Commenced in January 2007
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Edition: International
Paper Count: 18

Search results for: Bhojan Dhakal

18 Assessment of Major Feed Resources and Its Utilization in Manaslu Conservation Area Nepal

Authors: Sabita Subedi, Bhojan Dhakal, Shankar Raj Pant, Naba Raj Devkota

Abstract:

An assessment was made about the available feed resources, its utilization pattern, specifically, roughage and concentrate, produced from the Manaslu Conservation Area (MCA) of Nepal to formulate the appropriate strategies in satisfying the annual dietary requirements of the livestock covering its present production and management scenarios. A comparative study was done by employing a purposively conducted survey to deduct the distribution of forage sources in the area. Findings revealed that natural vegetation, seasonally available crop residues, and dried grasses were major feed resources, whereas their contribution to the total supply varied significantly (p < 0.01). The amount of feed obtained from various sources was calculated by standard conversion and using primary household data. Findings revealed that farmers practice significantly higher (p < 0.01) number of grazing days and hours per day for large ruminants such as Yak and Chauries as compared to small ruminants such as goats and sheep. The findings also indicated seasonal variations of feed supply, whereas January to March is the period of short supply (p < 0.01). It was relatively in good supply from June to September though average roughage and crude protein supplement for the animals was far below than optimum requirements. These scenarios suggest the need for immediate attention to improve the range productivity in the MCA as the deteriorating situations of the rangelands may raise questions on the sustainability of livestock herders.

Keywords: altitude, carrying capacity, dietary requirement, feed resources, rangeland, ruminant

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17 Fodder Production and Livestock Rearing in Relation to Climate Change and Possible Adaptation Measures in Manaslu Conservation Area, Nepal

Authors: Bhojan Dhakal, Naba Raj Devkota, Chet Raj Upreti, Maheshwar Sapkota

Abstract:

A study was conducted to find out the production potential, nutrient composition, and the variability of the most commonly available fodder trees along with the varying altitude to help optimize the dry matter requirement during winter lean period. The study was carried out from March to June, 2012 in Lho and Prok Village Development Committee of Manaslu Conservation Area (MCA), located in Gorkha district of Nepal. The other objective of the research was to learn the impact of climate change on livestock production linking it with feed availability. The study was conducted in two parts: social and biological. Accordingly, a households (HHs) survey was conducted to collect primary data from 70 HHs, focusing on the perception of respondents on impacts of climatic variability on the feeding management. The next part consisted of understanding yield potential and nutrient composition of the four most commonly available fodder trees (M. azedirach, M. alba, F. roxburghii, F. nemoralis), within two altitudes range: (1500-2000 masl and 2000-2500 masl) by using a RCB design in 2*4 factorial combination of treatments, each replicated four times. Results revealed that majority of the farmers perceived the change in climatic phenomenon more severely within the past five years. Farmers were using different adaptation technologies such as collection of forage from jungle, reducing unproductive animals, fodder trees utilization, and crop by product feeding at feed scarcity period. Ranking of the different fodder trees on the basis of indigenous knowledge and experiences revealed that F. roxburghii was the best-preferred fodder tree species (index value 0.72) in terms overall preferability whereas M. azedirach had highest growth and productivity (index value 0.77), F. roxburghii had highest adoptability (index value 0.69) and palatability (index value 0.69) as well. Similarly, fresh yield and dry matter yield of the each fodder trees was significant (P < 0.01) between the altitude and within species. Fodder trees yield analysis revealed that the highest dry matter (DM) yield (28 kg/tree) was obtained for F. roxburghii but that remained statistically similar (P > 0.05) to the other treatment. On the other hand, most of the parameters: ether extract (EE), acid detergent lignin (ADL), acid detergent fibre (ADF), cell wall digestibility (CWD), relative digestibility (RD), digestible nutrient (TDN), and Calcium (Ca) among the treatments were highly significant (P < 0.01). This indicates the scope of introducing productive and nutritive fodder trees species even at the high altitude to help reduce fodder scarcity problem during winter. The finding also revealed the scope of promoting all available local fodder trees species as crude protein content of these species were similar.

Keywords: fodder trees, yield potential, climate change, nutrient composition

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16 An Alternative Institutional Design for Efficient Management of Nepalese Irrigation Systems

Authors: Tirtha Raj Dhakal, Brian Davidson, Bob Farquharson

Abstract:

Institutional design is important if water resources are to be managed efficiently. In Nepal, the supply of water in both farmer- and agency-managed irrigation systems is inefficient because of the weak institutional frameworks. This type of inefficiency is linked with collective problems such as non-excludability of irrigation water, inadequate recognition of property rights and externalities. Irrigation scheme surveys from Nepal as well as existing literature revealed that the Nepalese irrigation sector is facing many issues such as low cost recovery, inadequate maintenance of the schemes and inefficient allocation and utilization of irrigation water. The institutional practices currently in place also fail to create/force any incentives for farmers to use water efficiently and to pay for its use. This, thus, compels the need of refined institutional framework that can address the collective problems and improve irrigation efficiency.

Keywords: agency-managed, cost recovery, farmer-managed, institutional design

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15 Earthquake Effect in Micro Hydro Sector: Case Study of Dulakha District, Nepal

Authors: Keshav Raj Dhakal, Jit Bahadur Rokaya Chhetri

Abstract:

The Micro Hydro (MH) is one of the successful technology in Rural Nepal. Out of 75 district, 59 districts have installed 1287 MH projects with a total capacity of 24 Mega Watt (MW). Now, the challenge is how to sustain them. Dolakha is a prominent district for sustainable endues of power to sustain the MH projects. A total of 37 MH projects have been constructed with producing 886 Kilo Watt (KW) of energy in the district. This study traces out the impact of earthquake in MH sector in Dolakha district. It shows that 59 % of projects have been affected by devastating earthquake in April and May, 2015 where 29 % are completely damaged. Most of the damages are in civil structures like Penstock, forebay, power house, Canal, Intake. Transmission and distribution line have been partially damaged. This paper analysis failure of the civil structural component of MH projects and its financial consequence to the community. This study recommends that a disaster impact assessment is essential before construction of MH projects.

Keywords: micro hydro, earthquake, structural failure, financial consequence

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14 Evolution of Sustainable Municipal Solid Waste Management in Nigeria: Lagos Case Study

Authors: Chinedu Bevis Dibia, Hom Nath Dhakal

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Effective waste management in sub-Saharan Africa has been identified as a means of resolving the wicked problems posed by climate change. Municipal solid waste management in Nigeria could be argued to be ineffective and unsustainable, despite the tag of sustainable ascribed to most municipalities’ waste management. Relatively, few studies have enquired on the evolution of Sustainable Municipal Waste Management (SMWM) in Nigeria. The main objective of this research is to examine the evolution of SMWM in Nigeria using Lagos state as a case study. A qualitative method was used as methodology, soft systems analysis is the main tool of evaluation. Results indicated that effective policy implementation and management is the main challenge to the proper evolution of SMWM. These findings highlight the relevance of effective stakeholder’s engagement and management, policy consistency as major determinants in SMWM.

Keywords: high income localities, low middle income localities, SMWM, upper middle income localities, waste collection, waste disposal

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13 Gender and Change of Socio-Cultural Behavior: A Case Study of Sarangkot VDC of Kaski District

Authors: Padam Pandey, Madhu Sudan Dhakal

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As a consequence of being a patrimonial society, most of the Nepalese women work inside the house and take care their children. Men are always regarded to be responsible for managing fund to fulfill the family requirement. Outgoing men of 25-35 for employment in foreign country is a common practice. In the absence of man, women aged of 20-45 have to be active in society. The responsibility of women is not only looking after inside the house but also leading the society. This study analysis gender aspect of household work and involvement in the society. This study shows that women are leading 56% different organizations in the society where 51% women spend more than 54% time in community development work. The involvement of man in the house work has significantly increased. The women leadership has succeeded to show the transparency in all the community development activities. It shows a model of social harmony, solidarity, and unity in the Sarankot Village Development Committee. Social behavior change towards women is a milestone of sustainable community development. This study recommends that the equal participation is essential to sustain community development.

Keywords: gender, women leadership, social harmony, unity sustainable development

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12 Study on Compressive Strength and Setting Time of Fly Ash Concrete after Slump Recovery Using Superplasticizer

Authors: Chaiyakrit Raoupatham, Ram Hari Dhakal, Chalermchai Wanichlamlert

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Fresh concrete that is on bound to be rejected due to belated use either from delay construction process or unflavored traffic cause delay on concrete delivering can recover the slump and use once again by introduce second dose of superplasticizer(naphthalene based type F) into system. By adding superplasticizer as solution for recover unusable slump loss concrete may affects other concrete properties. Therefore, this paper was observed setting time and compressive strength of concrete after being re-dose with chemical admixture type F (superplasticizer, naphthalene based) for slump recovery. The concrete used in this study was fly ash concrete with fly ash replacement of 0%, 30% and 50% respectively. Concrete mix designed for test specimen was prepared with paste content (ratio of volume of cement to volume of void in the aggregate) of 1.2 and 1.3, water-to-binder ratio (w/b) range of 0.3 to 0.58, initial dose of superplasticizer (SP) range from 0.5 to 1.6%. The setting time of concrete were tested both before and after re-dosed with different amount of second dose and time of dosing. The research was concluded that addition of second dose of superplasticizer would increase both initial and final setting times accordingly to dosage of addition. As for fly ash concrete, the prolongation effect was higher as the replacement of fly ash is increase. The prolongation effect can reach up to maximum about 4 hours. In case of compressive strength, the re-dosed concrete has strength fluctuation within acceptable range of ±10%.

Keywords: compressive strength, fly ash concrete, second dose of superplasticizer, setting times

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11 Institutional Design for Managing Irrigation Problems: A Case Study of Farmers'- and Agency-Managed Irrigation Systems of Nepal

Authors: Tirtha Raj Dhakal, Brian Davidson, Bob Farquharson

Abstract:

Institutional design is an important aspect in efficient water resource management. In Nepal, the water supply in both farmers’- and agency-managed irrigation systems has become sub-standard because of the weak institutional framework. This study characterizes both forms of the schemes and links existing institution and governance of the schemes with its performance with reference to cost recovery, maintenance of the schemes and water distribution throughout the schemes. For this, two types of surveys were conducted. A management survey of ten farmers’-managed and five agency-managed schemes of Chitwan valley and its periphery was done. Also, a farm survey comprising 25 farmers from each of head, middle and tail regions of both schemes; Narayani Lift Irrigation Project (agency-managed) and Khageri Irrigation System (farmers’-managed) of Chitwan Valley as a case study was conducted. The results showed that cost recovery of agency-managed schemes in 2015 was less than two percent whereas service fee collection rate in farmers’-managed schemes was nearly 2/3rd that triggered poor maintenance of the schemes and unequal distribution of water throughout the schemes. Also, the institution on practice is unable to create any incentives for farmers for economical use of water as well as willingness to pay for its use. This, thus, compels the need of refined institutional framework which has been suggested in this paper aiming to improve the cost recovery and better water distribution throughout the irrigation schemes.

Keywords: cost recovery, governance, institution, schemes' performance

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10 Problems Associated with Fibre-Reinforced Composites Ultrasonically-Assisted Drilling

Authors: Sikiru Oluwarotimi Ismail, Hom Nath Dhakal, Anish Roy, Dong Wang, Ivan Popov

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The ultrasonically-assisted drilling (UAD) is a non-traditional technique which involves the superimposition of a high frequency and low amplitude vibration, usually greater than 18kHz and less than 20µm respectively, on a drill bit along the feed direction. UAD has remarkable advantages over the conventional drilling (CD), especially the high drilling-force reduction. Force reduction improves the quality of the drilled holes, reduces power consumption rate and cost of production. Nevertheless, in addition to the setbacks of UAD including expensiveness of set-up, unpredicted results and chipping effects, this paper presents the problems of insignificant force reduction and poor surface quality during UAD of hemp fibre-reinforced composites (HFRCs), a natural composite, with polycaprolactone (PCL) matrix. The experimental results obtained depict that HFRCs/PCL samples have more burnt chip-materials attached on the drilled holes during UAD than CD. This effect produced a very high surface roughness (Ra), up to 13µm. In a bid to reduce these challenges, different drilling parameters (feed rates and cutting speeds, frequencies and amplitudes for UAD), conditions (dry machining and airflow cooling) and diameters of drill bits (3mm and 6mm of high speed steel), as well as HFRCs/PCL samples of various fibre aspect ratios, including 0 (neat), 19, 26, 30 and 38 have been used. However, the setbacks still persisted. Evidently, the benefits of UAD are not obtainable for the drilling of the HFRCs/PCL laminates. These problems occurred due to the 60 °C melting temperature of PCL, quite lower than 56-90.2 °C and 265–290.8 °C composite-tool interface temperature during CD and UAD respectively.

Keywords: force reduction, hemp fibre-reinforced composites, ultrasonically-assisted drilling, surface quality

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9 Estimation Model for Concrete Slump Recovery by Using Superplasticizer

Authors: Chaiyakrit Raoupatham, Ram Hari Dhakal, Chalermchai Wanichlamlert

Abstract:

This paper is aimed to introduce the solution of concrete slump recovery using chemical admixture type-F (superplasticizer, naphthalene base) to the practice, in order to solve unusable concrete problem due to concrete loss its slump, especially for those tropical countries that have faster slump loss rate. In the other hand, randomly adding superplasticizer into concrete can cause concrete to segregate. Therefore, this paper also develops the estimation model used to calculate amount of second dose of superplasticizer need for concrete slump recovery. Fresh properties of ordinary Portland cement concrete with volumetric ratio of paste to void between aggregate (paste content) of 1.1-1.3 with water-cement ratio zone of 0.30 to 0.67 and initial superplasticizer (naphthalene base) of 0.25%- 1.6% were tested for initial slump and slump loss for every 30 minutes for one and half hour by slump cone test. Those concretes with slump loss range from 10% to 90% were re-dosed and successfully recovered back to its initial slump. Slump after re-dosed was tested by slump cone test. From the result, it has been concluded that, slump loss was slower for those mix with high initial dose of superplasticizer due to addition of superplasticizer will disturb cement hydration. The required second dose of superplasticizer was affected by two major parameter, which were water-cement ratio and paste content, where lower water-cement ratio and paste content cause an increase in require second dose of superplasticizer. The amount of second dose of superplasticizer is higher as the solid content within the system is increase, solid can be either from cement particles or aggregate. The data was analyzed to form an equation use to estimate the amount of second dosage requirement of superplasticizer to recovery slump to its original.

Keywords: estimation model, second superplasticizer dosage, slump loss, slump recovery

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8 Downtime Modelling for the Post-Earthquake Building Assessment Phase

Authors: S. Khakurel, R. P. Dhakal, T. Z. Yeow

Abstract:

Downtime is one of the major sources (alongside damage and injury/death) of financial loss incurred by a structure in an earthquake. The length of downtime associated with a building after an earthquake varies depending on the time taken for the reaction (to the earthquake), decision (on the future course of action) and execution (of the decided course of action) phases. Post-earthquake assessment of buildings is a key step in the decision making process to decide the appropriate safety placarding as well as to decide whether a damaged building is to be repaired or demolished. The aim of the present study is to develop a model to quantify downtime associated with the post-earthquake building-assessment phase in terms of two parameters; i) duration of the different assessment phase; and ii) probability of different colour tagging. Post-earthquake assessment of buildings includes three stages; Level 1 Rapid Assessment including a fast external inspection shortly after the earthquake, Level 2 Rapid Assessment including a visit inside the building and Detailed Engineering Evaluation (if needed). In this study, the durations of all three assessment phases are first estimated from the total number of damaged buildings, total number of available engineers and the average time needed for assessing each building. Then, probability of different tag colours is computed from the 2010-11 Canterbury earthquake Sequence database. Finally, a downtime model for the post-earthquake building inspection phase is proposed based on the estimated phase length and probability of tag colours. This model is expected to be used for rapid estimation of seismic downtime within the Loss Optimisation Seismic Design (LOSD) framework.

Keywords: assessment, downtime, LOSD, Loss Optimisation Seismic Design, phase length, tag color

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7 Effectiveness of Management Transfer Programs for Managing Irrigation Resources in Developing Countries: A Case Study of Farmer- and Agency-Managed Schemes from Nepal

Authors: Tirtha Raj Dhakal, Brian Davidson, Bob Farquharson

Abstract:

Irrigation management transfer has been taken as the important policy instrument for effective irrigation resource management in many developing countries. The change in governance of the irrigation schemes for its day-to-day operation and maintenance has been centered in recent Nepalese irrigation policies also. However, both farmer- and agency-managed irrigation schemes in Nepal are performing well below than expected. This study tries to link the present concerns of poor performance of both forms of schemes with the institutions for its operation and management. Two types of surveys, management and farm surveys; were conducted as a case study in the command area of Narayani Lift Irrigation Project (agency-managed) and Khageri Irrigation System (farmer-managed) of Chitwan District. The farm survey from head, middle and tail regions of both schemes revealed that unequal water distribution exists in these regions in both schemes with greater percentage of farmers experiencing this situation in agency managed scheme. In both schemes, the cost recovery rate was very low, even below five percent in Lift System indicating poor operation and maintenance of the schemes. Also, the institution on practice in both schemes is unable to create any incentives for farmers’ willingness to pay as well as for its economical use in the farm. Thus, outcomes from the study showed that only the management transfer programs may not achieve the goal of efficient irrigation resource management. This may suggest water professionals to rethink about the irrigation policies for refining institutional framework irrespective of the governance of schemes for improved cost recovery and better water distribution throughout the irrigation schemes.

Keywords: cost recovery, governance, institution, irrigation management transfer, willingness to pay

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6 Assessing the Financial Potential of an Agroforestry-Based Farming Practice in a Labor Scarce Subsistence Economy

Authors: Arun Dhakal, Rajesh Kumar Rai

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Agroforestry is long practiced in Nepal as a means of subsistence livelihoods. Given its potential to climate change mitigation, this practice is being recommended as a climate-smart farming practice in the recent years. However, the financial attractiveness of this practice is not well-documented in a labor scarce economy such as Nepal. This study attempts to examine the financial suitability of an agroforestry-based farming practice in the present socio-economic context of Nepal where labor is in short supply. A total of 200 households were randomly selected for household surveys in Dhanusha district during April to July 2015. Two farming practices were found to be dominant in the study area: 1) conventional farming (field crops only) in which at least two field crops are annually grown, and 2) agroforestry-based farming (agroforest, home garden and field crops combined) practice (ABFP). The ABFP was found to be less labor intensive than the conventional farming (137 Man days/yr/ha vs 218 Man days/yr/ha). The ex-ante financial analysis indicated that both the farming practices generated positive NPVs (Net Present Values) and B/C (Benefit-Cost) ratios greater than one, indicating both are financially attractive farming enterprises under the base discount rate of 12%. However, the ABFP generated higher NPV and greater B/C ratio than the conventional farming, indicating the former was financially more attractive than the later. The sensitivity analysis showed that the conventional farming was more sensitive to change in labor wage rate than that of the ABFP. Up to the 24% discount rate, the ABFP generated higher NPV and in case of B/C ratio, the ratio was found greater for ABFP even in 50% discount rate.

Keywords: agroforestry, benefit-cost analysis, conventional farming, net present value

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5 Practical Modelling of RC Structural Walls under Monotonic and Cyclic Loading

Authors: Reza E. Sedgh, Rajesh P. Dhakal

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Shear walls have been used extensively as the main lateral force resisting systems in multi-storey buildings. The recent development in performance based design urges practicing engineers to conduct nonlinear static or dynamic analysis to evaluate seismic performance of multi-storey shear wall buildings by employing distinct analytical models suggested in the literature. For practical purpose, application of macroscopic models to simulate the global and local nonlinear behavior of structural walls outweighs the microscopic models. The skill level, computational time and limited access to RC specialized finite element packages prevents the general application of this method in performance based design or assessment of multi-storey shear wall buildings in design offices. Hence, this paper organized to verify capability of nonlinear shell element in commercially available package (Sap2000) in simulating results of some specimens under monotonic and cyclic loads with very oversimplified available cyclic material laws in the analytical tool. The selection of constitutive models, the determination of related parameters of the constituent material and appropriate nonlinear shear model are presented in detail. Adoption of proposed simple model demonstrated that the predicted results follow the overall trend of experimental force-displacement curve. Although, prediction of ultimate strength and the overall shape of hysteresis model agreed to some extent with experiment, the ultimate displacement(significant strength degradation point) prediction remains challenging in some cases.

Keywords: analytical model, nonlinear shell element, structural wall, shear behavior

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4 Deriving an Index of Adoption Rate and Assessing Factors Affecting Adoption of an Agroforestry-Based Farming System in Dhanusha District, Nepal

Authors: Arun Dhakal, Geoff Cockfield, Tek Narayan Maraseni

Abstract:

This paper attempts to fulfil the gap in measuring adoption in agroforestry studies. It explains the derivation of an index of adoption rate in a Nepalese context and examines the factors affecting adoption of agroforestry-based land management practice (AFLMP) in the Dhanusha District of Nepal. Data about the different farm practices and the factors (bio-physical, socio-economic) influencing adoption were collected during focus group discussion and from the randomly selected households using a household survey questionnaire, respectively. A multivariate regression model was used to determine the factors. The factors (variables) found to significantly affect adoption of AFLMP were: farm size, availability of irrigation water, education of household heads, agricultural labour force, frequency of visits by extension workers, expenditure on farm inputs purchase, household’s experience in agroforestry, and distance from home to government forest. The regression model explained about 75% of variation in adoption decision. The model rejected ‘erosion hazard’, ‘flood hazard’ and ‘gender’ as determinants of adoption, which in case of single agroforestry practice were major variables and played positive role. Out of eight variables, farm size played the most powerful role in explaining the variation in adoption, followed by availability of irrigation water and education of household heads. The results of this study suggest that policies to promote the provision of irrigation water, extension services and motivation to obtaining higher education would probably provide the incentive to adopt agroforestry elsewhere in the terai of Nepal.

Keywords: agroforestry, adoption index, determinants of adoption, step-wise linear regression, Nepal

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3 A Life Cycle Assessment of Greenhouse Gas Emissions from the Traditional and Climate-smart Farming: A Case of Dhanusha District, Nepal

Authors: Arun Dhakal, Geoff Cockfield

Abstract:

This paper examines the emission potential of different farming practices that the farmers have adopted in Dhanusha District of Nepal and scope of these practices in climate change mitigation. Which practice is more climate-smarter is the question that this aims to address through a life cycle assessment (LCA) of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. The LCA was performed to assess if there is difference in emission potential of broadly two farming systems (agroforestry–based and traditional agriculture) but specifically four farming systems. The required data for this was collected through household survey of randomly selected households of 200. The sources of emissions across the farming systems were paddy cultivation, livestock, chemical fertilizer, fossil fuels and biomass (fuel-wood and crop residue) burning. However, the amount of emission from these sources varied with farming system adopted. Emissions from biomass burning appeared to be the highest while the source ‘fossil fuel’ caused the lowest emission in all systems. The emissions decreased gradually from agriculture towards the highly integrated agroforestry-based farming system (HIS), indicating that integrating trees into farming system not only sequester more carbon but also help in reducing emissions from the system. The annual emissions for HIS, Medium integrated agroforestry-based farming system (MIS), LIS (less integrated agroforestry-based farming system and subsistence agricultural system (SAS) were 6.67 t ha-1, 8.62 t ha-1, 10.75 t ha-1 and 17.85 t ha-1 respectively. In one agroforestry cycle, the HIS, MIS and LIS released 64%, 52% and 40% less GHG emission than that of SAS. Within agroforestry-based farming systems, the HIS produced 25% and 50% less emissions than those of MIS and LIS respectively. Our finding suggests that a tree-based farming system is more climate-smarter than a traditional farming. If other two benefits (carbon sequestered within the farm and in the natural forest because of agroforestry) are to be considered, a considerable amount of emissions is reduced from a climate-smart farming. Some policy intervention is required to motivate farmers towards adopting such climate-friendly farming practices in developing countries.

Keywords: life cycle assessment, greenhouse gas, climate change, farming systems, Nepal

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2 Microalbuminuria in Patients with Hypertension Visiting Tertiary Care Centre, Western Nepal

Authors: Binaya Tamang, Buddhi R. Pokharel, Narayan Gautam, Puspa R. Dhakal, Yuresh Twayana

Abstract:

Background and Objective: Microalbuminuria is often regarded as a sign of end-organ damage due to hypertension, with an increased risk for renal diseases. The present study was designed to find the prevalence of microalbuminuria in hypertensive patients by determining albumin creatinine ratio (ACR) and the association of ACR and microalbuminuria status with different stages and duration of hypertension (HTN). Also, to establish the correlation of systolic and diastolic blood pressure (SBP and DBP) with various parameters viz; ACR, urinary microalbumin (UMA), estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR), urinary creatinine (Ucreat), serum creatinine (Screat), and find out their significance among HTN and ACR status. Materials and Methods: A hospital-based cross-sectional study was conducted in the Department of Biochemistry in collaboration with the Department of Internal Medicine, UCMS, Bhairahawa, Nepal from April 2019 to September 2019 after obtaining ethical approval from institutional review committee (IRC), UCMS. A total of 120 hypertensive patients were enrolled whose blood, and spot urine samples were taken. eGFR was calculated by using Cockcroft-Gault formula after determining Screat while ACR was calculated after measuring Ucreat and UMA from the spot urine sample. Creatinine was estimated from modified jaffes’ reaction, whereas urinary micro albumin was done by Mispa i3 analyzer. Data were analyzed by using SPSS. 20 using p-value ≤ 0.05 as statistically significant. Results: In our study, the highest enrolled were grade II HTN (36.7%) followed by normal (33.3%), grade I (20.8%) and grade III (9.2%). Evaluating the ACR status, 19.2% were microalbuminuria, and the rest were normal. Though the ACR status (normal and microalbuminuria) was not statistically significant with HTN status (P=0.860) and the duration of HTN status (P=0.165), 5 (45.5%) out of 11 grade III HTN were microalbuminuria and the prevalence was also higher for longer duration .i.e., more than 10 years. In microalbuminuria, both the SBP (p=0.023, r=0.471) and DBP (P=0.034, r= 0.444) were strongly and positively correlated with Screat, in contrast to eGFR, which was negatively but weakly correlated. With the significant difference between the HTN group, the mean ACR (P=0.047) and UMA (P=0.02) were found to be highest among grade III patients, i.e., 84.3 ± 113.3 mg/gm. and 88.4 ± 83.9 mg/l respectively. The mean eGFR (64.2 ± 24.8 vs 77.2 ± 18.1 ml/min) was considerably lower in microalbuminuria ( p=0.026) than the normal in contrast to the SBP (160 ± 33.7 vs. 146.6 ± 19.5 mm of Hg) which was significantly higher (P=0.008). Among the different BMI category, the mean ACR was found to be significantly different (P= 0.01) with the highest value in underweight (115.2 ± 51.5 mg/gm.) and lowest in overweight (31.8 ± 4.3 mg/gm.). Conclusion: The study recommends that the microalbuminuria can be a very useful and imperative predictor of deranged kidney functions in hypertensive patients. The high value of ACR and UMA in hypertensive patients along with significant increased Screat, SBP whereas decreased eGFR in microalbuminuria patients explicitly supports the above statement.

Keywords: albumin creatinine ratio, hypertension, microalbuminuria, renal disease

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1 The Effect of Finding and Development Costs and Gas Price on Basins in the Barnett Shale

Authors: Michael Kenomore, Mohamed Hassan, Amjad Shah, Hom Dhakal

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Shale gas reservoirs have been of greater importance compared to shale oil reservoirs since 2009 and with the current nature of the oil market, understanding the technical and economic performance of shale gas reservoirs is of importance. Using the Barnett shale as a case study, an economic model was developed to quantify the effect of finding and development costs and gas prices on the basins in the Barnett shale using net present value as an evaluation parameter. A rate of return of 20% and a payback period of 60 months or less was used as the investment hurdle in the model. The Barnett was split into four basins (Strawn Basin, Ouachita Folded Belt, Forth-worth Syncline and Bend-arch Basin) with analysis conducted on each of the basin to provide a holistic outlook. The dataset consisted of only horizontal wells that started production from 2008 to at most 2015 with 1835 wells coming from the strawn basin, 137 wells from the Ouachita folded belt, 55 wells from the bend-arch basin and 724 wells from the forth-worth syncline. The data was analyzed initially on Microsoft Excel to determine the estimated ultimate recoverable (EUR). The range of EUR from each basin were loaded in the Palisade Risk software and a log normal distribution typical of Barnett shale wells was fitted to the dataset. Monte Carlo simulation was then carried out over a 1000 iterations to obtain a cumulative distribution plot showing the probabilistic distribution of EUR for each basin. From the cumulative distribution plot, the P10, P50 and P90 EUR values for each basin were used in the economic model. Gas production from an individual well with a EUR similar to the calculated EUR was chosen and rescaled to fit the calculated EUR values for each basin at the respective percentiles i.e. P10, P50 and P90. The rescaled production was entered into the economic model to determine the effect of the finding and development cost and gas price on the net present value (10% discount rate/year) as well as also determine the scenario that satisfied the proposed investment hurdle. The finding and development costs used in this paper (assumed to consist only of the drilling and completion costs) were £1 million, £2 million and £4 million while the gas price was varied from $2/MCF-$13/MCF based on Henry Hub spot prices from 2008-2015. One of the major findings in this study was that wells in the bend-arch basin were least economic, higher gas prices are needed in basins containing non-core counties and 90% of the Barnet shale wells were not economic at all finding and development costs irrespective of the gas price in all the basins. This study helps to determine the percentage of wells that are economic at different range of costs and gas prices, determine the basins that are most economic and the wells that satisfy the investment hurdle.

Keywords: shale gas, Barnett shale, unconventional gas, estimated ultimate recoverable

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