Since the inception of the Under2 MOU in May 2015, members of the Under2 Coalition have been able to meet and collaborate in conferences and events hosted around the world. Under2 leaders have brought international attention to the ambitious goals made at the subnational level, demonstrated the collective impact of subnational actions and commitments, and highlighted the diversity of approaches to reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Some key events are highlighted below.
California Climate Change Symposium
January 25-26, 2016
The California Climate Change Symposium brought together over 800 participants from local and state government, science, academia, industry, non-profit, and the community, with a total of 120 presenters distributed in 16 panels.
The first day of the Symposium centered on such issues as drought and water, extreme heat, ocean acidification, sea level rise, fuel system vulnerabilities, adaptation and resilience. The second day of the Symposium examined regional concerns, then ended on an international scale. The closing keynote of the California Climate Change Symposium titled, “Global Climate Collaboration through the Under2 Coalition,” featured delegates from California, Ontario, and Jalisco.
Conference of the Parties 22 (COP 22)
November 7-18, 2016
At COP 22, the Under2 Coalition was championed as a way that subnationals can pave the way forward on climate even under federal inaction. A wave of 29 signatories joined the Coalition, including the Alliance of Peaking Pioneer Cities in China; East Kalimantan, West Kalimantan, and South Sumatra in Indonesia; Michoácan and Tabasco in Mexico; Australian Capital Territory in Australia; and Abruzzo in Italy.
On November 13, 2016, the Under2 Coalition meeting convened delegates from over 10 jurisdictions. The meeting covered pathways to 2050 work featuring Laurence Tubiana; research on Measuring, Verification, and Reporting (MRV) emissions with a case study in Laikipia County; and analysis of action areas and policies in Under2 appendices.
On November 15, 2016, The Climate Group, C40, and Climate Analytics hosted the side event,”Under2 MOU: 2050 strategies towards 1.5 degrees C with States, Regions and Cities.” Moreover, Under2 Coalition members participated in other such relevant events as the “Low Emissions Solutions Conference,” “States and Regions General Assembly,” and “Climate Summit for Local and Regional Leaders.”
Climate Week 2016
September 19-25, 2016
New York City, USA
The Climate Group, the Under2 Coalition’s Secretariat, convened the eighth Climate Week in New York City, bringing together influential global figures from the worlds of business, government and society who are leading the low carbon transition.
Global leaders from the Under2 Coalition and the States and Regions Alliance converged at the “States and Regions” event. Presentations updated the members on the emerging activities of subnationals, and the different legal authorities of global states and regions. Members then formed breakout groups focusing on the energy actions that have been adopted in their regions, and the similarities and differences between those groups, thereby exploring ways to enhance intergovernmental collaboration. Under2 Coalition delegates included South Australia in Australia; Ontario and Quebec in Canada; Baden Württemberg and North Rhine-Westphalia in Germany; Jalisco in Mexico; Catalonia in Spain; California and Minnesota in the USA.
Subnational Clean Energy Ministerial (Sub-CEM)
June 1-2, 2016
San Francisco, USA
At the inaugural Sub-CEM hosted in San Francisco, Under2 leaders from states, cities and provinces from around the world convened to highlight regional clean energy and climate action and collaboration. Seven new signatories joined the Under2 Coalition, including the first state from India: Telangana, India; Veneto, Italy; Laikipia County, Kenya; City of Budapest, Hungary; City of Santiago, Chile; and the City of Sacramento and the City of Portland, USA.
During the “Subnational Leadership in Renewable Energy Resources Panel,” Governor Jerry Brown of California, Governor Jay Inslee of Washington, Governor Kate Brown of Oregon, and Environment Minister Mary Polak of British Columbia discussed the need to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions by transitioning to cleaner fuels and the rapid scaling and expansion of renewable energy worldwide.
The Sub-CEM was held in conjunction with the seventh Clean Energy Ministerial (CEM7), an annual meeting of national energy ministers and other high-level delegates from 23 member countries and the European Commission.
At COP 21, Under2 members demonstrated what subnational governments are doing to combat climate change and why they should be part of the global climate conversation. Myriad events pertained to subnational governments and Under2 Coalition members.
On December 6, 2015, a signing ceremony was held for seven new Under2 Coalition members: South Australia in Australia; Mato Grosso in Brazil; Basilicata in Italy; Navarra in Spain; the City of Austin, the City of Seattle, and the City of Oakland in USA. Another eight jurisdictions signed the agreement remotely: City of São Paulo in Brazil; Aquitaine and Midi-Pyrénées in France; Piedmont in Italy; San Martín in Peru; Jämtland Härjedalen in Sweden; the City of Bristol in the UK; and the State of Rhode Island in the USA.
On December 7, 2015, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC)’s “Climate Action Dialogues: Subnationals Leading the Way” event championed cities and states that are adopting ambitious emission reduction targets, while at the same time creating economic opportunity. Participants included Under2 representatives from Acre in Brazil; British Columbia and Vancouver in Canada; Jalisco in Mexico; Cross River in Nigeria; Ucayali in Peru; and the City of Oakland and Washington in the USA.
On December 9, 2015, a signing ceremony welcomed 43 new Under2 Coalition members: Drenthe in the Netherlands; Hesse in Germany; Andalusia in Spain; Loreto in Peru; São Paulo state in Brazil; Pays de la Loire in France; and Quintana Roo in Mexico. Moreover, the three nations of Costa Rica, Panama, and Peru joined as endorsers, and the Association of the Regions of Côte d’Ivoire joined as 33 regions.
Climate Week 2015
September 21-28, 2015
New York City, USA
Ahead of the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris known as COP 21, the Under2 Coalition added 14 new signatories at Climate Week in New York City. Seven signatories signed or endorsed the Under2 MOU at a ceremony: the nation of Italy; the Azores and Madeira in Portugal; the City of Nampula in Mozambique; Kathmandu Valley in Nepal; the City of Guédiawaye-Dakar in Senegal; and New York City in the USA. Seven other jurisdictions signed remotely: Northwest Territories and the City of Vancouver Columbia in Canada; Gifu Prefecture in Japan; Mexico City in Mexico; Ucayali in Peru; the City of Greater Manchester in the UK; and the City of San Francisco in the USA.
Events included “Cities Driving Sustainable Development: Endorsing the Sustainable Development Goals and Committing to Their Implementation,” where mayors from around the world endorsed the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.
Governors’ Climate and Forests Task Force (GCF)
June 15-18, 2015
The GCF is a unique, subnational collaboration between 26 states and provinces from Brazil, Indonesia, Mexico, Nigeria, Peru, Spain, and the United States whose goal is to protect forests and climate while enhancing livelihoods. Several GCF members are Under2 MOU signatories. On June 18, 2015, at the GCF’s first annual meeting in Europe the Under2 Coalition welcomed the two states of Chiapas, Mexico, and Cross River, Nigeria. Panel discussions included “New Partnerships with Private Sector and Financial Institutions,” “New Partnerships with Supply Chain Actors, Indigenous People, and Traditional Communities,” and “Subnational Innovation and Partnerships on the Road to Paris.”
At its inaugural ceremony, 12 ambitious states became the founding signatories of the Under2 MOU. This day earmarked a first-of-its-kind agreement between subnational leaders to limit the increase in global temperature to below 2 degrees Celsius, the threshold at which scientists say there will be catastrophic efforts.
Delegates from California, USA; Baden-Württemberg, Germany; Acre, Brazil; Baja California, Mexico; and Catalonia, Spain participated in the signing ceremony, marking the first of many future occasions for collaboration. In addition, delegates from British Columbia in Canada; Oregon, Vermont, and Washington in the USA; and Wales in the UK signed remotely. The Under2 MOU provides a template for the world’s nations to work toward an international agreement to reduce greenhouse gas emissions ahead of the 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris.
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