The recognition is a nod to the Finnish city’s steadfast track record on climate efforts. Turku has reduced its greenhouse gas emissions by a third from the 1990s and is on track to halving them by 2021. The long-term plan is to be carbon-neutral by 2029, when the oldest city in the country celebrates its 800th birthday.
The awards are a part of the European Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy, a pledge signed by over 10 000 cities and covering over 320 million inhabitants that aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions faster than the goals set by the European Union.
“Our climate efforts are done on a broad spectrum,” stated Minna Arve, Mayor of Turku. “In addition to the city’s own actors, companies, universities and citizens are pitching in. Turku’s work on climate issues is based on a unanimously agreed climate plan, and we have good reason to call this award a recognition for all of Turku’s inhabitants.”
Turku joined the covenant in 2010 and has been an active member ever since.
“The co-operation helps us to stay up to date on the progress cities throughout Europe are making on their energy and climate goals,” told Arve. “But our job is not done yet. We have to continue to lower emissions on all fronts.”