Finding solutions to Bristol’s climate challenges

Finding solutions to Bristol’s climate challenges

Bristol a finalist in UN-backed competition.

9 November 2021

Bristol is taking part in the Climate Smart Cities Challenge as innovators from around the world help us to find solutions to reduce carbon emissions and positively impact on the city’s quality of life.

Organised by the United Nations Human Settlements Programme, UN-Habitat, teams will pitch technologies and solutions to challenges such as green and affordable homes, net-zero neighbourhoods and urban freight, with Colombia’s capital Bogota, Curitiba, in Brazil and Makindye Ssabagabo, in Uganda also taking part in the competition.

Bristol has already taken a global lead in addressing climate issues, the city’s councillors and city Mayor Marvin Rees declaring a climate emergency in November 2018 and launching the shared One City Climate Strategy to address these challenges in February of last year.

Last February, the Mayor and One City partners also declared an ecological emergency in response to the decline in wildlife in Bristol.

Marvin Rees, Mayor of Bristol, said: “As One City, we are delighted to be supporting the Climate Smart Cities Challenge, with Bristol as one of four finalists.

“We are committed to addressing the twin challenges of the housing crisis and the climate emergency.

“We want to hear from people with their innovative solutions for building good quality homes for people to live in, while reaching net zero carbon as quickly as possible in the build process.”

“Bristol is an ambitious city that is already demonstrating global leadership in how we address issues of common concern.

“We look forward to seeing the responses to the Climate Smart Cities Challenge as we work together so that future generations have a planet to inhabit with a good quality of life.”

The Climate Smart Cities Challenge launched on 3 November at Expo 2020 Dubai , aiming to empower innovators and communities to collaborate in designing and demonstrating solutions and reinventing how cities innovate.

Teams of innovators will be selected to collaborate with cities and investors to demonstrate climate smart approaches that will inform future investments in the cities.

The outcomes of the competition are expected to have a significant impact on the four cities' responses to climate change by strengthening their capacity to engage in diverse partnerships, enabling communities and innovators to work with government and stakeholders to come up with solutions to their climate issues.

The deadline for submissions is 5 January 2022 and up to 80 finalists will be presented on 20 January 2022. This will be followed by a process to form winning teams that will plan for system demonstration. 

More information about the Climate Smart Cities Challenge and how to enter a submission can be found on

The council’s project team will host a webinar to provide more information and an opportunity for potential applicants to ask questions on Wednesday 17 November at 1pm UTC.

To find out more about the webinar please contact the City Office at

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