Sub-national governments gather for International Climate Conference

25 October 2012

STUTTGART: Over 200 participants from sub-national governments, and other key stakeholders from across the globe, have gathered for a two-day International Climate Conference hosted by Baden-Württemberg, in partnership with The Climate Group

Following on from the European Conference of Regions on Climate Action in Lyon last year the meeting brought together members of The Climate Group’s sub-national government network States and Regions Alliance and beyond to share best practices and showcase the low carbon leadership that is emerging in sub-national governments across the global. 

Minister Franz Untersteller, Baden-Württemberg; Vice President Benoit Leclair; Vice President Vincent Payet, La Reunion; Vice President Dominique Ramard, Brittany; Minister Johannes Remmel, North Rhine-Westphalia and Secretary of State Dr. Enric Llebot, Catalonia were amongst the high-level representatives illustrating the potential of the Clean Revolution with the concrete experiences of their regions.  

In the afternoon our thematic panels provided the opportunity for in-depth exchanges on four key areas:

  • low-carbon cities and municipalities,
  • the business potential of the green economy, 
  • financing low-carbon investments,
  • the role of international networks in promoting climate action.

Cooperation with private actors featured as an important theme across varying panels, amongst others with representatives of The Climate Group members Alex Paskov, Johnson ControlsHarry Verhaar, Philips and Bernard Lanfranchi, Veolia Environment sharing their perspectives on building the low-carbon economy.

At the conference the Environment Ministers of Baden-Württemberg and North Rhine-Westphalia, Franz Untersteller and Johannes Remmel, also signed up to the Clean Revolution Statement which was adopted by States and Regions Alliance members at World Summit of States and Regions in Rio. The regions of Jamtland and Ile-de-France had likewise transmitted their support ahead of the conference, so that the Statement is now supported by 16 regions worldwide.

The Environment Minister of Baden-Württemberg, Franz Untersteller, views the Clean Revolution Statement as a clear commitment of a forward-looking climate policy: “We are no longer discussing whether climate change exists, but how we can best meet this challenge, what we now need to get done quickly, so that GHG emissions are stopped.”

“The development of low-carbon technologies is not only a necessity, but also an immense opportunity”, highlighted Mark Kenber, CEO of The Climate Group: “The examples presented during the conference, and many others, show that the Clean Revolution towards a low-carbon society is already becoming a reality in many areas – with immense benefits for economic development, employment and quality of life. Regions can play a crucial leadership role in developing such approaches.”

Also taking place during the conference, The Climate Group’s States and Regions Alliance held a closed session to further develop its work program. Amongst others, two working groups on Energy Efficiency Financing and Adaptation, led by the region of South Australia were finalized, and a kick-off meeting held for a Green Economy Working Group led by the region of Brittany.

“Following the Rio World Summit, this conference was another important step forward for the States and Regions Alliance. Both the new commitments from the closed political session and the ambitious best practice exchanges at different levels on the next day provide compelling inspiration for the Clean Revolution in Europe and beyond”, said Luc Bas, Director of European Programs and International States and Regions, The Climate Group.

Full conference program.

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