glasgow leader signing GDC 2Glasgow has joined 41 major cities from 17 countries in signing up to the European Green Digital Charter.

Part of the EUROCITIES and Networking Intelligent Cities for Energy Efficiency (NiCE) initiative, the charter, supported by the European Commission, focuses on using and sharing information communication technology (ICT) to help create sustainable low carbon societies.

The charter supports the council’s sustainability agenda already being pursued through Sustainable Glasgow and FutureCities.

By signing the charter, Glasgow commits to using digital technologies to reduce the city’s overall carbon footprint – while reducing the carbon footprint of ICT in the city.

The three essential commitments require working with other signatories on ICT and energy efficiency, deploying five large scale ’ICT for energy efficiency’ pilots within five years of signing up, and decreasing ICT’s direct carbon footprint by 30% within 10 years of signing up.

The benefits to Glasgow of signing the charter are:

  • The charter is strongly supported by the European Commission’s DG CONNECT and will provide a competitive edge in future smart city funding
  • Glasgow will benefit from networking with European digital pioneer cities and knowledge exchange among fellow signatories
  • Cities are supported by the Networking Intelligent Cities for Energy Efficiency project offering a toolkit for monitoring and reporting the Green ICT progress of cities
  • The EC has cited the charter as a criterion for city participation in the annual EU-China urbanisation summits and related EC-sponsored collaboration
  • Glasgow’s profile on digital and climate work will be enhanced by inclusion as a signatory city in high-visibility publications and events.

Glasgow already has aspirations to become one of the most sustainable cities in Europe and is currently working on a number of actions that fit this agenda including work on energy efficiency, transport and innovative technology.

Councillor Gordon Matheson, Leader of Glasgow City Council, said: “Signing the Green Digital Charter is a clear sign of Glasgow’s commitment to becoming a sustainable city.

“The signing this charter clearly demonstrates, on the European stage, of our city’s green agenda. It also supports the city’s commitment to national and international trade development issues.

“It is a declaration eventually committing well in excess of 100 European cities, to work in partnership to deliver on the EU climate objectives through intelligent use of ICT.

“A strong environmental agenda will promote positive impacts in terms of tourism, business and prestige, particularly with regards to the city’s ambition to become one of Europe’s most sustainable cities.”

Glasgow joins other UK signatories including Manchester, Bristol and Sunderland.