17 MAR 2022

Belorado, Jaca and Montornès del Vallès, recognised for their good climate practices

  • These are the three proposals selected among the more than 135 actions submitted by small and medium-sized municipalities to the campaign "50+1 municipal initiatives #PorElClima" with the aim of boosting municipal climate ambition in Spain.
  • The recognition is part of Ayuntamientos #PorElClima (City Councils #ForTheClimate), an initiative promoted by the #PorElClima Community and Iberdrola whose objective is to make visible the actions of municipalities committed to the environment in order to achieve emission neutrality by 2050.

The town councils of Belorado (Burgos), Jaca (Huesca) and Montornès del Vallès (Barcelona) have been distinguished for their good climate practices as part of the "50+1 municipal initiatives #PorElClima" campaign. This recognition is awarded by the platform Ayuntamientos #PorElClima, promoted by the #PorElClima Community and Iberdrola, to promote and raise the profile of the actions that municipalities committed to the environment are implementing to achieve emission neutrality by 2050.

The Polytechnic School of Avila was the venue for the presentation of these awards this morning, in the presence of the President of the Provincial Council of Avila, Carlos García; the Vice-Rector for Academic Organisation and Teaching Staff of the University of Salamanca, David Díez; the Director of Climate Action of ECODES and of the #PorElClima Community, Pablo Barrenechea, and the Director of Climate Change and Alliances of Iberdrola, Gonzalo Saénz de Miera.

Of the more than 135 actions presented, these three have been the best evaluated proposals by a committee of experts composed of members of the Cities for Cycling Network (RCxB), the Spanish Rural Development Network (REDR), the University of Salamanca, the #PorElClima Community and Iberdrola. To this end, they have analysed their impact on the potential for reducing greenhouse gas emissions, rural development and the promotion of sustainable mobility.

Iberdrola's Director of Climate Change and Alliances, Gonzalo Saénz de Miera, stressed in his speech that "now is the time for all of us to accelerate renewables for the climate, for industrial opportunities, for energy security and above all for price".

LED lighting, self-consumption of energy and promotion of cycling

More specifically, Belorado Town Council has been highlighted for its project to renovate all municipal lighting, an initiative that began in 2017 and which has led to the replacement of all outdoor luminaires - more than a thousand - with LED units. The council is currently continuing to work in this area by replacing the indoor light fixtures in municipal buildings and changing the floodlights on the football pitch. In addition, it is planning to install solar panels for self-consumption and is offering green rebates on local taxes such as ICIO (construction and works tax) and IVTM (vehicle tax).

Along the same lines, the Montornès del Vallès town council has also been distinguished for its Public Lighting Master Plan, which has led to the replacement of mercury vapour lamps with others using LED technology. This system will reduce electricity consumption by 70%. In addition, thanks to the installation of a 15-kW photovoltaic plant on one of the roofs of the Les Vernedes Municipal Sports Centre, it will achieve savings of around €2,250 on the municipal bill.

For its part, Jaca City Council approved the climate emergency in 2019 in a municipal plenary session almost unanimously, which means that all its actions, plans and projects are focused on the fight against climate change. One example is the fact that it has made sustainable mobility the cornerstone for the reduction of CO2 emissions. Among the measures implemented to this end, several bicycles were added to the municipal fleet, in addition to the creation of a network of park-and-ride car parks with the aim of removing cars from the city centre.

City Councils #ForTheClimate

Ayuntamientos #PorElClima aims to help small and medium-sized municipalities to boost their climate action and align their planning and budgets with decarbonisation objectives. To do this, it works in three areas: offering practical and simple tools to measure the carbon footprint and design an action plan to reduce emissions adjusted to the municipality's budget, giving visibility to the climate actions that are already being carried out and extending this impact by allowing other councils to understand the scope of these good practices.

During the year of life of this initiative, more than 15 webinars have been organised to present the project in different regions of Spain by regional federations of municipalities, chambers of commerce and provincial councils. Some of these presentations have been of a very practical nature, illustrating decarbonisation solutions from a technical-economic point of view and a presentation of a case study presented by a city council that has already carried out this action and shared the particularities of the different projects undertaken.

Iberdrola to reforest the villages in Spain most committed to sustainability

Forest seeks village to grow in. With this slogan, Iberdrola recalled during the presentation at the Higher Polytechnic School of Ávila that it has launched a search for villages committed to sustainability and the environment in order to reforest them. The aim of the project is to promote the recovery of natural spaces in "Empty Spain" -through the conversion of burnt land or wasteland into forests-, the development of employment and of the region.

Municipalities with less than 15,000 inhabitants - in Castilla y León there are more than 2,000 - may participate in this call. Their strategy and planning in sustainability, entrepreneurship and innovation will be assessed, with special attention to the promotion of renewable energies, the electrification of demand and the decarbonisation of their economic activity.

Iberdrola will be responsible for the reforestation of the land through selective planting with drones and smart seeds, which will be implemented by CO2 Revolution. These plantings will always be carried out with native species, not just trees, to ensure that entire ecosystems that promote biodiversity are created. In addition, shrubs, aromatic and flowering plants from all strata of the plant cover are included in the planting.