The city of Porto Alegre is one of the most important cultural, political and economic centers of Southern Brazil. The capital of the southernmost state of Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre is the eleventh most populous municipality in Brazil. The centre of Brazil's fifth largest economic area, Porto Alegre serves as an important hub of international exchange, with Rio Grande do Sul bordering the Mercosur countries of Argentina and Uruguay.
Porto Alegre was the second city in Brazil to be chosen to become a model city. It is currently in the process of establishing policy structure and initial project set-up, as well as the needs and interests for the renewable energy resource centre.
The official Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signing between ICLEI and the city of Porto Alegre took place in May 2009. The city is eager to establish their resource centre and is in contact with the Indian Model Community cities for advice and experience in establishing such a centre.
Porto Alegre has also recently won the Eco-City award for its project on processing used cooking oil to produce biodiesel fuel. The project was developed by the Municipal Secretary of Environment and the Urban Cleaning Department. For more information, see ICLEI case study number 96.