Nine Italian cities will participate in the EU Mission for “100 climate-neutral and smart cities by 2030”: Bergamo, Bologna, Florence, Milan, Padua, Parma, Prato, Rome and Turin.
Thanks to the European Commission’s initiative, these cities will act as experimentation and innovation hubs to enable all European cities to become climate neutral as soon as possible (and in any case by 2050), reducing greenhouse gas emissions to zero. This is the main objective of the Mission that will receive 360 million euro from Horizon Europe to promote research and innovation actions addressing clean mobility, energy efficiency and green urban planning.
The project was prompted by the fact that urban areas are home to 75% of EU citizens. They consume over 65% of the world’s energy accounting for more than 70% of CO2 emissions. In order to balance emissions produced with those naturally absorbed by the planet, and reduce them to a minimum, it is necessary to take concrete actions such as those proposed by the EU Missions.
The 100 cities selected to participate in the Mission come from the 27 Member States,with 12 additional cities coming from countries associated or in the process of being associated to Horizon Europe.
Participation in the Mission offers the selected cities several benefits, including support from NetZeroCities which will provide tailor-made advice on cross-cutting issues. The Mission will enable participating cities to attract new funding and investment and to establish national coordination networks providing opportunities for networking, learning and exchange of experiences.
Actions will focus on mobility, energy efficiency and green urban planning, with the possibility to build joint initiatives with other EU programmes. The Commission will invite the 100 selected cities to develop, together with businesses and citizens, contracts which will include an overall plan for climate neutrality across all sectors and related investment plans.
The President of the Commission Ursula von der Leyen said: “The green transition is making its way all over Europe right now, but there’s always a need for trailblazers who set themselves even higher goals. These cities are showing us the way to a healthier future. We will support them on this! Let’s begin the work today.”