• Country: United Kingdom
  • Population: 441,300
  • Member of Covenant of Mayors?: Yes
  • Politician Who Signed: Councillor Barbara Janke
  • Website:

City Introduction

Bristol aims to be in the top 20 European Cities by 2020 and has made a clear commitment to create a world-class and inclusive green digital economy. Bristol is a port city with a number of distinctive areas that offer a mix of architectural styles – a legacy of our 800 years of history. At the heart of the city is the Harbourside area, which has been transformed in recent years through one of Europe’s most successful waterfront regeneration schemes. Bristol was identified as an ‘innovation hub’ by McKinsey and the World Economic Forum, and has a world-class knowledge economy based on aerospace, defence, engineering, ICT and electronics, financial services, media, creative and environmental industries, and the global reach of its outstanding universities. It is the only UK city to be shortlisted for the European Green Capital Award and is an exciting, quirky and creative city with a strong arts, music and culture scene.

Main Contact

Related Initiatives

  • In 2011 Bristol City Council created the Bristol Futures Group to provide city leadership on green, digital, economic and international issues;
  • Bristol City Council adopted a Green ICT Strategy in 2010. The strategy looks both to reduce CO2 emissions associated with the use of ICT and to use ICT to reduce emissions elsewhere within the city and the council;
  • Bristol was the first European City to create a Citywide Carbon Footprint of Business ICT. The methodology is open source and available on
  • The Council launched a Green ICT website ( which has free resources to support organisations to reduce the carbon footprint of their ICT and we established a Green ICT Champions group in Bristol with public, private and community sector partners;
  • The City Council funded a Green ICT programme for the community and voluntary sector run by VOSCUR;
  • In 2011 the Covenant of Mayors produced a Case Study on Green Addict: green ICT for business and community;
  • With funding from the UK Department of Energy and Climate Change, the City Council commissioned a Smart City Bristol Study published in March 2011. This study undertook:
    • An independent analysis of how smart city technologies can contribute to Bristol’s carbon reduction objectives;
    • Benchmarked Bristol against other world cities; and
    • Offered a set of objective recommendations that will contribute to further emissions reductions and provide citywide economic benefits.
      For more information:
  • In March 2011 we held a Smart & Connected City Strategic Roundtable, which brought together over 80 city stakeholders to discuss the outcomes of the Smart City Bristol report and to look forward to the development of a Smart City Programme ;
  • Bristol’s Smart City programme, launched in 2011, is using smart technology to meet the City’s ambitious target to reduce CO2 emissions by 40% by 2020 and meet wider social and economic objectives. The programme builds upon the DECC funded Smart City Bristol Report and has 3 key strands: (i) Smart Energy, (ii) Smart Transport and (iii) Smart Data. Please see Briefing Note on the programme ;
  • In 2012 we are further developing our Smart City Programme and have produced a Smart city Briefing Note on the programme which outlines the projects we have underway which includes a number of projects which received European and UK funding in 2011 which include projects on smart metering, home energy management systems, smart grid, intelligent transport, electric vehicles and open data etc.;
  • The Bristol Smart City Programme is being developed in partnership with local stakeholders including Toshiba, IBM, Arup, HP, University of Bristol, University of West of England, Western Power Distribution, Knowle West Media Centre etc. Through this partnership we are bidding to a number of UK, European and International financing schemes for large ICT / smart city demonstration projects;
  • Bristol’s Green Digital work is part of a wider Bristol Digital City Programme (, which also includes work on broadband infrastructure and connectivity, digital inclusion and skills and tele-health;
  • In February 2012 we submitted a £22m Super Connected Cities Bid to the UK Urban Broadband Fund. Bristol’s bid is called Gigabit Bristol and it is centred around a large, centrally-located area of the city comprising Temple Quarter Enterprise Zone, Harbourside and the University. This 400-hectare area includes 5,000 businesses, 5,000 university students, 5,000 social housing tenants and 7 million people passing through every year. It will ensure that gigabit connectivity is readily available to businesses and that ultrafast broadband is available to consumers. The Council also aims to extend Wi-Fi coverage both in the gigabit zone and across the city as a whole, providing open access Wi-Fi to 100% of the city’s public spaces. To achieve this, the Council would work with Telecoms providers to build on our existing 650 hot-spot B-Open network, which is currently used by university staff, students and members of the public.


Briefing note on the Bristol’s Smart City programme

Case study developed by the Covenant of Mayors on Bristol GreenAddict project