The contribution of small Municipalities in achieving European 2050 neutrality commitment

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Luigi Santopietro
Francesco Scorza


The National Recovery and Resilience Plan, together with the European Green Deal and the new Leipzig Charter on sustainable cities, has set the "green" transition as a reference for implementing interventions aimed at reducing carbon emissions. This transition was further strengthened in 2022 by REPowerEU, which includes measures on energy savings, diversification of energy supplies, and an accelerated roll-out of renewable energy to replace fossil fuels in homes, industry, and power generation. In response, large cities with populations over 50’000 have accelerated their transition by implementing adaptation and mitigation actions to climate change, in line with the European vision of achieving "net-zero emissions by 2050". However, the contribution of small municipalities (i.e., those with populations below 10’000) towards achieving this vision has only been partially considered. This research aims to highlight the role of small municipalities in achieving the net-zero emissions vision through the European initiative of the Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy (CoM). In this research, the actions developed by the small Italian CoM municipalities were analyzed, remarking some relevant best practices. The proposed evaluation highlights the effectiveness of the actions in reducing carbon emissions and promoting sustainable development. The findings of this research represent a contribution in supporting the implementation of decision-making process and identify best practices that can be replicated in other small municipalities.


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SantopietroL., & ScorzaF. (2023). The contribution of small Municipalities in achieving European 2050 neutrality commitment. UPLanD - Journal of Urban Planning, Landscape & Environmental Design, 7(1), 77-96.


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