Side Events convened on Wednesday, 16 December 2009

Presented by ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability

L-R: Ritt Bjerregaard, Lord Mayor of Copenhagen; David Cadman, President of ICLEI; and British economist Lord Nicholas Stern.

David Cadman, President of ICLEI, explained that the event would address local-level climate actions. Ritt Bjerregaard, Lord Mayor of Copenhagen, stressed that cities represent more than half of the world’s population and can lead the way to a solution with ambitious policies and strategies. British economist Lord Nicholas Stern noted that 80% of the world’s energy is used in cities and that many actions are easier to achieve at the local level.

Robert Doyle, Mayor of Melbourne, stated that capital cities in Australia are already acting. Amos Masondo, Mayor of Johannesburg, emphasized the need for collaboration between all levels of government. Greg Nickels, Mayor of Seattle, highlighted that his city has reduced its emissions by 7% below 1990 levels, and that 1,060 US mayors have pledged to do the same.

Rakesh Mehta, Chief Secretary, Government of National Capital Territory Delhi, stressed the importance of involving communities in climate change actions. Bärbel Dieckmann, Chair of the World Mayors Council on Climate Change, said “without local governments, there will be no solution to climate change.