News: City of Cape Town awarded a medal of honour in global sustainability award
  Nov 23, 2021     News, Wisp, Cape Town, Industrial Symbiosis, Competitions, Challenges and Awards

The City of Cape Town has been awarded a Medal of Honour in the 5th Guangzhou International Awards for Urban Innovation for its partnership with the Western Cape Industrial Symbiosis Programme (WISP), delivered by GreenCape.


“We are very pleased that our partnership with GreenCape to implement WISP presented the opportunity for this global learning engagement, and that the efforts we are implementing as a City to promote a more circular economy is getting international recognition for the impact that it has in promoting investment and creating jobs in the City,” said Alderman James Vos, City of Cape Town Mayoral Committee member for Economic Opportunities and Asset Management.


The City was shortlisted in the Top 15 earlier this year, out of 273 initiatives from 175 cities and local governments in 60 countries and regions. 


This global award aims to recognize innovation that improves social, economic and environmental sustainability in cities and regions and, in so doing, advances the prosperity and quality of life.  Guangzhou Awards recognise winning projects: “for their ability to stimulate new policies and strategies, form new partnerships engaging with multi-sector stakeholders and employ technology to their advantage.”


The award’s technical committee commended WISP for its promotion of sharing resources between companies, thus cutting costs, increasing profits, improving business processes and learning from each other about how to operate more sustainably.


The cumulative impact of WISP over the last eight years has been the following:


  • 119 000 tonnes of waste diverted from landfill;
  • 362 000 fossil GHG emissions saved (equivalent to the annual electrical usage of 46 600 households in SA);
  • Over R134 million generated in financial benefits (additional revenue, cost savings and private investments);
  • 69 permanent jobs in member companies, as well as 25 temporary positions, and 265 economy-wide jobs in supply chains have been created.


The 15 shortlisted cities of the 5th Guangzhou Award were: City of Unley, Australia; Wien, Austria; São José dos Pinhais, Brazil; Chongqing Municipality, China; Capital Region of Denmark, Denmark; Quito, Ecuador; All 114 Urban Local Bodies (ULBs) of Odisha, India; Berhampur Municipal Corporation (BeMC), India; Bandung City Government, Indonesia; Union of Municipalities, Lebanon; Municipality Of Antananarivo (Commune Urbaine d'Antananarivo, Madagascar; Breda, Netherlands; Departmental Council of Saint Louis, Senegal; City of Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa; Los Angeles, USA.