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ICT for Urban Metabolism: The case of BRIDGE

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Shaker Verlag


Cities consume material and energy inputs, process them into usable forms, and eliminate the wastes from the internal processes. These processes comprise the "metabolism" of industry, commerce, municipal operations and households. A bottom-up approach based on quantitative estimates of urban metabolism components, at local and regional scales, can be obtained by considering the three-dimensional (3D) exchange and transformation of energy and matter between a city and its surroundings. Recent advances in bio-physical sciences have led to new methods and models to estimate local scale flows. However, there is often poor communication of new knowledge and its implications to urban planners, architects and engineers. Recently, increasing attention is being directed to bridge this gap. One opportunity of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) to reduce this gap is through better integration of scientists into planning. Here, ICT tools and techniques that can be used in bottom-up urban metabolism studies, focusing on energy, water, carbon and pollutants are briefly reviewed. How these tools and techniques are used in the BRIDGE project to develop a decision support system to address the challenges of sustainable urban planning with regards to the urban metabolism is outlined. The approach proposed provides quantitative measures of energy, water, carbon and pollutants fluxes, estimates their environmental impacts and socioeconomic benefits and proposes guidelines for resource optimisation.


Chrysoulakis, Nektarios; Vogt, Roland; Young, Duick; Grimmond, C. Susan; Spano, Donnatella; Marras, Serena (2009): ICT for Urban Metabolism: The case of BRIDGE. Environmental Informatics and Industrial Environmental Protection: Concepts, Methods and Tools. Aachen: Shaker Verlag. ICT for Sustainable Use of Natural Resources. Berlin. 2009