Letter from Gino Van Begin – January

Dear ICLEI friends and colleagues,

Local and subnational governments have proven to be a reliable force for positive global change. Now, in 2017, it is vital that we push to make the trend towards sustainable development irreversible. We aim to do so through our actions on the ground, efforts to shape global policy and events that bring local action and local issues onto the global stage.

This year, ICLEI is organizing several global events, and we warmly invite you to join us at each one of them:

On 4-6 May 2017, ICLEI will host Resilient Cities 2017, the 8th Annual Global Forum on Urban Resilience and Adaptation in Bonn, Germany. This year, the congress will explore trending resilience issues, including health risks and urban displacement. We will also look more closely at how climate finance and risk insurance can help address realities on the ground.

Then, for the full month of October, the City of Kaohsiung will host the EcoMobility World Festival. The city will make a whole neighborhood car-free for a full month, paving the way for new modes of transport and serving as a model for other cities across the world. In parallel, the EcoMobility Congress will gather international actors to share good practices and discuss topics such as mobility as a service, freight and road safety.

In November, as nations gather at COP23, the 23rd UN Climate Change Conference, ICLEI and the City of Bonn will host the 2017 Bonn Climate Summit of Local and Regional Leaders, which will explore how stronger partnerships can accelerate climate action at all levels.

Meanwhile, at the global level, ICLEI will be actively engaged in policy discussions around the review of the New Urban Agenda adopted at Habitat III last year, as well as the 3rd United Nations Environment Assembly and Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction. By engaging in these frameworks, cities, towns and regions in the ICLEI Network will have the chance to establish their role in building the architecture needed to implement global sustainability policy, as well as to define the frameworks themselves and how to monitor them.

ICLEI believes that local action can and should be the key driver of global sustainable development. We invite you to join us at these events and show how we are making global sustainability commitments a reality.

With kind regards,

Gino Van Begin