Sustainable Development: Specific development commitments and measures in Brussels

The City of Brussels and the Public Welfare Centre of Brussels have concrete sustainable development commitments and measures. The goal of sustainable development is to reconcile economic, social and environmental aspects of human activities.

Climate Plan of the City of Brussels

The City of Brussels has signed the Covenant of Mayors for climate and energy, and has drawn up its climate action plan. This new commitment follows on from the ‘Agenda 21’ launched in 2008. As such, the climate plan will supplement what has already been achieved in terms of mobility, sustainable urbanisation, green spaces, energy, etc. This tool is essential for planning the efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and adapt the territory to climate change. It was drafted in 2 stages: firstly an assessment and then the climate plan itself.

In the first instance, the City had an assessment carried out. It includes the following:

  • a calculation of the greenhouse gas emissions produced within the territory, also referred to as a mitigation diagnosis,
  • a vulnerability study of the territory regarding the effects of climate change, or an adaptation diagnosis.

Mitigation diagnosis

The results in terms of emissions of greenhouse gases are encouraging :

  • 16% fewer CO2 emissions produced by the City administration since 2008.
  • 18% fewer CO2 emissions produced by the activities linked to the City’s territory.


By: Noah Buscher – Unsplash


Participatory process

The City of Brussels wanted to put the public at the heart of the action, by consulting Brussels residents, who submitted more than 300 ideas. These formed the basis of the climate plan, which was supplemented by the expertise of staff members.

EU objectives

With this plan, the City of Brussels targets the European objectives which it has undertaken to achieve by 2030 by signing the Covenant of Mayors for climate and energy:

  • reduce emissions of greenhouse gases by at least 40% (compared to 1990)
  • bring the proportion of renewable energies to the minimum threshold of 27%
  • improve energy efficiency by at least 27%

In addition, it wishes to adapt the territory to the effects of climate change.

Ecorun, the Climate Plan video game:

Eco Run is a video game that makes players aware of climate change problems. The game, developed in collaboration with the inhabitants of Brussels, is part of the Climate Plan of the City.


Agenda 21

The Agenda 21 is an action plan that contains the priorities of sustainable development of the City and the CPAS.

It contains more than 150 action sheets organized around five goals and spread over 22 areas of intervention. These actions are subject to an annual review. This plan defines a code of conduct for municipal employees, local government, users and citizens.

Here is an overview of the results of the year 2017:

  • Installation of 1793 m2 of solar panels
  • Construction of 3 award-winning building examples
  • More than half of the girls attend sports activities at the Children’s Homes
  • 573,522 euros in taxes collected for abandoned buildings and terrains
  • Thanks to the international partnership, the Registry Service of Kinshasa has been able to register 17,994 birth certificates
  • 12 actions in favor of gender equality and the fight against violence against women
  • 17 schools participated in intergenerational activities
  • 11 citizen projects for the participation budget
  • A third of the toys purchased for nurseries is ecological
  • 1,025 people received sports tickets


Call for projects

The City of Brussels supports civic and participatory actions that have a positive and lasting impact on the behavior of the target group and its living environment.

Residents groups, local organizations and schools that are operating on the territory of the City may get a grant that can go up to 2,500 euros.

Projects must be situated within one of the following areas: awareness campaigns on sustainable development, biodiversity, green spaces, water, energy, reducing and recycling waste, mobility, sustainable consumption, social inclusion, access to culture and knowledge, living environment, employment, economic development, social economy.

This project call is launched annually in spring. For 2018 the call is already closed.