Biodiversity footprint of the city
Worldwide, 50% of people already live in cities, and this proportion will continue to grow. Cities are centres of resource consumption and rely on a growing and increasingly global hinterland to maintain their metabolism. Urban consumption therefore has a massive impact on the environment and biodiversity in not only the immediate surroundings but also in distant regions. The aim of Fridolin Krausmann’s project is to develop methods and models that will provide a solid scientific basis for potential improvements to reduce the global biodiversity impact of cities.
Heat below the city
As a result of large-scale sealing, urban civil engineering, the use of groundwater for cooling and heating purposes, and climate change, heat islands are forming under large cities. Christian Griebler and his team are investigating the effects of these temperature changes on the subsurface ecosystem and quality of groundwater. This project is exploring future applications of near-surface geothermal energy.
Temporary forms of housing are in great demand in urban areas, such as in a growing city like Vienna. The reasons for this demand are manifold, and affects people who need affordable housing quickly and for a limited time. The nature of their need may be planned (e.g. for training) or unforeseen (natural disasters, migration). The project team around Marion Huber-Humer develops scenarios, models and evaluation criteria for temporary housing in cities.
Measure greenhouse gases correctly
Can Vienna's greenhouse gas emissions be accurately measured? Bradley Matthews and his team are investigating this question in the Vienna Urban Carbon Laboratory (VUCL) project. The goal is to further develop the latest measurement methods and thus provide decision-makers with the basis for an improved monitoring system.