SOFIA DEVELOPMENT ASSOCIATION was founded as non-profit organization with the decision 348
of the Sofia Municipal Council to work for the sustainable development of the capital.


The conference "Countermeasures to Urban Heat Islands", organized on March 1, 2024 by the Sofia Development Association, brought together leading policymakers, academic experts and researchers, representatives of European cities and regions from 12 European countries, who discussed together the causes, effects and solutions to overcome urban heat islands.

The conference was opened by Julian Popov, Minister of Environment, who pointed out that we need to start thinking seriously about climate adaptation and take specific actions to overcome the effects of heat islands – energy efficiency, green roofs, restoration of urban rivers.

The Deputy Minister of Regional Development Angelina Boneva shared with the participants the recipe for dealing with urban heat: recognition of the problems related to warming and urbanization; development of a strategy; sharing of experiences; institutional involvement; and development of appropriate, place-based solutions.

Nadezhda Bobcheva, Deputy Mayor of Sofia Municipality on environment, explained the complexity of the topic – the intersection of the economy, urban planning, ecology, social cohesion. That is why Sofia's work is in different aspects – improving green spaces, creating groves in neighborhoods, schoolyards and inter-block spaces.

Experts from the universities of Vienna, Bratislava and Sofia presented scientific models and methods that can benefit municipalities. Representatives of European cities and regions shared their approaches and challenges.

The conference is held within the project "Be Ready" under the Interreg Danube Program, led by the Sofia Development Association. "The project aims to equip cities with research and tools and help them develop pilot solutions for climate resilience and adaptation together with citizens," said Sevdalina Voynova, Head of BeReady. Sofia Municipality is a strategic partner in the project.





This conference is supported as part of Be Ready, an Interreg Danube Region Programme project co-funded by the European Union.

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