The Climate Summit of Local and Regional Leaders will revolve around four key themes:
(1) Multilevel governance to achieve Nationally Determined Contributions
Nations have made ground-breaking commitments through national climate action plans known as Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs). However, there is still a sizable gap between what was pledged and what is needed to keep global warming under 1.5 degrees Celsius. Local and subnational governments all over the globe are in a unique position to help national governments shape and implement new, more ambitious plans through the 2018 NDC review process.
(2) Holistic approaches to sustainable development
Cities are at the center of converging global frameworks and processes, such as the Sustainable Development Goals, the New Urban Agenda and the Paris Climate Agreement. Greater synergy among these frameworks and processes is the key to ensure that the drivers and first effects of climate change on urban and rural systems alike are approached holistically.
(3) Community and business engagement
The engagement and empowerment of citizens and communities plays a major role in making local action for climate and sustainability happen. At the same time, local businesses have the potential to contribute substantially in achieving commitments.
(4) Partnerships for action in Africa, Least Developed Countries and Small Island Developing States
Africa, Least Developed Countries and Small Islands Developing States have much to lose if the world does not keep global warming under 1.5 degrees Celsius. Through platforms such as the Climate Vulnerable Forum, they have already committed to go carbon neutral by 2050. Unfortunately these tend also to be the countries with the least resources to address the risks of climate change. Increased support and collaboration are critical for these regions of the world.