Changing Planet

Mayors Voices: Lord Mayor Frank Jensen on Copenhagen as Europe’s Green Capital

*Editor’s note: Lord Mayor Frank Jensen of Copenhagen will be participating in the C40 Mayors Summit in Johannesburg this week, participating on a panel with UNFCCC Executive Secretary Christiana Figueres on ‘City Leadership and the International Climate Agenda.’

Copenhagen Launches Its Year As Europe’s Green Capital

Frank Jensen, Lord Mayor of Copenhagen

Despite freezing temperatures more than 150 winter swimmers jumped in the downtown Copenhagen Harbour Bath last week to celebrate the launch of Copenhagen’s year as European Green Capital. Fire, hot chocolate and music warmed the swimmers afterwards. The winter swimmers marked the final event in a two day opening, including the inauguration of three new wind turbines in the city, photo exhibitions, and a conference on sustainable solutions.

Winter Swimmers 1 (Ursula Bach)

The European Commission awarded the European Green Capital Award to Copenhagen in recognition of our initiatives to make the city even greener while raising the standard of living. The award also recognizes Copenhagen’s ambitious plan to become the world’s first CO2-neutral capital by 2025. It is a plan that has set the bar high and already shown tremendous results with a 40 percent cut in CO2 emissions since 1995.

Sharing Copenhagen

As European Green Capital, we want to share our ideas, experiences and solutions with the world. The goal is that Copenhagen will become a green growth laboratory, where companies from all over the world can develop, try out and showcase innovative sustainable solutions. Copenhagen is a world leader in green growth, and we work closely with all cities interested in exchanging and sharing knowledge.

Copenhagen Image 1   Award

With this in mind, I look forward to the C40 Mayors Summit in Johannesburg, where policy makers and executive leaders will discuss the world’s climate. We in Copenhagen are happy to share our best sustainable solutions, and we remain on the lookout for new ideas and hope to be inspired by the lessons learnt by other cities around the world.

The C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group (C40) is a network of large and engaged cities from around the world committed to implementing meaningful and sustainable climate-related actions locally that will help address climate change globally. Recognizing that cities consume over two-thirds of the world’s energy and account for more than 70% of global CO2 emissions, our organization’s global field staff works with city governments, supported by our technical experts across a range of program areas to reduce carbon emissions and increase energy efficiency in large cities across the world. The current chair of the C40 is Rio de Janeiro Mayor Eduardo Paes, and 108th Mayor of New York City Michael R. Bloomberg is President of the Board. The Steering Committee includes: Berlin, Buenos Aires, Copenhagen, Hong Kong, Houston, Jakarta, Johannesburg, London, Los Angeles, Rio de Janeiro, Seoul and Tokyo.

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