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May 28, 2015

USDN Cities Announce "Carbon Neutral Cities Allliance"

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The Urban Sustainability Directors Network (USDN) announced recently that the mayors of 17 international cities across nine nations have collectively launched the Carbon Neutral Cities Alliance (CNCA) - a group of cities committed to reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by at least 80 per cent by 2050 or sooner.

Because urban areas account for nearly three-quarters of humanity’s emissions, minimizing global temperature changes will require cities to reduce GHGs by at least 80 per cent below 2000 levels by 2050.

The Carbon Neutral Cities Alliance is governed by a Steering Committee of Alliance cities, and staffed by the Urban Sustainability Directors Network (USDN) in partnership with the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group (C40) and Innovation Network for Communities (INC). The Alliance’s work is supported by the Kresge Foundation, Barr Foundation, V. Kann Rasmussen Foundation, Rockefeller Brothers Fund and Summit Foundation.

Early Alliance activities include:

  • developing Carbon Neutrality Planning Standards – Developing approaches, analysis and tools to support cities striving for carbon neutrality, and standardizing measurement and verification methodologies for tracking progress.
  • advancing Transformative Change in Key Urban Sectors – Sharing and implementing best practices for achieving "transformative" deep carbon reduction strategies in urban transportation, energy use and waste systems.
  • advocating for Policy Change – Identifying and advocating for policies at the state, regional and federal levels to reduce emission sources not controlled directly by cities, and engaging with other external stakeholders, such as utility companies, who are critical to cities success.
  • speaking with a Common Voice – Helping CNCA cities demonstrate their leadership and  communicate with a common voice.
  • Creating a CNCA Innovation Fund – Investing in high-potential, city-led projects that develop, test, implement and amplify deep de-carbonization strategies and practices (currently funded at $700,000 USD).
  • Fostering a "Next Wave" of Carbon Neutral Cities – Sharing best practices. 



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