Wonder how the world would be if every place on earth was covered with greenery, free of pollution, and everything was eco-friendly?
A pretty hard thing to imagine isn’t it? Yet there are places and people on this very earth that are committed to making this planet habitable and beautiful yet again.
Sadly the list is not very long. And among the shortlisted places, is Reykjavik, the greenest city in the whole world.
Reykjavik is the largest city and the capital of Iceland. It is believed that Reykjavik is the location of the first permanent settlement in Iceland, dating back to 874 A.D.
It is one of the most popular tourist destinations of the country and also the heart of Iceland’s economic, governmental, and cultural activity.
Nevertheless, with all this pressure behind it, Reykjavik has still made it as the greenest city in the world.
According to a survey done by travel agency TravelBird, Reykjavik secured the first place with 9 out of 10 inhabitants living less than 300 m from a green space.
How Did Reykjavik Get The Title?
The snowy capital of Iceland is one of the world’s only places, apart from Bhutan, whose energy is 100% renewable.
Here, 25% of electricity comes from geothermal energy whereas 75% of it comes from hydropower dams.
In Reykjavik, 90% of the houses have natural heating. Meaning, the houses are heated by hot springs that the city is naturally blessed with.
In fact, the name of the city of Reykjavik which means Smoke Cove is named after its natural hot springs.
This is not the only reason the city is named the greenest city.
The city also plans to develop electric and hydrogen-powered cars.
They can start implementing hydrogen technologies faster than the rest of the world as they have enough source of renewable power, both geothermal and hydropower.
The first goal of Reykjavik is producing zero polluting vehicles by the year 2030.
And by 2040, they are planning for carbon-neutral emission only.
Reykjavik is miles ahead than the rest of the world in making the world a better place to live with all the technological developments. Despite that, they aren’t sure if they can meet the COP21 agreements.
This is because of the energy-intensive industries like aluminum and silicon. And also the explosion of tourism.
With a population of around 330,000, the tiny country is visited by 2 million tourists every year. It is also one of many locations of the popular TV show Game of Thrones. This is what makes the development activity pace a little slower.
Nevertheless, the Smoke Bay city or Reykjavik has still made it as the greenest city becoming an example for the rest of the world.