Bruges aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 40 percent by 2030 as an intermediate step to becoming climate-neutral in 2050.
In order to achieve this goal, we laid down 6 guidelines that will also serve as a basis for the Climate Plan 2030. You too can use these guidelines in your everyday life.
Making progress will only be possible with the help of numerous residents, entrepreneurs, thinkers, and doers. It goes without saying, however, that the City of Bruges will set a good example. The 6 guidelines are:
A substantial part of CO2 emissions comes from fossil fuels, used to heat our homes and buildings. If we want to change this completely by 2050, will have to lay the foundations in the 2030 climate plan. We can see 3 main levers for change:
Being located by the sea, Bruges has a lot of wind at its disposal. Soon, Bruges will have more than 50 wind turbines. But there are other possibilities as well. Research will show how we can further develop wind energy production and how we can allow the inhabitants of Bruges to participate in these investments.
Solar energy also has a lot of potential left unused: countless roofs of homes, businesses, and offices are suitable for solar installations. Together, we can make better use of solar energy, and people who cannot install solar panels themselves should be given the possibility to co-invest in large-scale solar energy projects. The City will set an example by installing solar panels on its own urban patrimony where possible.
More than one-third of our local CO2 emissions come from our own travels. We can do things differently and in a healthier way:
Bruges has a thriving economy with strong businesses. Our companies are getting ready for a fossil-free future. The transition is in full swing. Together with these companies and other partners, we are preparing ourselves for the challenges of the future in terms of energy, mobility, production, and water management.
By creating closed waste and energy flows fewer resources will be lost, which means that we are gradually giving shape to a circular economy. This requires efforts in terms of both innovation and visionary entrepreneurship. Knowledge institutions and companies work together to create the future.
Quality tourism is a prerequisite for any climate-friendly city that cherishes its heritage. Our strong healthcare, trade, and hospitality sectors also play their part in this evolution towards a sustainable local economy.
‘Brugge Smaakt’ is the name of Bruges’s food strategy that will help make our local food consumption more sustainable and climate-neutral. Bruges’s catering and restaurant industry is the standard-bearer for excellence in food product innovation. A lot of Bruges-based chefs, but also the hotel and food schools are thinking about the tasty and sustainable food of tomorrow. Food should always taste good, the ingredients should be fair and sustainable. Bruges: a city of taste!
The production of animal proteins, especially from ruminants such as cows, releases far more greenhouse gases than the production of plant proteins. These vegetable proteins can provide an equivalent alternative to animal proteins. Plant-based food will become increasingly important in gourmet kitchens, mass catering kitchens, and in-home kitchens.
The movement to consume and produce products that are sourced and made locally is also very much alive in Bruges. Small-scale urban garden, roof agriculture, or local sustainable agriculture: what we grow ourselves tastes better. Bruges is becoming one big garden.
Too much food is thrown away. Less waste means less energy loss, here or elsewhere. Bruges turns leftovers into new products.
The weather conditions in Bruges are expected to become more extreme and we have to be prepared. The climate adaptation plan that is being created will provide guidance for both the City and the inhabitants of Bruges. We focus on 3 main strategies: