While the Paris Agreement was agreed upon by nations, science shows that action by regions and cities is critical to keep global warming from raising above 1.5°C. Cooperation amongst all levels of government is imperative to advance technology, public policy, knowledge and capacity at scale and speed necessary, to meet the Paris Agreement goals. One of the key requirements for scaling up and increasing coordinated and integrated climate action is the capacity of systems to incentivise, encourage and institutionalise partnerships between national and local governments, public institutions and civil society, as well as the private sector.
The cluster session will encompass recommendations on the investment needs of cities in order to meet the climate challenge. Furthermore, it will demonstrate that cities are willing partners on commitments for collaborative and vertically integrated climate action. In order to plan and implement appropriate climate mitigation and adaptation measures, cities require access to decision making tools and downscaled data. The session will also address the opportunities of enhancing data availability through spatial analysis and community-based enumeration schemes. Geographic focus will be placed on Africa and how data may facilitate new insights and lead to faster, more ambitious climate action.
Structure of Cluster Session 1
||Technology and Innovation Investment Opportunities
||Roundtable discussion with mayors, national government ministers, and representatives from private sector companies dedicated to highlighting the most pressing investment and pilot opportunities in cities pertaining to technological innovation, data management, research and development
5-7 Global Mayors (Turkey, Kenya,
National government representatives/ministers
Richard Baron, the Executive Director of the 2050 Pathways Platform
|30 minutes kick-off presentation to highlight Innovate4Cities’ evolution and current projects/commitments answering the I4C call to action
Potential for select Mayors to present projects and additional opportunities
60 minutes moderated roundtable discussion diving into city priorities and where current action as well as future support by national governments would be most promising
||Concise readout of the specific opportunities presented during the session
Recommendations on the specific investments national governments should consider as they focus their commitments in the lead up to the UNSG Summit in September 2019.
Structure of Cluster Session 2
The African continent is undergoing a process of rapid urbanization characterized by an increasing socio-economic inequality and informality that is expected to continue in the coming decades, with a population expected to reach 2.4 billion people by 2050. African cities are at the forefront of experiencing the first order impacts of climate change, including coastal and inland flooding, heat waves, droughts, wildfires and unequal access to sustainable and affordable energy. As the IPCC Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5°C warns, current nationally-determined contributions under the Paris Agreement are not enough to avoid the drastic consequences that will concurrently impact African communities, even as they face the demographic, social and economic challenges of the coming decades.
Through the use of satellite data and technology, such as through the European Space Agencies’ Copernicus program – thousands of cities globally could potentially access critical near-real-time climate data to support real-time decision making and urban planning efforts. At the same time, many community- based initiatives are plugging the data gap at neighbourhood level in many African cities. There is an increasing potential of combining global and local data sources to substantially transform cities’ ability to identify, map and adapt to climate hazards and their impacts in infrastructure, livelihoods and ecosystems.
In order to understand and share the potential for global satellite imagery and community based assets to support climate planning in African cities, the session will focus on a better understanding the needs of African cities across the continent.
Special focus would be placed on three key questions:
Where do data gaps exist and are there any regional variations across the continent?
How can global and community based data be positioned to address these gaps?
How and to what extent can data be provided in manner that can quickly enhance local capacity and support accelerated decision-making.
||Using Global and Local Data Technologies to Address climate change impacts in African Cities
||Roundtable discussion with experts and practitioners to highlight success stories and innovative urban planning solutions to climate change in Africa
|Proposed speakers (tbc)
William Cobbett, Director of Cities Alliance
Mr. Mohamed Nbou, Head, United Cities Local Government Africa Climate Task Force
Ms Sheela Patel, Chair of Slum Dwellers International (tbc)
Ms. Comfort Doryen, Chair, Federation of Petty Traders & Informal Workers Union of Liberia (FEPTIWUL)
Dr André Obregón, Senior Technical Officer for Copernicus Climate Change Service-ECMWF
A Mayor, to be nominated by GCOM
Prof. Dr. Astrid Ley, University of Stuttgart
|Welcome by Moderator
Moderated roundtable discussion on existing data gaps and current needs of African cities by experts and practitioners.
||Concise readout of the specific needs of cities and local governments identified during the session
Discussion on solutions and opportunities to address city-identified barriers that must be overcome to accelerate climate action at a scale achievable for all cities
Commitment by ESA to deploy capabilities to support cities