A week to find out if we're the Green Capital
BUSINESS leaders in Bristol believe that up to 1,000 new jobs will be created if the city becomes the Green Capital of Europe in 2014.
Bristol will find out next Friday if we have won the award after being shortlisted two months ago.
The other two shortlisted cities are Frankfurt and Copenhagen.
A delegation of top councillors and council executives will put their final presentation to judges in Brussels before the winner is announced in a ceremony at the end of the month.
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Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg is now giving his support to the Bristol bid. In addition to new jobs, it is expected that the award will:
â generate £1 million worth of national and international media coverage for the city;
â bring 1,000 professional and business tourists to the city, generating an estimated £800,000 for the local economy;
â lead to 5,000 people becoming engaged in "green" activities and accelerate the city's progress towards meeting carbon targets by the end of the decade;
â generate £500,000 of sponsorship for the city;
â trigger £500,000 of European funding for major "green" projects.
Colin Skellet, chair of the newly-created Local Enterprise Partnership said: "This is very good news for the city and is a clear signal of Bristol's standing as a great place to do business.
"Winning the title of European Green Capital would provide an excellent platform for local businesses to market themselves on the national and international stage and help attract new investment to the West of England."
If Bristol wins Green Capital status, then it will be used to help bring new investment to the Temple Quarter Enterprise Zone which aims to attract 4,000 new jobs during the next five years.
It is also expected to raise Bristol's profile in Brazilian, Russian, Indian and Chinese markets. The city is not as strong in these markets as some other British cities, such as Manchester, for example, because we don't have such high-profile football teams.
Hamburg, which was Green Capital of Europe last year, created more than 1,000 new jobs in renewable energy and environmental technology as a result of winning the award.
Stockholm, which won the award in 2010, estimate the value of the Swedish media coverage was £1 million and more in the international media.
Alan Bailey, chair of Low Carbon South West, a body which represents "green" firms in the region and which currently employs about 18,000 people in Bristol, said: "Bristol winning the European Green Capital Award and the resultant publicity and business profile raising that the award and the 2014 programme would deliver will enable our world class innovators to sell more products and services creating local jobs and economic growth."
Council leader Simon Cook said the award would be a tremendous fillip to the city during the current economic downturn.
He said: "Bristol would benefit enormously from this award. It would encourage many business and professional visits to the city and we expect that it would attract national and international conferences which would help the local economy.
"Stockholm had six months to organise their year and attracted 1,000 professional visitors to their own events and conferences.
"This generated an estimated £800,000 for the local economy in hotels and other expenditure.
"Other cities have been able use the award to attract other organisations events and conferences."
Mr Clegg said in a letter to Mr Cook that the Government would support the city if it won the award.