5 Climate Action Mayors to Follow on Twitter

The new Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy's board met in Mexico City on 2 December 2016. Photo: @CompactofMayors / Twitter
The new Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy's board met in Mexico City on 2 December 2016. Photo: @CompactofMayors / Twitter

A new global coalition of more than 7000 mayors wants to implement the Paris climate accord together – get to know some of them via social media!

The Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy is the largest-ever global coalition of cities committed to fighting climate change. The initiative is supported by the European Commission and was founded earlier this year following a merger between the EU’s Covenant of Mayors and the UN-led Compact of Mayors.

EU Commission vice-president Maroš Šefčovič and former New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg recently announced the mayors who will lead the initiative when it kicks-off in 2017.

The covenant will be “city-driven and city-led,” Šefčovič said in a tweet, along with a list of the Covenant’s new board members including mayors from cities in the US, South Africa, France, Ecuador, India, South Korea, Indonesia and Canada.

The coalition says it represents the strongest and clearest signal to national governments that cities are not only acting to stop the effects of climate change, but that they are leading  – and leading together.

Former UN climate chief Christiana Figueres, who was announced as the covenant’s vice chair, put it like this in a tweet: “National governments have set the direction. Cities will set the pace.”

You can find five out of the nine mayors on the Covenant’s board on Twitter.

1. Paris, France

I’m proud to take part in elevating the critical role of all mayors onto the global state in the defining challenge of our time. — Mayor Anne Hidalgo

2. Atlanta, United States

3. Cape Town, South Africa

Now more than ever, subnational leaders must be heard to strengthen our efforts in turning national commitments into concrete solutions. — Mayor Patricia De Lille

4. Quito, Ecuador

5. Vancouver, Canada

Cities are leading the charge on developing, innovating and broadening climate change solutions, and I’m excited to take on this new role to help further collaborate with other local leaders to meet the goals of the Paris Agreement. — Mayor Gregor Robertson

600 Million People

The new coalition brings together cities from close to 120 countries across six continents. The cities represent more than 600 million people, over 8 per cent of the world’s population.

Under the Compact of Mayors, 596 commitments made by participating cities are equivalent to reductions of nearly one billion tons of greenhouse gas emissions annually by 2030. The over 6000 commitments under the EU’s Covenant of Mayors are projected to have an overall estimated reduction of 27 per cent by 2020.

During the COP22 climate summit in Marrakesh last month, the European Commission announced it is also setting up a separate North American chapter of the new covenant as the first of more such regional coalitions.

Climate-KIC is already working with cities across North America. Last month, cities like Washington D.C., Toronto and Puebla took part in the global Climathon, a 24-hour hackathon to find local climate change solutions. Low Carbon City Lab, another Climate-KIC programme, is helping Mexico City create its first green bonds to fund sustainable infrastructure.

Interested in making cities more sustainable? Check out Climate-KIC’s Smart Sustainable Districts and Building Technology Accelerator programmes.

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