For the Viennese, sustainability is no mere buzzword. From city management to students to entrepreneurs, the people of Vienna know that building an environmentally conscious future isn’t a trend—it’s a must. With the climate crisis commonly accepted as one of the biggest challenges of our time, the city aims to focus on measures that are not only good for the environment and climate but also good for the people, as pointed out by Jürgen Czernohorszky, Executive City Councillor for Climate, Environment, Democracy and Personnel, in the Vienna Climate Guide.
Drawing up a separate climate budget, with clearly defined targets, was only the first step in doing so. Vienna’s Smart City Wien Strategy, which guides and concentrates the city’ efforts for the upcoming years, employs various data-backed measures that are meant to not only decrease dependency on finite resources and improve liveability, but also give citizens the tools needed to integrate sustainability into their every day.
It is exactly this human-centric approach that sets Vienna apart. Fully aware that well-designed climate policies need to go hand in hand with social equity, the city focuses on creating opportunities for active participation, ensuring that all groups are taken into consideration, and that all contribute to shaping their community. By making climate justice a core part of its green strategy, as well as applying circular economy principles at every level, the city aims to ensure fairness not only between social groups, but also between generations.
What’s more, in doing so, Vienna makes use of its long-standing artistic and cultural tradition in order to raise awareness and develop new solutions. With more and more creative and tech businesses alike placing a focus on environmental protection, the city is well on its way to becoming the centre of the creative climate movement.