Rio de Janeiro’s Neutral Carbon Rio Strategy is improving the city’s outlook for its water and energy supply while leading the way in carbon-neutral planning in the global south.

The Challenge

Rio faces climate change threats due to a change in rainfall patterns, impacting the availability of water and energy, with hydropower production accounting for more than 70 % of current electricity usage. Rio is securing a sustainable future for its people by planning for water and energy efficiency measures with a commitment to carbon neutrality through the Neutral Carbon Rio Strategy.

 

The Solution

As one of the first cities in the global south to commit to long-term carbon neutrality as a municipal policy, Rio de Janeiro has launched its 50-year Neutral Carbon Rio Strategy to achieve carbon neutrality by 2065, putting the city on a low-carbon, resilient, and inclusive path to development. Rio has established a greenhouse gas inventory based on the Global Protocol for Community-Scale Greenhouse Gas Emission Inventories (GPC), acting as the foundation for establishing climate goals and actions, which will be regularly revisited and updated. So far, the city plans to improve the public transport network, as well as water and energy efficiency, with a goal to reuse more than 80% of all water consumed, preserve floodplains within the city, and produce 30% of energy consumed in the city from renewable and decentralized sources. Overall, the project aims to reduce the city’s annual carbon emissions from a baseline of 11.6 million tons to 9.2 million tons by 2020, and further to 2.3 million tons by 2050, a full 80% reduction.

 

Environmental Benefits - The strategy will see cleaner air through the use of clean fuels, improving the quality of local ecosystems.

Social Benefits - The strategy promotes a more inclusive city, due to a better and more efficient public transportation network, available to more people.

Economic Benefits - Through the implementation of the Neutral Carbon Rio Strategy, Rio de Janeiro will focus and develop its sustainable construction industry, making use of green technology and renewable energy.

Health Benefits - It is expected that there will be fewer occurrences of waterborne diseases due to better water management and measures to decrease urban flooding that are included in the strategy.

 

About Cities100

In its second year, Cities100 – presented by C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group (C40), Sustainia and Realdania – showcases leading solutions to urban climate challenges in ten sectors, ranging from solid waste management to transportation. For the first time, this year’s publication features solutions that address the nexus of climate change and social equity.

Available online and in print, Cities100 provides stakeholders an accessible format to explore achievable solutions for climate action in cities, and will be a useful tool for relevant groups ranging from impact investors and development organizations, to mayors and city governments.  You can access the full Cities100 2016 publication online here and read more about how may­ors will de­liver the aims of the Paris Agree­ment in a fore­ward by Anne Hidalgo, C40 Chair and Mayor of Paris, here.