Tallinn to lead sustainable development of European cities network

Cyclist by Tallinn's Old Town.
Cyclist by Tallinn's Old Town. Source: Ken Mürk/ERR

Tallinn will lead the newly launched network of 19 European cities, which aims to implement the UN Sustainable Development Goals at the local level.

In addition to Tallinn, the project also involves Braga (Portugal), Bratislava (Slovakia), Dzierżoniów (Poland), Glasgow (Great Britain), Gävle (Sweden), Heraklion (Greece), Jihlava (Czech Republic), Klaipeda (Lithuania), La Rochelle (France), Manresa (Spain), Mouscron (Belgium), Ozalj (Croatia), Reggio Emilia (Italy), Schiedam (Netherlands), Solingen (Germany), Veliki Preslav (Bulgaria), Veszprém (Hungary), and Trim (Ireland).

The project, which runs from March this year until the end of 2022, will create a local working group in each partner city, bringing together experts from both the city organization and outside which will share experiences and examples of good practice.

The UN's 2030 Sustainable Development Goals are divided into three major areas: humanity, environment and economy, focusing among other things on the poverty eradication, gender equality, clean water, climate change, sustainable cities and energy sustainability, economic growth and employment.

Life in Tallinn is planned to be greener in four areas: improving the energy efficiency and indoor climate of buildings, curbing car use and reducing greenhouse gas emissions, preserving and increasing biodiversity in the city, and supporting the transition to a more sustainable circular economy, including waste reduction and recycling.

Mayor of Tallinn Mihhail Kõlvart (Center) said: "These goals provide a good basis for the balanced development of cities in order to ensure the well-being of inhabitants and the preservation of natural resources. Tallinn was honoured to be elected as the lead partner of this network."

The Strategic Partnership project "Implementing Sustainable Development Goals in Cities - SDGs in Cities" helps to contribute to the goals of the EU's Green Deal by supporting sustainable urban development. Europe's goal is to become a climate-neutral continent by 2050, meaning that by then it will not emit more greenhouse gases than the ecosystem can sequester. 

The partnership is funded through the European Regional Development Fund's URBACT III European Territorial Cooperation program, which aims to support cooperation and the exchange of know-how between cities.

Representatives of the 19 cities involved in the pilot network will meet for the first time virtually at the opening event organized by Tallinn on April 13–14.

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Editor: Helen Wright

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