The Covenant signatory city of Ljubljana, which was part of five other finalists all members of the Covenant community (Essen in Germany, Nijmegen in the Netherlands, Oslo in Norway and Umea in Sweden), has been selected today at the Copenhagen Award Ceremony to become the 2016 European Green Capital. 

The Slovenian capital signed the Covenant of Mayors in 2009 and has adopted a 21% CO2 reduction action plan, downloadable here from the Covenant of Mayors website. 

When handing the award to the city Mayor Zoran Jankovic, European Commissioner for the Environment Janez Potočnik said: "The European Green Capital Award is far more than a communication initiative; it has also been a catalyst for change in numerous cities." In his acceptance speech, the Mayor thanked his administration for the fast progress accomplished and invited other cities to visit his "beautiful, green city" (green areas: 75%; green procurement over 70%; 74% of heat provided through district heating).

On top of becoming 2016 Green Capital, Ljubljana was also awarded this year’s European Mobility Award.

While Copenhagen holds the 2014 title, next year’s European green capital award also goes to a Covenant of Mayors signatory city, as Bristol formally takes over. Commenting on the 2016 announcement, the Mayor George Ferguson said he was “looking forward to working together”.