CoJ greenest municipality

MMC for Environment and Infrastructure, councillor Nico de Jager accepted the green award. Photo: Twitter

“We’re honoured to be named the overall winner of the metropolitan category of the Greenest Municipality Competition,” said MMC Nico de Jager.

The Member of the Mayoral Committee (MMC) for Environment and Infrastructure services had the honour of accepting the prestigious award during a glittering ceremony in Bloemfontein recently.

The city was named the overall winner of the metropolitan category of the 2017 edition of the annual Greenest Municipality Competition (GMC) Awards.

The competition – which is in its seventh year – focuses on sustainable development in areas such as good waste management practices, efficient energy use, sustainable water use, public participation and best practice in municipal leadership.

The GMC panel commended the city’s entry which primarily focused on climate change green economy projects, including carbon sequestration programmes such as tree planting, waste minimisation efforts, environmental education and public participation programmes by various entities. They were also impressed with

the city’s roll out of smart Wi-Fi enabled benches in city parks, inner city park safety programmes, CCTV cameras in city parks, the declaration of the tree planted by former president, Nelson Mandela, as a heritage tree and Johannesburg City Parks and Zoo’s invasive tree and plant education programmes.

The honour carries a total of R3,5 million in prize money and was bestowed on the city by Deputy Minister of Environmental Affairs, Barbara Thomson, in recognition of its job creation projects around issues such as waste management, climate change and the green economy.

According to a recent press release, the prize money will be ploughed back into the infrastructure projects aimed at preserving and protecting the environment. “The city won the award in 2015, but in 2016 lost it to eThekwini before reclaiming it this year,” said the MMC.

He added that the accolade served as motivation to continue developing an environmentally sustainable city in line with its strategic objectives. “This coveted award is a testament to the fact that the City of Johannesburg is committed to the sustainable preservation and protection of its ecological assets and to the improvement of the quality of life of its citizens. It also serves as motivation to bolster our efforts to effect increased sustainable environmental programmes,” he concluded.

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Adéle Bloem

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