Valongo is located in the North of Portugal, District of Porto and is part of the Metropolitan Area of Porto (AMP). It has a population of 93,858 inhabitants.
The name Valongo originated by the Latin words Vallis Longus (long valley) when the Romans settled in the region as they were attracted by the gold mining opportunities in the Serra de Santa Justa.
An area of 58.3% of the municipality is covered by forest, part of which is classified as a Natura 2000 Site and part as a Regional Protected Landscape Area. Especially for these areas the Municipal Strategy for Adaptation to Climate Change is in place. This aims at increasing resilience to fire, consolidating margins for flood and inundation abatement.
Valongo has a number of interesting projects underway or in development which are meant to demonstrate how the city can enhance its biodiversity whilst also benefiting the well-being of its citizens such as the FUTURO project, the Urban Agriculture Laboratory, Leça Corridor Project, and the Enhancement and Adaptation of the Ferreira and Sousa Rivers.
The city aims high when it comes to circular economy. In addition to collecting door-to-door residual waste of households together with clothes, Waste from Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) and cooking oil, the municipality of Valongo intends to extend this action up to 90% by 2030 and include paper, packaging, glass and food collection.
The European Green Leaf jury highlighted the various ways the city is offering support to low-income citizens in the transition to sustainability as well as Valongo’s close collaboration with neighbouring cities to preserve the surrounding nature.
Although being a first-time applicant, Valongo has presented itself as a credible green ambassador, addressing and convincingly tackling a wide range of relevant environmental issues.
Last but not least, Valongo is planning to sign the EU Circular Cities Declaration.