Green Reykjavík


The City of Reykjavík won the Nordic Nature and Environment Prize 2014 and the city is now in sixth place of the Global Destination Sustainability Index. The city is the world´s most sustainable city in the world.  Reykjavik City has also put forward a climate policy paper with an action plan where goals are established for a carbon neutral city 2040.

Over 99% of electricity production and almost 80% of total energy production in Iceland comes from hydropower and geothermal power making meeting buildings quite naturally eco-friendly. No other nation uses such a high proportion of renewable energy resources. The Icelandic government has stated an objective of making Iceland the first nation to use only renewable energy for its power in the near future according to the Icelandic National Strategy for sustainable development. Reykjavik is a global centre for renewable energy research, as universities, government departments, public and private companies all contribute. renewable energy

President Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson and the people of Iceland were presented with the first-ever Atkinson Center Award for Global Leadership in Sustainable Development for promoting the use of renewable energy while reducing its own reliance on fossil fuels.

The world’s largest geothermal heating system is located in the Icelandic capital. It has been growing and improving since it opened in 1930. 90% of the housing in Iceland is geothermally heated, 9% with electricity and 1% with oil. This means that all venues and accommodations are naturally sustainable and comfortably warm, even during the coldest winter days. For half a century emission of greenhouse gases in Reykjavík have been systematically reduced and residents have found use for the surplus water using the 20°-40°C water that has already heated their homes to keep ice from forming on their driveways and pavements.

A considerable number of the vegetables and fruits consumed by Icelanders are grown in greenhouses heated geo-thermally and illuminated by hydro-electricity. There is even a banana plantation in Iceland, one of the largest in Europe. Icelandic farmers take pride in their environmentally-friendly growing methods. Bees are imported to fertilize the plants, as are insects that help to limit the number of parasites that might risk causing damage. It’s no wonder Icelandic vegetables are so rich in flavour and colour.

There is a Geothermal beach, Nautholsvik, in Reykjavik. Golden beach sand was imported and big seawalls were build which form a lagoon where the cold sea and hot geothermal water fuse together. Sea bathing is getting increasingly popular and Nautholsvik is the perfect spot where you can warm up in a large hot tub after a swim in the Atlantic Ocean. Our swimmingpools are thermal pools and are popular for health benefits and gossiping in the hot tubs.

The tap water is famous for being pure and untainted with chemicals and minerals. This, of course, reflects the innovative and refined culinary scene, not to mention our beer breweries that have won international awards. Iceland is in fact starting to develop as a foodie destination.

Icelanders are are constantly exploring alternative fuel and electric cars. Methane, hydrogen and electric cars are in use by a number of civil services within the city and the municipal government intends to increase the number of these types of vehicles further.


An overview over Meet in Reykjavik´s and our partners sustainable actions can be seen here