22/06/2016 Two major global initiatives to fight climate change at city level are merging to create an alliance of more than 7,100 cities across the world called the Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy.
The Covenant of Mayors – an EU initiative launched in 2008 involving 6,800 cities and regions in 57 countries – and the Compact of Mayors – a global coalition of mayors and city officials launched in 2014 by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon – together represent more than 600 million residents in urban areas.
Both initiatives have worked to galvanise cities and local governments into setting transparent, ambitious goals to help reduce emissions, develop clean energy solutions and adapt to the impacts of climate change. Combining them will expand the alliance’s reach across the globe and provide resources and support to small, medium and mega cities.
European Commission Vice-President Maroš Šefčovič, who will co-chair the new alliance with UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for Cities and Climate Change Michael Bloomberg, said: “The EU Covenant of Mayors shows that when mayors share a vision of a low-carbon future and roll up their sleeves, things get done. Bottom-up and close to the citizens: that is the strength of the European Covenant. As of today, this will become the strength of the Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy, a coalition that is truly unique on the global scene. Never before, so many cities joined forces, eager to inspire each other and committed to collectively take the path to a low-carbon, resilient society.”
Michael Bloomberg said: “Today, the world’s cities are uniting their efforts to fight climate change behind a single global organisation, something that has never before happened. In unity there is strength, and this new Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy will help accelerate the progress cities are making and magnify their influence on the global stage. This is a giant step forward in the work of achieving the goals that nations agreed to in Paris.”