UN-Habitat, Partners Call for Multi-level Action for Successful NDC Implementation
UN Photo/Kibae Park
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The publication notes that coordinated and integrated multilevel action is critical for countries to implement their NDCs, raise ambition and advance the SDGs.

The paper provides examples of measures that national governments can take to raise NDC ambition through subnational involvement.

It argues that the Talanoa Dialogue presents an opportunity to “co-design an approach to multi-level NDC implementation” by jointly “raising the bar” for inclusive and effective implementation of the Paris Agreement on climate change.

16 May 2018: The UN Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat), ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability and Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) have prepared a joint submission to the Talanoa Dialogue process under the UNFCCC, which demonstrates that national, regional and local government levels have “a unique and potentially complementary role” to play in advancing low-emission and climate-resilient development.

The joint policy briefing note titled, ‘Talanoa and Beyond: Raising Ambition with Cities and Regions,’ responds to the three Talanoa Dialogue questions: Where are we? Where do we want to go? and How do we get there?

The publication explains that coordinated and integrated multilevel action is critical for countries to implement their Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs), raise ambition and advance the SDGs; argues that national governments should integrate sub-national and local governments into climate change policy, action and financing; and provides examples of where this has been achieved. According to UN-Habitat, 113 out of 164 NDCs submitted by August 2016 address urban issues, particularly adaptation.

The brief argues that the Talanoa Dialogue presents an opportunity to “co-design an approach to multi-level NDC implementation” by jointly “raising the bar” for inclusive and effective implementation of the Paris Agreement on climate change. The Talanoa Dialogue, launched by Fiji during the 23rd session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 23) to the UNFCCC in Bonn, Germany, in November 2017, is a Pacific islands concept that aims to create a safe space for exchanging ideas and collective decision making.

According to UN-Habitat, 113 out of 164 NDCs submitted by August 2016 address urban issues, particularly adaptation.

Benefits of multilevel action for national governments highlighted in the paper include: encouraging collaborative governance; increasing the ambition of the NDCs by including subnational governments’ targets and actions; improving policy delivery and implementation by including high-emitting urban sectors and at-risk infrastructure and capital; and improving access to data for effective reporting and analysis.

The paper provides examples of measures that national governments can take to raise NDC ambition through subnational involvement in the short term, such as:

  • exploring the role of cities and regions in NDC implementation through Cities and Regions Talanoa Dialogues, which ICLEI launched to provide an opportunity for all stakeholders to collaborate and engage on successful NDC implementation;
  • developing policies to enable NDC initiatives in urban relevant sectors, such as transport, buildings and waste;
  • mobilizing finance for subnational implementation;
  • integrating data on subnational and local level action in national reporting systems and global reporting platforms, such as the carbonn Climate Registry, which maintains the enhanced transparency framework for action and support under the Paris Agreement; and
  • setting up a national competence center for urban and regional climate action, which can help municipalities implement climate action by providing guidance, good practices, advisory support, trainings and peer-to-peer exchange.

The publication outlines examples of multilevel action, such as a South African programme managed by the national government that supports municipalities’ efforts to reduce electricity consumption; and Germany’s National Climate Initiative, which offers targeted funding and strategic advice to municipal actors.

Regarding financing, the brief details requirements for cities and regions to implement climate action, including: direct financing of climate-compatible infrastructure and pilot projects in cities; support for the prioritization, planning and preparation of bankable projects; and domestic finance and official development assistance (ODA) to leverage NDC-related private sector investments.

On measures that national governments can initiate to enhance local climate action over the long term, the paper highlights: competence frameworks, which allocate climate-related responsibilities to lower government levels; reforms in such sectors as land use, transport, buildings, waste and energy; and mainstreaming climate change considerations into financial systems, such as carbon pricing, and public management, such as green budgeting.

The publication also includes a list of resources for all levels of government. [Publication: Talanoa and Beyond: Raising Ambition with Cities and Regions] [NDC Partnership News Story]


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