Green Cities Fit for Life

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Urban air quality – challenges and opportunities for European green cities

2nd – 7th June 2013, Brussels

The 2013 Green Week Conference, which will be held in Brussels’ Egg Conference Centre from the 2nd to the 7th of June 2013, is fast approaching under the theme “Cleaner air for all”.

This annual event will focus on Air Quality and has scheduled more than thirty sessions on this topic.

02.06.13 Urban Air Quality - Green Week Session 1The full agenda of the Green Week Conference 2013 can be accessed here.

“Urban air quality – challenges and opportunities for European green cities” is one of these sessions which will present successful examples from the European Green Capitals and cities signed up to the Covenant of Mayors. These signatories aim to meet and exceed the European Union 20% CO2 reduction objective by 2020. 02.06.13 Urban Air Quality - Green Week Session 2

The session, that will take place on the 6th of June, will be represented by keynote speakers from Nantes, the current European Green Capital; Copenhagen, the European Green Capital in 2014; and London; will focus on the following challenges: integrated urban mobility and spatial planning, innovative logistics concepts and reducing emissions from heating. This meeting will also give an insight into how to cope with the challenges mentioned. Registration is available here.

The “Urban air quality – challenges and opportunities for European green cities” session is part of the 1st meeting of the Committee of the Regions/European Commission joint Technical Platform for Cooperation on the Environment which aims to promote solutions for better implementation of EU environment law.

The European Commission (EC) declared 2013 as the “Year of Air”. In this way, the current air policy is being reviewed during the year, with the goal of finding new ways to improve air quality across the EU.

Despite a step forward in the last few decades, several pollution indicators remain at unacceptable level in the EU’s most urban areas. In fact, globally, 70% of greenhouse emissions are generated in these areas.  European cities are committed to improving air quality in line with the EU legislation, even though this also brings challenges for them in their dependence on source-based measures such as fuel and vehicle standards.

Air Quality and the European Green Capital Award

The European Green Capital Award was born to reward the efforts cities make to face environmental challenges, which includes tackling air pollution and implementing measures against it. For that reason, quality of local ambient air is one of the 12 indicators assessed by the panel of internationally acknowledged Experts.

The model city of Copenhagen, awarded to be the European Green Capital 2104, has set as a target, to extremely reduce its emissions, as a result, to be carbon-neutral by 2025. An estimated 75% of the CO2 reductions will come from initiatives in relation to the city’s energy system mainly involving an increase in the share of renewable energy.02.06.13 Urban Air Quality - Green Week Session 3

For more information on the Award click here.

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