between environmental practitioners and decisionmakers. LCA results are rarely joined with analyses of the social systems that control or influence decisionmaking and policies. As a result, LCA conclusions generally lack information about who or what controls different parts of the system, where and when the processes' environmental decisionmaking happens, and what aspects of the system (i.e. a policy or regulatory requirement) would have to change to enable lower environmental impact futures. The value of …

Contributors
Kimball, Mindy Anne, Chester, Mikhail, Allenby, Braden, et al.
Created Date
2014

Natural rubber and rubber products can be produced from the guayule plant (Parthenium argentatum Gray), which is a low input perennial shrub native to Mexico and the American Southwest. Guayule rubber has the potential to replace Hevea (Hevea brasiliensis) rubber, the most common natural rubber, and synthetic rubber, which is derived from petroleum, in a wide variety of products, including automobile tires. Rubbers make up approximately 47% of the analyzed conventional passenger tire's weight, with 31% from synthetic rubber and 16% from natural Hevea rubber. Replacing the current rubber sources used for the tire industry with guayule rubber could help …

Contributors
Rasutis, Daina, Landis, Amy E., Colvin, Howard, et al.
Created Date
2014

Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) quantifies environmental impacts of products in raw material extraction, processing, manufacturing, distribution, use and final disposal. The findings of an LCA can be used to improve industry practices, to aid in product development, and guide public policy. Unfortunately, existing approaches to LCA are unreliable in the cases of emerging technologies, where data is unavailable and rapid technological advances outstrip environmental knowledge. Previous studies have demonstrated several shortcomings to existing practices, including the masking of environmental impacts, the difficulty of selecting appropriate weight sets for multi-stakeholder problems, and difficulties in exploration of variability and uncertainty. In particular, …

Contributors
Prado-Lopez, Valentina, Seager, Thomas P, Landis, Amy E, et al.
Created Date
2013

Ecolabels are the main driving force of consumer knowledge in the realm of sustainable product purchasing. While ecolabels strive to improve consumer's purchasing decisions, they have overwhelmed the market, leaving consumers confused and distrustful of what each label means. This study attempts to validate and understand environmental concerns commonly found in ecolabel criteria and the implications they have within the life cycle of a product. A life cycle assessment (LCA) case study of cosmetic products is used in comparison with current ecolabel program criteria to assess whether or not ecolabels are effectively driving environmental improvements in high impact areas throughout …

Contributors
Bernardo, Melissa Anna, Dooley, Kevin, Chester, Mikhail, et al.
Created Date
2012

Advancing sustainable food systems requires holistic understanding and solutions-oriented approaches that transcend disciplines, so expertise in a variety of subjects is necessary. Proposed solutions are usually technically or socially oriented, but disagreement over the best approach to the future of food dominates the dialogue. Technological optimists argue that scientific advances are necessary to feed the world, but environmental purists believe that reductions in consumption and waste are sufficient and less risky. Life cycle assessment (LCA) helps resolve debates through quantitative analysis of environmental impacts from products which serve the same function. LCA used to compare dietary choices reveals that simple …

Contributors
Berardy, Andrew James, Seager, Thomas P, Hannah, Mark, et al.
Created Date
2015

One of the key infrastructures of any community or facility is the energy system which consists of utility power plants, distributed generation technologies, and building heating and cooling systems. In general, there are two dimensions to “sustainability” as it applies to an engineered system. It needs to be designed, operated, and managed such that its environmental impacts and costs are minimal (energy efficient design and operation), and also be designed and configured in a way that it is resilient in confronting disruptions posed by natural, manmade, or random events. In this regard, development of quantitative sustainability metrics in support of …

Contributors
Moslehi, Salim, Reddy, T. Agami, Lackner, Klaus S, et al.
Created Date
2018

Ion exchange sorbents embedded with metal oxide nanoparticles can have high affinity and high capacity to simultaneously remove multiple oxygenated anion contaminants from drinking water. This research pursued answering the question, “Can synthesis methods of nano-composite sorbents be improved to increase sustainability and feasibility to remove hexavalent chromium and arsenic simultaneously from groundwater compared to existing sorbents?” Preliminary nano-composite sorbents outperformed existing sorbents in equilibrium tests, but struggled in packed bed applications and at low influent concentrations. The synthesis process was then tailored for weak base anion exchange (WBAX) while comparing titanium dioxide against iron hydroxide nanoparticles (Ti-WBAX and Fe-WBAX, …

Contributors
Gifford, James McKay, Westerhoff, Paul, Hristovski, Kiril, et al.
Created Date
2016