Europe’s Journey Towards Climate-Neutral Cities: NetZeroCities will launch In October 2021

The new initiative NetZeroCities will begin its path toward climate-neutral communities in October 2021. The four-year initiative, coordinated by EIT Climate-KIC, will assist European cities in dramatically reducing greenhouse gas emissions in order to attain climate neutrality, one of the most pressing challenges our societies face today. The Horizon Europe Framework Programme is funding NetZeroCities, which is assisting the European Green Deal in developing a low-carbon, climate-resilient future through research and innovation. 

Europe has vowed to lead on climate action and decrease emissions by 55 percent by 2030, with the goal of reaching climate neutrality by 2050, in response to the current climate emergency and the Paris Agreement’s goals. 

Cities’ participation in the climate transition is more crucial than ever as they continue to grow and become more significant as centres of economic activity, knowledge generation, and innovation and technology hubs. Cities have a leading role to play in a world where rapid decarbonisation is required: not only in meeting the climate goals and targets set out by international policy frameworks but also in ensuring that our decarbonisation efforts are equitable and contribute to the well-being of European communities. 

To do so, NetZeroCities is bringing together 33 partners from 13 countries to assist cities in overcoming present structural, institutional, and cultural challenges to achieve climate neutrality by 2030. 

This will allow European cities and citizens to lead the way toward a more inclusive, prosperous, climate-resilient, and sustainable future, as well as contribute to the European Union’s Mission 100 Climate-Neutral and Smart Cities by 2030, by scaling up the project’s activities across 100 cities and tackling the unprecedented capital investments required to make such a transformation. 

For any city, achieving this degree of effect will be a huge task that will necessitate significant and structural changes. Government leadership will be crucial, and policies, governance, and arrangements for needed capital expenditures must be aligned by industry, civil society, education, and research institutions. 

The European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) Climate-KIC, Europe’s largest public-private innovation collaboration focused on climate innovation to reduce and adapt to climate change, is in charge of NetZeroCities (EIT). The initiative builds on its partners’ experience, harnessing a huge array of information and expertise, as well as access to a large network of cities across Europe.