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29.02.2016

Almada achieves landmark climate actions under ambitious Local Strategy for Climate Change


The city of Almada, Portugal is one of the 18 municipalities within the Lisbon metropolitan region and one of the country’s frontrunners for sustainable development. As such it was selected as a European Urban-LEDS network city, to share its expertise and experiences with other local governments engaging in low emission development. Almada has made recent significant strides in the areas of climate change adaptation and mitigation, with particularly notable mitigation successes in the areas of low carbon emissions and energy efficiency.

In 2007, Almada adopted a Local Strategy for Climate Change, building upon the City’s Mitigation Action Plan of 2002. The Strategy goes by the principles of: “Almada + Sustainable + Solidarity + Eco-efficient” - the motto of the city’s local development strategy. This strategy prioritizes a prosperous and low carbon economy with efficient use of natural resources, sustainable and smart urban mobility and the improvement of urban livelihood. This strategy also relies on enhanced integrated governance including local associations and citizens in the planning process.

As part of this strategy, Almada has established a groundbreaking new fund called the “Almada Less Carbon Climate Fund” to reduce Almada’s carbon footprint by financing energy efficiency and renewable energy investments. This fund is a voluntary financial scheme, whereby the carbon emissions resulting from the City Council’s regular activities are evaluated from an economic standpoint, and such costs are then internalized with a compensation system. This has enabled various municipal departments to improve their performance without tapping into their own budgets. The Fund is also used to complement national and European funding and has contributed to successfully finance the implementation of Almada’s Sustainable Energy Action Plan.

Landmark activities since the strategy was introduced have included the city’s subscription to the Aalborg Charter and the Aalborg Commitments, as well as its active participation in ICLEI’s Cities for Climate Protection (CCP) Campaign.  Almada is an ICLEI and Energy-Cities member, is a signatory of the Covenant of Mayors, the Compact of Mayors, the Global Cities Covenant on Climate and the Mexico City Pact.  

Improved adaptation is a priority for the local government. Almada submitted a project exploring financing options under the Transformative Actions Program (TAP). This program, developed by ICLEI and supported by a wide range of partners, collects and presents ambitious, cross-cutting, multi-sectorial, inclusive and innovative mitigation and/or adaptation actions led by local and subnational governments. The TAP platform is used to profile selected TAP projects, and at the climate COP meetings of the UNFCCC selected TAP projects are presented, to accelerate connections with potential funders partners. One of the projects selected for presentation during the historic COP21 negotiation’s was Almada’s ‘MultiAdapt’ project, which will create four vegetable gardens designed to absorb the water runoff in the flood plain during storms.

This cross-cutting project capitalizes on the multiple benefits of urban green infrastructure. It enhances climate change adaptation and resilience as well as reducing disaster risk, as the gardens absorb flood runoff, and the additional green space mitigates the urban heat island effect. The added green space will improve the urban water cycle and boost community interaction and social resilience. Furthermore, it contributes to food security and offers a low-carbon alternative for local consumers, aside from the other tangible and intangible social, economic and health benefits of urban green space.  

For more information on all the leading activities carried out by Almada, please consult: