What is European Green Leaf about?
The European Green Leaf is a new initiative aimed at cities with a population between 50,000 and 100,000 inhabitants. It is an award that recognises commitment to better environmental outcomes, with a particular accent on efforts that generate green growth and new jobs. The objectives of the European Green Leaf are threefold:
To recognise cities that demonstrate a good environmental record and commitment to generating green growth;
To encourage cities to actively develop citizens' environmental awareness and involvement;
To identify cities able to act as a 'green ambassador' and to encourage other cities to progress towards a better sustainability outcomes.
The European Green Leaf will be awarded on an annual basis by the European Commission.
To underpin the work of creating an ever-better environment for European citizens, the EU adopted the 7th Environment Action Programme (7th EAP) entitled "Living well, within the limits of our planet". It provides the basis for EU environment policy up to 2020. This programme aims to enhance Europe's ecological resilience and transform the EU into an inclusive and sustainable green economy.
The 7th EAP includes a specific policy objective "To enhance the sustainability of EU cities". It foresees that the EU will promote and expand existing initiatives that support innovation and best practices in cities, enabling better networking and exchanges between cities and encouraging the leading ones to show how they lead on sustainable urban development.
The European Green Capital Award (EGCA) launched in 2008, is one such initiative. Following its success, many smaller cities have asked for EU recognition of their effort and commitment. In response, the European Commission launches a new initiative called the European Green Leaf (EGL). It will run as a pilot project for 2015 using one language (English) and if successful as expected, will be further developed in due course to include other languages.
Should your city wish to apply, please send a mail to: ENV-EUROPEAN-GREEN-LEAF@ec.europa.eu