Mayor DeLille, Mayor Hidalgo, Michael Bloomberg, Christiana Figueres and Mayor Robertson at the C40 Mayors Summit

Nine pioneering mayors to lead the Global Covenant of Mayors

Nine mayors, representing leading cities and towns around the globe that actively tackle climate change, have been appointed to the global board of the newly created Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate & Energy.

The recently announced mayoral leadership group for the Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate & Energy includes the following nine leaders:

  • Mayor Park Won Soon - Mayor of Seoul, South Korea and President of ICLEI
  • Kasim Reed - Mayor of Atlanta, USA
  • Patricia De Lille - Mayor of Cape Town, South Africa
  • Mohamed Sefiani - Mayor of Chefchaouen, Morocco
  • Anne Hidalgo - Mayor of Paris, France and Chair of C40
  • Mauricio Rodas - Mayor of Quito, Ecuador and member of the ICLEI Global Executive Committee
  • Jaiman Upadhyay - Mayor of Rajkot, India
  • Tri Rismaharini - Mayor of Surabaya, Indonesia
  • Gregor Robertson - Mayor of Vancouver, Canada

Each of these mayors represent active ICLEI Member cities that are committed to low-carbon, resilient development. They are advancing global climate goals through the actions they take in their respective cities, as well as through the global collaboration they foster.

Cape Town was the first African city to switch to electric buses and is proactively incorporating nature-based solutions into its urban development planning, which ICLEI strongly encourages through its Cities Biodiversity Center.

Meanwhile, Chefchaouen, Morocco, the first ICLEI Member in Morocco, is implementing energy efficiency measures that align with and support national commitments, and Rajkot is quickly advancing on renewable energy and energy efficiency, having been a model city in Urban-LEDS project on urban low-emissions development strategies implemented by ICLEI and UN-Habitat.

Over in Indonesia, Surabaya is proactively building its resilience to coastal flooding under the leadership of Mayor Rismaharini.

The Global Covenant of Mayors mayoral leadership group will now advance the efforts of cities and towns to prove their contributions to global and national climate goals. Their strategic guidance and experience will be a vital part of the Global Covenant of Mayors, which brings together two key city-led climate change and energy initiatives: the Compact of Mayors and the European Covenant of Mayors. By joining forces, these two entities have created a first-of-its-kind global initiative of cities and towns committed transparent climate action. 

Mayor Park Won Soon, Mayor of Seoul and President of ICLEI has been highly active in the Compact of Mayors since its launch in 2014. Seoul is fully compliant with all Compact requirements and has hosted two major events that brought together Compact cities: the ICLEI World Congress 2015 in Seoul and the Seoul Mayors Forum on Climate Change 2016. The Seoul Mayors Forum resulted in the Seoul Communiqué 2016 for the New Climate Regime, which was integrated into ICLEI global advocacy messaging, calling for greater ambitions from nations ahead of the 2016 United Nations Climate Change Conference in Marrakech, Morocco.

“I am honored and proud to stand with my fellow global mayors in serving on the board for the Global Covenant of Mayors,” stated Park Won Soon, Mayor of Seoul and President of ICLEI. “The world needs to join hands to shift the flow of climate change that we are facing. I will work hard to reach beyond the borders of cities and nations, and to ensure that the board can become he hub that connects climate change efforts from the world.” 

Mayor Gregor Robertson of Vancouver also expressed his pride at the board announcement at the C40 Mayors Summit on 1 December in Mexico City: “Today, I am proud to announce in Mexico City that I will be joining the Board of the Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy,” said Mayor Robertson. “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.”

Vancouver is taking bold steps on energy, aiming to derive 100 percent of its energy from renewable sources by 2050 and is an active member of the ICLEI 100% Renewable Energy Cities & Regions Network.

The City of Paris is also pioneering ICLEI Member in Europe and globally, and through the Earth Hour City Challenge was designated as the 2016 Global Earth Hour Capital for its exemplary work in bringing together the business sector, civil society and other cities to advance climate action.

Global collaboration between cities is indeed a strong theme underpinning the Global Covenant of Mayors, which has been reaffirmed by its new board Members.

"We know that cities are stronger when we work together, and our collaboration through the Global Covenant of Mayors can demonstrate our impact and give us an even greater platform from which to advocate for greater support from our national and local governments," said Kasim Reed, Mayor of Atlanta.

Mauricio Rodas, Mayor of Quito echoed this sentiment, explaining that “Quito will take this opportunity to enhance and strengthen dialogues and knowledge exchange, experiences and best practices between local governments around the world.”

The new Global Covenant of Mayors is set to officially launch in January 2017. Its board will be co-chaired by Michael Bloomberg, the United Nations Secretary General Special Envoy for Cities and Climate Change and Maroš Šefčovič, Vice President of the European Commission. Former Executive Secretary the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), Christiana Figueres, will as serve Vice-Chair of the board, while current UNFCCC Executive Secretary, Patricia Espinosa, will join the Board as an observer and advisor.

ICLEI and the Global Covenant of Mayors

ICLEI supports the Global Covenant of Mayors has actively worked as part of the Compact of Mayors and the European Covenant of Mayors in recent years. ICLEI has provided technical support and tools that enable cities and towns to achieve their commitments and recruited local governments to accelerate their climate actions through the two initiatives.

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