The Paris Agreement cannot be implemented without the local level, neither can regional flagship initiatives like the European Green Deal. Cities around the world have recognized the global challenges of climate change and committed to climate neutrality. To accomplish this goal, more ambitious and integrated climate targets for 2030 and 2050 are needed. In Europe the Green Deal provides a comprehensive framework and currently triggers Local Green Deals that transpose mission to action. Do political signals such as the declaration on the climate emergency help to achieve climate neutrality and establish civil society buy-in? How does a just transition to green energy work at the local level? How can market-based instruments be used to advance the Green Deal? Despite its hybrid format, the event was an opportunity for interactive and mutual exchange on the implementation of the Paris Agreement and of the European Green Deal collaboratively with the local level as well as the alignment of local strategies with national strategies among the speakers and the participating audience.
Key results and conclusions
Yunus Arikan, ICLEI: The Paris Agreement and European Green Deal cannot be implemented without the local level. The multilevel dialogue, organized by ICLE in the framework of LGMA is key. The road to sustainability is urban and multilevel collaboration is the new normal.
Mayor Dr. Peter Kurz, City of Mannheim: the European Green Deal provides a comprehensive framework and currently triggers Local Green Deals such as in Mannheim. Mannheim’s approach is a broad sustainability approach along the SDGs. Mayor Kurz advocates for the multilevel approach, involving mayors as policy makers and change agents to move forward. One example that proofs their role as change agents is the worldwide mayors declaration of nuclear free zones. The Global Parliament of Mayors is also engaging in the topic of climate justice and works on climate related migration.
Commissioner Brigid Shea, Travis County, USA and Chair of ICLEI US Board: climate adaptation is key, e.g. Texas: fraud and water shortage, Travis County saved 40 millions of water per year by stopping the use of drinkable water for air conditioning, at Travis County, they reduced emissions from commuting by 30%,
Prof. YUN Sun-Jin, Co-Chairperson, 2050 Carbon Neutrality Commission, Republic of Korea: the Republic of Korea recognises the important role of mayors and governors especially in their function as implementers but they need to be supported in this role by the central government. The 2050 Low-carbon Vision Forum was established to listen to various opinions of experts to have a long-term strategy towards climate neutrality 2050. Industrial sustainability is also key.
All panellists wished a clear signal from COP 26 to climate neutrality and replacement of grey energy by 2050 to avoid a disruption of life. We especially we to embed the role of Cities within the treaty (CMA)“, 1/CMA.3, our amendments in bold:
- Recognizing the important role of civil society, including youth and indigenous peoples, in addressing and responding to climate change, and highlighting the urgent need for MULTILEVEL AND COLLABORATIVE action
- para.75. Recognizes the importance of international AND MULTILEVEL collaboration on innovative climate action, including technological advancement, across all actors of society, sectors and regions, in contributing to progress towards the objective of the Convention and the goals of the Paris Agreement.
- para.76. Also recognizes the important role of non-Party stakeholders, including civil society, indigenous peoples, youth and other stakeholders, CITIES AND OTHER SUBNATIONALS in contributing to progress towards the objective of the Convention and the goals of the Paris Agreement.
Source: German Association of Cities