Europe’s city mayors unite to demand emissions cuts by next year

Europe’s city mayors unite to demand emissions cuts by next year

Mayors and leaders of 210 European cities, representing 62 million citizens have written to European leaders demanding that emissions are halved by 2030 and reach a net-zero by the mid-century.

They also call on EU leaders to step up the EU’s climate commitments, to show global leadership and drive ambition to make rapid progress in the implementation of the Paris Agreement.

In an open letter published ahead of Future of Europe conference (Sibiu, Romania on 9th May 2019) they call for enhanced targets to ensure rapid and just energy transition, and an end to fossil fuel subsidies.

Their demands include:

  • Develop a just and inclusive European long-term climate strategy that enhances resilience and ensures emissions in the EU peak by 2020, more than halve by 2030 and reach net-zero by 2050;
  • Enhance the 2030 EU climate and energy targets and Nationally Determined Contribution to ensure a resilient, rapid and just energy transition in line with the above goals;
  • Align the next EU long-term budget with this strategy, remove fossil fuel subsidies and mainstream climate action as a priority across all funding programmes; and
  • Commit all member states to binding net-zero emissions reduction targets and the above goals.

The open letter was signed by leaders of cities in 21 EU member states and 7 neighbouring countries, including Anne Hidalgo, Mayor of Paris and Chair of C40 Cities. “Climate change is a threat to all Europeans regardless of their social background or political beliefs. Mayors from large and small cities, right across Europe recognise the urgency of the challenge ahead and are implementing bold climate action on their streets. EU decision makers must set aside their differences to take the ambitious and courageous decisions needed on climate action. The future of Europe must be as a global climate leader. Future generations will not forgive us if we fail to act while there is still time.” – Ms Hidalgo says.

“I am very proud that many cities have already taken ambitious steps towards a net zero economy but limiting warming to 1.5C requires the involvement of all political levels. It is time that European and national leaders fully commit to and start working for a climate neutral Europe by 2050, together with our cities.” joins Anna König Jerlmyr, Mayor of Stockholm and President of EUROCITIES.

“Now is the time to act to avoid the worst consequences of climate change. We have to listen to science and take the IPCC report seriously – it is very likely that we only have until 2030 to limit climate change effects. We need a rapid and deep transformation to a more sustainable and just society for the benefits of our citizens, and should commit to a net-zero emissions target by 2050. Freiburg will continue to implement ambitious climate measures to safeguard the well-being of our and future generations.” – Martin Horn, Mayor of Freiburg and Chair of ICLEI Europe

Further information

 

May 8, 2019
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