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1 July 2015
Local action and innovation key to addressing climate challenges
With less than six months left to the UNFCCC COP 21 in Paris, local governments in Africa gathered in the Ivory Coast to work together to find common goals ahead of the watershed congress.
Held from 24 – 25th June in Yamoussoukro, Lakes Region, in the Ivory Coast, the summit was co-organised by the Ivory Coast District and Region Association (ARDCI), the West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU) and the Global Fund for Cities Development (GFCD). In attendance were representatives from several African regional and local governments’ and research institutions.
The summit provided a space for a variety of parties across the continent to debate appropriate strategies and solutions to support Africa in building resilience to climate change. It’s also important to focus on taking advantage of greener and efficient technologies that are now available to leapfrog development along low development pathways. The summit discussed many challenges local governments face, from waste management, food security, reforms in urban transport to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions, energy security, water resources and the fight against natural disasters.
The Summit culminated in the Yamoussoukro Declaration which captures the common voice of local authorities in Africa regarding responses to climate change and affirming the local authorities’ commitment to implementing good environmental governance, integrating risks and opportunities of climate change into local level strategies and development plans. Acknowledged in the declaration are the on-going advocacy efforts at the local level mirroring efforts at the national level. These include the Local Government Climate Roadmap.