For its innovative, holistic approach to becoming a 21st century eco-city
After the recession nearly wiped out Malmö's industrial base in the 1980s, the city had a chance to start over. It created eco-friendly neighborhoods of transformed tenements and old shipyards. Much of Western Harbour now runs solely on renewable energy, including wind and solar, while organic waste from the area is turned into biogas. In Augustenborg and Sorgenfri, roof gardens reduce runoff and insulate homes, while a carpool system with special lanes for pedestrians and cyclists help cut vehicle use. Using a holistic approach to its greening, the city is investing in centres of learning on urban sustainability, such as the Institute for Sustainable Urban Development. Only too aware that buildings consume almost half the world’s energy and spew out nearly a third of greenhouse gases, Malmö plans to reduce its CO2 emissions by 25% between 2008 and 2012, well above the Kyoto Protocol's target of 5%. Malmö says that making its infrastructure greener is the quickest and easiest way to avoid a climate catastrophe. Malmö today is a leading signatory to the European Union’s Covenant of Mayors on greenhouse reductions. Here they burn household waste to generate heat and electricity. By going off-grid they don't lose energy in transmission. It aims to become more and more of a greener eco-city.