Paris' efforts towards developing a more sustainable ecosystem have paid off and have been recognized worldwide by taking the Global Earth Hour Capital title of 2016.
Out of 125 cities representing 21 countries, Paris was selected by WWF as the "role model for climate action for its ambitious vision and successful engagement with business, civil society and other cities on its journey toward sustainability" (WWF). The cities were evaluated on their level of ambition and innovation in developing climate-smart solutions that advance sustainable development under local circumstances. Paris impressed the international jury with its innovative actions, long-term vision and willingness to collaborate and share knowledge capital with cities around the globe.
In addition to setting up an effective centralized Climate Agency, ensuring clean vehicles, extending public transportation and developing waste-to-fuel conversion, Paris has also incorporated a regular review process to ensure that the city is on track to meet its sustainability goals as well as the current and future needs of its citizens. Incorporating such systems creates a solid foundation which facilitates building upon it for the future. Secretary General of ICLEI Gino Van Begin adds that “as a member of ICLEI, [Paris] is a global forerunner in sustainability. The city's ambitious, long-term, holistic vision, supported by concrete climate actions and ambitious targets set the bar high for the Earth Hour City Challenge this year. Paris has demonstrated its commitment to inspire, collaborate and exchange knowledge with cities around the world, taking this to new heights as the host of the COP21 last year"
Paris has set the example for other cities and has shown extraordinary leadership in developing innovative solutions for tackling climate change and reducing the ecological footprint of urban lifestyles.