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LGMA Statement of Supportfor CHAMP: 62 Countries Answer Call for Deeper Cooperation with Cities, Regions and Other Subnational Governments

Date

04 Dec 2023

Sections

Regional Policy

The Local Governments and Municipal Authorities(LGMA) Constituency commendsthe political commitment of nation statesto engage with local and othersubnational governments on climate planning, financing and implementation as one of the most significant outcomesfor local and othersubnational governmentssince the Paris Agreement. 

Dubai, UAE (1 December 2023) – Today at COP28, more than 60 countries pledged to join the COP28 Coalition for High Ambition Multilevel Partnership (CHAMP) for Climate Action in order to enhance cooperation with their local, regional and other subnational governments - including cities, towns, states and regions - to collectively pursue efforts to limit the global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees above pre-industrial levels. 

The goal of the pledge is to help nations to achieve Paris Agreement goals, by working with and harvesting contributions from local and other subnational governments for planning, financing and implementation of climate strategies and actions. CHAMP shows that leaders at every level are working together to solve the climate crisis. 

The Local Governments and Municipal Authorities (LGMA) Constituency, which is the official voice of local, regional and other subnational governments in the UNFCCC, strongly supports CHAMP and applauds the forward-looking countries who have already pledged to join the Coalition. 

CHAMP supports decades of climate advocacy by the LGMA Constituency for multilevel climate action, as well as championing the bridging of urban and climate communities, and particularly complements progress at COP26 and COP27. Thus, the LGMA fully supports the basis for CHAMP’s approach - that by engaging local and other subnational governments, national governments can achieve more ambitious Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) by 2025.

The LGMA also stands ready to support CHAMP endorsers to deliver on their pledge after COP28. 

The LGMA Constituency encourages other UNFCCC Parties to endorse CHAMP over the coming days at COP28 and beyond. The next important step is to connect all the dots on multilevel climate action and urbanization including the outcomes of Multilevel Action and Urbanization Day on 6 December and the Ministerial Meeting on Urbanization and Climate Change at its second iteration at COP28. Ultimately, the LGMA calls for the vision of CHAMP to be reflected in the COP28 decisions and outcomes, particularly in relation to Global Stocktake. 

The LGMA also recognizes and commends the leadership of the COP28 Presidency and Bloomberg Philanthropies to include and make visible non-party constituencies, especially local and regional governments, and their contributions to climate action and ambition within the official COP agenda. This level of inclusion has set the bar for future COP proceedings. 

QUOTES THE LGMA FOCAL POINT AND LGMA MEMBERS 

The quotes are reflected in alphabetical order, according to the last names of the respective speakers. 

UCLG supports the launch of The Coalition for High Ambition Multi-level Partnerships (CHAMP) as joint forces from national and local governments will be critical to achieve the ambitious objectives needed for a sustainable future. This will be the focus of our work towards COP 30 and our inputs as a constituency to the Summit of the Future,” said Uğur İbrahim Altay, Mayor of Konya, Turkey and President of UCLG. 

“In the urban world of the twenty-first century, multilevel action is the new normal in how to respond to the climate emergency. By the time we reach to COP30 in Belem in 2025, we should be able to count only countries who have not endorsed CHAMP and its vision in their national plans,” said Yunus Arikan, Director of Global Advocacy at ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability and the LGMA Focal Point to the UNFCCC. 

“With CHAMP, we feel that a greater engagement to fight climate change will be reinforced between national and subnational governments, including small, medium-sized and big cities, towns, and regions, allowing us to be better prepared in COP30 with the next round of NDCs,”

said Ronan Dantec, Senator and Councillor of the city of Nantes, France and Spokesperson for the Environment at the Council of European Municipalities and Regions (CEMR). 

“Every nation joining CHAMP during and after COP28 marks a milestone for multilevel collaborative climate action in the spirit of the Paris Agreement. As Mayor of Bonn, a city on the path to Climate Neutrality 2035, as ICLEI Co Chair Climate Action and Vice President of the German Association of Cities, I am pleased to enter the next phase of ambition, of national strategies and stocktakes, including and reflecting the efforts of cities and regions. And I am offering the Daring Cities Forum back to back to the June Climate Negotiations as a permanent home to our follow-up and stocktake of the collaboration to come,” said Katja Dörner, Lord Mayor of Bonn, Germany and the ICLEI Global Executive Committee Climate Action and Low Emission Development Portfolio. 

"FMDV-Global Fund for Cities Development commends the COP28 Presidency for this crucial move towards promoting multilevel action as the catalyzing and transformative next stage of Paris Agreement's implementation. The CHAMP initiative demonstrates that Local and Regional Governments are National Governments' first partners and solution providers for implementing their global commitments to the Paris Agreement's objectives. Unleashing the transformative power of urbanization financing will be the key touchstone of this multilevel cooperation. All initiatives accelerating access to and innovation in financial engineering for a sustainable, just and resilient urban future will need to converge to make this pledge a transformative reality. Based on its extensive expertise and experience, the LGMA community will stand on CHAMP signatories' side to support their efforts," said Carlos de Freitas, Executive Director, FMDV - Global Fund for Cities Development. 

“I fully support the Coalition for High Ambition Partnership (CHAMP), and appreciate the leadership of the COP28 Presidency, Bloomberg Philanthropies and partners in achieving this commitment. I believe this is a significant innovation in international climate policy for local and regional governments. I look forward to additional opportunities for dialogue with our federal government, to co-create Canada’s next climate action plan to cut emissions and adapt to climate impacts, and to share this with cities throughout North America as a best practice approach,” said Cam Guthrie, Mayor of Guelph, Canada and Board Member of the Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate & Energy. 

“The Global Cities Hub applauds the inclusion of the Local Climate Action Summit in the COP28 program and urges the organizers and participating States to incorporate its outcomes into the official COP28 documentation. As the Summit brings together an impressive array of national

and subnational climate leaders with the goal of revolutionizing climate finance, mobilizing global action, accelerating the energy transition, and strengthening local-level resilience and adaptation, the viewpoints of local leaders are placed at the forefront,” said Sami Kanaan, Vice-Mayor of Geneva, Switzerland and President Global Cities Hub. 

The Rwanda Association of Local Government Authorities (RALGA) welcomes the Coalition for High Impact Multilevel Partnerships (CHAMP). I am happy that the Government of Rwanda endorsed it, which is a sign of shared vision and commitment to sustainable climate action, with shared responsibilities at all levels. It reflects the importance of multilevel collaboration to deliver climate action for sustainability. I invite all other Governments who have not yet endorsed it to do so with a sense of urgency. I also request Development Partners to provide resources for its implementation. Congratulations to those who worked hard to have it endorsed at COP28. As RALGA celebrates its 20th anniversary in 2023, it is high time to renew our commitment to local climate action. History is in the making, next should be loss and damage fund operationalization,” said Ladislas Ngendahimana, Secretary General, Rwanda Association of Local Government Authorities (RALGA). 

“Multilateralism has been in Rio’s DNA since Rio1992, and we are looking forward to consolidating CHAMP under the Brazilian presidency of the G20. We congratulate the Brazil Federal Government for endorsing the declaration and for their commitment to CHAMP,” said Eduardo Paes, Mayor of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. 

“Time is no longer on our side if we are serious about tackling the climate crisis. We welcome the CHAMP initiative as a vital and urgent signal to all levels of government to work together on solutions. States and regions, such as those in the Under2 Coalition, are already at the frontlines of the crisis. They are seeing its devastating impacts every single day and have so much more to contribute when it comes to solutions. They must have more opportunities to do so at COP28 and beyond,” said Champa Patel, Executive Director, Governments and Policy, Climate Group 

“In the urgent and collective pursuit of global climate resilience, the role of subnational actors in shaping the trajectory of climate action is undeniable. The indispensable contribution of subnational governments, cities, towns, states, and regions fortifies the global response to climate change. I am pleased to reaffirm our dedication to the principles and objectives of CHAMP, and our collective pursuit of a resilient, sustainable, and low-emission future. The European Commission will continue working towards ambitious multilevel climate action in collaboration with national and subnational governments,” said Maroš Šefčovič, Executive Vice President of the European Commission.

“The Coalition for High Ambition Partnership (CHAMP) shows how partnerships between governments are the only way to make progress in the most challenging of conditions. We know the window is rapidly closing to keep temperatures below 1.5C degrees and that transformative action on emissions and resilience is rapidly needed in the rest of this decade to keep the Paris Agreement in reach. Having national governments commit to collaboration with local governments will empower cities, and strengthen their role in creating a low-carbon and resilient future,” said Oleksandr Senkevych, Mayor of Mykolaiv, Ukraine. 

“A key strength of the Paris Agreement is in its unique top-down and bottom-up design - we need everyone involved in tackling the climate crisis if we are to succeed. Subnational actors are a crucial part of implementing the Paris Agreement, and especially in enhancing ambition in the next NDC ratchet cycle. Subnationals are the new ‘super nationals’! I’m happy to see multilevel collaboration initiatives like CHAMP leading the way in the next evolution of the Paris Agreement,” said Laurence Tubiana, CEO of the European Climate Foundation (ECF), COP22 UN High-Level Champion for Climate Action, and France’s Climate Change Ambassador and Special Representative for COP21. 

"Subnational governments are taking the reins in the fight against climate change, bringing commitments, ambition, and distinctive perspectives to the table. With direct experience and connections to their territories and people, they design and implement creative solutions to overcome obstacles in meeting the goals of the Paris Agreement, but also to build resilience and adapt to the impacts they are already facing. Meaningful progress can only be achieved through collaboration among all levels of government and we call for the CHAMP initiative to allow for sustainable support to accelerate action," said Natalia Uribe Pando, Secretary General, Regions4. 

"Delighted that 62 countries have pledged to work with subnational governments to limit global temperature rise to 1.5C. Local governments are leaders on science-based climate action and their experience and achievements can help stimulate faster, stronger national climate action. And, of course, in return we need to see more direct investment in cities to achieve a fair and just transition to a greener future for all," said Mark Watts, Executive Director, C40 Cities.

NOTE TO EDITORS 

About Local Governments and Municipal Authorities (LGMA) Constituency Since the Earth Summit in 1992, when nine stakeholder groups – including local authorities – were designated as essential partners in implementing the global sustainability agenda, the Local Governments and Municipal Authorities (LGMA) Constituency has represented networks of local and regional governments under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). The LGMA has served as the voice of cities and regions since the first Conference of Parties (COP) in 1995 and continues to achieve advocacy success for multilevel action in the climate, nature, and desertification processes. The LGMA has grown to more than 45 accredited networks of local and regional governments. The LGMA coordinates inputs to the global climate negotiations all year, influencing and informing outcomes toward meeting the Paris Agreement. 

For more information, please visit: www.cities-and-regions.org/ 

CONTACT 

For media inquiries, please contact: 

Anastasia Sukhoroslova, Media Coordinator, ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability World Secretariat (Bonn, Germany) 

WhatsApp: +49 (0)163 832 5284 | Email: anastasia.sukhoroslova@iclei.org 

Ariel Dekovic, Head of Global Communications, ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability World Secretariat (Bonn, Germany) 

WhatsApp: +49 (0)177 190 2830| Email: ariel.dekovic@iclei.org

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