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Updates from ICLEI's Global Sustainability Network
Edition #28 September 2015


Gustavo Petro
Mayor, Bogotá


Dear ICLEI Friends and Colleagues,

On 25-27 September 2015, the United Nations will meet in New York at the Sustainable Development Summit 2015. This summit will build on the outcome of the Rio+20 Summit in 2012, and will adopt the universal 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG).

As a Mayor, I recognize that sustainability is a global issue and requires an integrated solution. However, we are currently struggling with an economic system that is built on values from the previous centuries. Our development paradigm has solidified as a hegemonic system based upon the exploitation of fossil fuels.

Globally, many ambitious cities have the will, potential and experience to act faster and collectively. In the Urban World of 2030, this will play an even larger role. That is why we particularly welcome the Urban SDG, which will help local leaders to pursue ambitious sustainability actions. The Urban SDG will support us in our ongoing efforts to make our cities inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable, as set out in ICLEI’s 10 Urban Agendas. The UrbanSDG is in fact the next step in the journey that began with Local Agenda 21 in 1992.

The agenda to be established by the Summit must be seen a baseline rather than a target. For a full transformation to sustainability, we need to create a race to the top. The best way to do this is to encourage pioneers, who are most often found at the local level. As local governments we have the responsibility to articulate social mobilizations that compel states to reduce and limit climate change, achieving sustainable development goals so that we can have better lives and futures.

My city will contribute to this movement by hosting the “Encounter of the Americas Facing Climate Change – Bogotá Climate Summit” on 20-23 September 2015. We will be calling upon all cities to unite and to deepen our global mobilization to directly address the conflict between humanity and the market. I hope that what my fellow local leaders and I are currently doing will become the norm by 2030.

With kind regards,

Gustavo Petro
Mayor, Bogotá

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