Climate Alliance International Annual Conference and General Assembly
22 - 25 April 2015 in Dresden, Germany
We cordially invite you to this year's International Annual Conference of Climate Alliance, which takes place under the motto “Developing Europe – Securing local energy supplies” in the city of Dresden.
Come and celebrate 25 years of Climate Alliance with us during this exciting event! For a quarter of a century, Climate Alliance has stood for local commitment to the efficient use and sustainable production of energy as well as for action in solidarity with the indigenous peoples of the Amazon.
Seize the opportunity to network with like-minded professionals while discussing topics such as energy security, local energy supply, climate change mitigation and adaptation as well as the Millennium Development Goals as they apply your local context. Climate Alliance looks forward to sharing new inspiration with you!
View conference program. Online registration possible as of 20 February.
The UN Climate Change Conference in Lima
The primary aim of the UN Climate Change Conference held in Lima, Peru, in December 2014 was to prepare the ground rules for contributions to the new agreement scheduled to be agreed in Paris at the end of 2015. The compromise in Lima made possible by a two-day extension of the negotiation period is detailed in a four-page document outlining the basis for a future agreement.
The conference in Lima was a particularly important event for our indigenous partners from Amazonia. Due to the large number of indigenous representatives in attendance from all four corners of the globe and especially the Andes and Amazon region, the conference was also referred to as the “COP of indigenous peoples”.
This year, the traditional ceremony to hand over the Green Footprints collected by children throughout Europe (in 2014, 2.2 million footprints collected by 180,000 children from 11 countries) was held at the office of Executive Secretary of the UNFCCC, Christiana Figueres.
The Committee of the Regions and Climate Alliance have joined forces to call on the formal recognition of the role of local governments in their global strategy on climate change.
Brokerage event in Brussels
In the beginning of December 2014, Climate Alliance organised a brokerage event in Brussels, bringing together partners and interested stakeholders to develop ideas for future projects. Topics linked to EU funding such as Horizon 2020 and INTERREG, but also Marie Curie Innovative Training Networks and Smart Cities in Belgium received much attention.
As a result of the good feedback the event received, Climate Alliance now plans to organise such brokerage events on at least a yearly basis. In the meantime, you are invited to inform the Climate Alliance Working Group on Financing (firstname.lastname@example.org) of your project ideas and needs in terms of potential project partners.
A new investment plan for Europe – Climate Alliance reacts
Cities and regions should be at the heart of the new Investment Plan for Europe. This was the message of the letter Climate Alliance sent to the President of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, in early January 2015.
On 26 November 2014, Juncker presented the new Investment Plan for Europe and promised to set up a European Fund for Strategic Investment with the European Investment Bank. The aim is to kick-start a string of public and private investment projects in Europe that would not have happened otherwise. The format foreseen for the financing is similar to that of the European Investment Bank’s European Local ENergy Assistance (ELENA) initiative – a financing scheme thus far successfully implemented by local authorities. In addition, the Climate Alliance Secretariat along with its members offered their willingness to act as a key partner in the yet to be established investment advisory hub.
Addressing climate change in alpine space municipalities
23 March 2015 in Munich
The final conference of the successful SEAP_Alps project will be introduced by high-level speeches of representatives from the national and European level as well as from the field of science. Participants will have furthermore the opportunity to learn from the experience of SEAP_Alps pilot municipalities and regions as well as to take part in workshops on "Adaptation to climate change" and "Implementation of mitigation concepts".
2015 European Sustainable Energy Week
15 to 19 June 2015 in Brussels and across Europe
Climate Alliance would again like to encourage its members to take part in the European Sustainable Energy Week (EUSEW) by organising an Energy Day and applying for the Sustainable Energy Europe Awards or attending one of the hundreds of events set to take place during the entire month of June.
Here you find infos about the Energy Day and about the Awards.
Gold company loses case against farmer
In mid-December 2014, the Peruvian province of Cajamarca’s Court of Appeals acquitted small-scale farmer Máxima Acuña de Chaupe and her relatives. In an absurd process, Yanacocha, Peru’s largest gold mine, took the farmer to court over “usurpation” - illegal land grabbing. The Chaupe family was found guilty in early August and was sentenced to 32 months in prison and a fine while also being ordered to vacate the land. The decision has now been repealed despite Yanacocha’s substantial legal efforts: the court battle saw the firm’s legal team of six go up against the lawyer of Máxima de Chaupe.
www.gfbv.ch (in German)
Ecuador’s President rages against indigenous
Ecuador’s President Correa’s relationship with the indigenous peoples of his country is on the rocks. In late December 2014 he gave the Confederation of Indigenous Nationalities of Ecuador (CONAIE) 2 weeks to clear its office, which it has been running for the last 23 years. Official government plans to set up a transition centre for young people also seem to be under threat due to the disputes between Correa and indigenous peoples surrounding oil extraction in the Amazon Basin.
Former President Borja had made the office building located in the north of Quito available for use to CONAIE back in 1991. Correa, however, demands CONAIE vacate the premises as the much of the work done there contradicts the government’s position. For years the indigenous have been fighting against oil extraction on their land.
http://arjanmeesterburrie.com (in Dutch)
European Year for Development – The future we want
The EU has proclaimed 2015 the European Year for Development. During the year, European states will agree on a new global framework for poverty reduction and sustainable development and progress on the Millennium Development Goals will be evaluated.
In this context, Climate Alliance will be organising a project on sustainable development worldwide along with a number of member municipalities and partner organisations from ten European countries. This three-year project, funded by EuropeAid, will run under the motto "our world – our dignity – our future" and will serve to inform citizens about current EU development policy. As a cornerstone of the project, three tours will bring indigenous partners to Europe, making use of their wisdom to evaluate pressing European challenges.
Covenant of Mayors – Quick Reference Guide
Published within the framework of the Covenant of Mayors initiative, a Quick Reference Guide detailing financing solutions for sustainable energy action plans (SEAP) implementation has now been made available. The document also contains an overview of some alternative financing schemes that have proven successful across Europe including crowd-funding, third party investments and revolving funds.
TURAS conference: Novel tools for local authorities
In today’s fast-changing world, urban areas are increasingly facing new environmental and demographic challenges. How can cities adapt and build resilience from the inside out? Novel green infrastructure that helps preserve biodiversity, foster community, revive vacant spaces, drive local economies and curb urban sprawl can be part of the solution. At a TURAS event held in Brussels this January, partners from Dublin, London, Rome, Brussels, Aalborg, Sofia and the Region of Stuttgart showcased their approaches and achievements in building sustainability and resilience.
Climate Alliance Board Member Tine Heyse (Ghent, BE) was invited by TURAS as a panellist, providing inspiration to conference participants and project partners, while representatives of the Greater Stuttgart Region (DE) gave a powerful pitch about the Green Living Room project implemented in close collaboration with the Climate Alliance city of Ludwigsburg (DE).
TURAS is an EU-funded research project in which Climate Alliance acts as a link to the municipal level. Climate Alliance supports project partners in disseminating project results to its members and other interested municipalities. TURAS also involves academia and SMEs in the search for climate change adaptation and mitigation solutions.
Regarding e-mobility, the municipality’s role is to set regulations and standards, encourage interoperability and to provide incentives. The private sector’s role is to bring the new technology to the market and enforce mass production and thereby reduce costs. The Emobility Works project will therefore encourage municipalities to create new partnerships with the private sector, such as energy companies and vehicle manufacturers. Stakeholders will then altogether set up and implement a local Action Plan integrating the use of renewable energy in e-vehicles and charging stations. The project runs from March 2014 to August 2016, and is funded by the Intelligent Energy Europe programme of the European Union.
If you are interested in sharing your experience and/or supporting project implementation, please get in touch with one of the contact points:
Poignant exhibitions on the effects of climate change and land grabbing
Climate Alliance is proud to offer two powerful exhibitions to its member municipalities. The easily mounted roll-ups can be borrowed by contacting Climate Alliance.
“We are all witnesses – People in a changing climate” gives climate change a face. The exhibition features citizens of the world reporting on the consequences of climate change in their localities spread across Africa, South America, Asia and Europe. Each poster contains country-specific examples and valuble background information.
“The land we grab – seizing tropical rainforest and soil” illustrates the effects of overconsumption in places such as Europe and the US on hand from particular examples across Amazonia and Africa. The collection highlights the global dimension of our consumption patterns and the consequences they have on the local people.
News from all over the world
Heat record in 2014
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration announced that 2014 was the warmest year across global land and ocean surfaces since records began in 1880. The average annual temperature was 0.69°C above the 20th century average of 13.9°C, easily breaking the previous records of 2005 and 2010 by 0.04°C.
The global average ocean and land surface temperatures for 2014 came in at record highs of 0.57 and 1.00°C above the 20th century averages of 16.1°C and 8.5°C, respectively. These ocean temperatures easily surpass the records set in 1998 and 2003 by 0.05°C while the 2014 average land surface temperature was the fourth highest annual value on record.