Ulrich Kral

Ulrich Kral
Umweltbundesamt, Austria · Waste & Material Flow Management

Dr. techn.

About

50
Publications
8,583
Reads
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278
Citations
Citations since 2016
24 Research Items
251 Citations
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Introduction
Educated in Austria, Dr. Kral has a background in civil engineering and holds a waste expert position at the Waste and Material Flow Management team of Environment Agency Austria. His work focuses on the assessment of material flows from sources to final sinks to manage the use of resources and protect the environment. As member of the UNECE Expert Group on Resource Management, he supports the promotion and development of the United Nations Framework Classification for Resources (UNFC).
Additional affiliations
March 2009 - December 2020
Technische Universität Wien
Position
  • PostDoc Researcher

Publications

Publications (50)
Article
Full-text available
Circular economy seems a vital enabler for sustainable use of natural resources which is also important for achieving the 2030 agenda for sustainable development goals. Therefore, a special session addressing issues of “sustainable solutions and remarkable practices in circular economy focusing materials downstream” was held at the 16th Internation...
Article
Circular economy is recognized as a powerful integrative framework envisioned to solve societal problems linked to environmental pollution and resource depletion. Its adoption is rapidly reforming manufacturing, production, consumption, and recycling across various segments of the economy. However, circular economy may not always be effective or ev...
Technical Report
Waste prevention and reduction contribute to protecting the environment and human health. Recent European policies have set framework conditions for implementing national waste prevention programmes and measures. Yet, waste generation is still increasing throughout Europe, both for total waste and key waste streams. Reducing waste requires a radica...
Article
Full-text available
Building age maps inventory the construction dates of buildings. While many cities routinely map the construction dates of present building stocks, building age maps of the distant past are mostly not available. An exception is the building age map of Vienna around 1920. It covers about 80% of the building footprint area within the city boundary in...
Technical Report
Full-text available
Im Zuge der Entwicklung der österreichischen Kreislaufwirtschaftsstrategie 2050 wurden konkrete Maßnahmenvorschläge durch eine breite Einbindung von Akteurinnen und Akteuren aus Wirtschaft, Zivilgesellschaft, Verwaltung und Wissenschaft erarbeitet. Im Zeitraum Mai bis Juni 2021 fanden neun thematische Workshops statt, in denen rund 250 Teilnehmende...
Article
Full-text available
This article presents geospatial datasets for administrative boundaries of the city of Vienna in 1920. One dataset covers the city area and another the urban districts. The boundaries were retrieved from historic analog maps that show the course of the borders at this time. GIS software was used to geocode the analog maps and construct the polygon-...
Presentation
Full-text available
Circular economy aims to cycle materials at high value in observance of high protection levels towards human health and environment. Special attention is given to those materials that can be given a second life through recycling. Recycling is tasked to produce secondary materials of high quality. One quality parameter among others is the absence of...
Article
A successful transition to a Circular Economy, as promoted by the European Commission, requires solid information on the future availability of anthropogenic resources. Anthropogenic resources are human-made material stocks and flows, such as old landfills, buildings or different waste streams. A case study approach was adopted in this paper to inv...
Article
Full-text available
Urban archives provide rich information on historical data. To a large extent, these data are not available in machine-readable format and therefore not linkable with other datasets. The “Häuser-Kataster der Bundeshauptstadt Wien” is a building schematic for the city of Vienna for the end of the 1920s. While this schematic was used as a knowledge b...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Historical urban archives and todays geospatial data provide rich information about the development of settlements. The goal of our study is to show the historical development of the building stock in the city of Vienna. We developed a spatial-temporal model and tested its application on the Viennese 18th district. Four steps were carried out. Firs...
Technical Report
Full-text available
Responsible policies, which are essential for the achievement of sustainable consumption and production (SDG12), take the material resources required for human health and well-being into consideration. Extraction of natural resources and utilization of residues can be optimized to achieve the SDGs, but we need to develop systems to enable sustainab...
Technical Report
Full-text available
The traditional mining sector uses resource assessments to estimate the mineability of natural resources. The results are communicated to investors, authorities and corporate management boards in a standardized manner, at least on a country level. The recycling sector also requires estimates of recoverable anthropogenic resources. Evidence-based re...
Article
Full-text available
This research explores the material recovery from bottom-ash, which is a residue from municipal solid waste incineration. The investigations aimed to characterize, evaluate, categorize and classify the development status of the recovery projects in the Canton of Zürich, including two technology pathways, i.e. dry and wet bottom-ash recovery. The te...
Article
Full-text available
Built environment stocks (buildings and infrastructures) play multiple roles in our socio-economic metabolism: they serve as the backbone of modern societies and human well-being, drive the material cycles throughout the economy, entail temporal and spatial lock-ins on energy use and emissions, and represent an extensive reservoir of secondary mate...
Poster
Full-text available
The demand for resources is on a growth trend. It is likely that future supply will be dominated by primary raw materials and complemented by an increasing share of secondary raw materials. The utilization of second-ary raw materials conserves geogenic deposits and their production is of-ten less energy intensive than primary raw material productio...
Presentation
Full-text available
The aim of our research is to predict recoverable material quantities from construction and demolition waste flows, originating from the building stock in the city of Vienna. Therefore, we develop a system dynamics (SD) model covering two main stages in the material value chain, the use and the waste management phase. This presentation focuses sole...
Technical Report
Full-text available
The United Nations Framework Classification for Resources (UNFC) is an international system for classifying minerals and energy resources. This document specifies the UNFC terminology and principles to enable its application to Anthropogenic Resources. Anthropogenic Resources can be found in a variety of sources, including: mine tailings, buildings...
Article
Full-text available
Modern products contain a wide range of substances. Some of them are hazardous, cause risks for human and environmental health, and impair the quality of future secondary resources produced by recycling. Ways must be explored to extract detrimental substances during recycling and direct them to safe final sinks. Final sinks can be end-of-pipe techn...
Preprint
Full-text available
Vorratsklassifikation hat im Bergbau eine lange Tradition und dient der systematischen Kategorisierung von mineralischen Ressourcen in Lagerstätten. Damit werden Informationsgrundlagen geschaffen um Bergbauunternehmen und Investoren einen Überblick über die Entwicklung ihres Projektportfolios zu geben, und staatlichen Einrichtungen eine nationale R...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Securing the future supply of materials is fundamental for economic development and prosperity. While the use of primary raw materials still dominates in terms of quantity, secondary raw materials are increasingly important for the diversification of sources. However, the stakeholders striving for a circular economy lack harmonized information on m...
Technical Report
Full-text available
Ausgangssituation/Motivation: Der städtische Bergbau (Urban Mining) versteht Gebäude, Infrastrukturen und Deponien (Landfill Mining) als Reservoir für die Produktion von Sekundärrohstoffen. Die Infrastrukturen für Energie, Wasser und Information stellen ein beträchtliches, aber wenig bekanntes Rohstoffpotential dar. Ein Ressourcenkataster würde die...
Article
A discussion between researchers in the field of industrial ecology led to the question of whether Wolman's work on the urban metabolism (UM) of cities in 1965 was the first to quantify material flows of urban societies. This forum communication retrieves an apparently lost, but remarkable, work in the development of material flow analysis (MFA). T...
Presentation
Full-text available
Today`s “anthropogenic metabolism” involves a huge material turnover. After utilization, materials either remain in the anthroposphere as recycling products, or they leave the anthroposphere as waste and emission flows. To accommodate these materials without jeopardizing human and environmental health, limited natural sinks are available; thus, man...
Article
Full-text available
Besides recyclables, the use of materials inevitably yields non-recyclable materials such as emissions and wastes for disposal. These flows must be directed to sinks in a way that no adverse effects arise for humans and the environment. The objective of this paper is to present a new indicator for the assessment of substance flows to sinks on a reg...
Article
Full-text available
Material management faces a dual challenge: on the one hand satisfying large and increasing demands for goods and on the other hand accommodating wastes and emissions in sinks. Hence, the characterization of material flows and stocks is relevant for both improving resource efficiency and environmental protection. This article focuses on the urban s...
Data
Supporting Information S1: provides a large quantity of background material that complements the methods and findings included in the main research article, including a compilation of 15 exemplary studies for copper (Cu) on an urban scale, comprehensive descriptions of all flows and stocks for the study, documentation on the substance flow analysis...
Poster
Full-text available
Anthropogenic material use ineluctable yields non-recyclable material flows such as certain waste fractions and emissions. Those flows have to find appropriate sinks in order to avoid harmful impacts on ecological and human health.
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Two phenomena characterize the development of the material world of the last 100 yr: The per capita growth in material consumption, and the introduction of a myriad of new materials. Together with the growth in population, this resulted in large, growing and complex material flows and stocks, particularly in urban areas. The objective of future mat...
Conference Paper
Several metrics exist to evaluate the environmental performance of products, processes and systems. A deficiency of the present evaluation schemes is that they do not follow materials to “the very end” in the anthroposphere such as mineralization in incinerators for organic substances, and to final storage in underground structures for inorganic su...
Article
Full-text available
In order to fulfill the objectives of environmental protection, today's focus on quantitative recycling rates must be amended by a more qualitative approach. Because modern products represent a mix of numerous and sometimes hazardous substances, ways must be explored to remove detrimental substances during recycling and to establish "clean cycles"....

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Projects

Projects (8)
Project
To testing the hypothesis with regard to whether materials in the building sector can be classified as resources / reserves in order to be compared with primary materials.
Archived project
Ziel der Studie ist die Beurteilung, ob ein Ressourcenkataster für erdverlegte Ver- und Entsorgungsnetzwerke (Elektrizität, Telekommunikation, Trinkwasser, Abwasser, Gas sowie Fernwärme und –kälte) in Österreichs Stadtregionen mit vertretbarem Aufwand machbar ist
Project
Assessing resource recovery potentials for securing future supply of raw materials.