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News (September, 2017)

 

25 September 2017

WHO launch survey on blue spaces in urban areas

In recent years, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has looked at the correlation between urban green spaces and health, the results of which can be seen in the open-access book “Nature-based solutions to climate change adaptation in urban areas”. The UN Agency has now turned its attention to the health effects of living near blue spaces, such as canals, lakes and rivers.

As part of their Blue Health Project, the WHO is producing criteria to be considered in a decision support tool for local actors on planning and integrating blue spaces in cities.

To ensure the needs and interests of urban practitioners are met, the WHO is calling on all local authorities and local actors involved in urban planning decision-making to participate in a mini-survey on blue health, providing their views on blue spaces in cities and what aspects should be considered.

The survey is accessible until the end of September. To share your views use the password: bh and click here.
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21 September 2017

Webinar to present how to participate in Urban Water Agenda 2030 consultation

With the new Urban Water Agenda 2030 (UWA2030) initiative, the European Commission is joining forces with local governments, including their water utilities, to promote sustainable water management in cities.

EUROCITIES and ICLEI, on behalf of the European Commission, are running an online consultation to ensure that relevant stakeholders in the urban water sector have a say in the development of the UWA2030.

This consultation is based on the first version of the UWA2030 strategy, which has been developed in close collaboration with a core group of cities. The current version suggests that cities can voluntarily commit themselves to actions in five strategic directions: at local, river basin, European Union, and global level, with the fifth direction highlighting direct exchanges between local governments as an essential mechanism for making an impact on the ground.

The webinar will be held on 21 September 2017 from 3:00-4:00pm [CEST]

The public consultation is open until 9 October 2017.

To take part in the webinar, contact water@iclei.org or click here.
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20 September 2017

EUROPEANMOBILITYWEEK kicks-off around the globe

EUROPEANMOBILITYWEEK is now underway, with over 2,000 towns and cities across the world organising events to encourage residents to try out alternatives to traditional means of transport.

The European Commission launched the 16th EUROPEANMOBILITYWEEK at a ceremony in Brussels (Belgium). Commissioner for Transport Violeta Bulc said: “Shared mobility is a smart and innovative emerging model of transportation, with the potential to reduce the number of vehicles on the roads: for example, for each shared car, 15 private cars are off the road. But it's not only about cars; we are witnessing a real spurt of shared bike systems in cities and towns across the EU. We need to ensure that the future of urban mobility is both shared and sustainable."

The theme of the 2017 campaign is ‘Clean, shared and intelligent mobility’, with the call-to-action ‘Sharing gets you further’.

This year’s EUROPEANMOBILITYWEEK encourages people to use shared forms of transportation such as bicycle and car sharing. Europe is the leader in shared mobility solutions and the value of transactions in shared mobility in Europe was estimated at €5.1 billion in 2015. It is expected to exceed €100 billion in 2025. Sharing transportation not only helps people save money, but also support the EU's goals of achieving a low-emission economy.

Every year, local authorities making significant efforts to promote sustainable urban mobility during the campaign, can apply for the EUROPEANMOBILITYWEEK Award until 23 October 2017.

In 2017, for the first time, small municipalities will have their own category within the EUROPEANMOBILITYWEEK Award. This means that two awards will be presented: one for municipalities with less than 50,000 inhabitants and one for municipalities with 50,000 inhabitants or more.

Local authorities can also apply for the Award for Sustainable Urban Mobility Planning (SUMP Award) until 3 November 2017. The SUMP Award rewards the development of a mobility plan addressing the diverse transport needs of people and businesses.

For more information, visit the EUROPEANMOBILITYWEEK website.
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19 September 2017

Brussels conference to explore setting standards for the smart city

Many cities are unfamiliar with the benefits of adopting voluntary standards and are unsure of how to get involved in the standardisation system. This conference, on 19 October in Brussels (Belgium), will bring cities and standardisers together to discuss the value of standardisation and to debate priorities and needs for cities in their journey to become smarter and more sustainable.

The intensive one-day event will see representatives of local communities, city authorities, and city professionals; representatives of smart city projects; policy makers; and other relevant stakeholders explore solutions for smart cities in their roll out of suitable infrastructures, services, systems, devices, equipment and more.

The results of the debates will feed into the CEN-CENELEC-ETSI Sector Forum on 'Smart and Sustainable Cities and Communities', which acts as the advisory and coordinating body for European standardisation activities in this field.

For more information and to register, visit the conference website.
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15 September 2017

2017 Procura+ Awards finalists announced

Six finalists for the 2017 Procura+ Awards have been announced, representing outstanding sustainable and innovation procurements carried out in Europe. All six are competing across three award categories: 'Sustainable Procurement of the Year', 'Innovation Procurement of the Year’, and 'Tender Procedure of the Year'.

The finalists are ATC Torino (Home Territory Agency of Central Piedmont, Italy) for building energy performance solutions; the Netherlands Institute for Safety for sustainable fire service clothing; Hyvinkää Municipality (Finland), for its eco-labelled pre-school building; Public Health Wales (UK) for remanufacture of office furnishings; City of Lahti (Finland) for asphalt from waste roofing materials; and Ministry of Defence Netherlands for procurement of textiles from recycled fibres.

The winners will be announced and the awards presented as part of the Third Major eafip Event on Innovation Procurement in Tallinn (Estonia) on 17 October. The finalists were chosen after extensive deliberations of a jury comprised of procurement experts Philippe le Quement (DG Growth), Maria Pagel Fray and Casper Marott (City of Copenhagen, Denmark), Paula Trindade (LNEG), Floris den Boer (PIANOo), and Philipp Tepper (ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability).

Jury member Philippe le Quement said: “We were incredibly impressed by the quality of applications to this year’s awards and it was a real pleasure to learn more about the impressive strides being taken across Europe in innovative and sustainable procurement.”

The category 'Innovation Procurement of the Year' acknowledges PPI and public authorities as launch customers, while 'Sustainable Procurement of the Year' rewards the outstanding environmental, social and economic impacts of a procurement. 'Tender Procedure of the Year' recognises exceptional approaches to sustainable and innovation procurement.
Initiated and co-ordinated by ICLEI, Procura+ is a network of European public authorities and regions that connect, exchange and act on sustainable and innovation procurement.

For more information on the finalists, visit the Procura+ website.
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7 September 2017

Circular and Innovation Procurement to be highlighted at Estonian EU Presidency events

The Estonian Presidency of the EU in the second half of 2017 will host two major European procurement conferences from 17-19 October in Tallinn (Estonia), highlighting Circular Procurement and Public Procurement of Innovation (PPI). Since the first Circular Procurement Congress in April 2016 the topic of the transition to a Circular Economy has enjoyed increased focus at the EU level, resulting in a growing number of projects and initiatives involving local governments and the mainstreaming of the Circular Procurement concept.

The Conference on Innovation Procurement, hosted by eafip on 17-18 October, will host the 2017 edition of the Procura+ Awards for Sustainable Innovation and Procurement. The conference will bring together policy makers, public procurers and innovators to discuss major ICT-related innovation procurement initiatives across Europe.

The Circular Procurement Congress will address the key developments and current initiatives in Circular Procurement through presentations from the Estonian Government and the European Commission and ICLEI, as well as Procura+ network participants Rijkswaterstaat and Aalborg (Denmark). The event, taking place on 18-19 October, will have 'Market Lounge' group discussions and conclude with a keynote address by David Peck from the Leiden-Delft-Erasmus Centre for Sustainability (CfS).

A Circular Procurement Interest Group has been established by the Procura+ European Sustainable Procurement Network, coordinated by ICLEI, to foster discussion and exchange on the topic among cities, local governments and regional networks. The Interest Group is currently open to new members and is focused on seeking to identify product and service groups to pilot circular procurement projects, incorporate non-conventional business models within tenders, and engaging markets to deliver products based on circular economy principles.

Mark Hidson, Global Director of ICLEI's Sustainable Procurement Centre and speaker at the Circular Procurement Congress, said:

"Using Circular Economy methodology in the context of public procurement has significant potential as a means to achieve social and environmental goals with impact across all European cities and regions. Public procurement represents 19% of European GDP, giving public authorities the leverage to be at the heart of the transition from the linear 'make, use, dispose' economy to a sustainable, circular model."

Online registration is available for the Conference on Innovation Procurement and the Circular Procurement Congress.

For more information and to join the Procura+ Circular Procurement Interest Group, contact procurement@iclei.org.
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5 September 2017

Heat Roadmap Europe 4 takes centre stage at Copenhagen energy and district heating conference

In Europe, there is a clear, long-term objective to decarbonise the energy system, but it is currently unclear how this will be achieved in the heating and cooling sector. A huge variety of tools and methods is currently applied to support the transition and develop efficient strategies and policies. The Heat Roadmap Europe 4 (HRE4) project aims to provide new capacity and skills for lead-users in the heating and cooling sector by developing the data, tools, methodologies, and results necessary to manage the sector’s transition.

An HRE4 project workshop will take place Monday 11 September (13:00-15:30, at the BLOX HUB), preceding the 3rd International Conference on Smart Energy Systems and 4th Generation District Heating (4DH). On this occasion, experts on heating and cooling system analyses from various ongoing (EU and beyond) H2020 research and innovations projects will exchange experiences, lessons learned and ways forward with regard to heating and cooling focused energy system analyses. The workshop aims at both: getting a better understanding of today's state of the art, as well as identifying promising ways forward to improve existing tools and methods. The scope includes assessments for individual cities or districts, as well as country- or EU-wide studies. It comprises sector-specific and system-wide approaches, bottom-up as well as top-down studies, etc.

Furthermore, the latest version of the Pan-European Thermal Atlas 4, Peta 4.2 will be launched on Tuesday, 12 September (17:00) at the 4DH conference. Immediately afterwards participants will have the opportunity to learn even more about Peta 4.2 and try it out for themselves at the Peta Stand, hosted by ICLEI. The Stand will also be available on Wednesday.

For more information about the events and registration, visit the conference website.
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1 September 2017

PPI4Waste project to host Brussels procurement conference

The PPI4Waste project will host its final conference, "Feedback and opportunities for public procurement of innovation in the waste sector", on 12 September in Brussels (Belgium). The purpose of the conference is to share the principal findings of the research, networking and training activities implemented during the project's lifetime to help increase the uptake of innovative waste solutions.

The one-day conference will have two main sessions. The first session will present the main findings of the PPI4Waste project and how public procurement of innovation (PPI) can be experimented and stimulated in the field of waste management. It will be followed by an afternoon session exploring synergies between procurers and projects on innovative solutions. A full programme and participant registration will be available shortly.

PPI4Waste is a three-year Horizon 2020 project involving eight partners, which explores how innovative public procurement can be a key instrument in galvanising the market in order to foster sustainability, preserving and recycling material resources.

For more information and to register, visit the PPI4Waste website.
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EMAS at ICLEI