Lisbon European Green Capital 2020
The European Commission awarded Lisbon the European Green Capital Award, an award that the Portuguese capital will bear throughout 2020.
This is the first time that a capital in southern Europe has been distinguished under this initiative. Previously, the distinction was mainly up to cities in northern Europe, such as Copenhagen, Stockholm and, in 2019, Oslo. In the opinion of the selection jury, Lisbon has now been welcomed due to significant progress towards environmental sustainability achieved in recent years and the ambitious programs defined for the future in five key areas: Energy, Water, Mobility, Waste and Green Infrastructure and Biodiversity.
Of intelligent urban involvement, green growth and eco-innovation, alternative mobility, sustainable land use, adaptation to climate change and treatment of municipal waste were the areas considered as the strengths of Lisbon application, among the twelve indicators analyzed.
But it is the ambitious commitments made by the city that make a difference, and for which the municipality will mobilize resources and wills, in a process participated that aims to involve public and private entities and all citizens. The goals are distributed into five areas of commitment, and of which stand out:
– completion of a photovoltaic power plant for carris electric fleet supply; continue working to meet the 2030 targets: achieve 103 MW of photovoltaic solar energy production from solar panels installed throughout the city, achieve 30% more efficient buildings, reduce CO2 emissions by 60 % (base year 2002), eradicate energy poverty; and achieve carbon neutrality in 2050.
– installation of a re-use water distribution network that will start operating in full in 2025; save 25% water through a water efficiency program in the areas of rationalization of consumption and reuse; invest in the drainage of the city in particular with several natural retaining basins to minimize the effects of floods.
– more and better infrastructure for furniture and pedestrians and cycling; increased modal transfer for active mobility and public transport; strengthening and renewing the public transport fleet (Carris); simplification of transport titles and betting on reducing travel within the city of light cars.
– promote the diminution of waste; increase selective collection; combat the use of disposable plastic and food waste; promote a real circular economy of materials.
Green Infrastructure and Biodiversity
– 350 ha of new green areas built and opened to the public by 2022 – difficult work in a small and consolidated city – as a way to combat the increasingly evident island heat effect; minimize the effect of floods, increasing water retention capacity; improving air quality; creating quiet areas with less exposure to the ruído and increasing biodiversity.
The agenda of events provides for exhibitions and important international conferences, welcomed by the various partners of the initiative, such as the National Museum and Natural History andScience of the University of Lisbon, the Pavilion of Knowledge Ciência Viva, the Academy of Sciences, the Oceanarium, the Electricity Museum, the MAAT, the Foundation Calouste Gulbenkian, the Centro Cultural de Belém, facilities of EPAL and the Water Factory in Alcântara, the Gare Marítima de Alcântara, among many others.
At the same time, educational programs are taking place for students from schools, from primary to university education, and initiatives that aim to involve different audiences.
The massive tree planting, which takes place every month, will involve citizens in environmental design to make Lisbon a sustainable city, ready to face the climate challenges of the future.
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