This side event was co-organised by the Global Covenant of Mayors Secretariat and the Covenant of Mayors – Europe Office, who brought high-level experts together to reflect on how to fund and implement action at scale.
During the session, the importance of localising Nationally-Determined Contributions was reiterated by speakers, who outlined the strategic importance, operability and local impact of going through such an exercise. Moreover, during the session, the Global Covenant of Mayors’ 2021 Global Aggregation Report was pre
sented, and a look ahead to the next year of Covenant activities.
Liviu Stirbat, Deputy Head of Unit Adaptation, European Commission’s Directorate-General for Climate Action (DG CLIMA):
“The [Global Aggregation] Report was really an eye-opener. The cumulative figure of signatory reductions is equivalent to removing 16 billion cars off the road for a year – it is ultimately cities that deliver a large chunk of the NDCs.”
The session featured Sharon Dijskma, Mayor of Utrecht, Massamba Thioye, from the UNFCCC, Giulia Macagno of the European Investment Bank, Liviu Stirbat, DG CLIMA; Ryuzo Sugymoto, Japanese Ministry of Environment, and was moderated by Giorgia Rambelli of the Covenant of Mayors – Europe.
The session brought together cities and experts from the Mediterranean region, and shed light on the actions taken, needs and aspirations of Mediterranean municipalities with respect to climate and energy policies that combat climate change. The discussion ultimately had a strong focus on evidence- and science-based policy actions.
Of particular note is that, since the session ended and as a direct result of the event, participating organisations have continued to liaise with the hope of cooperating moving forward.
Paolo Micheli, Mayor of Segrate:
“In coping with climate emergency, politics has been slow in providing answers. This should change as soon as possible. Policies at the local level are the answer to fight effectively. It is time to be bold!”
This session was co-organised by the Global Covenant of Mayors Secretariat and the Covenant of Mayors – Europe Office, together with the Clima-MED project, the ENI CBC Med hub for Mediterranean cooperation, and the City of Segrate (Italy). The event was moderated by Andy Deacon, Global Covenant of Mayors, with contributions from Paolo Bertoldi, European Commission’s Joint Research Centre, Henrike Trautmann, European Commission’s European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations, Paolo Micheli, City of Segrate, Joana De Balsemao, City of Cascais, Sorina Mortada, Lebanese Center for Energy Conservation, Silvia Assalini, Covenant of Mayors – Europe, and Naguib Amin, Clima-MED.
This side event, organised by the Covenant of Mayors – Europe, in cooperation with Climate Alliance and ICLEI Europe, explored how varied ‘collective initiatives’ help cities and local governments to meet climate neutrality.
The session touched upon how cities can advance towards reaching climate neutrality via bold, bottom-up initiatives. Furthermore, the speakers discussed how vital it is to discuss and work on these bold actions collectively with peers – including, for example, via the Covenant of Mayors. Speakers spoke of their work in the fields of nature-based solutions, the Renovation Wave, sustainable just cities, and the 2050 vision of the Covenant of Mayors of a fairer, climate-neutral Europe. Throughout the session, speakers showcased how municipalities’ commitments influence present and future citizen well-being, by forging fairer and more climate-resilient communities.
Gillian Dick, Glasgow, UK:
“It is important to learn from others and recognise that your problems are the same as those many other cities are facing around the globe. This really supports in bringing up solutions.”
Tom Meeuws, Antwerp, Belgium:
“Thanks to the Covenant of Mayors, the City of Antwerp managed to reach its climate goals in 2020!”
The event featured moderation by Eero Ailio of the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Energy, technical moderation by Adrienne Kotler of the Covenant of Mayors – Europe, and a roundtable discussion amongst Tom Meeuws, Vice-Mayor of the City of Antwerp, Gillian Dick, Glasgow City Council, Yann Françoise, City of Paris; and Allen Colbian, Mayor of the City of Brasov.