PRIVILEGES - Cities program for greenhouse gas reduction (Chalon sur Saône)

LIFE02 ENV/F/000289

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Contact details:

Project Manager: Mohend MANOUCHE
Tel: +33 1 55 25 84 57
Email: m.manouche@wwf.fr

Project description:


The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change came to the conclusion that the planet has experienced a temperature increase of between 0.3 and 0.6°C since the end of the 19th Century. The consequences of this global warming could be catastrophic.

Aware of the importance of this phenomenon, the European Commission has been working on a community strategy on climate change.

At national level in France, an inter-ministerial greenhouse effect committee met in 1998 chaired by the Prime Minister. It recognised that, whilst the state had made international commitments such as signing the Kyoto Protocol, greenhouse emissions depend to a large extent on decisions taken at local level.

This LIFE project chose to make a test case of Chalon-sur-Saône in central France. The town has 52 000 inhabitants and 450 local firms; there are more than 1 700 when including its surrounding area.


The PRIVILEGES project aimed to demonstrate the potential impact of actions at local level on greenhouse gas emissions and to mobilise the local population, businesses and administration in Chalon-sue-Saône in the fight against global gas emissions.

More specifically, it sought to provide operational tools to be implemented by the different stakeholders at local level for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. A specific eco-industrial plan was to be drafted designed to reduce the environmental impact of local industry without negatively impacting upon its economic performance. The plans would largely be based on the collation and dissemination of good practice.

The project targeted an actual reduction in CO2 emissions of 5.2% over the duration of the project through these actions. This was symbolic as it corresponded to the commitment over 10 years taken in Kyoto by industrialized nations.


The project was able to successfully demonstrate that, with the right information, municipalities and companies are motivated to apply energy efficient solutions. It achieved a highly ambitious municipal plan for greenhouse gas emissions, leading to a 20% reduction in this sector. A plan was also developed with local industry, that was making slower, but still important progress.

The project identified and collated innovative actions carried out by - mainly French - local communities of small and average size. It evaluated their ecological, social and economic impact and presented them to elected officials and staff members of the local administration to demonstrate how and why to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

The project led to the agreement of a highly ambitious municipal plan for greenhouse gas reductions and the most useful measures were applied locally. Already during the project, the Chalon-sur-Saône administration recorded a 20% reduction in its greenhouse gas emissions. 5 220 tonnes of CO2 were saved by the town in 2004 alone – the equivalent of about €150 000 on the EU emissions market.

Measures included the investment in energy-saving street lighting (20% energy reduction), 15% of the municipality’s fleet of light vehicles running on liquefied petroleum gas and tweaking the engine of other municipal vehicles (8% CO2 reduction), two new cogeneration power plants (cutting greenhouse gas emissions of the town’s heating provision by 11.1% in two years).

To prepare the complementary eco-industrial plan, the project started by assessing the energy consumption and waste creation of the principal 250 firms in the Chalon basin. This enabled them to identify the sectors with the greatest potential to benefit from the implementation of clean technologies and detailed environmental management.

A plan was elaborated centred on promoting energy effectiveness in local industry, but also promoting waste reduction, particularly in offices. It made recommendations for a variety of local industries and arranged thematic meetings to facilitate their dissemination.

The practical results in the industrial sector were modest, but still promising. Awareness was raised and 21% of the recommendations to the first 18 companies were implemented. This helped achieve a 1.5 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions in 2006, but there is expected to be a 10 percent reduction in the medium term.

The project also sought to engage the community, e.g. with financial incentives such as offering a bonus of €100 for every square metre of solar panelling installed on private homes, and the creation of 17km of new bicycle lanes.

The transferability of the project’s approach is high. Already 38 communes in the Grand Chalon area and 159 communes in the Pays du Chalonnais region are going to undertake similar measures on their territories. This has been supported through the production of educational material, including an information pack, a website and a guide to environmental management.


Environmental issues addressed:


Land-use & Planning - Urban design (urban-rural)
Information - Governance - Public and Stakeholders participation
Climate change Mitigation - GHG reduction in non EU ETS sectors


urban area‚  emission reduction‚  public-private partnership‚  climate protection‚  greenhouse gas‚  social participation

Target EU Legislation

  • Climate Change & Energy efficicency
  • COM(2000)88 - "Towards a European Climate Change Programme (ECCP)" (08.03.2000)
  • "Kyoto Protocol to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change - Declaration Offici ...

Natura 2000 sites

Not applicable



Coordinator W.W.F.
Type of organisation NGO-Foundation
Description WWF-France is part of the international WWF network - one of the world’s leading and most experienced independent conservation organisations working for dialogue towards sustainable environmental solutions.
Partners ADEME Bourgogne, France Ville de Chalon-sur-Saône-Service Environnement propreté, France Maison de l'Environnement de Chalon-sur-Saône, France


Project reference LIFE02 ENV/F/000289
Duration 01-SEP-2002 to 31-JAN -2006
Total budget 711,711.16 €
EU contribution 355,800.00 €
Project location Bourgogne(France)


Read more:

Leaflet Project's leaflet(517 KB)
Publication: After-LIFE Communication Plan After-LIFE Communication Plan (FR)
Publication: Guidelines-Manual "Entreprises et administrations : L’environnement, ...
Publication: Layman report Layman report (EN)
Publication: Layman report Layman report (FR)
Video link "Programme PRIVILEGES : le défi contre l'effet de serre" (2')


Project description   Environmental issues   Beneficiaries   Administrative data   Read more   Print   PDF version