Newly elected regional governor of Attica, Nikos Hardalias, on Monday stressed the increasing importance of the role of the Region of Attica in the country’s development, but also its transformation into being “sustainable and environmentally friendly, with the NSRF as an ally and a vehicle for using new technologies, which is also a key priority of the new administration.”
Hardalias was speaking at the 7th Sustainability Conference for Southeast Europe and the Mediterranean, organised by the Economist.
More specifically, Nikos Hardalias, speaking about how the Region of Attica can become greener and more sustainable, described the effort to reorganise the productivity of Athens as “vital for the impetus of the national development of Greece.”
Citing data from an OECD survey, he said that the Attica Region contributes approximately 48% of the national GDP and 43% of employment. It has the highest GDP per capita (23.3 thousand in 2018) and one of the lowest unemployment rates (13% in the first quarter of 2021) among the 13 regions of the country. He underlined that the metropolitan character of the Region of Attica influences and determines the country’s key figures at the European and global level, as with the country’s growth rate of 2% per year, Greece will return to pre-crisis levels in 15 years, while with a growth rate of the Attica Region of 3% per year, the recovery period is reduced by 7 years.
Moreover, he underlined that “effective integrated governance and planning of the metropolitan region of Attica is required in order to implement multisectoral strategies for economic development and better management of the negative effects of urban complexes, especially with regard to the goals of sustainable development where the Region of Attica shows a low performance, as for example, the small amount of greenspace per inhabitant and square kilometer, the aging and energy-consuming building stock, the high rate of waste production combined with low recycling rates. In addition, climate change poses an additional threat, creating a particularly stressful environment for the citizens of our region.”
The newly elected Attica governor stated that his main goal is better results in the environmental sector and in particular the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, but also the saving of energy, taking into account the principles of the circular economy both in daily activities and and in the design and implementation of new projects.