Green Cities Fit for Life

Image by Jean-Dominique Billaud

European Green Capital Secretariat attend Green Week 2014

This month the European Green Capital Award Secretariat attended Green Week, the biggest annual conference on environment policy in Europe, at The Egg in Brussels, Belgium. The theme of this year’s conference was Circular Economy, Resource Efficiency & Waste. During the week, plenary sessions focused on better waste management practices and the contribution it can make in helping European countries use their resources more efficiently – as part of the broader approach of circular economy.

Karl Falkenberg, Director General DG Environment speaking at the launch of the European Green Capital Award 2017.

Karl Falkenberg, Director General DG Environment speaking at the launch of the European Green Capital Award 2017.

 

There were many highlights as part of Green Week including the launch of the European Green Capital Award 2017. On 4th June 2014, the Commission launched the search to find the city that will inherit the prestigious title of European Green Capital 2017. Karl Falkenberg, Director-General for the Environment at the European Commission and Casper Harboe Programme Director, European Green Capital/Sharing Copenhagen 2014 attended the event, and spoke about their support for the award and encouraged cities to apply. The European Green Capital stand was located in the exhibition hall, which meant the team had an excellent location and were able to attend some particularly interesting sessions. During the three day event, sessions mainly focused on the benefits of a circular economy as a solution for a resource-constrained world.

One of sessions which the European Green Capital team attended was entitled: Involving children and youth actively in the green city transition. The workshop took place in the Sharing Copenhagen exhibition and provided a platform where students from European School No.1 presented their key recommendations from a green involvement project based on Copenhagen’s methods to Commissioner for the Environment Janez Potočnik, Commissioner for Climate Action Connie Hedegaard and Pia Allerslev Copenhagen’s Deputy Mayor for Children and Youth. Over 60 children from 18 different nationalities between the ages of 12 and 14 participated in the project. The European Green Capital Award team also tweeted live from the event using the hashtag #EUGreenWeek. This enabled them to interact and engage with speakers during events and also with people not in attendance who were following the proceedings online.

The European Green Capital Award Secretariat listened to Commissioner Potočnik engaging with students at Green Week in Brussels, Belgium.

The European Green Capital Award Secretariat listened to Commissioner Potočnik engaging with students at Green Week in Brussels, Belgium.

The European Green Capital Award aims to recognise cities that have a well-established record of achieving ambitious environmental objectives. In addition to inspiring other cities, this increased profile can enhance the winning city’s reputation and attractiveness as a destination for people to visit, work and live in. The deadline for applications is 20 October 2014. The competitions are adjudicated by a European jury supported by a panel of renowned experts in different environmental fields. The winners will be announced in June 2015.