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Updates from ICLEI's Global Sustainability Network
Edition #25 May 2015

 

Jürgen Nimptsch
Mayor of Bonn, Germany


 

Dear ICLEI Friends and Colleagues,

This Friday – 5 June 2015 – the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) invites us to be part of World Environment Day (WED). WED is an occasion to assess the challenges we face, to create awareness, to demonstrate the action we are taking, and to share our visions of a better, sustainable future.

There is no doubt that our current lifestyle and mindset are unsustainable. As UNEP points out: “By 2050, if current consumption and production patterns remain the same, and with a rising population expected to reach 9.6 billion, we will need three planets to sustain our ways of living and consumption.”

The challenge is particularly visible in cities. The facts are well known: with increasing urbanization comes an increased demand for natural resources, along with issues of waste, pollution, infrastructure, and so on. But this is also an opportunity for us to engage in ambitious action. In fact, as much as the challenges, innovation is emerging from the urban centers of the world!

The global motto of WED this year is "Seven Billion Dreams. One Planet. Consume with Care." Let us be modest and go for 50 percent: if more than half the world’s population adopts a sustainable lifestyle, 50 percent of the dream could come true just from cities! If we consume with care, and if we succeed in transforming our cities and our societies, we will make a substantial contribution to the overdue transformation of our planet.

In the build-up to COP21 in Paris, this summer is the time to be bold and holistic – and to prepare for Post-Paris Action. I would therefore like to encourage all ICLEI Members to present their ambitious projects on urban sustainability as part of ICLEI’s Transformative Actions Program (TAP), to increase the visibility and impact of cities and to scale-up funding for major initiatives. TAP your potential!

June will be a milestone on the road to transformation. And Bonn is the location of two major stepping stones. On 1 June 2015, the UNFCCC’s Bonn Climate Change Conference began, while ICLEI’s Resilient Cities 2015 Congress will take place on 8-10 June 2015. I look forward to two weeks of productive and stimulating debates – and of course to welcoming you in Bonn!

With kind regards,

Jürgen Nimptsch
Mayor of Bonn and Member of the ICLEI Global Executive Committee

ICLEI launches Transformative Actions Program application process

Designed as a 10-year program, the TAP aims to raise local and regional climate ambitions as well as to accelerate the implementation of climate actions in the crucial pre-2020 and post-2020 phases. More specifically, the TAP aims to, over time, improve access to existing capital flows to cities and regions, as well as catalyzing and accelerating additional capital flows from public and private investors.

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UNFCCC Friends of Cities provide multi-level partnerships for scaling up local action

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Cities and businesses work to bridge gaps at Metropolitan Solutions 2015

Metropolitan Solutions 2015, which took place on 20-22 May in Berlin’s CityCube, brought together a range of representatives from businesses and cities for plenaries, workshops and discussions on urban sustainability. The lesson was clear: while finance and innovative technology for making cities more sustainable are available, the connections required to bring them to the local level must be strengthened.

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Local governments call for ambitious climate agreement at Bonn talks

Local governments are seeking to provide an impetus to the ongoing Bonn Climate Talks by demonstrating their climate leadership and ambition. The Bonn talks will focus on trimming the 80-page draft climate pre-agreement to be adopted at the UN Climate conference in Paris in December 2015.

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Urban-LEDS cities’ projects profiled to potential funders

Nine projects, promoted by 6 Urban-LEDS cities, were chosen to be presented to potential funders at the Global Infrastructure Basel (GIB) Summit 2015, in Basel, 27-28 May. These projects were selected from a group of 150 project proposals submitted. Concurrently, the Transformative Actions Program was presented in a mobilization of efforts towards the global climate negotiations later this year.

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