Berlin, the German capital, has been cut its CO2 emissions by one-third since 1990 and the goal is to be climate neutral by 2050.
With a population of over 3.5m, Berlin is Germany’s biggest city. The city average growth is around 40-50,000 people a year. As a growing metropolis, the city has to respond to the environmental, social and economic challenges, the demands for housing, urban infrastructure, mobility, waste disposal as well as the use of resources to grow continuously.
The German’s capital is known for people who are great at imagining and repairing broken systems, making significant contributions to creating a more environmentally safe city. To ensure a sustainable and solidarity life, the German capital offers creative solutions by responding to the diverse challenges of the future in an environmentally and citizen-friendly way. There is a strong collaboration between the city, businesses and the scientific community.
The city has been working for a long time to cut the CO2 emissions by one-third by implementing hundreds of cycle lanes and recycling incentives, creating over 2,500 green spaces, parks and gardens, committed to change. Over 30% of the city area is green spaces and woodland. The huge green space of Tiergarten can be traced back to 1527. Berlin is one of the greenest cities in Europe.
Public transport in Berlin is becoming more sustainable with implementing electric buses through the city, and some buses using hydrogen-powered internal combustion engines. Trams run on specially built tracks to reduce both air and noise pollution.
Companies like SunCat, Solarpolis, and Solar Water World are offering eco-friendly tours and rentals with solar-powered boats.
Berlin is the leading city in Germany for alternative forms of transport and has more than 400 electric car-charging stations and four hydrogen refueling stations. The city collaborates with companies like eMo for innovative solutions for future mobility support economic development, create jobs and improve the quality of life and the environment.
With fLotte Berlin the city offers the free rental of cargo bikes in some districts. Projects like this are supported by encouraging more Berliners to switch to this environmentally friendly way.
It is important that these people travel using environmentally sustainable transport, that is compatible with the city — on foot, by bicycle or with public transport.
– says Burkhard Horn, director of the city government’s transport department
The Berlin-based enterprise WindNODE with the help of the federal Smart Energy Showcase program, focuses on a future in which the electricity needs are covered by renewable sources.
Berlin has created the House of Food foundation, its goal is to significantly increase the share of organic products in day-nurseries, schools, canteens, cafeterias and catering in public institutions by 2021. Copenhagen was the first city to integrate such a program in 2007.
Consumers, retailers, and manufacturers are embracing sustainability as a social and business cause.
People are encouraged to recycle by using the refund system, in which consumers can get back €0.25 for every plastic bottle recycled.
After WWII there were also a lot of unused spaces, which were taken over by locals and turned inot urban gardens. The city was bankrupt so people were allowed to take over these spaces because the government had no money to do anything else with them. By the end of World War II, Berlin’s largest artificial park was converted into allotments and agricultural zones.
Berlin is one of the greenest cities in the world and by 2020 aims to be the greenest city in the world.
With so many vegetarian and vegan restaurants in Germany’s capital, there is no surprise that in late 2015, American magazine Saveur ranked Berlin as the new vegetarian capital.
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