ClairCity Webinar Series

We’ve produced a series of webinars to share our findings from the ClairCity project. We’ve got something to suit everyone, so take your pick from the programme and register through our Eventbrite pages linked below. The speakers come from across Europe, and range from scientists to members of local government. They’ll be sharing tips and resources during the webinars, helping you to learn from their experiences and to make your work more effective. We look forward to seeing you!

FOR ALL ATTENDEES: please read the following document on how to use our webinar platform Blackboard Collaborate before signing in to the webinar: Blackboard Collaborate instructions

The webinars will be turned into learning materials in July, so stay tuned on social media for when they are ready.

Engaging citizens on air quality and climate change

Webinar 1: Thursday 11th June, 11:00-12:20 CET

Do you work in the environment sector, sustainability or are a policy advisor? Do you engage members of the public on air quality or climate change? Then this webinar is for you.

Learn from the experiences of a four-year Horizon 2020 research project that sought to engage citizens from 6 cities and regions across Europe. In total, 8302 citizens from all walks of life took part in varied engagement activities. The aim was to make our cities healthier places to live by influencing decision making processes on reducing air pollution and carbon emissions.

Hear from science communicators, game developers and engagement practitioners, and engage in discussion about the types of tools that work for different audiences, from mobile games to schools activities, the challenges and rewards of working with different cultures, and the steps that can be taken to keep the momentum going during times of disruption.

Dr Margarida Sardo and Dr Laura Fogg-Rogers (UWE Bristol, UK)

Andy King (PlayWest, UK)

Eva Csobod and Péter Szuppinger (The Regional Environmental Center for Central and Eastern Europe – REC, Hungary)

This event has ended. You can watch the recording here and read the FAQ of all unanswered questions here.

Citizens at the centre: adding people’s behaviour in the emissions, air quality, health modelling chain

Webinar 2: Thursday 18th June, 14:00-15:10 CET

Are you a modeller, mathematician or data scientist? Do you work in the fields of air quality, health or climate change? Then this webinar is for you.

The webinar will dive into the methodological approach for the innovative modelling in ClairCity, which aimed to include citizens behaviour in the classical modelling approach.

We didn’t just want to know the share of car emission contributing to local air quality problems – we wanted to add knowledge on who’s driving the cars and why. Understanding underlying practices allows for designing effective policy strategies and behaviour changes to improve air quality. – Kris Vanherle, TMLeuven

In this 70 minute interactive session, hear the international team of modellers highlight examples of how they dealt with this, and listen to them present key elements of the modelling on transport and residential energy use. Then gain case specific insights as they elaborate on a few key findings from the city’s that were part of the ClairCity project.

There will be several opportunities to ask questions, and you will come away with new insights and some useful resources to help support your work.

Speakers:

Kris Vanherle (TMLeuven, Belgium)

Vera Rodrigues (University of Aveiro, Portugal)

Angreine Kewo (Technical University of Denmark, DTU)

Enda Hayes (UWE Bristol, UK)

This event has ended. You can watch the recording here and read the FAQ of all unanswered questions here.

Lessons from putting citizens at the centre for air pollution and carbon reductions in cities

Webinar 3: Thursday 25th June, 15:00-16:30 CET

Are you a politician, mayor or regional representative? Do you wonder how to give a greater voice to the citizens of your city or region? Then this webinar is for you.

This session will focus on the ClairCity results of making policies together with citizens. The main policy lessons achieved across our six cities will be discussed in the context of citizen involvement. The speakers will reflect with attendees about the opportunities and costs for policymaking and policy implementation following greater citizen participation. Finally, the session will discuss what policy lessons the ClairCity method can offer to other middle-sized cities aiming at ambitious and citizen-inclusive air quality and carbon policies.

You will be joined by representatives from science, policy and local government, and we may have some special speakers to announce nearer the time.

Lucia Bernal-Saukkonen (DG Environment, European Commission)

Stephan Slingergard, Hans Bolscher and Irati Artola (Trinomics, The Netherlands)

Enda Hayes (UWE Bristol, UK)

Andrew Edwards (Bristol City Council, UK)

Svein Knudsen (NILU, Norway)

This event has ended. You can watch the recording here and read the FAQ of all unanswered questions here.

Citizens engaging policymakers on air quality and climate change

Webinar 4: Thursday 16th July, 12:00-13:00 CET

Are you a campaigner working for social & ecological justice? Do you care about your community and want to take action? Then this is for you

Climate change and air quality are social justice issues. Poor and BAME communities are disproportionately affected, with certain age groups (young and old), and those with existing health conditions (e.g. asthma) particularly vulnerable to air pollution.

Given the urgency needed to address these issues, how can we find the time to slow down and ensure our processes are inclusive? What works at engaging different communities and what lessons can we draw from campaign groups from different organisations working towards the same goals?

This webinar is a chance for you to hear from some of the most influential clean air and climate change campaigners from across Bristol, as they share their experiences from working with marginalised and at-risk communities. They will talk openly about what works and what doesn’t and you will have the chance to reflect, ask questions and forge connections. All participants will leave with a suite of tools and resources to improve their practice and ultimately the effectiveness of our collective mission to include citizens – and the natural resource base upon which we depend – in decision making.

Speakers (more to be announced)

Sophie Laggan and Dr Laura Fogg Rogers, UWE Bristol

Zoe Banks-Gross, Playing Out

Our City Our Health, XR Bristol

Eventbrite

ClairCity Skylines

It’s time to save your skyline!

ClairCity Skylines is a unique policy-making strategy game where you are the mayor, you make the rules, and only you have the power to unlock a successful clean-air future for your city.

Visit areas representing environment, economy, health, and satisfaction. Collect ideas for city policies that you think sound good, then visit city hall to turn them into law.

Policies you create will have consequences for your city and citizens, and you must unlock a clean-air future in less than fifty years. but be careful! If your city goes bankrupt, gets too polluted or if your citizens get too unwell or unhappy with their lot in life it’ll be game over!

The app is available for download for each of our five partner cities: Amsterdam, Aveiro, Bristol, Ljubljana and Sosnowiec.

By playing this game, your anonymous policy making decisions will contribute to the ClairCity.eu research project for air pollution and policymaking.  Download the app for Android or Apple now!

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GreenAnts App

Be the first to test a new, citizen-led air quality managament app!

We need your help to test out our Green Ant app and contribute to its development!

Ever wondered how our travel journeys impact your city’s air quality? Now, for the first time, you can.

Green Ant is a free app for mobiles (Apple and Android) alongside a web system that allows you to become a citizen scientist, through monitoring your own and others’ transport activities. Utilising GPS data, you simply let the app run in the background while you get around the city.

Collect data with friends, colleagues, or use as a tool to improve the health of your staff or fellow citizens. The more citizens there are collecting data, the richer the picture we can build about air quality in the city. By making visible the invisible, we can begin to make changes to how we travel.

Log your data collection area online – https://greenant.nilu.no/ and download the app for Apple or Android.

For video instructions on how to play, check out our YouTube videos (or flyer, attached):

Step 1 and 2: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aTt0IYn3Rwk

Step 3: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TqsyrAsqNF4

By taking part, you will be contributing to the EU’s largest citizen science research project on air pollution reduction in cities!

Your data will help you and fellow citizens to improve air quality locally

Your feedback is critical, allowing us to improve the usability of the App before its official launch.

Citizens at the Centre conference

CANCELLED: ClairCity’s final conference on citizen-led air pollution and carbon reductions

Sadly, we have decided to cancel the conference due to the COVID-19.

Written 1/03/2020: Although the Health Authorities in Belgium, the Netherlands and neighbouring countries have not yet advised against travel to the region, the number of consortium partners and external participants who have restricted travel instructions from their organisations and will not be able to attend, as well as possible restrictions on large gatherings to curb the spread of the virus, has led to us having to cancel the conference.

This is sad news for the 100+ people that we expected to gather and disappointing given the relevant findings from ClairCity that we aimed to present and discuss with you, and the hard work and enthusiasm put by the project team and speakers to make this conference happen.

That said, we are exploring potential ways to disseminate the results of ClairCity. We will soon get in touch again to invite you to a series of webinars where you will be able to see the presentations and sessions that we had prepared for the conference, as well as ask questions to our researchers and consultants.  

Cities throughout Europe are faced with the challenge of tackling local air pollution and carbon emissions. ClairCity has been working with citizens, decision-makers and cities across Europe to find out how the involvement of citizens in these decision-making processes can accelerate progress towards clean air and low carbon futures.

If you have any questions, please email Irati Artola.

December 2019 Newsletter: ClairCity Contributes

The latest edition of our newsletter is out now! In this penultimate newsletter, we share our latest findings, celebrate two successes from our colleagues in Aveiro and Sosnoweic, and give you the scoop on the latest air quality news. Click on the PDF or read the magazine version below.

Open publication – Free publishing

ClairCity: a Horizon 2020 success story

ClairCity Sosnowiec was honoured to be featured as a Horizon 2020 success story at this years “Day with Horizon 2020” conference in Warsaw. The meeting, organized by the National Contact Point of the Horizon 2020 Program was held on October 8, 2019 at the Centre for Innovation and Technology Transfer Management at the Warsaw University of Technology.

The event, addressed to people and entities interested in receiving support from the Horizon 2020 program, was an opportunity to learn about selected examples of Polish projects implemented under the program and the possibilities of applying in the EU’s 2019-2020 call for proposals round.

An important point of the meeting was the panel “Success stories – Horizon 2020 why is it worth it?”, in which the Natalia Dziurowicz and Barbara Kosowska-Siwiec from the Sosnowiec team had the opportunity to present. During their talk, the spoke of the implementation of ClairCity in Sosnowiec and how to involve residents in developing local activities in the area of improving air quality. Natalia and Barbara also highlighted the role of the project in helping scientists collect data and in informing the city about citizen-led solutions. In their opinion, the goal and success of the project is a tailor-made strategy for the city in the area of ​​improving air quality and involvement of the local community.

The project aroused interest of the conference participants, which was expressed by the numerous questions they asked. The full report on the event can be found (in Polish) at: https://www.kpk.gov.pl/?p=50096

Why business as usual is just not good enough

ClairCity has been modelling emissions scenarios for each of their partner cities across Europe to figure out whether they are on track to meet air quality and carbon emission targets. Ahead of the Global Strike for Climate on September 20th and Zero Emissions Day on September 21st, we speak with our head modeller Kris Vanherle from TML in Belgium about ‘business as usual’ and whether that is enough for a future with clean air.

 

Why business as usual is not enough
Example of emissions modelling, showing how current pledges (business as usual) will almost certainly exceed 2° C warming. Source: World bank (2012). Turn down the heat. Why a 4˚C warmer world should be avoided.

 

So what is business as usual?

A business as usual (BAU) scenario is used as a benchmark to assess the impact of new policy measures in alternative emissions scenarios. Typically, the BAU scenario takes a central/conservative estimate of technological changes. Most importantly, they ONLY considers confirmed policy measures taken in the past that have a prolonged effect in the future.

A typical example in the case of air quality is emission standards of new cars (the so-called EURO-standards). While this policy measure is fully implemented, the impact takes some time to come into full effect because of the slow pace of vehicle replacement.

Apart from policy measures, a BAU scenario typically takes a central/conservative estimate in new technological evolutions – think electric vehicles. As well as a central/conservative estimate in non-technical trends such as population growth and/or Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth. For variations in key trends it is possible to produce a range of figures, or a “bandwidth” for an expected future without further policy action.

 

What has your modelling revealed in ClairCity?

When assessing the BAU scenario in the ClairCity project, we’ve found that air quality will improve over time. This is due to existing policy measures coming into full effect, in combination with generic technological trends. These trends include the uptake of electric vehicles and lower domestic energy demand with new building techniques.

However, air pollution is not solved in full in the BAU scenario, which means that people will continue to suffer the health impacts. Even zero-emission electric vehicles cannot solve the problem due to particulate matter emitted from tyre and brake wear and tear. Moreover, the pace of improvement is slow and will continue to lead to exceedances of EU air quality limits in the immediate future. This leads to a twofold challenge: how to solve the immediate issue of exceedances of air quality standards; and how to develop new measures to improve air quality in the long-run.

 

What do you recommend we do about this?

On the basis of ClairCity findings, we recommend further (policy) action at two levels. Firstly, to ensure air quality is within current standards for human health, we need strong action to reduce pollution levels immediately. Examples of effective measures to address this are restricting access for polluting cars in city centres or banning the use of solid fuels for residential heating (and actually enforcing the ban!).

Secondly, action is also needed in the long-term as it is expected air quality standards will tighten further as evidence mounts for the adverse health effects from even low levels of pollution. To achieve compliance to more stringent targets and under continued pressure from concerned citizens, city authorities in particular will have to be more ambitious. This will require developing a more profound long-term strategy to fundamentally solve the problem of air pollution and carbon emissions.

 

What will that involve?

This will involve measures that have a strong yet gradual effect in the future and will impact the very core of the city. This means changing how we get around in the city, moving away from private car transport to more active travel, and requiring a fundamentally different strategy from city authorities in terms of public infrastructure investment. More ambitious urban planning and building codes for new buildings could also lead to zero-emissions of houses.

School Strike 4 Climate - Be Part of the Solution not the Pollution
School Strike 4 Climate Zagreb Demonstrations

We can see in the BAU scenario there is clear progress, but this is not enough to stop the impacts on human and planetary health.

ClairCity is urging for more action in the short-term to avoid air pollution exceedances and carbon emissions, and to achieve a future with clean air for all.

 

 


 

Zero Emissions Day happens each year on September 21st. It raises awareness of the need to act on air quality through a 24-hour Moratorium on the use of Fossil Fuels: http://zeroemissionsday.org/

The Global Climate Strike takes place from September 20-27th and is connected to School Strike 4 Climate (Fridays for Future). https://globalclimatestrike.net/

ClairCity has been producing resources for citizens wanting to act on these issues. Find them in our Take Action section or click on the cities above to find out how you can take action locally. We’ll be adding more resources in the coming months so stay tuned!