Basel is becoming even more sustainable

Basel supports the climate-friendly staging of exhibitions and conferences and has been committed to sustainability for many years.

Strategy and goals

In November 2022, the citizens in the canton of Basel-Stadt approved the plan to achieve net zero by 2037. This means that, by 2037, the canton should not emit more greenhouse gases than can be absorbed naturally or by technical means. 

Thanks to its exemplary energy policy, Basel was awarded the European Energy Award Gold for the fifth time in 2022. The city has also been committed to the vision of a 2000-watt society since 2001. The goal is to reduce energy consumption gradually to 2000 watts per person.

Basel aims to increase its energy efficiency and promotes the development of renewable energy and environmentally compatible mobility: 

  • Since 2009, 100% of the electricity provided by the energy supplier IWB (Industrielle Werke Basel) has come from renewable sources.
  • Basel has above-average public transport connections. A bus takes passengers from EuroAirport Basel-Mulhouse-Freiburg to the Basel city centre in just 15 minutes. Zurich Airport is 70 minutes by train from Basel.
  • In 2019, Basel was the first Swiss city to declare a climate emergency. As such, the Basel Parliament considers combating climate change a responsibility of the highest priority.
  • Basel is an Energy City Gold, which is continuously working towards the efficient use of energy, climate protection and renewable energies.
  • The Basler Verkehrsbetriebe will convert its entire bus fleet to electric mobility by 2027. This makes it a pioneer in Europe.
  • Basel is a certified “city on the path to the 2000-watt society”.
  • Hotel guests receive a free BaselCard, which allows them to use public transport for the entire duration of their stay – an effective measure to limit individual transport. In addition, the BaselCard can be used to rent an e-bike for only CHF 20 a day.

Basel takes ecological, economic and social aspects of sustainability into account in many other areas:

  • Basel promotes fair trade and was officially named Switzerland’s biggest “Fair Trade Town” in May 2022.
  • To promote sustainable food, Basel has signed up to the Milan Urban Food Policy Pact.
  • Basel is a member of the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group and ICLEI city networks, which support projects and campaigns for sustainable urban development.
  • The Congress Center Basel’s online climate calculator provides organizers with an overview of the climate impact and carbon footprint of their event. They can offset their emissions by supporting individually selected climate protection projects.
  • The “Basel isst abfallfrei” (“Basel eats out with zero waste”) campaign promotes opportunities to purchase food and drink in reusable containers. A sticker at the entrance of take-away providers indicates to customers that they and their reusable eating and drinking utensils are welcome here.


Switzerland is already a pioneer in matters of sustainability – not only in terms of the landscape but also thanks to its outstanding infrastructure. Swiss cities make a good case for being sustainability superstars due to the spatial proximity of their points of interest in particular. Nowhere else in the world are the attractions, cultural institutions, restaurants, insider tips and opportunities to shop closer together.

This is also the case in Basel, and that is precisely why the city is eager and motivated to further develop and promote the destination in terms of sustainability. All of this is to happen not only within the Basel Tourism organization but also in close collaboration with the city and canton as well as various tourism service providers and stakeholders. Positioning Basel on a lasting basis as a world-renowned smart city is the objective that drives all partners and contributors.

Swisstainable level II

Basel Tourism participates in Swisstainable, the sustainability programme developed by Switzerland Tourism. Level II businesses have at least one sustainability certificate. They pledge to operate sustainably and improve their sustainability standards on a continuous basis.

Certification (only in German):

OK:GO initiative

Basel Tourism is participating in OK:GO. This nationwide initiative aims to make information on the accessibility of tourist offers available to the public. By participating in this initiative, the Tourist Information office at the Stadtcasino sets an example for good customer service and makes an important contribution to sustainable and inclusive tourism.

Cause We Care

When guests make online bookings, Basel Tourism offers them the opportunity to make a small, voluntary contribution to climate protection and sustainability. As a member of Cause We Care, Basel Tourism will match all contributions made.

News on sustainability in Basel


Basel reaches Level I as a "Swisstainable Destination"

Media release 


Canton Basel City approves ‘ambitious’ climate goal


Die Flora wird Basels erste klimaneutrale Buvette


Erster Round Table zum nachhaltigen Tourismus in Basel


Basel wird Fair Trade Town!


Velospot-Fahrradverleih: Velo oder E-Bike mieten in Basel


How this Swiss city is using green roofs to combat climate change


GAIA Hotel Basel erhält ibex fairstay gold-Zertifikat


Kunstmuseum, Kaserne, Literaturhaus und das Neue Orchester Basel wollen Kultur divers gestalten


Smart City Lab – so werden in Zukunft Städte gebaut