As cities keep growing and increasingly represent centres of economic activity, knowledge about their role in the climate transition is crucial. The EU-funded NetZeroCities project will support European cities in significantly reducing greenhouse gas emissions to achieve climate neutrality. The initiative supports the European Green Deal aim to realise a low-carbon, climate-resilient future through research and innovation. Bringing together 33 partners from 13 countries, the project will help cities overcome structural, institutional and cultural barriers in order to achieve climate neutrality by 2030. Specifically, NetZeroCities will develop a service-oriented platform, co-create solutions, and develop new and improve existing tools, resources and expertise.
NetZeroCities (NZC) is designed to pursue the ambition of the report from the Mission Board for Climate Neutral and Smart Cities, as part of a broader European ambition to achieve climate neutrality before 2050. This ambition represents a substantial elevation of the degrees of decarbonisation and the timescale for achieving it. For all cities achieving this level of impact is an extraordinary undertaking and would require profound changes in how policies, projects and programmes are advanced by cities, with the direction and support of senior governments. NZC connects and builds beyond established programmes and experimental initiatives.
The NetZeroCities consortium is build based on partners? expertise, experience, and access to a very large network of cities of all sizes and maturity throughout Europe. It has an excellent balance of partner typologies, a great geographical coverage allowing presence and activity all throughout Europe, and thanks to that, its approach goes beyond current state-of-the-art.
NetZeroCities supports the EU’s Mission of “100 Climate-Neutral and Smart Cities by 2030” newly-launched as part of the Horizon Europe programme. The project works as a service-oriented platform supported by world-class practitioners. It helps European cities by providing them with the support and solutions they need to achieve their Net Zero goal in a socially inclusive way.
New and existing tools, resources and expertise are developed and promoted into a one-stop platform accessible to all cities through an online portal. Dedicated services are designed to support cities that are part of the EU’s Mission “100 Climate-Neutral and Smart Cities by 2030”. In addition, NetZeroCities supports a series of Pilots to help drive rapid learning about how to achieve climate neutrality at city scale, and will run a Twinning programme to enable peer-learning.
NetZeroCities will create a programme tailored to the specific conditions of each city. All the services and thematic expertise will be aggregated and co-designed through a NZC one-stop-shop Platform and the digital portal and smart repository for impact measurement, capacity building and knowledge/tools dissemination. Cities will benefit from an intensive support relationship of dedicated City Guides to navigate the platform and ensure city needs are adequately understood and addressed.
NetZeroCities will support pilots in 30 European cities and, in subsequent rounds of engagement, more than 100 cities to achieving carbon neutrality by 2030 (medium-term) and 2050 (long term) respectively, by developing and deploying an integral approach to support climate-neutral transformation in cities. This will be achieved through the co-design and organisation of services, including the Climate-neutral City Contract as an enabling instrument.