This conference brought together policy makers and representatives of the thousands of community-led initiatives on climate change and sustainability in Europe in order to launch the first ever European Day of Sustainable Communities (EDSC) that took place the following day.
The conference aimed to engage European Union (EU) policy-makers and stakeholders in Brussels by demonstrating how community-led initiatives on climate change and sustainability have a vital role to play in achieving climate targets. The potential of community-led action is significant and the EESC is delighted to have worked together with ECOLISE to promote local action on sustainability. The event also contributed to the action week that celebrated the adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals.
To mark the European Day of Sustainable Communities on 23 September, communities across Europe showcased their pioneering efforts to create new models for sustainable living. Ecovillages, Transition initiatives, permaculture projects, the agroecology movement, and many others opened their doors and invited the public to observe, discuss and be inspired by a diverse range of projects, covering everything from community energy, to local food, sustainable mobility, resource management and much more.
During the conference at the EESC, there was a live video link-up with the organisers showcasing a selection of these Europe-wide events. The latest information from the ECOLISE network was shared with conference participants, including research findings on the status, impacts and challenges of community-led initiatives in Europe in achieving climate targets, preserving natural resources and biodiversity, and creating a fairer and more equitable society.
Participants at the European Day of Sustainable Communities launch event included EU policy-makers such as the European Commission, Members of the European Parliament, Members of the EESC, government representatives, and community leaders, including ECOLISE members, partner organisations, associations and NGOs.