2018 was the year of Nijmegen Green Capital. The title of Sustainable Capital of Europe is an initiative by the European Commission to reward cities that strongly promote ecological, social, and economic sustainability. We achieved this award through years of hard work towards making things greener and more sustainable. By ‘we’, we mean the entire city and its surroundings. ‘We’ includes both young and old, participating in large and small initiatives.
The Sustainability Board advises on building on the results of the Nijmegen Green Capital year. The members are representatives of all kinds of parties in the city, such as DAR, Rabobank, housing corporations, educational institutions and De Bastei.
Green Friday was held for the first time in 2018 as a closing ceremony for Nijmegen European Green Capital. Everywhere volunteers, residents and employees rolled up their sleeves to make Nijmegen greener and more beautiful. Green Friday Nijmegen is now an annual event. With Green Friday, the municipality of Nijmegen, together with the network that was created in the Green Capital year, is continuing the activities from 2018. The aim is to make Nijmegen greener and more beautiful together.
Nijmegen prefers green to concrete. In 2018 about 190,000 paving stones were removed from the city and replaced by more than 10,000 trees and bushes. Residents, companies, schools, churches and the city itself participated in Operation Steenbreek, a direct result of Green Capital that we can be proud of. Between 2018 and 2020 about 400.000 paving stones were removed and replaced by greenery.
The five themes of Nijmegen EGC 2018 were:
- Clean mobility
- Energy transition
- Water/climate adaptation
- Vital city
- Circular economy
Within Nijmegen, we have been working for quit some time on the transition to sustainable mobility and energy transition. The continuation of Green Capital focuses mainly on the transitions green biodiversity, food, climate adaptations and the waste-free city. Because of EGC 2018, Nijmegen has gained access to international networks and organizations.