Barcelona and Climate Change

barcelona bike

Climate change is a global problem. Everyone who lives on this planet is affected by this crisis. Hence, we should all work together to lessen the effects of climate change and create a better future.

Barcelona and Climate Change

One of the biggest contributors to helping stop climate change is Barcelona, Spain. Their mayor, Ada Colau,  explained their plans to create a more sustainable environment for their residents. 

They offered a road map that would help guide future actions that are aimed at mitigating and adapting to climate change. According to Barcelona’s plan, they are reducing greenhouse gas emissions by up to 40% by 2030. 

Not only that, but they are also very much enthusiastic about increasing their urban green space. They are increasing green spaces to one square metre per current inhabitant. This strategy will help create a city that is much cooler and more habitable.

The expected results are better air quality and better quality of life for their citizens. They also look to reduce their road traffic by 21 percent. 

This, of course, can be done by increasing the number of journeys people can make by foot or by bicycle. Most of these plans are already being implemented, and larger cities all over the world are following their lead.

How Will Barcelona Achieve These Goals?

In order to be successful at this, Barcelona needs to implement a lot of structural measures over the next two years. They also plan to introduce traffic calming measures and create more spaces where people can interact. 

All of these will help create a better change to the city’s urban infrastructure. As of the moment, the city is putting priority on reducing air pollution levels, adding more green spaces, reducing noise pollution, cutting down on road traffic accident rate and sedentary lifestyle.

Road to a Greener City

Barcelona’s local government has already taken steps toward their goals. They have already authorized multiple programs for this. The goal is to finish these between 2015-2019, and 2019-2030.  

The plan covers three different areas. These areas include improving existing green spaces, and adding new ones. They also aim to give their residents a more enthusiastic role in managing the said green spaces. They aim to add 165 more hectares of green spaces by 2030.  

Moving Around the City

bike Barcelona

Aside from adding more green infrastructure, Barcelona’s local government is also working on creating a more safe and more sustainable mobility in their city. This is why they are currently working on policies that will help reduce the number of trips made by private vehicles. And they also encourage their residents to make travels through sustainable modes of transportation. This includes cycling, using public transport, or going by foot. 

Creating new traffic calming zones is one of their ways to encourage travels on foot. They have restricted areas that are only used for sports, culture, and leisure activities for their local residents. 

Adding More Bicycle Lanes

Another plan is by tripling the number of cycle lane kilometers. They want to extend their bike infrastructure. This means that it will go from 116 kilometers to 308 kilometers. That’s almost triple the length. 

They have invested over 32 million euros for this. It is the city council’s goal to create a better, extensive and improved cycle lane network that will guarantee the safety of their residents. This plan also enables travels to be made all over the city without interrupting walkers on sidewalks. 

Barcelona’s Customized Bike Lanes

The city is also filled with streets where bike lanes are customized depending on each section’s necessities. They take into account the width of sidewalks, public transport activity, parking spaces, trash containers, and more. 

Barcelona already has a lot of bike lanes, and they are planning on growing the number. This new bicycle network is segregated by using plastic separators. 

Bicycle lanes with a unique direction are at 1.40 meters wide. On the other hand, bike lanes with directions are at 1.90 meters. 

They also made it better by adding new surfacing for the streets, and adding parking spaces for bicycles. These parking spaces are close to each bike lane. 

The city also boasts a new system that counts all the bicycles that move along each bike lane. They also replaced their metallic grid for water drainage with the goal to avoid the wheels of the bikes getting stuck.

Improvement in Public Transportation Infrastructure

In addition to their plans for climate change, Barcelona is also creating major changes in their public transport. They added two new Line 10 stations that had a major impact on their local residents. 

Banning Polluting Cars on the Streets

With regards to private vehicles, Barcelona aims to ban the most polluting cars from their roads. Their Programme of Measures to Combat Atmospheric Pollution aims to restrict access to the most polluting vehicles.

This program also helps promote change towards an active and more sustainable mobility. It encourages local residents to use public transportation, bicycles and walking.

Overall Improvement for Barcelona and Climate Change

In this article, we have discussed Barcelona and the steps they are taking towards a better response for climate change. Their effort to improve their public transportation, green infrastructure, and more are truly something to look forward to. 

It is clear that Barcelona prioritizes their commitment to creating a better quality of life for its residents. And they are also committed to improving the city’s living conditions and habitability. All of these changes will truly create a more sustainable lifestyle. One that’s healthier for its citizens, and better for the planet.

These projects mentioned above are not only for the well-being of Barcelona’s citizens, it is also a great example for different cities all over the world. If everyone takes a step towards a better, more eco-friendly solution, then our planet still has a chance against climate change.

© Image credits to Jasser Gomez & J Shim

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