A snapshot of urban resilience

At the end of last year, nations had submitted nine National Adaptation Plans under the UNFCCC, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. Now, there are 24 submissions from the total 197 nations that have signed the treaty.

Local and regional governments are moving ahead themselves to advance resilience planning. They are progressing towards the targets in SDG 11 on sustainable cities and human settlements and the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction.

The Resilient Cities congress each year is a place where we aim to take stock of global progress on resilience.

So where are we and how are we progressing?

Data compiled in the carbonClimate Registry (cCR) shows that 155 cities and regions have reported climate adaptation or integrated mitigation-adaptation plans as completed or in progress. This represents around 15 percent of the more than 1,000 cities, towns and regions reporting to carbonn. Thirty percent of all climate actions reported to the cCR also focus on adaptation, 70 percent of which are funded by local resources.

Not many have dug into the adaptation data – and overall it is underrepresented part of the global climate conversation. Mitigation often takes front and center, but it is important for us to look into and pay attention to these figures.

Data from the cCR offers a snapshot. The figures show we have made progress on urban resilience, but in any case, we need to quickly scale up action globally. We need cities with advanced resilience planning to support and inform national frameworks in countries that are just getting started. There is local data and local knowledge available.

For its part, ICLEI will support cities in compiling information on disaster risk reduction and reporting it to inform global tracking. By understanding the real picture of action on the ground, we can make sure that nations and the global community really understand where local resilience stands and where it needs to go with global support.