Three cities showcase the use of the City Performance Tool (CyPT) instrument for achieving policy and climate targets through changes in areas such as buildings, transport, or energy. Policymakers can select specific levers based on the goals they prioritize.
1. Helsinki: carbon neutral by 2050
The capital of Finland aims to become carbon-neutral by the middle of this century by switching to cleaner electricity and heating. Using CyPT, Helsinki and Siemens identified a number of technologies in the building sector that can deliver over 23 percent in citywide emission savings compared to business as usual. The total investment for these technologies stands at €1.9 billion, but in return, over €2.2 billion of energy savings will be delivered in a 15-year period; although this is a long payback period for investors, the city could look at setting up a warehousing loan facility to increase the total loan value for retrofits.
2. Minneapolis: Thirty percent less GHG by 2025
Minneapolis, a metropolis of 404,000, adopted a Climate Action Plan in 2013 that identifies a roadmap for meeting its near-term 2025 goal of a 30 percent reduction in GHG emissions. CyPT modeling is being used to analyze the potential for meeting the even more stringent target of an 80 percent reduction in emissions by 2050 – and the analysis drawn from it may form the basis for updating the City’s Climate Action Plan in future years.
Comprehensive analysis using the tool ultimately shows that 40 building and transportation technologies will have to be implemented and adopted at their highest implementation rates by 2050 to ensure that targets are met; a tough challenge. Minneapolis-based utility Xcel Energy already plans a move to 65 percent clean energy sources – a significant step toward achieving the city’s sustainability goals.
3. Shenzhen: a model of sustainability
Shenzhen, the coastal metropolis in southeast China that borders Hong Kong, was a modest town of fishing villages when it was declared the country’s first special economic zone in 1979. Four decades later, it is a technology hub known as China’s Silicon Valley with a population of over 10 million, a metro network of 131 stations, and the fastest-rising house prices in the world.
The award-winning Shenzhen International Low-Carbon City (SILC) in the metropolis’s Longgang District is a comprehensive urban renewal project that aims to showcase China’s cutting-edge low-carbon technology, while serving the needs of local residents by upgrading existing buildings and factories to reduce their emissions. In 2014, the project clinched the prestigious annual City of the Future award from the Paulson Institute and the China Center for International Economic Exchanges. By applying CyPT, SILC aims to further clarify the concrete implementation plan for its low-carbon development target.
More information can be found here.