Stuttgart is known for its industrial activity as well as for its forward-looking urban sustainable development thanks to its farsighted climate and energy policy. A scenario of a 2ºC increase in temperatures threatens Stuttgart and its region for the period of 2071–2100. The city plans to become climate neutral as soon as possible, and at the latest by 2050. To this end, the city has adopted a climate action programme called ‘World climate at need – time for Stuttgart to act’. But Stuttgart has been taking action for its citizens in this context for a long time.
Thanks to its action programme and the city’s climate plan, Stuttgart now aims to reduce its oil and coal consumption to 65% by 2050. The remaining energy will be provided through locally produced renewable energy. Compared to 2017, Stuttgart must therefore increase its renewable energy performance by 17%. Schools will be equipped with photovoltaic panels by 2025. To this end, the city council has asked the German federal government to make solar roofing mandatory for new buildings.
In addition, the city of Stuttgart wants to raise its public housing to a higher standard of energy efficiency. Since 1995, Stuttgart has been using internal agreements in combination with a revolving fund, called Intracting, to improve energy efficiency and promote renewable energies in public buildings. City departments collaborate and fund projects with energy-saving potential (insulation work, lighting renovation, etc.) with the city budget.
The city also anticipates the increase in heat waves, the decrease in air quality and the urban climate: 30% of flat roofs and facades will be greened. The city has also mapped its ventilation corridors in 2014 in a Climate Atlas to help regional planners act for climate optimisation.
As Baden-Württemberg’s state capital, the city is pursuing progressive climate protection measures towards decarbonisation. The city is serving as a pilot municipality in the test of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) indicators and wants to set a local carbon price. To this end, the city plans to expand its funding and financial tools for energy and climate protection.
As a municipality, Stuttgart requires that the travel of its employees and its vehicle fleet be as low-carbon as possible. The city wants to forbid air travel from its airport for any destinations with an existing two-hour train alternative. At the same time, prices for public transport and e-mobility will be decreased. Finally, the city has asked the Federal government to support its ambitious programme by implementing transport-related measures.
In recognition of its actions, Stuttgart received the German Sustainability Award in 2021, known as Europe’s largest award for ecological and social commitment. The award’s office praised the exemplary work of the city in the field of energy and climate protection in its laudatory speech.
Sources: the city’s official website; Energy Cities’ best practices articles; the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals official page; online media ‘Ecogood’ article about the German Sustainability Award; Energy Cities report on the internal performance agreement, ‘Intracting’.
City of Stuttgart is a member of Energy Cities since 2007
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