Earlier this week the world’s most polluted major city according to AirVisual’s rankings, Belgrade was recently featured as a green city in German supermarket chain Penny’s viral organic food ad. The virtual greenery transformed even New Belgrade’s brutalism into a fairytale environment for a healthy lifestyle and an overall good mood.
In the ad, Nena, known for her 1980s hit 99 Luftballoons and today also for her sustainable lifestyle, sings about a fine day as she walks through Belgrade surrounded by real and virtual greenery – both added for the set – urban gardens, birds, and butterflies.
The video ends with what is a sad scene for many Belgraders – the Old Sava Bridge, in reality counting its last days, is transformed into an unreal structure wrapped in lush greenery.
And while the Old Sava Bridge is perhaps a thing of the past, at least in the place where it was built in 1942, Belgrade’s sustainable development is a thing of the future, provided the city authorities start tackling structural problems connected to air pollution, waste management, and spatial planning, but also provided that residents themselves contribute to a healthier and greener life in the city.
The latter is possible without any help from the authorities – everyone can make their balcony greener and abstain from littering and parking their car in undesignated spaces, or even driving when it’s not necessary. Not to mention burning hazardous waste such as plastic and tires for household heating, making cities across the region some of the most polluted in the world.
Green roofs are among the solutions developed by modern architecture in search of sustainable building solutions. Balkan Green Energy News has recently also featured the Green Living Concept involving a green roof, green terraces, and green walls.
Solutions are there, and it’s up to all of us to apply them if we wish to live a life resembling a German ad for organic food, filmed in an unreal city.