The EPP Group in the European Committee of the Regions will participate in the 23rd United Nations Climate Change Conference with a delegation of 5 members led by the Chair of the CoR’s Commission for Environment, Climate Change and Energy Cor Lamers. Other members in the delegation include Apostolos Tzitzikostas, Michel Lebrun, Witold Stępień and Sirpa Hertell.
While the role of cities and regions in combating global warming was formally recognized by the Paris agreement, local and regional authorities must be more extensively involved in the preparation and implementation of the agreement’s work programme including national energy and climate plans. The CoR will therefore participate in the COP23 to follow the negotiations as observer within the delegation of the European Union to COP23 and advocate its key political messages on climate change.
Ahead of the meeting, Cor Lamers shared his expectations:
With the impacts of climate change being increasingly felt in our local communities, the COP23 has even a more important role to play to advance the Paris Agreement. I expect the Bonn conference to fully and formally recognise the role of local and regional authorities in designing and implementing climate policies on the ground. Moreover, by agreeing on ambitious yet realistic actions, I expect the Parties to send a clear signal to the business sector to accelerate their transition to a low-carbon economy while improving their competitiveness and enhancing local economies. Finally, I expect the COP23 to strengthen global partnerships of cities and regions (also in the framework of the Covenant of Mayors) and exchange good practices to make our territories more climate resilient, more sustainable, and more attractive places to live in.
The EPP Group delegation will take part in the Climate Summit of Local and Regional Leaders on Sunday 12 November, where local and regional governments worldwide join forces to reach the 1.5 degree global target, as well as “The Global Covenant of Mayors Day” on Monday 13 November. Specifically, Cor Lamers will moderate a debate on the Transatlantic Dialogue on Climate Change with a focuses on cities and regions’ reinforced cooperation on climate against the backdrop of the US announcement to withdraw from the Paris agreement.
Following their return from Bonn, the EPP Group delegation will discuss their impressions and the follow-up with a group of students who are visiting the European Committee of the Regions for the EPP/CoR Study Visit on 22-23 November. The aim is to better involve students and young people in creating and multiplying a positive EU narrative ahead of the 2019 European Elections.