Dear ICLEI Friends and Colleagues,
This Friday – 5 June 2015 – the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) invites us to be part of World Environment Day (WED). WED is an occasion to assess the challenges we face, to create awareness, to demonstrate the action we are taking, and to share our visions of a better, sustainable future.
There is no doubt that our current lifestyle and mindset are unsustainable. As UNEP points out: “By 2050, if current consumption and production patterns remain the same, and with a rising population expected to reach 9.6 billion, we will need three planets to sustain our ways of living and consumption.”
The challenge is particularly visible in cities. The facts are well known: with increasing urbanization comes an increased demand for natural resources, along with issues of waste, pollution, infrastructure, and so on. But this is also an opportunity for us to engage in ambitious action. In fact, as much as the challenges, innovation is emerging from the urban centers of the world!
The global motto of WED this year is “Seven Billion Dreams. One Planet. Consume with Care.” Let us be modest and go for 50 percent: if more than half the world’s population adopts a sustainable lifestyle, 50 percent of the dream could come true just from cities! If we consume with care, and if we succeed in transforming our cities and our societies, we will make a substantial contribution to the overdue transformation of our planet.
In the build-up to COP21 in Paris, this summer is the time to be bold and holistic – and to prepare for Post-Paris Action. I would therefore like to encourage all ICLEI Members to present their ambitious projects on urban sustainability as part of ICLEI’s Transformative Actions Program (TAP), to increase the visibility and impact of cities and to scale-up funding for major initiatives. TAP your potential!
June will be a milestone on the road to transformation. And Bonn is the location of two major stepping stones. On 1 June 2015, the UNFCCC’s Bonn Climate Change Conference began, while ICLEI’s Resilient Cities 2015 Congress will take place on 8-10 June 2015. I look forward to two weeks of productive and stimulating debates – and of course to welcoming you in Bonn!
With kind regards,
Mayor of Bonn and Member of the ICLEI Global Executive Committee
ICLEI launches Transformative Actions Program application process
Designed as a 10-year program, the TAP aims to raise local and regional climate ambitions as well as to accelerate the implementation of climate actions in the crucial pre-2020 and post-2020 phases. More specifically, the TAP aims to, over time, improve access to existing capital flows to cities and regions, as well as catalyzing and accelerating additional capital flows from public and private investors.
UNFCCC Friends of Cities provide multi-level partnerships for scaling up local action
The engagement of all levels of government – local, subnational and national – is essential when tackling climate change. They are also highly dependent on one another to effectively plan and coordinate unitedly for achieving their respective (shared) climate targets. The UNFCCC’s Friends of Cities will encourage the fostering of climate change adaptation and mitigation by supporting governments and enabling frameworks.
Cities and businesses work to bridge gaps at Metropolitan Solutions 2015
Metropolitan Solutions 2015, which took place on 20-22 May in Berlin’s CityCube, brought together a range of representatives from businesses and cities for plenaries, workshops and discussions on urban sustainability. The lesson was clear: while finance and innovative technology for making cities more sustainable are available, the connections required to bring them to the local level must be strengthened.
Local governments are seeking to provide an impetus to the ongoing Bonn Climate Talks by demonstrating their climate leadership and ambition. The Bonn talks will focus on trimming the 80-page draft climate pre-agreement to be adopted at the UN Climate conference in Paris in December 2015.
- City partnerships in focus during Sustainable Urban China conference
- European Mobility Week and Do the Right Mix campaigns join forces
- New article by ICLEI Secretary General Gino Van Begin in Cities Today
- Roadmap brochure for ambitious climate regime beyond Paris 2015 published
James Nxumalo, Margareta Wahlström and Christiana Figueres announced as patrons of Resilient Cities 2015
The Resilient Cities 2015 congress begins next week. ICLEI is delighted to announce the three patrons of the congress, and to present the final program for participants. This year’s program includes a full-day Finance Forum and a half-day Special Urban Food Forum, as well as an exciting range of plenaries, presentations and panel discussions.
In a pioneering effort, the small urban settlement of Doornkop hosted the first Doornkop Renewable Energy Rural Expo. This event was organised by the local community, with support from the Steve Tshwete Local Municipality and ICLEI Africa.
ICLEI members Zurich (Switzerland) and Copenhagen (Denmark) have done more than any other European cities to combat urban air pollution, a new ranking by the campaign “Soot Free for the Climate” has revealed. Coming in at first and second place respectively, the Swiss and Danish cities were followed by Vienna (Austria) and Stockholm (Sweden).
As a city from an arid region, Solapur faces problems of scarcity of water, high T & D losses in water supply network, sewage treatment, river/nallah pollution and air pollution. Recently the city has initiated implementation of 3 decentralized wastewater treatment plants to prevent nallah/river pollution.
More Local Action Stories
- ICLEI Member Vitoria-Gasteiz doubles cycling share
- Workshop on adaptation portal to feature at Resilient Cities 2015
- Moving steadily towards building climate resilience in South Asia
2nd Urban-LEDS International Networking Seminar (INS) welcomes over 60 participants
The 2nd Urban-LEDS International Networking Seminar (INS) welcomed over 60 participants – including senior local government representatives of 37 Urban-LEDS project cities in Brazil, India, Indonesia, South Africa, and Europe – to meet and learn from each other. 12 Urban-LEDS cities expressed their intent to comply with the Compact of Mayors as leaders in support of transparent approaches to reducing city-level emissions.
The pilot projects were selected as part of an interactive exercise, with stakeholders asked to rank a set of projects based on environmental, social and economic feasibility/efficiency. The projects with the highest score were finalized for implementation, in consultation with the Municipal officials.
18th Breakfast at Sustainability’s looks at engaging cities and citizens ahead of Paris climate negotiations
The 18th session in the long-running Breakfast at Sustainability’s series will explore how cities and citizens can be engaged in the run up to the Paris Climate Negotiations. A major international climate change agreement is expected to be adopted at the upcoming COP in Paris (France), with the input of cities and citizens vital to ensure that the agreement recognises the roles of diverse actors in driving change.
Nine projects, promoted by 6 Urban-LEDS cities, were chosen to be presented to potential funders at the Global Infrastructure Basel (GIB) Summit 2015, in Basel, 27-28 May. These projects were selected from a group of 150 project proposals submitted. Concurrently, the Transformative Actions Program was presented in a mobilization of efforts towards the global climate negotiations later this year.
- Transformative Actions Program (TAP) open for applications
- All India Environmental Journalism Competition 2015
- 1-11 June 2015: UNFCCC Bonn Climate Change Conference (SB42/ADP2.9), Bonn, Germany
- 5-6 June 2015: ADP TEM on Urban Environment and Energy Efficiency, Bonn, Germany
- 8-10 June 2015: Resilient Cities Congress, Bonn, Germany
- 26 June-8 July 2015: High Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development, New York, USA
- 1-2 July 2015: World Summit of Cities and Territories, New York, USA
- 4-5 July 2015: International Fair Trade Towns Conference, Bristol, UK
- 13-16 July 2015: Financing for Development Conference, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
ICLEI World Secretariat
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ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability is the world’s leading network of over 1,000 cities, towns and metropolises committed to building a sustainable future. By helping our Members to make their cities sustainable, low-carbon, resilient, biodiverse, resource-efficient, healthy and happy, with a green economy and smart infrastructure, we impact over 20% of the global urban population