chevron_left Back to News updates
5 June 2024

ICLEI Africa mid-year news roundup 2024


top right mosaic bottom left mosaic

Message from Kobie Brand, our Regional Director

As we approach mid-year and the world commemorates World Environment Day under the theme “Our land. Our future. We are #GenerationRestoration,” it is a good time to reflect on how we are doing.

  • Are we doing enough to protect and restore our land (and our oceans)?

  • Are we making significant progress towards an inclusive, resilient urban future?

  • How can we better collaborate to build healthy, thriving cities?

  • How can we embrace varied, creative and unexpected paths to get there?

Our ICLEI Africa cities and regions are tackling the immense, interconnected urban sustainability challenges our world, and our continent in particular, currently face in an integrated, inclusive way with tenacity, boldness and innovation. We are indeed making great strides, but there is still so much more to do, and so much further to go on our journey, before we can truly claim the title of Generation Restoration!

Explore the newsletter

Latest news

Nature, biodiversity and health

ICLEI Africa focuses on supporting African cities by mainstreaming biodiversity into urban processes and decision-making, improving human health and well-being by connecting urban communities with nature


Crucial steps for African city resilience

Amidst the escalating challenges posed by climate change and biodiversity loss, biodiversity finance is fast becoming the cornerstone for adopting and implementing effective mitigation and adaptation strategies.


Opinion piece by Gareth Presch, CEO of the World Health Innovation Summit

With environmental factors taking the lives of around 13 million people each year, the potential of urban green and blue spaces to generate better health and well-being is clear.

CitiesWithNature: Guidelines for ecosystem restoration

In support of the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration objectives, this guide equips cities with the knowledge and tools to build the necessary capacity to take restoration action.

Dar es Salaam City develops stronger, more integrated biodiversity plan

The city has revised its Local Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan, clearly showing how the intersection between biodiversity and urban planning can help to identify projects that balance rapid urban growth with the need to retain and enhance nature’s benefits.

Climate change, energy and resilience

ICLEI Africa focuses on supporting African cities by mainstreaming biodiversity into urban processes and decision-making, improving human health and well-being by connecting urban communities with nature

Creating a future defined by unprecedented resilience and inclusivity in African cities

ICLEI Africa’s cutting-edge resilience projects are strengthening urban resilience in African cities, increasing preparedness and alleviating disasters, tackling climate shifts, and aiming to secure vital climate finance.

Collaboration is key for South Africa’s just transition

South Africa’s just transition to an inclusive, prosperous, climate resilient and low carbon economy is well under way, with ICLEI Africa supporting in a number of ways.


Local partners appointed to implement clean cooking interventions

A local team is working to address the slow uptake of clean cooking technologies through a range of interventions within urban informal settlements in Kampala, Uganda.


Learning from Beira and eThekwini

In the face of escalating climate-related disasters, the call for proactive and inclusive resilience planning has never been more urgent.

Urban systems

ICLEI Africa’s urban systems work focuses primarily on the systems that manage and influence the consumption of resources in African cities. By focusing on systems, cities can identify strategic areas of intervention that facilitate more sustainable urban living and unlock broader ecological and social benefits

Solve, fail, reflect: Insights from our RISE Africa 2024 Action Festival

The RISE Africa 2024 Action Festival brought together diverse voices from across the continent and beyond to explore innovative solutions and learn from failures in urban development. With the theme “SOLUTIONS ONLY [failures also],” the festival highlighted efforts to address urban challenges and emphasised the importance of community involvement, design-thinking and regional connections. Over three days, participants shared insights, celebrated successes and collectively reflected on the paths to creating equitable, sustainable and vibrant African cities. Looking ahead, the 2025 festival promises to build on this momentum with its first in-person event, aiming to Realise Unbound Possibilities through policy, research, creativity and practice.


Amplifying youth voices in governance

As we confront the complexities of today’s global landscape, the need for a diverse array of voices in decision-making processes becomes unmistakably crucial. Read more about our AfriFOODLinks projects.

World Water Day called for building peaceful, inclusive futures

Gender-inclusive, multilevel, and cross-boundary water governance approaches are ever more crucial for achieving peace and safety, improving access to safe sanitation and water, preparing for future shocks and threats, and tackling present-day social inequities.


Taking steps to eliminate open waste burning

African cities, which are expected to experience the highest urbanisation rates, are further trapped in a waste cycle where increased waste production is not adequately managed.

Out & about

A snapshot of some activities and highlights of our work across the continent and the globe

Dr Meggan Spires & Nelson de Lamare were in Brussels, Belgium

The Covenant of Mayors in Sub-Saharan Africa (CoM SSA) is the regional arm of the Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate & Energy (GCoM), the largest global alliance for city climate leadership. ICLEI Africa hosts the CoM SSA Secretariat, and in this capacity, Dr Meggan Spires shared key insights with other regional covenants and partners at the GCoM Open House in February 2024.

Carine Buma was in Kampala, Uganda

As part of the ENACT project, Carine co-facilitated several workshops and community engagement activities during 2024 to increase the uptake of clean cooking technologies in the informal settlement of Kisenyi. Many residents and business owners that have shifted to clean cooking technologies shared the key benefits: significant daily cost savings of up to 75%, reduced exposure to heat and smoke and some even mentioned that the food tastes better!

Anton Earle was in Bali, Indonesia

The 10th World Water Forum was held in May 2024, under the theme “water for shared prosperity”. Anton participated in various events and roundtables across the Forum sharing key insights, from the subnational government perspective, on building urban water resilience, nature-based solutions, urban water security and directing finance to the local level.

Claudia Schroder & Erin Hill were in Kigali, Rwanda

The third SESA regional event took place in Kigali, Rwanda, in April 2024. SESA partners joined SMEs from Cote d’Ivoire, Nigeria, Tanzania, Namibia, Ghana and Rwanda all working in renewable energy. The event, co-organized by ICLEI Africa and key SESA consortium partners, included a business model workshop, investment and procurement summit, and a site visit to Eco Green Solutions Ltd manufacturing facility where the SESA group received a demonstration of their biofuel and cookers.

Nicolas Gate & Carina Mason were in Beira, Mozambique

The INACCT Resilience project launch and learning lab held in Beira, Mozambique in March 2024, was a tremendous success and brought together various stakeholders and community members who used the opportunity to share experiences and expertise.

Paul Currie was in Ottawa, Canada

Paul represented the Coalition for Local and Subnational Governments at the fourth session of the Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee to develop an international legally binding instrument on plastic pollution, including in the marine environment (INC-4) in April 2024. The Coalition is convened under the leadership of ICLEI, Government of Catalonia, Government of Québec and UCLG, with the support of Global Cities Hub, Regions4, C40, WWF, and in collaboration with UN-Habitat and UNEP.

Ingrid Coetzee & Ivana Del Río B. Landa in Samarkand, Uzbekistan

Ingrid and Ivana attended the 14th Conference of the Parties of the Convention on Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS) in February 2024, as the first and only representatives of cities and regions. They convened a side event, where the Journeys for Life initiative: Cities and Regions connecting for migratory species protection, was launched. The CMS Secretariat invited ICLEI to join the Global Partnership on Ecological Connectivity and deliver a statement during the Closing Plenary.

Amy Murgatroyd & Meembo Changula were in Lusaka, Zambia & Lilongwe, Malawi

Meembo and Amy visited Lilongwe and Lusaka in March/April 2024 to undertake stakeholder engagements and site visits for the Strengthening fresh food markets for healthier food environments project, funded by GIZ. They met with City focal point Gift Kasamira, and the Honourable Mayor of Lilongwe City, Richard Banda.

Dr Meggan Spires & Carine Buma were in Kigali, Rwanda

In March, Carine Buma shared learnings from the ENACT project at the Transforming Energy Access Forum. ENACT is innovating clean cooking technology solutions in African informal settlements. While in Kigali, the team engaged with the Minister of Local Government, Rwanda Environmental Management Authority, the Rwanda Local Government Association and the City of Kigali Mayor.

Dr Michael Boulle, Ntombizodidi Mapapu and Courtney van Niekerk were in Pretoria, South Africa

In May, Dr Michael Boulle launched a report titled ‘Stakeholder perspectives on engaging with South Africa’s Just Transition’ during the Indalo Inclusive Symposium. The report, developed by ICLEI Africa for the Presidential Climate Commission of South Africa, provides insights into stakeholder engagement processes for South Africa’s just transition.

Ivan Pauw & Sara Nakalila were in Quelimane, Mozambique

In March 2024, Ivan and Sara led a delegation of visitors from Mbale, Tamale and Bruges, to Quelimane, as part of the AfriFOODlinks project. Sessions encouraged peer learning across visiting and host cities, and site visits offered visitors an immersive experience of the city’s food system.

Announcing our new leaders

We are proud to introduce the dedicated members of the 2024-2027 ICLEI Africa Regional Executive Committee (RexCom). These esteemed individuals are committed to steering ICLEI towards a more sustainable future.


Mayor Chilando Chitangala

Lusaka, Zambia


Mayor Manuel de Araujo

Quelimane, Mozambique


Mayor Mohamed Sefiani

Chefchaouen, Morocco

Mayor Ernest Arthur

Cape Coast, Ghana

Mayor Regina Bakitte Nakazzi

Nansana, Uganda

Meet the Special Advisors to the ICLEI Africa RexCom

Lord Mayor Mamode Isoop Nujuraully

Port Louis, Mauritius

Mayor Wild Ndipo

Blantyre, Malawi

Mr Steve Pheko

Botswana Association of Local Authorities – BALA

New resources & initiatives

Bridging gaps in the project development life cycle for African subnational governments

This infographic details the steps in the early project preparation processes and the areas where support is needed to increase impact and unlock funding, at the local level.

In the wake of the realities laid out in the first-ever State of the World’s Migratory Species report, as well as new findings highlighting how climate change is impacting migratory species, this initiative will support cities and regions as they take action to conserve these vulnerable species and their migratory journeys.

Integrating nature into urban planning

Food environments in African cities

Urban greening in Dodoma, Tanzania

Share on social: