Warsaw convenes a popular assembly on its energy future
The preparations for the Warsaw Climate Panel are on
- September 19, 2020 15:00
- Aseniya Dimitrova
Warsaw is getting ready to hold a special kind of public participation event on its energy future – the Warsaw Climate Panel. The tasks of the consultative body will be to adopt recommendations for the Mayor of the city on the challenges facing Warsaw in terms of its sustainable energy transition.
Warsaw Climate Panel – bridging expert opinions with citizens’ demands
Earlier this week, on Monday, Warsaw City Hall announced the start of preparations for the Warsaw Climate Panel. The body will convene several times, bringing together participants – 80 to 100 residents of Warsaw drawn at random to discuss the energy future of the Polish capital. The goal is to help them prepare recommendations on improving energy efficiency and the share of renewable energy sources in supplying the city.
The Warsaw Climate Panel will consist of at least four educational and discussion meeting starting this fall and ending before June 30, 2021. Depending on the pandemic situation, the meetings can take place online or in person. Naturally, these discussions will be preceded by expert debates - speeches by experts and representatives of the city hall, who will talk about the challenges facing Warsaw and explain the legal framework in which the city operates.
Finally, the members of Warsaw Climate Panel, constituting the "city in a nutshell" are tasked with finding solutions based on the fullest possible knowledge, thanks to the support of experts and reading the positions of all parties.
Three Warsaw non-governmental organizations that won an open competition will be in charge of organising all the relevant activities - Foundation for Social Research and Innovation "Stocznia", the Pole Dialogu Foundation and the Civis Polonus Foundation.
Warsaw – a pioneer in sustainable development
The citizen assembly is one of many types of participation of residents in the local affairs, practised in Warsaw, alongside civic budgets, social consultations and grassroots initiatives. It consists of a randomly selected group of people (taking into account demographic criteria such as age, sex, place of residence and level of education) who decide - with the support of experts - on a given issue from the perspective of the common good of a given community and provides the mayor of the city with recommendations adopted by a vote.
As for the Mayor of Warsaw, Rafał Trzaskowski, he himself has committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions in Warsaw by at least 40 per cent by 2030 and to the pursuit of climate neutrality by 2050. Currently, a plan for sustainable energy consumption is being prepared for Warsaw for the next 10 years, the city hall also points out.
Finally, Warsaw was the first city in Poland to join the program of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development called "Green Cities". Its aim is to support large cities in projects that will lead to sustainable development, environmental protection and the improved health of their inhabitants. As part of the program, Warsaw will create a long-term (10-15 years) strategy for sustainable development.
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