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The Brussels-Capital Region selected by the European Commission to achieve climate neutrality by 2030

04 May 2022

On Thursday 28 April 2022, the Commission announced the 100 EU cities that will participate in the EU's Mission for 100 climate-neutral and smart cities by 2030. Four cities in Belgium have been selected: Antwerp, La Louvière, Leuven and ... the Brussels-Capital Region!

With a budget of 360 million euros from the Horizon Europe programme (2022-2023), the mission aims to achieve 100 climate-neutral and smart cities in Europe by 2030 and ensure that these cities serve as experimentation and innovation hubs to enable all European cities to follow suit by 2050. The 100 EU cities selected represent 12% of the European population. 

The selected cities will receive tailored advice and assistance from the mission platform managed by NetZeroCities, additional funding opportunities and the opportunity to participate in major innovation actions and pilot projects. The European Commission also anticipates opportunities for networking, the exchange of best practices between cities and support for involving citizens in the mission.

Cities were invited to express interest in participating in the mission in November 2021 and the call closed on 31 January 2022. As a first step, independent experts evaluated each EOI. Next, the Commission applied additional criteria to ensure geographic balance and the representation of a diverse group of cities in terms of size, impact and innovative ideas. In total, no fewer than 377 cities applied to participate in the Cities mission. Those not selected will still receive support from the European Commission through the mission platform and in the form of funding opportunities under the Horizon Europe Cities mission work programme.

The Commission will invite the 100 selected cities to prepare Climate City Contracts, which will include a comprehensive plan for climate neutrality in all sectors such as energy, buildings, waste management and transport, as well as related investment plans. This process will involve citizens, research organisations and the private sector. The clear and visible commitments made by the cities in the framework of the climate contracts will enable them to dialogue with the European, national and regional authorities, and above all with their own citizens, so that they can achieve this ambitious objective.
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