Influencing climate change in Ljubljana
In the City of Ljubljana, we have outlined the sustainable development with numerous measures and ambitious environmental politics, based on which we won the prestigious title - the European Green Capital 2016. As environmental experts emphasise, this is the path which all cities on our planet must take, since only one city or even a country the size of Slovenia cannot prevent global warming.
The green vision
Since 2007, when we introduced the Vision of Ljubljana 2025, we have set out to ensure that our city becomes a sustainable and ideal city by 2025, a city, which nourishes history, takes care for quality life, safety and tolerance, is environmentally friendly and is connected to its landscape, while emphasising spatial and social values the city has been promoting ever since.
Some of these guidelines are also included in the Sustainable Urban Strategy 2014-2020 and the Environmental Protection Programme.
We have also signed a number of international commitments, aiming to decrease CO2 emissions. Ljubljana is part of several international networks within which we also exchange and share our views, experience and good practices in this field.
Over 2,000 sustainable projects
Just about every project in the City of Ljubljana - 2,000 of them over the past decade and currently running more than 200 - has been implemented with the care for the environment in mind. We are convinced that the environmental situation on the Earth would be much better if this was the case everywhere. Last year, we arranged, among other things, the beach on the Sava River and the beach within the arrangement of the Muste embankment.
The beach on the Sava River, photo: Helena Regina
We also established the urban forest at Masarykova road; we placed 500-litre troughs and planted 19 different sorts of maple trees next to the Teren park. We also arranged the Bežigrad student park, which was equipped with urban furniture and a water fountain with drinking water. We planted the missing bushes and trees. With the arrangement, we created another green area where students of the Bežigrad High School, nearby residents and visitors could socialize in the shade. More: https://www.ljubljana.si/en/ljubljana-for-you/environmental-protection/revival-of-overlooked-areas/
More than 50,000 trees and many green areas
Public company for water, waste-water treatment and waste management JP VOKA SNAGA takes care of more than 50,000 city trees, and last year they planted 582 new ones - trees within the individual investments are not taken into account. However, we must also take into account the forest and the fruit trees, which are not included in the 50 thousand city trees mentioned above.
At our Department for Environmental Protection 100 fruit trees and 45 park trees were planted last year, and there are currently 530 fruit trees in six public orchards.
In the past years, we have arranged numerous green areas, and as explained above, planted new trees.
It is well known that Ljubljana boasts as much as ¾ of green space; we are gradually renovating degraded areas, greening and equipping them with urban furniture (over 100 ha in the past 12 years).
Photo: Dunja Wedam
We also encourage our residents to green their balconies and window sills, and, according to the possibilities, we also promote the greening of the roofs.
With the URBforDAN project, we also ensure that our forests continue to be nurtured.
The City of Ljubljana was also a partner in the Urban Heat Island (UHI) Project, aiming at developing mitigation and risk prevention and management strategies concerning the urban heat island (UHI) phenomenon.
Energy efficient renovations of buildings
Energy efficiency has been one of priorities in renovation of our public buildings, and so in 2017 and 2018 we signed concession agreements with the consortium of companies Petrol and Resalta for the energy renovation of 59 public buildings under the ownership of the City of Ljubljana. Among them are cultural and healthcare structures, educational institutions, sports facilities and city administration buildings. The investment is worth 14.9 million EUR.
At renovations of school and kindergarten buildings and their surroundings we are paying special attention also to green surfaces. We are planting additional trees that offer natural shade, playgrounds are equipped with water games infrastructure, as well as with drinking fountains, roofs and shades are installed on terraces etc. Family centre Mala ulica even takes pride in green vertical wall (vertical garden) and spraying pipe on the outside playground. In most new buildings of this sort a systematic approach and measures are taken in order to assure air conditioning and cooling of new classrooms, such as outside shading on the windows, curtains, air condition appliances, ventilators, air shafts …
We are also focusing on preserving green areas in the outskirts of Ljubljana, which enable cool air to flow towards the urban area of the city. In the master spatial plan new construction on this area is limited and building conditions more strict.
37 drinking fountains
In the hot summer days it is nice to refresh oneself with quality drinking water from the Ljubljana’s 37 fountains distributed all over the centre and other parts of the city. The citizens of Ljubljana are especially pleased with drinking fountains at popular recreational surfaces. Ljubljana’s drinking fountains are not only an urban decoration for the city, they are also a reminder that in Ljubljana we are drinking good water, and public access to quality drinking water carries a symbolic message as well – water is a natural asset which has to be accessible to all.
Photo: Nik Rovan
Residents and visitors of Ljubljana can also cool down in the open-air swimming pools Kolezija, Kodeljevo and Ilirija. They can maintain their health at sport equipment in the recreational zones near forests or on forest paths.