Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Record number 498414
Title Greening the global phosphorus cycle : How green chemistry can help achieve planetary P sustainability
Author(s) Withers, Paul J.A.; Elser, James J.; Hilton, Julian; Ohtake, Hisao; Schipper, Willem J.; Dijk, Kimo C. Van
Source Green Chemistry 17 (2015)4. - ISSN 1463-9262 - p. 2087 - 2099.
DOI https://doi.org/10.1039/c4gc02445a
Department(s) Chair Soil Chemistry and Chemical Soil Quality
Sub-department of Soil Quality
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2015
Abstract

The sustainability of global phosphorus (P) use is emerging as a major societal goal to secure future food, energy, and water security for a growing population. Phosphate rock (PR) is a critical raw material whose inefficiency of use is leading to widespread eutrophication and uncertainties about supplies of affordable fertilizers. Green chemistry and green engineering can be applied to help close the global P cycle by addressing three sustainability challenges: (1) consume less PR and with greater efficiency, (2) minimise P losses and generation of waste P that can no longer be re-used, and (3) set economically, socially and environmentally acceptable P sustainability targets to lower P demand. Greater precision in P use by the agriculture sector (the main P flow) supported by smarter PR mining and processing technology could greatly improve global P use efficiency. Emerging bio-based and green chemical technologies could be more widely applied to enhance first- and second-generation valorization of low-grade PR ores, manures, by-products and residues to provide renewable secondary sources of P and other essential elements and compounds. All sectors of society have the potential to lower their P demands, and all production systems could be redesigned to facilitate recovery and recycling of P. Collectively these 'green engineering' actions at sector and regional level can help achieve planetary P sustainability.

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