17 cities from all corners of Europe have joined the race for the prestigious title of European Green Capital 2012 and 2013. 1 February 2010 marked the deadline for applications for the European Green Capital Awards 2012 and 2013. A total of 17 cities from 12 European countries have applied. Four Spanish, two Italian and two Polish cities, along with applicants from Belgium, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Iceland, Slovenia, Sweden and the UK have entered this friendly competition, which aims to promote environmental initiatives around the continent.
The future is urban
Europe is now an urban society, with four out of five Europeans living in towns and cities. Most of the environmental problems facing our society today originate from these urban areas, and many cities already have the tools and commitment they need to meet these challenges. "I am very pleased to see such a high level of commitment from European cities to improve not only the environment and the economy but also the quality of life of growing urban populations. Local authorities play an essential role in improving the urban environment, and the European Green Capital Award looks to promote and reward their efforts," says Robert Konrad, Head of the Communication Unit at DG Environment in the European Commission. Finding the finalists An evaluation panel of international experts are now tasked with studying the applications. They will soon draw up a shortlist of finalists who will be asked to submit further details to support their applications. Once they are satisfied with their information, the evaluation panel will present its recommendations to a jury, which will then make the final decision. The 2012 and 2013 award winners will be presented at an award ceremony in Stockholm on 20-22 October 2010.
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