The European Green Capital Award (EGCA) and the European Green Leaf Award (EGLA) is an initiative of the European Commission that rewards European cities for committing to a better urban environment that is fit for life. Both competitions are open to EU Member States, EU Candidate Countries, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland.
To date, ten cities across Europe have won the European Green Capital Award, including Stockholm (2010), Hamburg (2011), Vitoria-Gasteiz (2012), Nantes (2013), Copenhagen (2014), Bristol (2015), Ljubljana (2016), Essen (2017), Nijmegen (2018) and Oslo (2019). Cities with populations over 100,000 inhabitants are eligible to apply for the European Green Capital Award.
The European Green Leaf is open to cities of between 20,000 and up to 100,000 inhabitants. The European Green Leaf inaugural 2015 Award winners were both Mollet del Vallès, Spain, and Torres Vedras, Portugal. The city of Galway in Ireland holds the title for European Green Leaf 2017, with both Leuven, Belgium, and Växjö, Sweden, holding the title in 2018.
The European Green Capital and European Green Leaf Awards Secretariat facilitates the competition and promotes the initiative throughout Europe. This includes attending forums and conferences to raise awareness of the Awards and encourage cities to participate.