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News - 20 October 2007

Brighton & Hove tops sustainability league table

Brighton and Hove is the most sustainable city with the best quality of life in Britain, according to the Forum for the Future – a leading environmental charity.

Brighton and Hove came top overall in the Sustainable Cities Index, which ranks the 20 largest British cities according three criteria

  • environmental impact
  • quality of life
  • future proofing (i.e. how well the city is addressing issues such as climate change, recycling and biodiversity).

The Forum selected these index categories to reflect the sustainability of each city in a fair and balanced way. A total of 13 indicators, spread across the three, headlines were used. The indicators use existing data on aspects of performance on which cities are already expected to make improvements

Brighton came first, nearly ten points ahead of its nearest rival Edinburgh, because it was found to have the best quality of life - measured by a healthy average life expectancy of 65 years and public satisfaction with green spaces and bus services. Air and water quality were singled out in the report as two areas needing improvement.

Reasonably low unemployment levels and a highly educated population also counted, and the city came top of the future proofing league because of the council's commitment to tackle climate change and recycling via its sign up to the UK Sustainable Development Strategy.

The Forum for the Future is the charity founded by environmentalist and writer Jonathon Porritt who was a founder member of Greenpeace.

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