Brussels, 20 December 2013
Climate solutions are all around
Imagine the possibility to heat public spaces using clean energy sourced from the movement of people passing by. And imagine household lifts operating on solar power, food produced with minimal water or energy resources and technology allowing you to check the environmental impact of your shopping basket…
If this sounds like science fiction, think again. These are only some of the climate-friendly solutions discovered through the European Commission's World You Like. With a Climate You Like campaign, which comes to an official close today.
Since its launch in October 2012, this EU-wide campaign invited citizens, companies and organisations from across Europe to share their best climate solutions. Focusing on five areas – travel and transport, building and living, producing and innovating, shopping and eating, and re-use and recycling – the campaign found a wealth of innovative, cost-efficient solutions showing how Europeans take climate action in their everyday lives.
European Commissioner for Climate Action Connie Hedegaard said: "Creative ideas and concrete projects for a low-carbon society are already mushrooming throughout Europe. They show that climate action can save money and create jobs and growth. It’s now on us to make these solutions the norm and create a world we like with a climate we like!"
A key part of the campaign was the World You Like Challenge, a contest calling for creative minds from across the EU to put their low-carbon innovations to the test. The Portuguese project "Sown Biodiverse Pastures" was selected as the overall winner for its innovative solution in reducing CO2 emissions while improving the resilience and productivity of pastures.
In addition to the overall prize, the Challenge also rewarded one climate solution in each of the campaign’s five target countries – Bulgaria, Lithuania, Italy, Poland and Portugal. The Bulgarian winner showed how a community composting initiative can help reduce emissions from waste. In Lithuania, the winning design studio used its creativity to turn items that would otherwise have been thrown away into nice jewellery and accessories. In Poland and Italy, the rewarded projects build low-energy and low-emissions housing that make climate-friendly living affordable for all. Last but not least, the Sown Biodiverse Pastures also won the prize for national winner in Portugal.
The World You Like campaign has also succeeded in reaching millions of Europeans through a variety of online and offline channels: an interactive website, social media, electronic media, and press and campaign events in several EU member states. The campaign attracted over 70,000 followers on social media, and received the support of high-level politicians and celebrities, including UN secretary-general Ban Ki-moon and award-winning actor Colin Firth. To further increase its reach, the campaign also teamed up with 320 partners from all sectors of society.
The World You Like campaign, running from October 2012 until the end of 2013, aims at promoting practical, innovative and cost-efficient solutions to climate change.
It is a follow-up to the Commission's "Roadmap for moving to a competitive low-carbon economy in 2050" from March 2011, which sets out pathways for deep but cost-effective emission reductions by the main economic sectors. The Roadmap shows that building a low-carbon economy will increase investments in clean technologies and infrastructure such as smart electricity grids, and will drastically lower import bills for oil and gas.
In the medium-term, by 2020, the EU aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 20%, improve energy efficiency by 20% and boost the share of renewables in the energy mix to 20%. Currently, EU emissions are more than 18% below 1990 levels.
For more information about the World You Like campaign: