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ICLEI in Europe News
October 2013

Dear Members, Partners and Friends of ICLEI,

We are pleased to send you the latest news on ICLEI in Europe and our partners for urban sustainability!

You can also read these news articles and find more information on the topics at

Don't hesitate to send your news and information to

  1. ICLEI Member News
  2. Nantes Declaration refuels hopes for local governments on climate change
  3. European Mobility Week puts focus on link between clean air and transport
  4. EcoProcura 2014 conference announced
  5. Eco-friendly cities invited to apply for European Green Capital 2016
  6. GPP 2020 uses low-carbon procurement to reach EU sustainability goals
  7. Living Windmill aims to raise awareness of community-owned clean energy
  8. Events news
  9. Events calendar

1. ICLEI Member News

Hamburg's hybrid buses receive German government funding

ICLEI member Hamburg’s (Germany) sustainability agenda has received a funding boost from the German Federal Ministry for the Environment. As part of the ministry’s scheme to promote the use of advanced hybrid buses, a grant of €510,000 was made to the city. This represents two thirds of the cost of purchasing 15 hybrid buses, which will go into immediate service in the south of Hamburg.

Hybrid buses are particularly well-suited for urban traffic as they can conserve and re-use almost all energy lost in braking. Additionally, pollution is reduced and the buses are much quieter. The Ministry for Environment has supported the use of hybrid buses since 2010 in a move to develop bus routes served entirely by electrically-powered buses. The ministry’s policy on hybrid buses ties into the National Climate Protection Plan which supports projects across Germany to reduce emissions and combat climate change.

For more information, click here [in German].

Bologna bans high-polluting vehicles from its streets

New measures to ban high-polluting vehicles were implemented in Bologna (Italy) on 1 October 2013. To decide which vehicles will be banned, the city is using the European emissions standards scale. The measure will run until 31 March 2014 and will initially ban vehicles with petrol engines which do not attain Euro 1, diesel engines which do not attain Euro 3, and mopeds and motorcycles which do not attain Euro 1.

Additionally, from 1 October to 31 November 2013 and from 7 January to 31 March 2014 only vehicles with petrol or diesel engines which correspond to Euro 4 or 5 and mopeds and motorcycles at Euro 2 will be permitted in the city. Between Christmas and New Year both measures will be suspended.

The initiative reflects the overall sustainability priorities of Bologna, which is to reduce pollution and implement sustainable transport options. Vehicular traffic is now the single biggest contributor to air pollution in the city, which is likely to be significantly reduced while these measures are in effect. The city is further encouraging use of alternative forms of transport, such as by integrating its bus and cycling networks, for which it recently won an award at the CIVITAS Forum 2013.

For more information, click here [in Italian].

Survey reveals Münster has highest public transport satisfaction

Commuters in ICLEI member Münster (Germany) have the highest public transportation satisfaction levels in the country, the nationwide survey ÖPNV-Kundenbarometer has concluded. This is the third consecutive year that users of the public transportation network in Münster have given such feedback.

In 2012 Münster recorded 38 million journeys using public transport across the city, clearly demonstrating its popularity. Some aspects which were particularly praised were the city’s commitment to public transportation to help the environment, as well as the excellent customer service. The city has also kept less-mobile people in mind, as almost 500 of approximately 1,100 stops are wheelchair-accessible.

Finally, providing accurate information quickly has been important for Münster. This is one area where their ratings have historically been weaker than others, so in 2014 a new tool will be adopted that allows the city to bring together various ways of communicating information on delays and alternative services. All of this shows that Münster is aware that a key route to a sustainable city is having an efficient public transportation system that people enjoy using.

For more information, click here [in German].

2. Nantes Declaration refuels hopes for local governments on climate change

With the recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report painting a clear and worrying picture regarding man-made climate change, cities and regions came together at the World Mayors Summit on Climate Change from 27 – 28 September 2013 to affirm their commitment to scale up climate actions, urge engagement with the global level on climate change, and improve access to finance. The Nantes Declaration of Mayors and Subnational Leaders on Climate Change was adopted with the support of over 50 mayors from 30 countries, and more than 20 regional and global networks of local and subnational governments. Adoption of the Declaration marks the start of a new phase for the Local Government Climate Roadmap.

The audience, comprised of local government leaders, national government officials, and international organisation representatives, stood in applause upon the adoption. Farhad Suri, Councillor of South Delhi, India, recalled the words of Gandhi while expressing his approval for the declaration: “Our future is shaped by what we do today.” Kgosientso Ramokgopa, Executive Mayor of Tshwane (Pretoria), South Africa, offered strong support, calling for a greater focus on the global south, as well as access to funding for much needed adaptation measures.

Mathew Appelbaum, Mayor of Boulder, Colorado, USA, spoke of the devastation of his city by extreme weather, and of the urgent need to turn words into action: “We recently experienced an incredible flood, in which a year’s worth of rain fell in four days. It’s clear cities are on the frontlines - we have to be leaders and mitigate and adapt in the face of climate change.” The adoption ceremony came on the second day of the World Mayors Summit, an event held under the patronage of François Hollande, President of the Republic of France and with the support of the French Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault.

For more information, click here.

3. European Mobility Week puts focus on link between clean air and transport

European Mobility Week (EMW) 2013 came to a close on 22 September following a successful campaign which saw over 1900 cities explore the relationship between clean air and transport choices. Through a range of activities and events, participants looked at creating healthier, more pleasant urban environments by choosing sustainable mobility.

Limerick (Ireland) held a bicycle repair workshop for children and a class for school pupils on how to safely take the bus. Hunedoara (Romania) held public Zumba classes, while in Ronneby (Sweden) gift bags were given out to cyclists. Budapest (Hungary) invited young citizens to take part in an art competition on the theme of clean air. Urban traffic is a growing source of air pollution, and local authorities therefore have the responsibility to develop urban transport strategies that meet mobility demand, protect the environment, and improve air quality.

Confirming his support for the campaign, Janez Potočnik, European Commissioner for the Environment, said: “This year, we put an emphasis on the impact that transport and our daily choices have on the quality of the air we breathe and our health. By raising awareness and offering alternative transport options, cities can become more attractive places for people to live, they can make a major contribution to protect our health and promote a more sustainable future for all of us.”

For more information, click here.

4. EcoProcura 2014 conference announced

The EcoProcura 2014 conference will be held in Ghent (Belgium) from 24 – 26 September 2014. Entitled ‘Sustainability, innovation and cost efficiency: taking procurement forward’, the conference will develop and explore several themes. Among these will be the cost efficient use of public money through procurement, strategies for integrated sustainable public procurement, implementing the new European Public Procurement Directives, and how public procurement can stimulate innovation.

The conference programme will ensure that ideas, experiences, guidelines and opinions are exchanged between the participants throughout the duration. Plenty of opportunities for good practice exchange, dialogues between business and the public sector and discovering the latest initiatives and projects will be on offer. There will also be training sessions and a ‘meet the buyers’ event.

The EcoProcura conference series provides a dynamic and unique setting for exchange and equips participants with essential information on implementing sustainable public procurement and procurement of innovation. EcoProcura 2014 is the ninth conference of this series and will engage with procurers from all levels of government, policy-makers, suppliers and representatives from the European Commission and European Parliament.

For more information, click here.

5. Eco-friendly cities invited to apply for European Green Capital 2016

The European Commission has extended the application deadline until 13.00 CET, 31 October 2013 for the European Green Capital Award 2016. All cities with more than 100,000 inhabitants across Europe are invited to apply for the prestigious title.

Each year, the award recognises a city which is leading the way in environmentally friendly urban living and which can act as a role model to inspire others. Urban areas are the source of many of today’s environmental challenges, and this is particularly true in Europe as the majority of Europeans live in cities. The aim of the award is to recognise local efforts to improve the environment, the economy, and the quality of life in cities.

Six cities have been recognized as European Green Capitals from 2010 to 2015 – Stockholm (Sweden), Hamburg (Germany), Vitoria-Gasteiz (Spain), Nantes (France), Copenhagen (Denmark) and Bristol (United Kingdom).

For more information and to apply, click here.

6. GPP 2020 uses low-carbon procurement to reach EU sustainability goals

GPP 2020 is a new EU-funded project that aims to mainstream green public procurement (GPP) across member states to make the EU’s goals of a 20 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, a 20 percent increase in the share of renewable energy and a 20 percent increase in energy efficiency a reality by 2020.

Although awareness of GPP has increased in recent years, the vast majority of public tenders in Europe still do not incorporate effective environmental criteria and do not result in the purchase of sustainable solutions. The GPP 2020 project will work in eight target countries (Austria, Croatia, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Slovenia and Spain) to mainstream the practice across Europe.

Project partners will implement more than 100 low-carbon tenders to achieve significant emissions reductions immediately. The project will also organise training and networking events for procurers and procurement training providers on implementation of energy-related GPP, and enhance permanent GPP support structures in the target countries.

For more information, click here.

7. Living Windmill to raise awareness of community-owned clean energy

To promote the concept of cooperatively-owned renewable energy, the Community Power (CO-POWER) project is calling on groups across Europe to celebrate such initiatives on 7 November 2013. A living windmill of 200 individuals is planned in front of the EU Parliament in Brussels (Belgium), and similar actions are encouraged to make politicians and policy-makers take note. The project aims to facilitate the development of European and national legislation and financing to increase citizen participation in, and ownership of, renewable energy system projects.

Community owned renewables can play a major role in overcoming the economic crisis and speeding up the transition to clean energy. Cooperatives working towards the goals of clean renewable energy and energy efficiency can take the form of a community installing solar panels on a local school, developing a small wind farm on nearby land, or insulating entire apartment blocks and housing developments.

There are numerous advantages to developing cooperatively-owned renewable energy and energy efficiency strategies. These include a reduction in carbon emissions, a contribution to tackling climate change, fair and transparent energy bills for citizens, and the creation of green jobs contributing to more sustainable economies.

For more information, click here.

8. Events news

Cultural heritage and energy efficiency in Krakow

With the aim of spreading knowledge of renovating historic buildings for energy efficiency, the 3ENCULT project is organising a workshop in Krakow (Poland) on 26 November 2013. Taking into account economic feasibility, the workshop will provide participants with recommendations and exchanges of experience on implementing such renovations.

Local political decision-makers and technical staff responsible for urban planning or climate protection are therefore invited to take part. As European cities play host to increasing numbers of tourists, the preservation of their historical buildings is a cultural and financial priority. The 3ENCULT workshop in Krakow will address these issues, linking them with the outcomes of a broader climate mitigation strategy.

For more information, click here.

Sustainable Development at the EuroIndia Summit

A diverse range of European cities are expected to attend the Committee of the Regions supported 6th EuroIndia Summit on “Greening Cities” from 21-22 October 2013 in Hyderabad (India). Indian cities have seen great population growth in recent times, and authorities are eager to develop their cities in a sustainable way. The summit provides a unique opportunity for European local leaders to network with their Indian counterparts, sharing their experiences and expertise on sustainable development.

The Ministry of Urban Development of the Government of India has invited all Indian states and their cities to take part in the summit. Academic, scientific and professional stakeholders working in the field are also invited to attend. Registration is open until 4 October 2013 and can be accessed online. The event is organised by the EuroIndia Centre, the European Business and Technology centre (EBTC), and the Confederation of Indian Industry. ICLEI is a principal supporter.

For more information, click here.

Covenant capacity holds study tour and workshop in collaboration with Local Renewables

Local governments looking to improve their energy efficiency are invited to take part in the Covenant capaCITY study tour and workshop. The event will take place in Freiburg (Germany) and is intended for local government decision-makers on energy policy, and technical staff working in a local government context. It is held in collaboration with the Local Renewables series, the next conference of which will take place in 2014 on the topic of adapting cities for solar power. 

The study tour will introduce new strategies, exemplary approaches, and interesting ideas for participants, with a view to inspiring them in designing or improving their Sustainable Energy Action Plans (SEAPs). The workshop, focusing on Procurement and Financing, will look at improving financial access to sustainable energy roll-out, and will include input from sustainable energy experts.

For more information, click here.

9. Events calendar

6th EuroIndia Summit on "Greening cities" and European Mission in India
16 – 23 October 2013, Hyderabad (India)

Covenant capaCITY in collaboration with Local Renewables
23 – 25 October 2013, Freiburg (Germany)

URBES training session
13 – 15 November 2013, Barcelona (Spain)

Sustainable Brands London Conference
18 – 19 November 2013, London (UK)

3ENCULT Workshop: Protect historic buildings saving energy
26 November 2013, Krakow (Poland)

EcoProcura 2014
24 – 26 September 2014, Ghent (Belgium)

Local Renewables Freiburg 2014
23 – 24 October 2014, Freiburg im Breisgau (Germany)

Feedback? Questions? Let us know! If you have any further questions, would like to give feedback on ICLEI's work in Europe or would like to be taken off this mailing list, contact us at:

The ICLEI in Europe newsletter is produced by the European Secretariat of ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability. Copies are available on request. Editor: Sean Carroll, Ciara Leonard (responsible).

Comments and questions are welcome - please write to Sean Carroll at, Leopoldring 3, 79098 Freiburg, Germany,Tel: +49-761/36 89 2-0,

ICLEI is a membership organisation of local governments and their associations. To date more than 1,000 municipalities and municipal associations of all sizes from around the world have made a unique commitment to sustainable development by joining ICLEI. They support the work of ICLEI through their membership fees as well as through their experience and creativity in the development and implementation of projects and campaigns to address the globe's biggest problems. Within the organisation they are part of a network of peers that can profit from each other's knowledge. For membership information please have a look at our website or contact:

Copyright 2013 ICLEI European Secretariat GmbH, Freiburg, Germany. All rights reserved.