This article was written by Adrian Muller in October 2007. We're republishing it here as part of our month-long editorial retrospective.
In June, the residents of Mexico City had the opportunity to participate in a green referendum promoted by the government. The exercise, together with an analysis carried out by public authorities, served to prepare Mexico City’s Green Plan: a body of strategies and actions to ensure the sustainable development of the city. The referendum also served as a communications mechanism for citizens to learn, in a simple and lively way, about the government's sustainablity targets.
Presented two months ago by Mayor Marcelo Ebrard, the Green Plan is a living instrument that will constantly be evaluated and enhanced. The plan is divided into seven major areas: land conservation, public spaces, water, mobility, air, waste, climate change and energy. Each area has its own set of objectives and strategies proposed to achieve them.
Public participation is one of the key drivers behind the plan. In the words of Mayor Ebrard,
Everybody in the city will have to do something if we really aspire to improve things, people can not expect the government to do this on its own. Change is a team effort and it’s in all of us to start making a difference.
Among the different strategies outlined in the plan, the ones that have earned particular attention include:
The government is aware that if the plan is to succeed, it will need not just public acceptance, but also require complementary strategies across different competencies and areas of government to guarantee the resources needed for its execution:
Indeed, even if only some of the strategies proposed by Mexico City’s Green Plan succeed, it will still provide a good reference point for other cities with similar sustainability issues, plans and goals.
Image: Mexico City. Credit: flickr/Pulpolux
The Green Plan: An integrated sustainability strategy for Mexico City is part of our month long retrospective leading up to our anniversary on October 1. For the next four weeks, we'll celebrate five years of solutions-based, forward-thinking and innovative journalism by publishing the best of the Worldchanging archives.