May 23, 2018
Sign the Edmonton Declaration – a bold call-to-action for cities of all sizes to seriously consider the role of scientific research and data in building ambitious climate action plans. The Declaration, first presented in March in Edmonton, Canada, and further developed throughout the year, brings together policymakers, scientists, businesses and city networks to create a critical new dialogue between these vital groups of climate change stakeholders. It calls upon the scientific, technology and innovation community to work collaboratively with cities and city organisations. Together, we have to improve current knowledge and data gaps and develop innovative solutions that help cities meet ambitious climate targets, in line with the goals of the Paris agreement.
To join the community of cities committed to the Declaration, contact us at: email@example.com
Don Iveson, Mayor of Edmonton, on the Edmonton Declaration
As leaders of cities, we cannot tackle the complexity of climate change individually; instead, we must work collectively towards solutions. Cities have long been asking for the tools and data to make urgent decisions addressing the impacts of climate change, and this past March, global city networks, mayors and the science community came together in Edmonton for the Change for Climate Global Mayors Summit to begin to discuss these unique needs and one of the outcomes was the development of an Edmonton Declaration.
The Edmonton Declaration
In brief, the Edmonton Declaration:
- Engages all levels of government to recognize the immediate and urgent need for action that will limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius,
- Recognizes that cities face some of the most significant impacts of rising GHG emissions and bear the much of the costs for adaptation and mitigation,
- Reinforces the importance and role of cities in achieving the targets in the Paris Agreement,
- Calls on the scientific community and other levels of government to provide better data and tools for science-based decision-making,
- Asks cities to look beyond their borders at the impact of consumption on GHG emissions.
By signing the Edmonton Declaration, mayors are committing to taking the mantle of leadership on climate change, and amplifying the message that rising greenhouse gas emissions severely impact cities.
Innovate4Cities – A Global Climate Action Accelerator
The Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy have taken the lead on developing a global climate action accelerator, which will address critical knowledge, data and innovations gaps that cities experience. As they proceed with stakeholder engagement at city network and international gatherings, they will be using the Edmonton Declaration as a touchpoint to continue to gather global support to highlight the need for research and innovation that is specific to cities. This will be a powerful tool to help cities create policy, form partnerships and build financial resources.
Cities are facilitating and directly implementing innovative solutions to the challenges of climate change. The Invest4Cities initiative will focus on creating a shared understanding of the impacts climate change will have on cities and directly assist cities in identifying the optimal approaches to be implemented to both mitigate carbon emissions and adapt its infrastructure to a changing climate. All solutions, policy changes, infrastructure improvements and low carbon programs will need to be evidence based; the Invest4Cities initiative will provide local governments and practitioners with city level data to help them create the value cases to implement these solutions.
Ultimately, the Edmonton Declaration and Invest4Cities initiative will enable cities to take targeted, accelerated and ambitious climate action and facilitate a just transition to a low carbon future. Cities and city networks will be able to bring these documents to private industry, and national and subnational governments, in order to catalyze new research, build new data, provoke innovation, and stimulate new funding sources for cities to combat climate change.
Statements on the Edmonton Declaration
Michael Bloomberg, Co-Chair of the Global Covenant of Mayors, UN Secretary General’s Special Envoy for Climate Action:
“Mayors recognize that if you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it. Data allows them to identify challenges and opportunities – and respond. This new collaborative effort gives cities access to critical resources that will help them do more, faster, to take on climate change.”
Maroš Šefčovič, Co-Chair of the Global Covenant of Mayors, Vice President of the European Commission:
“Cities are experimenting with innovative solutions. It is in cities that most of the technological innovations and nature based solutions will be deployed to increase resilience and improve the well-being of citizens, that charging points for urban electric vehicles will be rolled out, that decentralised renewable energy production will take off and smart buildings in energy positive neighbourhoods will be constructed. This research and innovation agenda will create a pathway to channel existing funding commitments around research and innovation and develop a new research pipeline that will mobilize resources and knowledge generation for cities.”
Gino Van Begin, ICLEI Secretary General:
“Science gave us the wake-up call needed to get the Paris Agreement done. Now we must harness its potential for innovation to address the very present challenges that cities face in making the low-carbon transition happen. City leaders are already taking important steps in this direction, and we are calling on the scientific community to work with us to bridge gaps and identify evidence-based solutions for the present and the future of our communities.”