The EU Mission Label was awarded to 23 cities part of the EU Mission for Climate-Neutral and Smart Cities. The Label recognises the cities’ plans to achieve climate-neutrality already by 2030 and aims to facilitate access to public and private funding towards that objective. The first ten cities had received the Label in October 2023.

The EU Mission Label was awarded by Iliana Ivanova, Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth during a ceremony with mayors and city representatives at the EU Research & Innovation Days. The 23 cities that received the label are: Ioannina, Kalamata, Kozani, Thessaloniki (Greece), Heidelberg (Germany), Leuven (Belgium), Espoo, Lahti, Lappeenranta, Tampere, Turku (Finland), Barcelona, Seville (Spain), Pecs (Hungary), Malmö (Sweden), Guimaraes, Lisbon (Portugal), Florence, Parma (Italy), Marseille, Lyon (France), Limassol (Cyprus) and Izmir (Türkiye).

The EU Mission Label is an important milestone in the cities’ work. It acknowledges successful development of Climate City Contracts, which outline the cities’ overall vision for climate neutrality and contain an action plan as well as an investment strategy. Cities co-create their Climate City Contracts with local stakeholders including the private sector and citizens. The EU will continue to support the cities in their work on transforming their ambitious plans into a pipeline of projects. This includes new support via the European Investment Bank (EIB).

Later this year, the Commission will launch a “Cities Mission Capital Hub”. This initiative will help cities that have received the Mission Label to prepare projects for investment, offer them neutral advice on the best financing solutions in close cooperation with existing advisory services, and put them in touch with investors. The Capital Hub should also translate cities’ investment strategies into a concrete series of needs for products and services per sector, in order for industry to better assess demand and for large and small businesses in the EU to enhance their competitiveness.

Cities account for more than 70% of global CO₂ emissions and consume over 65% of the world’s energy. Urban action is crucial for climate mitigation and can contribute significantly to accelerating the efforts to achieve the legally binding commitment to achieve climate-neutrality in the EU as a whole by 2050, as well as to the EU’s target of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 55% by 2030 and more generally delivering the European Green Deal. The EU Cities Mission aims to help European cities become climate-neutral, offering cleaner air, safer transport and less congestion and noise to their citizens.