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ICLEI in Europe News
January 2017

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. Challenges of a changing world: Embracing opportunities with vision, optimism and hope in 2017
  2. ICLEI Member news
  3. Country-specific heat maps to be released by HRE4 project
  4. UrbanWINS invites stakeholders to take part in surveys on waste management
  5. Cost-benefit survey carried out on municipal emission inventories
  6. Event news
  7. Event calendar

            1. Challenges of a changing world: Embracing opportunities with vision, optimism and hope in 2017

            By Wolfgang Teubner, ICLEI Europe Regional Director

            Dear Members, Partners, Colleagues and Friends,

            It is always hard to believe that another year has passed and we are already in full swing working on our 2017 agenda.

            A bit more than a year ago we were able to celebrate major breakthroughs and successes for global sustainability with the conclusion of the UN 2030 sustainable development agenda and the Paris Climate Agreement.  These new global frameworks, based on scientific research and political agreement, are asking for change and transformation in our societies that goes far beyond technological innovation or the modernisation of infrastructure.  As the Basque Declaration spells out, we need significant socio-cultural, socio-economic and technological change, one spurred by transformative actions across all levels. However, today we feel severely challenged by the question of how we can ensure that these agreements are transferred to and implemented on the local level in the current political and societal situation in Europe and elsewhere.

            To read the full article, click here.

            2. ICLEI Member News

            Eindhoven rolls out electric bus fleet

            ICLEI Member Eindhoven (the Netherlands) in conjunction with fellow Dutch city Helmond introduced 43 fully electric buses late last month, achieving Europe's largest zero-emission bus fleet. The new buses use advanced technology that allow them to be fully recharged in 30 minutes.

            “This is an important step leading to sustainable bus transportation and a glimpse at the future of public transport,” said Bart Schmeink, CEO of public transport operator Transdev Netherlands.

            The new trams, which are almost silent in operation, have been fitted with bells to warn pedestrians and cyclists of their approach. Their introduction to urban streets feeds into the province of North Brabant’s strategy to have only sustainable transport in place by 2024.

            For more information, visit Eltis.
            Image copyright: Image (PRNewsFoto) by "Transdev"

            ICLEI Members outline experience of hosting a citizen forum

            ICLEI Members Rome (Italy) and Hamburg (Germany) have detailed their experiences around holding a “Smartathon”, a forum in which citizens are invited to give feedback on plans by the smarticipate project to use technology to increase citizen involvement in urban planning decisions. The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea in London (United Kingdom) has also published a blog post outlining their Smartathon experience.

            Rome’s post looks towards the Smartathon, detailing the challenges of organising such an event. To give Smartathon participants a better understanding of what the event will involve, Rome held two pre-meetings. “The second meeting was a simulation of the Smartathon,” said Patricia Hernandez, international relations expert with the City of Rome. “We showed participants how the London and Hamburg editions were held. By showing them the previous Smartathons we made it clear that they will run the show!”

            In Hamburg, participants at the event agreed that ICT platforms can play an important role in citizen engagement, but had different ideas of how to realise a fruitful cooperation between citizens and the city administration. “I think there are many people who joined the first Smartathon who want to see how it develops,” said Fritz Boysen, a participant at the Hamburg Smartathon. “One participant told me that next time she would come back with all her friends and colleagues.”

            To view the live case studies, visit the smarticipate website.
            Image copyright: Image by "Smarticipate project"

            Paris to test out new climate change adaptation measures

            ICLEI Member Paris (France) has announced that the Bercy-Charenton area will test out and co-create adaptation measures through the EU-funded RESIN project. Located in the south-east of inner Paris, the city’s aim is to turn the site “from an industrial landscape into a new and integrated piece of city fabric”.

            Over the next months, the RESIN project will help the City of Paris to find the best adaptation options for the site regarding fluvial and pluvial flood risk, heat waves and drought. The development of public spaces and housing construction is scheduled to take place from 2018 to 2030.

            RESIN partners and officials from Paris will meet in March 2017 to discuss the criteria to be considered for the selection of the adaptation options and to discuss the resulting options. Through knowledge brokerage between cities and researchers, the RESIN project works to develop practical and applicable tools to support cities in designing and implementing climate adaptation strategies for their local contexts.

            For more information, visit the RESIN website.
            Image copyright: Image (Flickr) by "Irene", licensed under CC BY-ND 2.0

            3. Country-specific heat maps to be released by HRE4 project

            The third edition of the Heat Roadmap Europe (HRE) studies alerted local and national decision-makers to Europe’s incredible energy inefficiency, showing that the amount of heat wasted is currently larger than the total heat demand of Europe’s entire building stock. Rightly, the first formulated strategic policy package of the EU to achieve a resilient Energy Union regards efficiency as an energy source, one which is vital to decarbonising the energy system.

            The Energy Union seeks to enhance the interconnectivity of the electricity grid of European nations to make efficiency gains, as well as to balance volatile renewable supplies. It is a new and crucial step in the energy transition, together with the “winter package” released in November last year. However, it falls short of adequately addressing heating and cooling issues.

            On 7 March, HRE4 will launch country-specific heat maps in Brussels (Belgium) that display the current status of heat demand and resources. These maps will contribute to identifying the most economically feasible and technologically effective pathway to decarbonisation by 2050 for 14 EU Member States. Local and regional governments are invited to attend the Brussels event to discuss and engage in the HRE process.

            For more information and to subscribe to the newsletter, visit
            Image copyright: ICLEI/Carsten Rothballer

            4. UrbanWINS invites stakeholders to take part in surveys on waste management

            UrbanWINS, an EU-funded project aiming at developing and testing eco-innovative waste prevention and management strategies in eight pilot cities, is inviting stakeholders to take part in two questionnaires that are designed to gain a better understanding of the state-of-the art of waste management and prevention in Austria, Italy, Portugal, Romania, Spain and Sweden, as well as the knowledge and possible interests of relevant actors. Local and regional governments, companies and civil society actors are encouraged to complete the surveys.

            By taking part in Survey 01, participants are helping to detect the most relevant local, regional and national innovative waste prevention and management strategies, including policies, regulations and plans (also available in Romanian, Spanish, Italian and Portuguese). Survey 02 aims to find out more about the role, interests and commitments of different stakeholders concerning consumption and production patterns, waste prevention, and participatory mechanisms to involve them in the future activities of UrbanWINS. (This survey is also available in German /Austrian, Italian, Portuguese, Romanian, Spanish, and Swedish).

            To take part in the surveys, click here.
            Image copyright: Image (Flickr) by "Francisco Gonzalez", licensed under CC BY 2.0

            5. Cost-benefit survey carried out on municipal emission inventories

            The Carbon Track and Trace (CTT) project provides a sound, empirical basis for the development of more advanced greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions inventory methods. This includes deployment of autonomous sensors and software to reduce the cost and complexity of conducting GHG inventories, enabling local governments to automatically log and analyse their direct GHG emissions.

            A cost-benefit analysis was recently carried out by surveying 17 leading inventory experts. Major costs related to an activity based GHG inventory were assessed. This was followed by an analysis of information on data access, reliability and availability per energy sector, as well as data used for municipal inventories and decision-making processes. Perceptions and expectations of the benefits and co-benefits were then gauged.

            The results reveal that about two-thirds of municipal emission inventories are outsourced in parts or completely, including the development of Sustainable Energy and Climate Action Plans. The cost of outsourcing a Baseline or Monitoring Emission Inventory to a third party are generally recognised, however costs for in-house activities linked to outsourcing, and in particular for municipal activity data gathering and coordination, are often underestimated. The study shows that these costs can add up to an average of €12,500 for an inventory, with substantial variation in costs across countries. Full results of the CTT survey will be released in the coming weeks.

            For more information, visit
            Image copyright: Image (Flickr) by "Bruno Jargot", licensed under CC BY 2.0

            6. Event News

            PPI4Waste to hold trainings on innovation procurement in waste sector

            A series of training workshops to build capacity in public procurement of innovation (PPI) in the municipal waste sector will be held in January 2017 by the EU-funded PPI4Waste project. The training sessions will take place in Germany, Spain, Croatia and Sweden.

            The training will be divided into six modules, providing an introduction to the project and identifying areas within the European waste sector where greater innovation is needed. Public procurement of innovation will also be outlined more generally, encompassing definitions, methodologies and approaches.

            The German city of Frankfurt will host a training session on 31 January, focusing on how public procurers can apply innovation to their waste management activities. Further details on the session are available in the programme. Following the training, useful resources will be provided to help procurers build on the lessons learned. The PPI4Waste project aims to promote public procurement of innovation within the waste sector across Europe.

            For more information, visit the PPI4Waste website.

            Sustainable energy actions from planning to implementation

            The Final Conference of the Intelligent Energy Europe funded projects Mayors in Action and BEAST will take place in Brussels (Belgium) on 8 February 2017. The projects will provide ideas on how to bridge the gap between planning and implementing a wide range of sustainable energy actions.

            The event will bring together policy makers and technical staff from local and regional governments, signatories of the Covenant of Mayors, Covenant Supporters and Coordinators, energy agencies, the business sector, and energy stakeholders. In addition to a great line-up of speakers and experts, the free one-day workshop will be an opportunity to exchange and discuss about sustainable energy actions and replication possibilities.

            The workshop will have a round of speed presentations to look at financing and implementing sustainable energy actions, followed by an interactive panel discussion. A “matchmaking lunch”, in which expert hosts facilitate the networking among participants in a series of topical roundtables, will conclude the event. Registration can be completed online.

            For more information, click here.

            RAMSES offers adaptation training to cities

            The RAMSES project will offer a free training event in Athens (Greece) on 15 February, during which cities will receive training on how to use the project’s results to support their local adaptation planning.

            Cities will learn how to calculate the impacts of climate change on public health and the costs connected to them, as well as how to identify adaptation measures to counteract them. They will additionally learn how to assess climate risks and vulnerabilities, select between different adaptation options (particularly in light of their cost efficiency), and elaborate a vision for a more climate resilient future.

            The training is open exclusively to cities. The event is free of charge and limited funds are available for reimbursing travel and accommodation costs. Registration is available online.

            For more information, contact

            7. Event Calendar

            Bridging the gap: sustainable energy actions from planning to implementation
            8 February 2017 - Brussels (Belgium)

            RAMSES project training event
            15 February 2017 - Athens (Greece)

            Heat Roadmap Europe 4 Workshop
            7 March 2017 - Brussels (Belgium)

            Open European Day 2017
            3 May 2017 - Bonn (Germany)

            Embrace the Water Conference
            12 - 14 June 2017 - Gothenburg (Sweden)

            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.

            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 2017 ICLEI European Secretariat GmbH, Freiburg, Germany. All rights reserved.