NEUTRALPATH is a project that supports two European cities, Zaragoza in Spain and Dresden in Germany, in becoming pioneers at the EU level in achieving climate neutrality and zero pollution by 2030. The project is part of the EU Climate-Neutral and Smart Cities Mission, which aims to help cities reach their decarbonisation objectives and contribute to the EU’s climate targets.
NEUTRALPATH is designed to establish clustering and knowledge-exchange actions at the local and EU levels to support cities in reaching climate neutrality by 2030. It will work closely with three other cities, Istanbul in Turkey, Ghent in Belgium, and Vantaa in Finland, to design their own Positive and Clean Energy Districts (PCEDs) and Climate-Neutral Labs (CN-Labs).
The PCEDs are cost-effective and feasible solutions that integrate energy efficiency, renewable energy, and smart technologies to create sustainable and climate-friendly districts. The project showcases PCEDs in Dresden and Zaragoza, acting as front-runners, and Istanbul, Ghent, and Vantaa will follow their examples to design their own PCEDs. To strengthen the PCEDs’ impact, the project will align the efforts of public authorities and stakeholders with extensive citizen participation.
The CN-Labs are innovation hubs that coordinate and facilitate co-creation of urban solutions for climate neutrality. NEUTRALPATH will set up CN-Labs in the five cities, which will work to co-design urban solutions for climate neutrality under participative and human-centered principles.
At the local level, NEUTRALPATH will support the improvement and creation of innovative governance practices. At the EU level, the project aims to be fully integrated into the framework of the Cities Mission and will deliver a solid contribution to meet the EU’s climate targets. It will establish a collaboration agreement with the Cities Mission Platform focused on exchanging knowledge and experiences, as well as with the main EU initiatives such as H2020 Smart Cities and Communities Lighthouse projects and Smart Cities Marketplace or Covenant of Mayors.
As one of 31 partners, Three o’clock is leading work package one (WP1): CN-Labs to Citizen and Stakeholder Engagement. With our participatory design approach Three o’clock, along with the project partners, will formulate activities that engage with local stakeholders and citizens to establish a human-centric strategy. To empower all the different stakeholders, from government officials to community organisations to residents, we will be developing innovative governance models that will be used towards the cities’ transformation.
The project shows the way to positive and clean-energy districts through co-designed urban solutions for climate neutrality. It sets out to support cities to reach their decarbonisation objectives and contribute to the EU’s climate targets. Through local and EU-level clustering and knowledge-exchange actions, NEUTRALPATH aims to establish itself as a pioneering project for climate-neutral and smart cities in Europe.