ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability is a global network working with more than 2,500 local and regional governments committed to sustainable urban development.


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ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability is a global network working with more than 2,500 local and regional governments committed to sustainable urban development.

ICLEI Regional Secretariats and country offices

21 September 2023

COP28 President-Designate Sultan Al Jaber and UN Special Envoy Michael R. Bloomberg announce first COP-Hosted Local Climate Action Summit


Convening hundreds of mayors, governors, and subnational leaders alongside heads of state, Summit at COP28 in Dubai will recognize the critical role of local leaders in the COP process eight years after local leaders convened on the sidelines of COP21 to turbocharge climate ambition

Xie Zhenhua, Special Envoy for Climate Change of the People’s Republic of China; John Kerry, U.S. Special Presidential Envoy for Climate Change; Simon Stiell, Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change; Maimunah Mohd Sharif, Executive Director of United Nations Human Settlements Programme; HE Razan Al Mubarak, UN Climate Change High-Level Champion of COP28; and Laurence Tubiana, CEO of the European Climate Foundation expected to be global co-chairs of the Summit

New York, NY – 19 September 2023 – COP28 President-designate Dr. Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber and UN Special Envoy on Climate Ambition and Solutions Michael R. Bloomberg announced the COP28 Local Climate Action Summit – the first time a COP Presidency has announced a formal summit designed to bring subnational leaders into the COP program and process. Hosted by the COP28 Presidency and Bloomberg Philanthropies on December 1-2, 2023 in Dubai, the COP28 Local Climate Action Summit will aim to bring together hundreds of subnational climate leaders – mayors, governors, businesses, non-government organizations, and more – who are increasingly critical in helping national governments reach emissions reduction targets and net-zero ambitions while building resilient and future-proof economies and societies.

“Cities are where the climate battle will largely be won or lost,” said United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres. “We all need to push further and faster; keep collaborating, innovating and raising ambition. Mobilizing and equipping local governments with the capacity and financing to accelerate climate action is necessary if we are to bend the emissions curve. We need to achieve our 1.5-degree goal.”

“The COP28 Presidency will bring mayors into the heart of the COP process and the World Leaders Summit for the first time. City leaders have been at the forefront of climate action – accelerating ambition, delivering results and dealing with climate impacts in real time. By bringing hundreds of local leaders to COP28, we will foster new, multi-level partnerships to help fast track the energy transition, fix climate finance, focus on people, lives and livelihoods, and make sure local voices are heard at the international climate table. Only by working in true partnership can we close the gap the Global Stocktake reveals, and keep 1.5C within reach,” said Dr. Sultan Al Jaber, COP28 President-Designate.

“For the world to tackle climate change effectively, mayors and governors need a bigger seat at the table – and while we have a come a long way since we convened mayors at COP21 in Paris, greater collaboration is still needed between local leaders, the private sector, national governments and international finance institutions,” said Michael R. Bloomberg, UN Special Envoy on Climate Ambition and Solutions and founder of Bloomberg LP and Bloomberg Philanthropies. “This Local Climate Action Summit will be a major opportunity to empower local and regional governments – who are already leading the way in reducing emissions – to be bolder and move faster.”

Recognizeengage and empower has long been the fierce mantra of cities, towns, regions and subnationals towards the parties in the UNFCCC. This Summit at COP28 is an extraordinary opportunity for these stakeholders to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with nations, and bring our commitment, action and influence to the table so that parties strengthen their next round of national commitments,” said Frank Cownie, Mayor of Des Moines, USA and President of ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability. “ICLEI, as the focal point for the Local Governments and Municipal Authorities Constituency to the UNFCCC, is ready to motivate our constituents and seize the opportunity to make multilevel action and sustainable urbanization the new normal.”

The Summit will be supported by a strong cohort of city networks and subnational partner organizations including ICLEI; America is All In; C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group; Catalytic Finance Foundation; CDP; Cities Climate Finance Leadership Alliance (CCFLA); Climate Mayors; the Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate & Energy (GCoM); the We Mean Business Coalition; United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG); UN-Habitat; the Under2 Coalition; The Center for Global Sustainability (CGS) at the University of Maryland; US Conference of Mayors; World Resources Institute (WRI), among others. For more information about the Summit, please visit www.cop28.com/LCAS.


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