Industrial Ecology

During the last decades economic development clearly showed increasing relevance of environmental issues. At the beginning these problems have been tackled by introducing new technical measures such as flue gas cleaning and were soon extended to methodically integrated attempts like cleaner production, pollution prevention, environmental management etc. Such local und punctual attempts did not appear to be sufficient as the causes are often of fundamental nature.

It turned out to be necessary to merge all efforts on reducing environmental impact at a higher level, on regional or national level. These efforts are summarized in the idea of "Industrial Ecology" and "Sustainability".

The central tasks of the Industrial Ecology include measurement of environmental pollution, assessment of the environmental performance of products and production lines as well as the evaluation of measures and funding programmes. In these fields we work with process modelling with scenario techniques, material and energy flow analysis, life cycle analysis and different ways of sustainability assessment.

  • Institute for Industrial Ecology
  • Climate, Energy, Emissions
  • Sustainablility in production
  • Sustainability of products
  • Sustainability in regions
  • Evaluation and monitoring

  • Institute for Industrial Ecology

    The field of activities was not institutionalized in Austria for a long time. The Institute for Industrial Ecology was founded in 1998 as a non-profit, scientific association through the take over of the Research Institute of Chemistry and Environment (FICU), which was situated since 1994 at the Technical University of Vienna. In doing so the Institute for Industrial Ecology could build its function on the extensive preparatory work of FICU.

    The complexity of that matter requires a multidisciplinary approach, so that an implementation at university seems difficult as there the main target lies in immersing the single scientific disciplines.

    Sponsorship through Industry and public entities on the one hand and the location at the Lower Austrian State Academy on the other hand form a perfect basis for the required multidisciplinarity.

    The main focus of scientific work is the creation of a framework for a sustainable economy under technical, environmental and economic aspects. To reach that goal work is carried out in interdisciplinary cooperation between the mentioned disciplines, as well as in the context of international working groups and committees.

    In recent years, the Institute significantly contributed to environmental topics in Austria.

    In accordance to the requirements of industrial ecology scientific fundamentals and applied themes are dealt with in a balanced combination. The projects are commissioned mainly by public institutions like Austrian ministries and economic associations as well as scientific funds financed by the EU.

    The main concern in all our work is to act as a go between among economy and offical institution, so that by gathering objective basis for decision-making contributes to an agreement over current themes and future strategies. Therefore a close connection between scientific background and application-oriented challenges might be the best security/guarantee for lasting independence and persistent acknowledgement for the institute.

    Climate, Energy, Emissions
    • Life cycle based greenhouse gas emissions of Austrian consumption
    • Climate impact of different consumption sectors
    • Monitoring of climate mitigation activities in Lower Austria
    • Evaluation of measures to comply with the targets of the NEC-directive for Austria
    • The role of carbon in climate assessment methods
    • Development and measures to reduce industrial emissions
    • Examining subsidies and funding for their climate mitigation potential
    • Climate mitigation potentials of bio-based plastics
    • Emissions of solvents

    Sustainablility in production
    • Bio-based Industry - National and international developments
    • Resource potentials of residues and wastes for the bio-based industry in Austria
    • Impacts of a forced cascading in wood processing industry
    • Master plan bio economy for Lower Austria
    • Improvement of resource efficiency of the industrial sector
    • Bio-based value chains for Lower Austria
    • Sustainability indicators for the chemical industry in Austria

    Sustainability of products
    • Sustainability criteria for procurement of the government of Lower Austria
    • Sustainability check of buildings of the government of Lower Austria
    • Life cycle assessment of wood-plastic composites
    • Evaluation and sustainability assessment of road marking systems
    • Model for life cycle cost optimization of road signs and equipment

    Sustainability in regions
    • Sustainability check for events
    • Sustainability check for regions

    Evaluation and monitoring
    • Monitoring of climate measures of Lower Austria
    • Monitoring of climate measures of Styria
    • Effect assessment of the funding programme EcoBusinessPlan Vienna
    • Effect assessment of the funding programme Wirtschaftsinitiative Nachhaltigkeit
    • Evaluation of regional funding programs in Austria
    • Sustainability assessment of funding in Lower Austria
    • Impact of the climate and energy programme of Lower Austria on the sustainable development goals