29 Apr 22

100 EU cities commit to total climate neutrality by 2030

100 EU cities commit to total climate neutrality by 2030

Many cities across the European Union have publicly stated their decarbonisation plans over the past few years but none has committed to zero-emissions - until now. Under a new EU scheme, 100 cities have committed to slashing emissions to zero by the end of the decade, reports Politico, and several non-European metropolises have too.

It’s all part of the European Commission's 100 Climate-Neutral and Smart Cities scheme, which launched Thursday, these cities have pledged to dramatically reduce emissions by 2030 in exchange for EU support to achieve that goal, writes Politico.

The proposal initially received more than 370 applications. Twelve non-EU cities including Glasgow, Sarajevo and Istanbul were also selected to take part.

Advancing clean mobility

"Cities are at the forefront of the fight against the climate crisis," EU Green Deal chief Frans Timmermans told the non-partizan news organisation. "Whether it's greening urban spaces, tackling air pollution, reducing energy consumption in buildings, or advancing clean mobility solutions: Cities are often the hub of the changes Europe needs to succeed in our transition to climate neutrality."

The participating cities will prepare non legally binding climate city contracts setting out action and investment plans to achieve climate neutrality.

The list includes cities with a known track record of pushing for ambitious climate targets, like Copenhagen and Gothenburg, alongside those that have more recently stepped up climate action, like Paris and Milan. It also includes cities in countries that have been slow on the uptake on climate action like Łódź, Poland, and Budapest. It will be interesting to see how this initiative develops and whether it is actually possible in reality for these heavy commitments to be met.

Image: Shutterstock

Authored by: Alison Pittaway