Environment conscious countries and green cities are need of the hour. With development and civilization all round the world, greenery is hard to be seen. In the modern set up, all we can see is concrete jungles everywhere and no sign of trees or forests. Increasing deforestation is having adverse effect on the environment causing global warming, greenhouse effect, water cycle disturbance, soil erosion etc.
Deforestation also causes depletion of natural resources and extinction of many animal, birds and insect species, which is causing an imbalance in the ecosystem. But with increasing awareness, this has become a global issue and many countries are taking it seriously and working towards it. People all round the world organize cycle marathons, plantation and awareness campaigns etc. These efforts may seem small, but will definitely have positive effect in the future.
Here is a list of Top 10 Greenest Cities around the World:
A capital of Norway, Oslo was established in 1048 by the King Harald III and is governmental and economic center of the country. It is also center to shipping, banking, trade and industry. In 2008, it was ranked as “Beta World City” and is also considered to be Global city. According to a study in 2016, the country’s population was 658,390 with population of 942,084 in urban areas. It is 4th most costly city in world, sharing the position with Melbourne, Australia, as declared by Economist Intelligence Unit after studying the Living Cost worldwide.
Oslo is at the end of Oslofjord in the northern direction. On the south, Oslo has Nesodden peninsula and on all the remaining sides, it has mountains and green hills. Nearly 40 islands come under the limit of the city and have about 343 lakes. The main source from where drinking water is supplied is Lake Maridalsvannet. It is a very compact city and public transport can be used for moving around. The city has received awards like The European Sustainable City Award in 2003; Reader’s Digest ranked it no#2 on greenest, most liveable city list in 2007.
Stockholm is Sweden’s capital and is most populous amongst Nordic countries. The city got its first mention in the year 1252 by Birger Jarl, Swedish statesman, but was settled during Stone Age, 6th millennium BC. It is a hub for culture, politics, economy and media in Sweden and accounts for more than 1/3rd GDP of the country. The city has some of the top universities of Europe like Karolinska Institute, Royal Institute of Technology and Stockholm School of Economics. The municipal population of the city is 932,917, urban population is 1.5million and metropolitan area population is 2.3million.
The city is considered to be one of world’s cleanest and greenest capitals. In 2010, EU Commission presented the city with the award of European Green Capital and was Europe’s 1st “Green Capital”. The reasons that the city won the award were administrative system was integrated, ensuring budget for environmental aspects, reporting, monitoring and operational aspects; in past 10yrs, emission of carbon dioxide has gone down by 25%/ capita and the decision of becoming a country free from fossil fuels by 2050.
Capital of Denmark, Copenhagen is most populated with municipal population of 591,481, urban 1,280,371 and metropolitan population of more than 2 million. Copenhagen is located on east coast of Zealand Island, small portion on Amager and strait Øresund separates the city from Malmö of Sweden. The city got its first mention in 11th century and got the status of a city in 13th century. The city is center for governmental, economic and culture of the country and is Northern Europe’s primary financial centre with Copenhagen Stock Exchange.
The city has many distinctive features and known for them, which include water abundance, number of parks and streets with cycling paths. It is a very green city with a number of parks and King’s Garden is oldest and most visited of all. People visiting it are usually sunbathers, ballplayers and picnickers. In 2015, they came up with a very unique municipal policy, according to which, every citizen should reach a beach or park with in 15mins on foot. With this policy in action, several new parks were developed in the city.
It is the city of Baden-Württemberg in Germany with about 220,000 as population. The city was incorporated in 12th century and Rhine Region’s center for commercial, ecclesiastical and intellectual. The place is well known for Renaissance University and medieval minister and also for futuristic environmental practices and elevated standard of living. The tourists around the world get attracted to the scenic beauty of Black Forest.
Freiburg is considered as the birth place of environmental movements, as according to them, the sustainability process started way back in 1970s. One of the most amazing facts about the city is that it is “car free”, and their objective is to produce solar energy continuously and reduce emission of carbon by 40% till 2030.
It is the 3rd largest city of Sweden and 6th in Nordic countries. It is the city with highest population in Scania and hub for economic and culture in South Sweden. Malmö got its first mention in the 13th century and as of 2012, it has city population of 318,107, urban population of 280,415 and metropolitan population of 687,481.
Malmö is considered as a green city as it has the world’s 3rd biggest park of wind energy and has its objective as making city climate neutral. One of its districts, Western Harbor, uses 100% renewable energy. They are focusing on achieving the climate neutral city by 2020.
Officially known as City of Vancouver, it is a coastal city on mainland of Canada and is highly populated. The city was incorporated on 6th April, 1886 and was named after Captain George Vancouver. It has a city population of 603,502, urban population of 2,135,201 and metropolitan population of 2,313,328. The largest industry of the city is that of Forestry and nature surrounded urban area attracts a lot of tourists, making tourism 2nd largest industry.
The city over the years could successfully make place in top 5 cities for its liveability and standard of living. It was ranked on the top ten list of Economist Intelligent Unit on the most livable city for 5 consecutive years. It is Canada’s cleanest and greenest city and worth your visit.
4. San Francisco
Officially called as City and County of San Francisco, it a center for financial, commercial and culture for North California. It is 2nd most populous main city after New York City in United States.the city was incorporated on 15th April, 1850 and was founded by José Joaquin Francisco Palóu and was named after St. Francis of Assisi.
There are reasons for which the city is called a green city like banning plastic bags, 77% of the water material discarded. Being the greenest and cleanest cities in world, San Francisco makes it popular destination for tourists.
The biggest city of Oregon, it is situated in Willamette Valley. The city was founded in 1845 and incorporated on 8th February, 1851. The city as of 2010 census had the population of 583,776, urban population of 1,849,898 and metropolitan population was 2,389,228.
Portland is known for the investment and planning of land-use in the public transportation. The city is also known as the one which has been environmentally conscious for the reasons like high walkability, cycling groups, more than 10,000 acres of parks and farm-to-table type of dining style.
It is an area of unitary authority, county and city in South West part of England. The place got royal charter in 1155 and got status of a county in 1373. As of 2015, it had a population of 449,300 of city, 617,000 in urban area and 1,006,600 in metropolitan area making it 6th most populous in England and 8th in United Kingdom.
Being the most sustainable city of Britain and topped Forum for the Future’s in 2008 on Sustainable City index. In 2015, it also received European Green Capital Award and was the first British city to receive it.
It is the most populous and capital city of Netherlands. It has a population of 847,176 in city, 1,343,647 in urban area and 2,431,000 in metropolitan area. The origin of the city is believed to be as a Dam on river Amstel and then as a village in 12th century. It gained popularity as the important ports in 17th century during Golden Age of Dutch.
The city is very beautiful and is extremely clean and green with majority people riding cycles for years now. It was called an alpha world city by Globalization and World Cities and is also considered as country’s cultural capital. In 2012, it was no#2 on the list of best city to live by Economist Intelligence Unit.
Top 10 Greenest Cities around the World
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It is high time that people and government of the respective countries take up the issue very seriously and work towards making all the cities, green cities. It’s our duty that we build a world which is good place to live for our future generations as well. “Theses Top 10 Greenest Cities around the World” have set an example, now its turn for others to follow.