Quantcast

Cities Around the World Take Lead on Tackling Climate Change

Climate

To tackle a problem you need to know the scope of the problem. Today at the climate talks in Lima, Peru, the World Resources Institute (WRI), C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group and ICLEI-Local Governments for Sustainability announced the launch of the first global standard for cities to monitor and report their greenhouse gas emissions, which has been developed over the past three years.

Rio de Janeiro has already reduced its potential carbon emissions by 378,000 tons as part of the beta test of the new global monitoring standards.
Photo credit: Shutterstock

The Global Protocol for Community-Scale Greenhouse Gas Emission Inventories (GPC) establishes ground rules for emissions accounting and reporting practices, allowing cities to see where they stand, set emissions reduction goals, develop action plans and track how their plans are working. The protocol will also be a tool for better reporting of data to other levels of government and should give cities better access to funds to address climate change. Over 100 cities are already using beta versions of the protocol.

“If we want to turn the tide against climate change, cities will need to lead the way," said WRI president and CEO Dr. Andrew Steer. "Compact and efficient cities can dramatically reduce emissions and will drive innovation and sustained economic growth. Until recently there has been no consistent way to measure city-level emissions. Now that has changed. We now have a common international standard to inform strategies to cut emissions and create better, more livable cities.”

Previously used monitoring and reporting systems vary considerably, making assessing the quality of the data and drawing comparisons between cities difficult. With the new protocol, all cities will follow the accounting principles established by the 2006 IPCC Guidelines for National Greenhouse Gas Inventories.

The GPC is also the basis for the Compact of Mayors, the world’s largest cooperative effort among cities to reduce emissions, track progress and develop plans to mitigate the impact of climate change.

“The Compact of Mayors that we launched at the UN Climate Summit is drawing attention to the powerful work cities are doing to confront climate change and helping them build on their progress," said Michael R. Bloomberg, the UN Secretary General's Special Envoy for Cities and Climate Change and C40 Board Chair. "The GPC’s standardized system for measuring and reporting emissions is a critical component of the Compact. It will help cities see what climate strategies are working, better target their resources and hold themselves accountable for results. The more cities take part in the Compact and adopt the GPC, the greater impact it will have."

Pilot cities already using the beta version of GPC include Guangdong, China; Rajkot, India; Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Wellington City, New Zealand; and Johannesburg, South Africa.

“Building a greenhouse gas emissions inventory enables city leaders to manage their emissions reduction efforts, allocate resources and develop comprehensive climate action plans,” said C40 Chair, Rio de Janeiro Mayor Eduardo Paes whose city has already implemented programs that have prevented 378,000 tons of carbon emissions, thanks to its participation in the pilot program. “With the launch of the GPC, cities now have a consistent, transparent and internationally recognized approach to measuring and reporting citywide emissions, allowing for credible comparison and aggregation across timescales and geographies. I strongly encourage other cities around the world to join the Compact of Mayors and take up this new standard as a key step in the global fight against climate change.”

 YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

Scientists Say Greenhouse Gas Emissions Continue to Wreak Havoc on Climate

U.S. Carbon Emissions Rise Despite Efforts to Combat Climate Change

World Meteorological Organization: Ocean Acidification and Greenhouse Gas Emissions Hit Record Levels

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

Pexels

By Dan Nosowitz

It's no secret that the past few years have been disastrous for the American farming industry.

Read More Show Less
Pexels

By Gavin Van De Walle, MS, RD

Medium-chain triglyceride (MCT) oil and coconut oil are fats that have risen in popularity alongside the ketogenic, or keto, diet.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
Pexels

By Bijal Trivedi

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released a report on Nov. 13 that describes a list of microorganisms that have become resistant to antibiotics and pose a serious threat to public health. Each year these so-called superbugs cause more than 2.8 million infections in the U.S. and kill more than 35,000 people.

Read More Show Less
Rool Paap / Flickr / CC BY 2.0

By Franziska Spritzler, RD, CDE

Inflammation can be good or bad depending on the situation.

Read More Show Less

By Joe Vukovich

Under the guise of responding to consumer complaints that today's energy- and water-efficient dishwashers take too long, the Department of Energy has proposed creating a new class of dishwashers that wouldn't be subject to any water or energy efficiency standards at all. The move would not only undermine three decades of progress for consumers and the environment, it is based on serious distortions of fact regarding today's dishwashers.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored

By Emily Moran

If you have oak trees in your neighborhood, perhaps you've noticed that some years the ground is carpeted with their acorns, and some years there are hardly any. Biologists call this pattern, in which all the oak trees for miles around make either lots of acorns or almost none, "masting."

Read More Show Less

By Catherine Davidson

Tashi Yudon peeks out from behind a net curtain at the rooftops below and lets out a sigh, her breath frosting on the windowpane in front of her.

Some 700 kilometers away in the capital city Delhi, temperatures have yet to dip below 25 degrees Celsius, but in Spiti there is already an atmosphere of impatient expectation as winter settles over the valley.

Read More Show Less

The Dog Aging Project at the University of Washington is looking to recruit 10,000 dogs to study for the next 10 years to see if they can improve the life expectancy of man's best friend and their quality of life, as CNN reported.

Read More Show Less