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ICLEI in Europe News
April 2014 www.iclei-europe.org

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 www.iclei-europe.org.

Don't hesitate to send your news and information to

information.services@iclei.org.

    1. ICLEI Member News
    2. European cities and regions call for more ambitious EU climate and energy targets
    3. UNEP, ICLEI and KEITI combine to direct public spending towards greening global markets
    4. Cape Town wins 2014 Earth Hour City Challenge
    5. EU Conference puts nature at the heart of the urban agenda
    6. Registration opens for European Mobility Week 2014
    7. ICLEI's Breakfast at Sustainability's discusses climate talks
    8. Final LANDMARK conference brings together years of experience in socially responsible procurement
    9. Mayors in Action supports clean energy transition through peer to peer exchange
    10. Event News
    11. Events Calendarmso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin;mso-fareast-font-family:"Times New Roman";

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      1. ICLEI Member News

      Las Rozas shares conclusions of city-wide resource efficiency project

      A pilot project aimed at increasing sustainability and reducing consumption has recently been completed by ICLEI member Las Rozas (Spain). The council trained staff on good environmental practices, installed photovoltaic panels on municipal buildings and planted 80 acres of native tree species as a carbon sink. New bike lanes were installed and a dedicated car-pooling area was created on the council website.

      Public parks were fitted with smart irrigation systems, helping reduce water usage by 20 percent. Schools, households and local businesses were also encouraged to join schemes to reduce their ecological footprint. Results from the project have been incorporated into the local strategy for action on climate change, which is expected to build on the success of this impressive local initiative.

      For more information, click here [in Spanish].

      Hannover commits to ambitious emissions reduction targets by 2050

      Hannover (Germany) announced plans last month to significantly reduce both emissions levels and resource use by 2050. In a new strategy paper for the 100 percent Masterplan for Climate Protection project, local dignitaries committed both the city and state of Hannover to a 95 percent reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and a 50 percent reduction in energy use from 1990 levels.

      Hannover’s plans form part of a national climate change mitigation programme, providing technical and financial support to regions which are working to reduce their environmental impact. The strategy was informed by a survey of 5,000 local residents and input from more than 240 experts from business, academia and the NGO sector.

      For more information, click here [in German].

      Birmingham City Council encourages sustainability through new awards scheme

      A new awards scheme designed to support waste reduction and encourage sustainability was announced by Birmingham City Council (UK) last month. 16 Awards will be presented across categories such as waste and recycling, energy reduction, food and growing, and staff and community schemes on 18 July. One overall winner will also be chosen, whose entry best embraces the ethos of the scheme.

      Schools, community groups and businesses are encouraged to submit entries to the Sustainability and Recycling Awards by 6 June. Councillor McKay, the Cabinet member responsible for making Birmingham a green, safe and smart city, said: “I would like to urge all local people, businesses and schools who actively recycle, reuse and reduce waste to enter these new Sustainability and Recycling Awards. These awards give us the opportunity to highlight and celebrate the fantastic work that’s being carried out in our city, which usually goes unnoticed.”

      For more information, click here.

      2. European cities and regions issue call for action on climate and energy targets

      200 European cities and regions have called for ambitious and binding targets in the European Union’s 2030 Climate and Energy Package. In a call for action published last month, local and regional governments underlined their eagerness to implement a sustainable, socially just and ecologically sound energy strategy. The cities called on the EU to enact agreed greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets measuring at least 50 percent below the level in 1990. Other actions include a share of 40 percent of energy from renewable sources and a 40 percent reduction in energy use by 2030.

      For local governments, EU leadership in this area is essential as it bolsters their ability to enact green energy policies. “Renewable energy and energy efficiency targets matter - they have a significant influence on the national and regional policy development and deployment of new and innovative energy technologies,” explained Marijan Maras, Head of Office for Energy, Environment and Sustainable Development in Zagreb (Croatia).

      For more information, click here.

      3. UNEP, ICLEI and KEITI combine to direct public spending towards greening global markets

      A new global programme will harness the spending power of governments to push towards a more resource-efficient world. The Sustainable Public Procurement (SPP) Programme – the first action as part of the 10 Year Framework of Programmes on Sustainable Consumption and Production (10YFP) – will assist governments to redirect public spending into goods and services that bring significant environmental and social benefits.

      Existing initiatives from around the globe prove that sustainable procurement transforms markets, boosts ecoindustries, saves money, conserves natural resources and fosters job creation.  The SPP Programme - co-led by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP), ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability, and the Korea Environmental Industry and Technology Institute (KEITI) - will enable this shift by improving knowledge of sustainable procurement’s benefits and supporting implementation through access to experts and tools.

      For more information, click here.

      4. Cape Town wins 2014 Earth Hour City Challenge

      Cape Town was announced as the winner of this year’s Earth Hour City Challenge at a ceremony in Vancouver (Canada) last week. ICLEI members Chicago (USA), Seoul (Korea), Copenhagen (Denmark) and Stockholm (Sweden) were also acknowledged by the jury.

      The competition is organised by the Worldwide Fund for Nature to promote renewable energy and encourage cities to prepare for climate change. Cape Town was recognised for its roles as both a leader and an inspiration in climate change mitigation and adaptation.

      In a joint statement, Gino Van Begin, Secretary General of ICLEI, Michael R. Bloomberg, Special Envoy for Cities and Climate Change, and Christiana Figueres, Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) said, “Cape Town is a worthy winner of the Earth Hour Capital 2014 prize […] This achievement clearly demonstrates the important contribution emerging economies can make in the fight against climate change.”

      For more information, click here.

      5. EU Conference puts nature at the heart of the urban agenda

      Wolfgang Teubner, the Regional Director of ICLEI Europe, is one of several high-profile speakers set to take part in at a two-day conference in Brussels (Belgium) next month. Organised by the European Commission, the forum will look at nature-based solutions for modern European cities. Key themes will include greening local economies, increasing urban resilience and introducing nature-based solutions into built-up environments.

      The conference will highlight pioneering tools, best practice and successful strategies currently being implemented to address these challenges in cities across the continent. Break-out sessions chaired by members of the European parliament and representatives of DG Environment, DG Regional Policy, DG Climate Action and the Joint Research Centre will give participants a chance to discuss the broader implications of returning nature to cities and contribute their own thoughts and ideas. To register, interested parties must send a completed registration form to catarina.roquete@ec.europa.eu by 17 April.

      For more information, click here.

      6. Registration opens for European Mobility Week 2014

      Cities and towns across Europe can now register for European Mobility Week 2014 and start planning their activities under this year’s theme ‘Our streets, our choice’. Registration can be completed online and each registered city is displayed on the European Mobility Week website.

      To register, an elected representative of the local authority must sign the European Mobility Week Charter and complete the online registration form. Activities related to the 2014 theme, permanent measures and car-free day do not need to be planned in order to complete registration, as these can be developed before the campaign starts on 16 September 2014.

      Non-commercial organisations operating at EU level can also get involved by becoming an Associated Partner. Associated Partners contribute to the success of the campaign by promoting and supporting participation, sharing their expertise and involving their members or member associations.

      For more information, click here.

      7. ICLEI's Breakfast at Sustainability's discusses climate talks

      The fifteenth in the current series of Breakfast at Sustainability's (B@S), an informal breakfast discussion organised by the ICLEI Brussels office, saw participants examine international climate talks, with a particular emphasis on the recent Conference of Parties (COP19) in Warsaw (Poland). Contributors supported a bottom-up approach which puts cities at the centre of the climate agenda, pointing to a clear link between local action and EU advocacy on the international stage.

      Greek MEP Kriston Arsenis highlighted the necessity of promoting positive stories from cities at international climate talks. People and cities can respond faster than national and international institutions, and outstanding local actions must be made more visible internationally. Local governments, however, need international support to scale up their work. William Gillett of the Executive Agency for Small and Medium Enterprises (EASME) added that EU energy programmes such as Horizon2020 are key aids for European cities and local authorities in addressing energy and climate issues.

      For more information, click here.

      8. Final LANDMARK conference brings together years of experience in socially responsible procurement

      The final LANDMARK Conference took place in Bremen (Germany) last month, providing an opportunity to reflect on the LANDMARK project’s three years of experience in socially responsible procurement. The conference also looked at the challenges posed when verifying social responsibility in the procurement process. A series of workshops and speeches throughout the day examined the opportunities presented by the recently adopted EU Procurement Directives, which strengthen the use of social criteria in public tenders.

      LANDMARK project coordinator Philipp Tepper stated: “LANDMARK showed that socially responsible public procurement with a clear focus on the improvement of labour conditions along the production and supply chain is possible and necessary” The LANDMARK project has contributed to improving working conditions along the supply chain, recognising that practices such as child labour, dangerous working environments, and unfair wages will only continue so long as they are tacitly sanctioned through purchases.

      For more information, click here.

      9. Mayors in Action supports clean energy transition through peer to peer exchange

      22 Coordinators and Supporters of the Covenant of Mayors met in Genoa (Italy) on 26 March 2014 to share practical experiences and new ideas to support European municipalities in developing their Sustainable Energy Action Plans (SEAPs).

      The training session took place in the framework of the newly launched MAYORS IN ACTION project, co-funded by the Intelligent Energy Europe Programme. The project focuses on Coordinators and Supporters, and aims to empower them in selecting, adapting and channeling good practices for the implementation and monitoring of existing SEAPs using coherent and results-oriented trainings, tutoring and coaching schemes.

      “Covenant Supporters and Coordinators play a crucial role in supporting the European transition towards a cleaner and more sustainable future,” said Dario Miroglio, Coordinator of the project from the Province of Genoa. “Empowering Coordinators and Supporters through peer-to-peer exchange and trainings we aim at facilitating direct and skilled support to hundreds of municipalities across Europe.”

      For more information, click here.

      10. Event News


      URBES training sessions on ecosystem services and resilience


      The URBES project is offering two capacity building events at the Gustav Stresemann Institute in Bonn (Germany) on 27 and 28 May. A one day workshop on ecosystem modeling and urban resilience will be followed by the chance to participate in discussions on ecosystem services at Open European Day. Attendance is free of charge but participants are required to register on the URBES website.

      On the first day, researchers will present tools and methods for modeling urban ecosystems in resilience assessment, and discuss how this can support decision-making. Open European Day, which takes place prior to Resilient Cities 2014, will provide practical support to local officials in developing adaptation plans which are suitable for their city or regions’ specific needs and challenges.

      For more information, click here.


      Open European Day at Resilient Cities 2014


      ICLEI Europe and the European Environmental Agency (EEA) are pleased to announce the return of Open European Day on 28 May 2014. The event is free of charge and precedes the three day Resilient Cities Conference in Bonn (Germany). The adaptation theme is topical, with shifting weather patterns across Europe highlighting the need to adjust to the realities of climate change.

      The forum will provide an opportunity to share knowledge, learn from others and discuss solutions in a lively city to city exchange. It will be structured around three core adaptation themes: vulnerability and risk assessments; the economics of adaptation; and multi-level governance cooperation and approaches.

      Three parallel breakout sessions will be offered on each theme to allow participants to choose the most appropriate learning angle for their work. These sessions will focus on: management and implementation, sectors and measures, and techniques and tools.

      For more information, click here.


      Local Renewables 2014


      The City of Freiburg (Germany), the City of Lörrach (Germany) and the ICLEI European Secretariat are co-hosting the Local Renewables Conference on 22-24 October 2014, which will consider opportunities for regional development through energy transition.

      The ongoing economic crisis, growing energy instability and resource scarcity calls for a shift to sustainable economies. To achieve this, cities are increasingly looking into making best use of the available resources within their region, moving beyond consumption to replenishment and even production of energy resources. This will not only lead to sustainable development within the region, but generate economic benefits too.

      The conference programme is designed to be interactive and engaging, featuring an interesting variety of plenary sessions, parallel workshops and study tours, which will provide participants a hands-on look at urban development projects. The conference will bring together policy-makers from various levels of government, as well as exporters from energy utilities, business and research to address these questions.

      For more information, click here.


      Reference Framework for Sustainable Cities Conference 2014


      The Reference Framework for European Sustainable Cities (RFSC) is an online toolkit designed to help cities promote and enhance their work on integrated sustainable urban development. Building on last year’s successful event, the 2014 conference in Brussels (Belgium) on 8 October will showcase how over 100 European cities are using the RFSC to strengthen their integrated approach, and how other cities can join this growing community.

      The conference will feature high-level speakers, including EU Commissioner for Regional Policy Johannes Hahn, and will offer an important forum to discuss how European cities can better reconcile social, environmental and economic objectives in a strategic perspective.

      The event is free of charge and translation into several EU languages will be available. Make sure you don’t miss this opportunity to be part of the RFSC future – registration will open in May 2014.

      For more information, click here.

      11. Event Calendar


      Covenant capaCITY study tour
      16 April 2014 – Padua (Italy)


      Urbes training – Ecosystem services support urban resilience
      27 – 28 May 2014 – Bonn (Germany)


      Transition Talk #1: Who runs this place? Unpacking local governance
      28 May 2014 – Brussels (Belgium)


      Open European Day at Resilient Cities 2014
      28 May 2014 – Bonn (Germany)


      Resilient Cities 2014
      29 – 31 May 2014 – Bonn (Germany)


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


      RFSC Conference 2014
      8 October 2014 – Brussels (Belgium)


      Local Renewables 2014
      22 – 24 October 2014 – Freiburg im Breisgau and Lörrach (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: information.services@iclei.org


      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.

      Comments and questions are welcome - please write to Sean Carroll at information.services@iclei.org, Leopoldring 3, 79098 Freiburg, Germany,Tel: +49-761/36 89 2-0, www.iclei-europe.org.


      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: membership.services@iclei.org.


      Copyright 2014 ICLEI European Secretariat GmbH, Freiburg, Germany. All rights reserved.

      www.iclei-europe.org