Exhibition on “Hamburg – A European Green Capital”

2015-11-02

The opening ceremony of the exhibition “Hamburg – A European Green Capital: 'Green, Inclusive, Growing City by the Water: Perspectives on Urban Development'” was successfully held on 15 October 2015 at City Gallery. Organised by the European Union Academic Programme Hong Kong (EUAP) and co-organized with the City Gallery, the opening ceremony has drawn over 100 participants from HKSAR Government (HKSARG), diplomatic bodies, business community, civil societies and academia.

The exhibition was opened by Mr. Wong Kam Sing, JP, Secretary for the Environment, HKSARG, Mr. Vincent Piket, Head of Office of the European Union to Hong Kong and Macao, Mr. K.K. Ling, JP, Director of Planning, Planning Department, HKSARG, Mr. Karsten Tietz, Deputy Consul General, Consulate General of Germany to Hong Kong, as well as Prof. Roland T. Chin, President and Vice-Chancellor of HKBU, Prof. Adrian J. Bailey, Dean of the Social Sciences Faculty and Prof. Jean-Pierre Cabestan, Head of Government & International Studies Department and Director of the EUAP.

The opening exhibition marked the debut of the 2nd edition of Urban Innovations from October to November 2015. Prof. H Werner Hess, Deputy Director of EUAP, said in the opening remark that “Urban Innovations tries to bring information about cutting-edge urban development in the EU to Hong Kong and, equally important, to provide a platform from which Hong Kong knowhow can be made known to Europe.” This year, Hamburg, awarded the title” European Green Capital” in 2011, is selected as the focus city since Hamburg and Hong Kong share many similarities including size of the city, economically competitiveness, and determination towards a “green” low-carbon economy.

It was followed by a speech from Mr. Wong Kam Sing, Secretary for the Environment, HKSARG. He agreed that Hong Kong is determined to continue working closely with other ports and share experience in promoting the environment. Hong Kong is also striving to improve air quality and encourage fuel switching from inefficient fuels to cleaner and economical alternatives.

Mr. Vincent Piket, Head of Office of the European Union to Hong Kong and Macao, mentioned that cities are key players in fighting against climate change. The EU launched the European Green Capital Award to recognise cities’ innovation and excellent effort to develop an environmentally friendly urban living. Hamburg shows that economic growth and environmental protection can go hand in hand in the context of a large city.  

Mr. K.K. Ling, Director of Planning, Planning Department, HKSARG, said that he was delighted to host the exhibition and a series of seminar of “Urban Innovations” in City Gallery. Mr. Ling also hoped that “Urban Innovations” can become an annual event in the future in which practitioners and interested participants will be able to learn from each other and stimulate new ideas and synergy between two cities in the context of urban planning.

The exhibition showcases long-term urban planning concepts and their concrete implementations in the city of Hamburg on Urbanisation, Social Inclusion, Green and Environment-friendly City as well as Urban Development in the Business Metropolis, in 30 panels.

The series of “Urban Innovations” was designed to present European current thinking in issues of urban development, solutions for urban problems and pan-European cooperation in these fields. Focusing on 4 main areas (Clean Port, Green Building, Urban Planning and Clean Energy), the series 2015-16 will discuss some of the best practices in Hamburg. In 2011, Hamburg became the European Green Capital, a title awarded annually by the European Commission. The title committed Hamburg to share its experiences and best practices and serving as a role model to inspire other cities within the field of sustainable urban development.

The issues selected are of significance to Hong Kong as they touch on some topics which are of great concern to today’s society. The series will cover more than 10 events in 2 months including exhibition, roundtable discussions and seminars.

The series is made possible from the generous support from the following partners: HKSAR Planning Department, Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung, the Behörde für Stadtentwicklung und Wohnen Hamburg (City Development & Housing Affairs Department) and German Consulate General Hong Kong.