Joburg to host 2014 C40 Mayors Summit

14 March 2013

The city of Johannesburg has been selected to host the fifth biennial C40 Cities Mayors Summit in February 2014.

The announcement was made by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, chair of the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group (C40), and Johannesburg Mayor Parks Tau in New York on Tuesday.

During the summit, hundreds of urban and climate change leaders from around the world will join mayors from the world’s largest cities for three days to advance urban solutions to combat the effects of global climate change.

The summit will highlight a wide range of successful ongoing projects from around the world, including building efficiency standards, sustainable transport measures, and delta cities partnerships.

“Cities around the world, particularly C40 cities, are taking meaningful actions that have quantifiable outcomes,” Bloomberg said in a statement on Tuesday. “As a result – as our research shows – we are having a real impact combating the impacts of global climate change.

“While nations and international bodies meet to talk about these issues, the C40 Cities Mayors Summit is focused on the concrete actions we can take to protect the planet and grow our cities.”

The event will feature a series of roundtable discussions and working sessions that will bring together C40 mayors, their staffs and technical experts to discuss city-driven climate actions and their effects. The discussions will be data-driven and outcomes-focused.

“It will be a historic moment for Johannesburg, but also for South Africa and the African continent,” said Tau. “Hosting the event is a clear recognition of the growing role that Africa, and the global South, can play to find solutions to the most pressing issues facing our globe.

“Climate change is not an issue that affects only the industrialised countries of the northern hemisphere,” Tau added. “It is an everyday reality for the people of Africa in rapidly expanding cities, as well as rural areas faced by the consequences of dramatic changes in weather patterns, resulting in threats to crops and livestock and their ability to survive.”

The C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group is, according to its website, a network of large cities from around the world that are “committed to implementing meaningful and sustainable climate-related actions locally that will help address climate change globally.”

Established in 2005, C40 expanded via a partnership in 2006 with the Clinton Climate Initiative founded by former US president Bill Clinton.

SAinfo reporter