News November 14, 2017

UK Government to support CFF to unlock climate action in cities

  • UK to provide £27.5m to help the world’s largest cities tackle climate change while also growing the economy.
  • Initiative supports cities to develop and implement ambitious climate action to meet emissions reduction targets in line with Paris Agreement.
  • It encourages governments internationally to prioritise action in urban spaces given their disproportionate impact on environment and climate.
  • Funding will help unlock potential opportunities for UK businesses who can offer their technical expertise and innovation overseas.

An ambitious initiative to help some of the world’s fastest developing countries embrace clean growth as their economies take off was launched by the UK government at COP23. The £27.5m ‘Climate Leadership in Cities’ programme will support the world’s largest cities including those in Asia and South America to develop, finance and implement ambitious plans for tackling climate change.
The UK is a world leader in promoting clean growth and has reduced emissions on a per person basis faster than any other G7 nation. The initiative will also help unlock potential opportunities for UK business to provide technical expertise overseas. The programme will be delivered in partnership with the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group, the German technical cooperation agency GIZ, and the Coalition for Urban Transitions

The UK has shown that tackling climate change and growing the economy, can, and should, go hand in hand. Since 1990, we have cut emissions by more than 40% while our economy has grown by two thirds and now we want to help other countries do the same. Ambitious climate action is needed across all levels of government and society in order to meet targets set out in the Paris Agreement; this is why we are taking the lead on supporting sustainable urban solutions to help unlock ambitious action in cities across the developing world.
Claire Perry MP Minister of State for Climate Change and Industry

Reducing emissions in the developing world is crucial for progress against the Paris Agreement. Cities account for around 70% of global energy consumption and energy-related greenhouse gas emissions and house a majority of the world’s population. Decisive action at city-level would significantly contribute to keeping global temperature increases to well below 2 degrees, in line with global commitments made at COP21 in Paris. 

This contribution from the British Government will be decisive in ensuring the great cities of the world become sustainable and prosperous partners in the fight against climate change. Britain’s leadership in recognising the risk and rewards at stake in the world’s great cities is a demonstration of national-local collaboration in action and will be a significant contribution to the global fight against climate change.
MW picture
Mark Watts Executive Director, C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group
The launch of the 'Climate Leadership in Cities' initiative was announced at an event at COP23, which included the participation of Mayor of Accra Mohammed Adjei Sowah (left), Mayor of Quito Mauricio Rodas (centre), and Nick Bridge, Special Representative for Climate Change for the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office (right). Photo credit: Simon Veith Fotografie/C40.

The programme will be supported by international climate finance over a 3-year period to address the capacity and skills gap preventing developing countries’ cities from creating ambitious climate action plans and implementing effective mitigation measures. Sharing knowledge and experience from this programme, and tapping into British expertise, is a key objective. 

Climate action planning work will be taken forward as part of C40’s ongoing Deadline 2020 programme. UK support through this programme will benefit fifteen cities in Latin America and Asia to create ambitious climate action plans aimed at creating healthy, green zero emission cities by 2050. 

UK funding will also be used to expand the C40 Cities Finance Facility (CFF), an initiative implemented by C40 and GIZ, to help cities across the developing world to prepare projects to attract investment, while building city capacity to structure sustainable infrastructure transactions.  The UK Government will join the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) in funding the CFF and, through the UK’s contribution, open up the CFF to support city action on energy, in addition to the existing CFF sectors of transport and climate change adaptation. 

UK support through the C40 Cities Finance Facility (CFF) will help 10-12 cities in developing countries to bring a transaction to financing, build city capacity to structure further transactions and share good practices, learning and knowledge with cities across the world. A new call for C40 Cities Finance Facility projects will be made in early 2018.