Environment: Commission launches European Green Capital Award
The European Commission is launching a new annual European Green Capital Award, to be given each year to a city that is leading the way with environmentally friendly urban living. The launch event will be held at 1800 on 22 May 2008 at the Committee of the Regions in Brussels, where Commissioner Dimas will sign a Declaration establishing the award scheme together with Paddy Bourke, the Lord Mayor of Dublin and President of the Union of Capital Cities of the European Union. Cities may then apply via an online application form to be selected as the European Green Capital for 2010 and 2011. Mr Jüri Ratas, former Mayor of Tallinn and current Vice-President of the Estonian Parliament, who laid the ground for the award in May 2006, will also be present, along with other mayors. Any European city with a population of more than 200,000 can apply, and a jury will select the winning cities for 2010 and 2011 later on this year. The award is intended to help European cities become more attractive and healthy places – "fit for life". The launch of the award also coincides with World Biodiversity Day.