City leaders committed to reduce emissions and take actions to promote low-emission, climate-resilient urban infrastructure, in a series of events on the sidelines of the Paris Climate Change Conference.
The events featured commitments and a publication launch.
4 December 2015: City leaders committed to reduce emissions and take actions to promote low-emission, climate-resilient urban infrastructure in a series of events on the sidelines of the Paris Climate Change Conference. The events featured commitments and a publication launch.
The Climate Summit for Local Leaders, the largest global gathering of mayors, governors and local leaders on climate change, resulted in a Summit Declaration, in which local authorities commit to reduce emissions, support transitions to clean energy, and scale up plans to protect cities and regions from climate impacts. Speaking at the event, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon highlighted the role of innovative policies and mechanisms in unlocking investment for climate-smart infrastructure in cities, which he said would reduce carbon footprints and contribute to cleaner air and healthier lives.
The Cities Climate Finance Leadership Alliance, a coalition of over 40 national governments, banks and civil society organizations, launched ‘The State of City Climate Finance.’ The report analyzes obstacles for cities in obtaining financing for low-emission, climate-resilient urban infrastructure, observing that many cities do not generate sufficient fiscal resources, or face challenges in accessing financial markets. Highlighted challenges include: uncertainty over regulatory and tax policies; lack of control over infrastructure planning; limited expertise in project development; high transaction costs; and city credit-worthiness.
The report recommends five actions for mobilizing infrastructure investment: urging national governments to adopt incentives and policies to encourage cities to invest in low-emission and climate-resilient infrastructure; supporting cities to adopt frameworks to put a price on carbon; strengthening banks and institutions to support cities to develop climate projects; directing international development finance through local financial institutions; and creating an innovation network for financial instruments and funding models.
The ‘Compact of States and Regions’ event launched Regions Adapt, a commitment by its members to develop climate adaptation plans and report on their progress, and Under2MOU, in which 57 state and regional leaders committed to reduce emissions by 80% under 2050. Ban described Under2MOU’s commitment as “a game changer,” calling it “the most ambitious commitment made to date from states and provinces worldwide.”
The Paris Climate Change Conference features a Cities and Regions Pavilion, which is hosting numerous events. [UN Press Release] [SDSN Press Release] [UN Secretary-General’s Statement at Summit for Local Leaders] [UN Secretary-General’s Statement at Compact of States and Regions] [UN Secretary-General’s Statement at Publication Launch] [World Bank Press Release] [ICLEI Press Release on Climate Summit] [ICLEI Press Release on Pavilion] [UNFCCC Press Release] [Climate Summit Website]