The sustainable development of our local communities is important to us. As such, we are supporting Delfshaven Cooperative’s sustainable energy programme as part of the city of Rotterdam’s 100 Resilient Cities initiative.
Rotterdam, the second largest city in the Netherlands, was selected in 2013 as one of the 100 Resilient Cities, an initiative pioneered by the Rockefeller Foundation.
This initiative aims to help 100 cities around the world to become more resilient to the growing physical, social and economic challenges of the 21st century – for the benefit of all its citizens, particularly the poor and vulnerable.
By building up resilience, cities can better adapt and respond to the chronic stresses (such as unemployment and crime) and acute shocks (such as floods and earthquakes) they each experience.
Making Rotterdam more resilient
With a population of around 635,000 people, and home to Europe’s largest port, Rotterdam’s ideal coastal location has made it a shipping centre for centuries.
As nearly 80% of Rotterdam is below sea level, the city also has a lot of experience when it comes to resilience and how it manages its vulnerability to extreme weather.
In 2007, the city announced its goal of becoming 100% climate-proof by 2025 and it continues working towards enhancing its resilience for future generations.
A community solar energy programme
As one of the 100 Resilient Cities, Rotterdam has been developing a range of environmental, social and economic programmes across the city, such as the forward-thinking Delfshaven Cooperative.
Delfshaven is a small historic neighbourhood in Rotterdam with a population of around 73,000 people. In 2015, the Delfshaven Cooperative was created to link local initiatives and people with the government and business community so they can all collaborate on a variety of programmes for everyone’s benefit.
Local ownership and involvement, self-management, entrepreneurship, sustainable development and shared interests are all key elements that make Delfshaven Cooperative’s programmes both innovative and inclusive.
We are supporting Delfshaven Cooperative’s energy programme to make the area’s power supply more sustainable, versatile and resilient by using solar energy sources for heating and electricity. As solar panels become accessible to every resident, they can have more control over their own energy supply while reducing their carbon footprint. More jobs are also created to construct and manage these renewable energy systems, giving the local economy a welcome boost.