11 Dec, 2018

ALDE-CoR: cities and regions to fight climate change

Ethan Arsht

Many success stories from the local level in fighting climate change are currently poorly documented or fail to be copied on a larger scale. At a time when the climate commitments of national governments are clearly insufficient to keep temperature down, it’s the local authorities that are stepping up, combating global warming tirelessly in a direct and often new and innovative ways. These success stories need to find their way to the decision-making table during global climate discussions. The European Committee of the Regions (CoR) showcases some local and regional sustainable initiatives, proving that inclusiveness can lead to bridging the gap between national pledges and local achievements.

Both Andres Jaadla, a Covenant of Mayors ambassador and Valter Flego, Vice-President of the Committee on Environment, Climate change and Energy in the CoR therefore believe that teaming up with other like-minded institutions and advocates is important to highlight and officialise this important role for subnational authorities and their achievements within the international climate commitments.

Local representatives also advocate the inclusion of a system of regionally and locally determined contributions that complement nationally determined contributions in the Paris Agreement. This would reduce the current emissions gap and even encourage further climate ambition from the bottom up. When national governments and their contributions under the Paris accord are clearly insufficient, regions and cities must lead the way.

For Flego, this is why this conference is the most important one after Paris in 2015: "The main objective of the COP 24 in Katowice is that the measures taken in Paris have been implemented in practice. This is very important for us in Europe, and especially for us in Croatia, because it coincides with the next financial budget of the European Union from 2021 to 2027. It’s therefore extremely important that, when the European Commission adopts the next financial framework, that the measures contained in the fight against climate change and written in the Paris Agreement are very concrete and financially backed through cohesion funds and the EU budget which regions and cities can use."

.@andresjaadla & Valter Flego highlight what regions & cities do to fight #Climatechange and:

defend role of local governments in global climate governance
urge for formal inclusion in implementation Paris Agreements#COP24 #Regions4Climate: https://t.co/WIgyfV9oXP pic.twitter.com/9ZcEbYbiFB


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