Climate Emergency in Perchtoldsdorf

Towards a climate-friendly future

For almost three decades, Perchtoldsdorf has been committed to environmental and climate protection as well as to promoting the use of renewable energy. In this sense, the municipality has taken on a pioneering role. On 18 June 2019, Perchtoldsdorf became the second municipality in Austria to join the climate emergency movement with its climate protection manifesto, which provides for an examination of the climate relevance of all municpal decisions. In the same year, the Austrian National Council announced the climate emergency at national level, calling upon all municipalities to develop concrete climate action programmes. “Municipalities have an increasingly important role to play in terms of action and initiatives,” comments Martin Schuster, Mayor of Perchtoldsdorf. “Due to their proximity to the residents, their needs and concerns, many municipalities have developed a good sense when it comes to issues of the future.”

Since 2019, a lot has happened in Perchtoldsdorf. In 2020 alone, the zoning regulations were changed and the new overall mobility concept, “mobil2030”, was developed. Perchtoldsdorf is also paying special attention to the issue of biodversity. On 25 March 2021, the municipal council unanimously adopted a proposal introduced by Mayor Martin Schuster and Deputy Mayor Christian Apl. The proposal is a commitment to the active and comprehensive conservation and promotion of biodiversity in Perchtoldsdorf.

When it comes to climate action, Perchtoldsdorf is also involving its citizens and promoting community spirit, as the initiative “Perchtoldsdorf4future” has shown. Under the motto “Together for a better quality of life,” the municipality offers all citizens the opportunity to actively help shape Perchtoldsdorf’s decarbonisation strategy. Citizens, businesses, municipal employees, associations and politicians can get involved in so-called action groups. The aim is to work side by side towards a climate-friendly future. There are already ten thematic working groups in existence dealing with decarbonisation in the areas of energy and housing, mobility and nutrition, but also with topics such as digitalisation, the circular economy and social issues. Participants can contribute their ideas and are being encouraged to develop and promote local projects.

“The Perchtoldsdorf4future initiative not only demonstrates how citizens can be successfully involved in local climate action, it also facilitates a cross-thematic and non-partisan dialogue and exchange,” Kerstin Reißner, Municipalitiy of Perchtoldsdorf, explains. “Climate action must be lived at all levels. However, this is only possible if there is a broad awareness of the urgency of the climate crisis as well as climate action measures. This requires good communication, motivation and involvement of all stakeholders,” Deputy Mayor Christian Apl emphasises. The extensive measures taken by the municipality also demonstrate the impressive effect of the climate emergency movement on the local level. Perchtoldsdorf used the adoption of its own climate protection manifesto as a catalyst. The municipality relied on its many years of experience in climate action and combined this with ambitious and innovative approaches to make its contribution to achieving global climate goals and to take action.

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written April 2021

Photo: Unsplash