Istanbul Environment Friendly City Award • 4th edition (2022-2023)

Genoa is the winning city of the 4th edition Istanbul Environment Friendly City Award

Ms Tatjana Hema
UNEP/MAP Coordinator at Mediterranean Pavilion – COP27

The Award • Recognizing the role and contributions of cities and local authorities in fulfilling the UNEP/MAP vision for a healthy Mediterranean Sea and Coast

The Istanbul Environment Friendly City Award was created in the framework of the Mediterranean Strategy for Sustainable Development (MSSD 2016-2025) to recognize efforts of local authorities in promoting sustainable development in Mediterranean coastal cities.

A Mediterranean environment friendly city is “a coastal city in harmony with the sea, utilizing its resources efficiently, equitably and sustainably, reducing its impact on marine and coastal environment and climate change, and managing the environment for the benefit of current and future generations“. In other words, a coastal city in which people enjoy a high quality of life and where sustainable development takes place within the carrying capacity of healthy ecosystems.

The objectives of the Award are to encourage local authorities to move towards a more environment friendly future; enable local authorities to act as a role-model to inspire other cities; and, raise the awareness of the general public regarding the quality of environment in their cities


Cities located along the Mediterranean coast, both small towns and metropolitan agglomerations, are invited to apply by demonstrating concrete steps taken and progress achieved to protect the environment, improve the quality of life, and promote sustainable development, in line with the priorities of the Mediterranean Action Plan and the principles enshrined in the Barcelona Convention for the Protection of the Marine Environment and the Coastal Region of the Mediterranean.

Applications submitted by local authorities should emphasize partnerships with civil society, the scientific community and the private sector, including actions aimed at promoting urban sustainability. Both achievements and plans for strengthening urban sustainability in a Mediterranean coastal context will be considered

Application process

to create your profile and to fill in the application form.

The following measure units are to be corrected as follow:
– B1.4. from “%” to “m/ha”
– B5.1  from “number” to “%”
– B5.6  from “Liters /day / inhabitant” to “%”
Please the link to the survey/application form you will received after registration has to be saved for further updates. Note that the application cannot be modified after submission.
The application form starts with a few general questions to better know the urban context of your city or agglomeration.
For familiarizing yourself with the application form prior to fill-in online, you can download it through the following links: [MS WordPDF]
For further information please contact

There are 15 macro-indicators, which are distributed in four categories, as per relevant COP 19 Decision – Istanbul Environment Friendly City Award, namely: 1. Nature and biodiversity protection; 2. Built environment; 3. Socio-economic and cultural sustainability, and 4. Policy and governance.


For each of those macro indicators, you are invited to:

  • Reply to a few simple yes/no questions (general approach of the city)
  • Describe the present situation through a text box with a description of the expected information
  • Provide data to inform some quantitative indicators (current situation)
  • Describe the measures and progress achieved in the last 5-10 years through a text box with a description of the expected information
  • Describe perspectives and plans for the future through a text box with a description of the expected information
  • Provide references, supporting documentation, etc.

It is recommended but not mandatory to provide qualitative and quantitative information for all indicators.

A “Calculation Guide” for the quantitative indicators is provided to explain the assessment methods: LINK

Prior to submit your application, you will be invited to provide feedback and observations on the overall process and in particular on your experience with the application form.

nomination and selection process

    • August 2023: The Secretariat to proceed with the initial screening of the applications
    • August-September 2023: The Technical Committee supported by three independent experts to propose a short list (three cities) and to draft the evaluation report
    • September 2023: The Jury to approve the evaluation report and to nominate the winning cities
    • September-October 2023: The Secretariat to notify applicant cities about the results of the selection and nomination process, and; organization of a regional experience sharing workshop with applicant cities and partners
    • December 2023: Award giving ceremony

    IEFCA Introductory Workshop • 18th May 2023

    Award participation rules and a guided presentation of the application form for the Mediterranean Coastal Cities

    The Istanbul Environment Friendly City Award is financially supported by the Government of Türkiye through a voluntary contribution to the UNEP/MAP Programme of Work and Budget.

    Since the second edition (2018-2019), this initiative is technically supported by the International Initiative for Sustainable Built Environment (iiSBE-Italy). It also benefits of in-kind support from experts in the context of the ENI CBC MED Sustainable Mediterranean Cities project.

    The communication campaign is supported by networks of local authorities such as Med CitiesAvitemFAIC, and CPMR. On 26-27 October 2021, a Peer Review and Experience Sharing Stakeholder Meeting was organized in Barcelona, Spain, by Med Cities in partnership with UNEP/MAP and the Secretariat of the Union for the Mediterranean.