6 February 2010

Climate Change and Local Government


She elaborated on the initiatives of the State of California with respect to climate change mitigation. She mentioned that California had a long history of environmental stewardship, and will continue to take steps to ensure that sub national governments are equipped to address the threats of global warming.
She talked about the initiatives taken by Germany for reducing carbon emissions. She emphasized on the need to increase the share of renewable energy. Although Germany’s climate policy is mainly at a national level, she opined that a lot can be done at sub national level too.
He shared the Japanese example of 30,000 municipalities entering into contracts with local enterprises for maintaining standards, which are stricter than the national standards. While recognizing the importance of finances and new technologies, he emphasized that a lot can be achieved without it through the ingenuity of local governments, and policy measures and incentives for local action by national governments.
Ms Linda S Adams Secretary for Environmental Protection, California Environmental Protection Agency   HE Ms Barbel Hohn Former Minister of the Environment of North-Rhine Westphalia, Vice-chair of the Green Party Parliamentary Group, Germany   Mr Mutsuyoshi Nishimura Special Advisor to the Cabinet in charge of Climate Change, Japan

He talked about the need for engagement, capacity building and resource allocation at a local level. He called for adoption of a bottom-up approach to tackle climate change.
He recognized local governments as agents of change rather than being merely implementing agencies. According to him, local governments have a stronger impetus to change, as climate change impacts are felt locally.
He observed how local government and city leaders along with enterprises are leading, and will continue to lead the shift towards low carbon growth. He discussed the challenge of communication and of removing the lack of public understanding of what a sustainable society is.
Mr I H Rehman Director-Social Transformation, TERI, India   Ambassador Staffan Tillander Sweden's Climate Change Ambassador   Mr Harry Verhaar Sr Director Energy & Climate Change, Green Switch Champion - Philips Lighting, The Netherlands  

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