Climate Alliance elected new leadership
The Climate Alliance General Assembly elected new board members on 2 October 2018 in Barcelona: Andreas Wolter, Mayor of Cologne (DE), became new president of Climate Alliance alongside standing president Tine Heyse, Mayor of Ghent (BE). Wolter is preceded by former president Holger Matthäus, Mayor of Rostock (DE). López Descanse of COICA, Climate Alliance’s indigenous partner organisation, has been elected as vice president into the executive board. López, COICA’s new Coordinator for Climate Change and Biodiversity, takes the place of Eider José Perafan Ramirez. Congratulations on the election and many thanks for their work to the former board members!
Climate Star 2018 goes to 15 municipalities and regions
This year Climate Alliance awards the Climate Star for the eighth time, the best examples of climate action throughout Europe were honoured on invitation of the Federal State of Lower Austria at Grafenegg Castle. A total of 15 projects from seven countries were awarded this year, among them, the Hungarian municipality of Kunsziget with 1,200 inhabitants and a generation project, Marcallo con Casone in Italy as a “bike-friendly municipality”. Tübingen in Germany brought home a Climate Star with its climate protection campaign “Tübingen macht blau”, Ghent in Belgium with the Foodsavers Initiative and the municipal network of energy cities in Switzerland with the Seeländer Solarcup. “The Climate Star is more than just a climate challenge. It has become an internationally known and proven platform for the exchange of innovative ideas, practical solutions and feasible measures for climate mitigation and adaptation to the consequences of the climate crisis. We congratulate all the winners and wish them continued success,” congratulates Thomas Brose, Climate Alliance Executive Director.
Climate Alliance members reaffirm climate commitments
Climate Alliance members across Europe have reasserted their pledge to cut CO2 emissions by at least ten percent every five years in support of the Barcelona Declaration. The Barcelona Declaration underlines that the local level is already doing its part on climate. It calls upon the EU and national governments to build upon the work of cities and regions in order to achieve national and international climate goals. Climate Alliance will be taking the messages of the Barcelona Declaration to the UN Climate Change Conference in Katowice on behalf of its members.
101 organisations call on EU Ministers to green the EU Budget
EU Ministers for European and Foreign Affairs received an open letter on 10 October 2018 demanding a dramatic improvement in climate action spending in the future EU budget. These have a great influence on work in key areas such as energy, transport, agriculture, buildings, waste and international cooperation. The budget thus harbours great potential to better support the just transition to clean and sustainable economies throughout Europe and the world. Climate Alliance signed the letter along with one hundred business associations, think tanks and civil society organisations and continues to insist on coherence between policy goals, financing and action ahead of the 24th UN Climate Change Summit in Katowice.
UN Climate Change Conference (COP24)
3 – 14 December 2018 in Katowice, Poland
Three years after the signing of the Paris Agreement, which aims to limit global warming to less than two degrees Celsius, a first global inventory is being carried out. To what extent have the national commitments entered into contributed to achieving this objective? Throughout 2018 and in Katowice Climate Alliance together with its partners and Climate Alliance President Andreas Wolter, Ambassador to COP24, will represent our network in the Talanoa dialogues on where we stand, where we want to go and how to get there.
Climate Alliance Events in Katowice
3 December, 15:15–16:45 “The Climate Partnership of the City of Cologne and Yarinacocha”
4 December, 9:00 –10:00 “Change the Power – (Em)Power to Change: The battle for land and water in Amazonia”
7 December, 11:00–11:30: Handing over of the Green Footprints featuring pupils from Katowice
7 December, 11:30–13:00 “Local Climate Action – The Practices Behind the Numbers”
7 December, 15:00–16:30 “The Powers of Water – On the Way to the Sustainable Use of Nature's Driving Force”
Financing sustainable mobility
11 December 2018, Webinar from 11:00 – 12:30 CET
Are you a city, region or province considering taking action on sustainable mobility to tackle climate change? Or a local authority that is already implementing activities on sustainable mobility and you want to learn more about existing financial tools? This webinar organised by the Covenant of Mayors will present the European Investment Bank instruments and successful cases of cities that have benefit from them.
Conference “Empowering Neighbourhoods for Climate Action”
10 - 11 April 2019 in Arnhem, Netherlands
For successful implementation of climate mitigation and adaptation strategies, it is fundamental to involve neighbourhoods and their residents. Changing perspectives from top-down to bottom-up and meeting the residents at eye level are the key to create sustainable, long term results. The two day conference on neighbourhood approaches towards local climate action is the final event of the EU project “Climate Active Neighbourhoods” led by Climate Alliance. Read more in the CAN newsletter.
Awards for local authorities
Apply for the EUSEW Awards
Submit your application for a EUSEW Award and show what you can do to achieve the EU's climate and energy goals. You can apply in one of the four categories Engagement, Leadership, Innovation or Youth. The 12 shortlisted projects will be invited to Brussels for the award ceremony at the EUSEW Policy Conference. You will also have the opportunity to win the Citizens’ Award. You can apply for the EUSEW Award until 4 February 2019. www.climatealliance.org/newsroom
New contest supports sustainable municipal water concepts
Until 31 January 2019 the POWER Idea Contest is open for interested parties to submit ideas dealing with challenges in the field of water. The competition is open to best practice examples from cities and municipalities in order to present a large number of local ideas and measures to a broad audience. Applications can relate to climate change, sustainable water management, sustainable consumption and abstraction or social commitment to water. The three most innovative projects will receive the Best Practice Award at a POWER conference.
Calling for ‘Corridor of Life and Culture’ in the Amazon
Alarmed by rampant destruction in the Amazon rainforest and the long-term impacts on biodiversity, an alliance of indigenous communities pitched the creation of the world’s largest protected area, which would reach from the Andes to the Atlantic Ocean, at the UN Biodiversity Conference from 13 to 29 November 2018 in Egypt. “We have come from the forest and we worry about what is happening,” declared Tuntiak Katan, Vice President of COICA. “This space is the world’s last great sanctuary for biodiversity. It is there because we are there. Other places have been destroyed.” COICA, partner organisation of Climate Alliance, aims to safeguard a “sacred corridor of life and culture” about the size of Mexico.
Voice of the forests in Katowice
Movie about the Belo Monte dam and other megaprojects in Brazil
‘Countdown on River Xingu V’ focusses on the penultimate construction phase of this mega dam: the flooding of the land. It reveals how the project came to being and what went on behind the scenes to make it happen. A scandal surrounding Brazil’s oil company Petrobras implicating major Brazilian construction companies and politicians is no small piece of the story. In May 2016, Belo Monte on the River Xingu was officially opened. To make way for the world’s third largest dam, swaths of rainforest have been cleared, fishermen and indigenous communities have been displaced and 40,000 people have forcefully been relocated. The video can be shown free of charge via Climate Alliance and is available in Portuguese (original version) with subtitles in various languages (contact: email@example.com).
EU call for tenders for municipal partnerships worldwide
The European Cooperation Office (EuropeAid) has launched a call for municipal development cooperation. The aim of the call “Local Authorities: Partnerships for Sustainable Cities” is to strengthen integrated urban development through partnerships between cities and municipalities in the EU as well as partner cities and municipalities in the Global South for the Agenda 2030.
New CITY CYCLING record - 59 million kilometres cycled
Almost 300,000 people took part in CITY CYCLING 2018 riding more than 59 million kilometres by bicycle. In the 886 municipalities in Germany, Luxembourg, Switzerland and Brazil the bicycle became the main means of transport for many participants in the respective campaign period. By doing so they avoided over 8,400 tons of CO2. These record results have been celebrated in Kaiserslautern (DE) with a ceremony in honour of the most active municipalities and municipal parliaments. Climate Alliance Executive Director Thomas Brose, Rhineland-Palatinate Environment Minister Ulrike Höfken and Mayor of Kaiserslautern Dr. Klaus Weichel presented the awards to the winning municipalities. In 2019 municipalities can also plan the CITY CYCLING firmly in their calendar. The campaign period from 1 May to 30 September remains unchanged. Municipalities can register from spring 2019.
Climate Alliance members recognised as frontrunners
The Covenant of Mayors published communication material, in which great attention is paid to the activities of seven Climate Alliance members. The two leaflets as well as a detailed case study are available via the Covenant of Mayors Library in many EU languages. The documents provide a glimpse of the work many Climate Alliance members are doing in the field of energy and climate action. Local strategies to cope with flooding in Cologne (DE), neighbourhood level engagement on energy poverty in Brest (FR) and the opening of an energy efficient environmental education centre in Thermi (GR) are only few of the inspirational examples featured. The Covenant of Mayors is a global movement of cities committed to fighting climate change with almost 8,000 signatories in Europe alone. Climate Alliance’s leading role in the European Covenant of Mayors Office and as an official Covenant Supporter helps the good practice examples of its members gain even more visibility across Europe.
The Clean Energy for EU Islands Secretariat
The Clean Energy for EU Islands Secretariat is a one-stop-shop for Europe's island communities wanting to transition to clean energy. It provides a platform to connect with each other, exchange experiences and best practices, and access experts to help them on the journey to clean energy. The Secretariat further provides direct support in writing transition agendas, project development, financial planning, capacity-building and communication around the clean energy transition for islands. You are welcome to participate in the open call for applications for support, which was launched during the 2nd Clean Energy for EU Islands Forum on Lanzarote (https://www.euislands.eu/lanzarote-forum). The Secretariat is managed by Climate Alliance, REScoop.eu and 3E.
Regional timber award honours low-emissions procurement projects
15 municipalities and organisations in the Alpine region received the Alpine Space Regional Timber Award for their timber construction projects on 20 November 2018 at the EUSALP Annual Forum in Innsbruck (AT). Regional wood was used to construct buildings, benches, boats and even tree houses for educational purposes. Low carbon value chains from the harvesting of wood to utilising it make a positive contribution to climate protection. Making use of resources locally can also help reinvigorate regional economies. The award was launched within the framework of the EU-funded Carbon Smart Communities (CaSCo) project.
“Change the Future” tool and actively shaping the future
Towns and municipalities already commit to improving climate protection and sustainability at the local level through a variety of campaigns. However, they are also dependent on the involvement of individuals and local initiatives. With the “Change the Future” tool interested parties are shown a variety of activities that individuals or groups can perform to help shape the future and contribute to a good life for all. Invite the public to commit themselves to a sustainable development. Use the tool to organise a competition with your neighbouring municipality. Who mobilises more strongly and collects the most changer points? The tool can be used free of charge and is currently available in English and German.
New posters: Why pollute our air when the winds of change are blowing?
With the campaign “A good life is simple” we show positive target images for one's own life and offer a new way of dealing with the topic of climate protection in everyday life. In the fields of energy, mobility, consumption and nutrition, incentives are being created to get people “into action” themselves. As a representative of your local authorities, you can show role models and draw attention to climate-friendly interaction. New posters are ready to print in PDF format on the topics of public transport, renewable energies, waste and consumption - so far in English and German.