(September 2, 2010 – Cambridge, MA) The Institute for Eco-municipality Education & Assistance (IEMEA) today announced it has received a grant, in partnership with the National League of Cities, to bring a delegation of ten U.S. mayors to participate in the first European Green Capital Conference, October 20-22, 2010, in Stockholm.
The European Green Capital Conference will bring together European and Scandinavian mayors who have made important accomplishments in sustainable development, with a goal of providing a forum for the mayors to share their experiences and assist each other in furthering local sustainable community initiatives. The U.S. Embassy in Stockholm, the source of the grant, wants European cities to be more aware of the substantial sustainable development activity going on in U.S. cities. The grant is also designed to help U.S. mayors to learn from their European counterparts and develop ongoing relationships with their colleagues across the Atlantic.
The delegation will include mayors or senior municipal officials from large and small cities from the East Coast, MidWest, West Coast, and the South. Four of the ten delegates will be mayors or city managers from U.S. eco-municipalities – local governments that have officially adopted the set of sustainability principles listed below and have committed to implementing these throughout their governments and larger communities. These include Bayfield, WI, part of the northern Wisconsin Chequamegon Bay eco-region initiative, Portsmouth, NH, Lawrence Township, NJ, and Madison, WI. The balance of the U.S. delegation will include mayors or other high-ranking elected officials from Minneapolis, MN, Cambridge, MA, Riverside, CA, Portland, OR, and Boulder, CO.
The U.S. eco-municipality movement was inspired by the Swedish eco-municipality movement where over 25 per cent of all municipalities in Sweden have adopted the same sustainability principles and have implemented these throughout their governments. Mayors from eco-municipalities in both countries will be connecting at this conference.
These principles are also the guiding sustainability objectives of the American Planning Association (APA):
APA’s Sustainability Objectives:
1. Reduce dependence upon fossil fuels, extracted underground metals and minerals.
2. Reduce dependence on chemicals and other manufactured substances that can accumulate in Nature.
3. Reduce dependence on activities that harm life-sustaining ecosystems.
4. Meet the hierarchy of present and future human needs fairly and efficiently.
For more information, email Sarah James, IEMEA Co-Director, at email@example.com.