Mission Cities


Main goal: E SDG goals icons individual rgb 11     Complementary goals: E SDG goals icons individual rgb 12  E SDG goals icons individual rgb 13  E SDG goals icons individual rgb 15 

More than half of the world's population already lives in cities. By 2050, this indicator is expected to increase up to 70%. According to the research of the McKinsey & Company consultancy, by 2025 600 largest global cities will account for 60% of the global GDP. Cities are areas of creating innovation and shaping our lifestyles.

It is worth underscoring that although urbanized areas occupy less than 3% of the lands on Earth, they generate enormous pressure on the natural environment.

The dominant patterns of production and consumption result in excessive amounts of waste and pollution. Among pollution types, one which worsens air quality affects cities greatly. It comes as no surprise because cities are responsible for 75% of the global greenhouse gas emissions. According to the ranking of the World Health Organization published in 2016, as many as 33 out of 50 European cities with the worst air quality are located in Poland.

Living in such an environment has its consequences – growing risk of health problems, such as respiratory or cardiovascular diseases. In addition to the deterioration of our health, our productivity is also affected, having a real impact on the loss of economic benefits. In 2016 the World Bank estimated that all over the world we are losing more than $5 trillion due to contaminated air. If it comes to Europe, its losses reach the equivalent of 3.6% of the continent's GDP.

Constantly changing climate means more and more frequent occurrence of heat days. According to the European Environment Agency, this can possibly result in 200,000 deaths annually at the end of the XXI century. The phenomenon of the urban heat island, meaning higher temperatures in densely built-up urban spaces compared to their immediate environment - will further intensify the heat issue.

Improving the quality of life in cities and shifting them to the paths of sustainable development is not only a chance for a healthier life in a cleaner environment, but also a business opportunity.

Green solutions can be implemented in every area of ​​urban life – in particular in construction and spatial planning, transport, energy and green infrastructure. They are a response to the challenges related to excessive exploitation of natural resources, contamination of waters and soils, as well as to relatively low levels of innovation on the Polish economy.

Implementation of green solutions is an opportunity for cities to stand out and create an innovative market. For companies it is an opportunity to show their responsibility for the quality of life and the state of the environment, as well as a way of building competitive advantage thanks to innovative products, services and operating patterns.

For non-governmental organizations, the challenge of building smart eco-cities means promoting social participation and raising public awareness of the challenges to our civilization we are facing, such as climate change or building a low-carbon economy.


Expert's support in the CITIES mission:

Krzysztof Zych


Selected, environmental areas of the SDGs are our focus in the MISSIONS of the Partnership "TOGETHER FOR THE ENVIRONMENT". Those areas are devoted to the issues relevant from the perspective of the environment and life on earth, both locally and globally. Members of the "TOGETHER FOR THE ENVIRONMENT" Partnership, implementing environmental MISSIONS by cooperation within initiatives and projects of the "TOGETHER FOR THE ENVIRONMENT". These activities support the fulfillment of tasks, which correspond with the environmental aspects of SDGs'.



We invite Partners Together for the Environment to get involved in the following initiatives:

GLOBE Program
Eco-house – a gift for yourself and the environment
Eco-education activities


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