First Rotterdam citizens' assembly on climate launched

First Rotterdam citizens' assembly on climate launched

ROTTERDAM, 4 April 2024 – The first Rotterdam Citizens' Assembly on Climate has officially been established, involving 117 citizens through a random selection process to shape the city's climate initiatives.

In a pioneering move for civic engagement, Rotterdam has inaugurated its first Citizens' Assembly on Climate, engaging 117 locals to deliberate and decide on the city's approach to climate challenges. The assembly represents a balanced mix of genders, age groups, educational levels, and residents from various neighbourhoods. These participants will commence their deliberations on solutions for climate issues starting 16 April, with an advisory report to be presented to the city council this autumn.

Diverse representation

The assembly members predominantly range between 26 and 45 years old, but all age groups from 16 to over 66 are included, mirroring the demographic diversity of Rotterdam. The educational backgrounds of the members vary significantly, ensuring a broad spectrum of perspectives in the discussions.

Ideation and collaboration

Throughout six sessions from April to September, the assembly members will deepen their understanding of climate issues and collaborate on potential solutions. No prior expertise is required, as the assembly encourages input based on the members' experiences as residents. They will also have opportunities to consult experts and participate in city excursions. All residents of Rotterdam are invited to contribute their ideas and suggest sites for the assembly to visit through the city's portal until 9 April.

Recommendations to the city council

The assembly will independently determine necessary measures to counter climate change, potentially advocating for increased water retention, energy conservation, or urban greenery. The city council has expressed its intent to seriously consider the assembly's recommendations, which are anticipated in the coming autumn.

Selection process

To ensure a diverse group, two rounds of lottery were conducted. Initially, 10,000 residents were randomly selected from the population registry in February, receiving invitations to apply. From 358 respondents, 117 were chosen, with attention paid to a balanced representation across various demographic factors.

Climate goals

By 2030, Rotterdam aims to reduce its CO2 emissions by 55% from 1990 levels, with the ultimate goal of achieving climate neutrality by 2050. The Citizens' Assembly on Climate is a strategic step to harness local ingenuity and creativity in meeting these ambitious objectives.

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