The fossil fuel coal plays a greater role in Poland than in any other European country. Many Polish municipalities have themselves taken environmental action, given the environmental impacts associated with coal. On this basis, they were chosen for participation in the project “Polish-German Cooperation on Climate Action and Air Pollution Reduction in Cities”. The project includes both closer cooperation between partner cities on low-emissions economics and the development of bilateral projects, targeted support and capacity-building for 13 Polish municipalities via coaching, and exchange between project participants and important stakeholders on these subjects at annual workshops.
Strong city partners extend their cooperation to climate action
The project is now in full swing, with adelphi having provided conceptual guidance and support for three bilateral working meetings between partner cities.
At a two-day meeting in Rosbach, Hesse, the partner cities Rosbach vor der Höhe and Ciechanowiec took their already close partnership to a new level. The partners identified as the most important endeavours for possible joint projects the retrofitting of street lighting with energy-saving LEDs, urban green transport, photovoltaic systems, and energy-focussed facility management in municipal properties.
The German city of Herten and the Polish city of Szcyztno also laid the foundation for their collaboration on climate action. Particularly well-received was the idea for a climate action school exchange as a means to raise awareness among the population. A joint project in more technical fields, such as climate-friendly street lighting, energy consulting for households, and energy-oriented building renovations is also planned.
Representatives from Cölbe and Kościerzyna met in Warsaw two days later to explore their interests and experiences of partner cities relating to low-emissions economics. They also laid out the steps to be taken in advance of their next meeting.
On the basis of these and other working meetings, the partner cities want to further define their project ideas in 2017, and conceptualise concrete implementation models in dialogue with one another.
Important impetuses for the shift to a low-emissions economy in Poland and Germany
As part of the conference “The Low-Emissions Economy at the Municipal Level” hosted by the German and Polish environment ministries, stakeholders from Germany and Poland met in Warsaw to discuss the role of municipalities in climate action. State Secretary Jochen Flasbarth, in the presence of the Polish Environment Minister Prof. Jan Szyszko, emphasised that many cities in both countries are already engaged in climate action. Following the policy debate, municipal representatives introduced their experiences in the implementation of climate action measures within two panels moderated by adelphi.
The project is being sponsored by the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, and Nuclear Safety (BMUB) and designed by adelphi to a significant extent.