17 European cities submitted candidacies: Nantes, the only entry from France, was one of 6 finalists. It has just been awarded the title of 2013 "European Green Capital".
During a ceremony that just took place in Stockholm, Jean Marc Ayrault, Deputy Mayor of Nantes and President of Nantes Métropole, and Ronan Dantec, Vice President of Nantes Métropole in charge of sustainable development and Agenda 21, were given the “Nantes - 2013 European Green Capital” award.
Every year, the European Green Capital Award, granted by the European Commission, honours a city with an exemplary involvement in environmentally-friendly urban development. The jury is comprised of representatives from the European Commission, the European Environmental Agency, the International Council on Local Ecology Initiatives (ICLEI), the European Federation for Transportation and the Environment, the Union of EU Capitals and the Committee for Regions.
“It is a great honour to receive this European Green Capital award for 2013. By recognising us, the jury of the European Commission is emphasizing the quality of the sustainable metropolitan area project that we are engaged in here. This is a significant victory for our city and one that rewards 20 years of efforts and commitments to protect the environment. Our overall policy combining urban development and transportation, our successive break-throughs with the tramway and busway, our willingness to be inventive in waste management, and our on-going desire to protect our natural heritage around the Loire Estuary have been recognised at the European level. This recognition shows that the efforts made by Nantes in sustainable development have come to fruition. 201X will thus be an opportunity to share and enrich this experience with all Europeans.” Jean-Marc Ayrault, Deputy Mayor of Nantes and President of Nantes Métropole.
After Stockholm, European Green Capital for 2010, Hamburg will take over the title in 2011. The finalists for 2010 and 2011 were: Amsterdam, Bristol, Copenhagen, Friburg and Oslo.