A Better Future for Local Climate Action

On behalf of ICLEI OceaniaCities Power PartnershipClimate Emergency Australiathe Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate & Energy, Better Futures AustraliaClimateWorks Centre and Melbourne Centre for Cities, representing 204 Australian councils covering 76% of the population(1), by the United Nations Climate Conference COP27 Sharm El-Sheikh, local governments call on the Australian Federal Government to:

1. Establish a vertically integrated climate policy framework(2) and recognise Local Government Contributions(3) in the Australian Nationally Determined Contributions to ensure current national climate targets are genuinely ambitious.

2. Establish an effective partnership between local governments and the Federal Government that will deliver an Accord that defines common objectives to strengthen climate mitigation, adaptation and resilience between the three tiers of government(4).

3. Allocate significant funding to deliver on the Accord based on the real resilience costs of climate change and what is required for local governments to protect their communities and build back better

See A Better Future for Local Climate Action: Background Paper for background information, context, methodology and stakeholders.  See also our proposed vertical integration approach to look at an effective partnership model for multilevel governance here

Watch this 2-minute video of City of Sydney Councillor HY William Chan articulating the three asks.

William who was in attendance at the 2022 Better Futures Forum said, “Local governments have been leading on climate action in Australia for decades. Local governments are Australia’s secret weapon to rapidly accelerate climate action, they are the secret weapon to support the federal government to meet their 2030 targets.”

(1) 204 local governments, representing over 19.4 million Australians or 76 % of Australia’s population, are already taking action on climate change and are a member of participant in at least of ICLEI Oceania, Cities Power Partnership, Climate Emergency Australia and/or the Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate & Energy

(2)Vertical Integration: the act of aligning and coordinating climate policies, plans and implementation across different levels of government, leveraging the potential of each respective level through collective efforts and promoting top-down and bottom-up information exchange. See C40 Climate Action: Planning Programme Vertical Integration Guide.

(3)The Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate & Energy Multilevel Climate Action Playbook (2021) sets out recommendations on the integration of Local and Regional Contributions (LRCs) into NDCs.

(4)This partnership and Accord model is inspired by the Victorian Local Climate Action Partnership: strengthening local-state government collaboration on climate action, July 2016.


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The International Universities Climate Alliance brings together 56 world-class climate research universities, united in their dedication to help communities capacity build and accelerate climate transition at a global scale.