During the preliminary meetings at the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development international networks presented their initiatives at the local level. As part of this, the Mayors of the Cities Climate Leadership Group, C40 cities, announced new initiatives to promote sustainable development at the urban level, creating new ecological paths for cities.
At the event, new data was presented on these cities’ possibilities to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by over a billion tones by 2030, a value equivalent to the current production of Mexico and Canada together. These proposed actions would continue the nearly 5,000 climate-related actions these cities have implemented since the network first formed in 2005.
In advance of Rio+20, the network launched new fundamental initiatives: a solid waste peer-to-peer learning network to reduce methane emissions through solid waste management. The initiative is a partnership with the Joint Initiative on Urban Sustainability (JIUS) to foster the sharing of best practices collected in all C40 Cities through a new library to be published on its website. This resource will identify the key linkages between policy tools, financing strategies and partnerships that enable successful climate reduction strategies
Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg from New York, which currently holds the chairmanship of the network, reinforced how due to local actions, “cities are making great progress in reducing greenhouse gases, which helps beat back climate change and makes our cities better, more livable places”. Mayor Eduardo Paes from Rio de Janeiro, recognized how cities can advance in some cases faster than nation states “to put into place progressive strategies that are already changing people’s lives” bringing results to the municipal level around the world.
Based on these results, mayors and local government leaders called on national governments and international organizations to provide more financing and other support for local climate action. The initiatives also have the support of the William J. Clinton Foundation and the Clinton Climate Initiative.
The C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group (C40) is a network of large and engaged cities from around the world committed to implementing meaningful and sustainable climate-related actions locally that will help address climate change globally.