In 2015, nearly 200 countries signed a historic agreement in Paris that established the world’s first truly global plan to tackle climate change. Now, three years later, there’s still a significant gap between current country emissions reductions pledges and what’s needed to limit global temperature rise to 1.5°C and stave off the worst impacts of a warming planet.
To address this gap, leaders from businesses, local governments, higher education, and communities are coming together to establish domestic coalitions in support of climate action. Working closely with national governments, these alliances aim to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and ensure that national climate pledges are met.
This week, more than 35 Mexican entities, from universities to local governments, officially signed a declaration stating that they will work together to advance the country’s goal of reducing up to 36% of its greenhouse gas emissions by 2030. The Alianza Mexicana para la Acción Climática—whose signatories represent more than 5 million people—is now the world’s third multi-stakeholder climate coalition assembled to help deliver on one countries’ Paris Agreement pledges.
“There’s a new face of climate leadership emerging from around the world: CEOs, university presidents, civil society, and leaders from local government and indigenous communities,” said Manuel Pulgar-Vidal, WWF’s global climate and energy practice lead. “They are demanding climate action and partnering together to accelerate implementation in key countries. This is a global groundswell and we are all in.”
In Japan, meanwhile, more than 150 companies have launched the Japan Climate Initiative, a group dedicated to realizing a carbon-free society and expanding renewable energies. Comprised of local governments, small businesses, and major companies such as Sony and Panasonic Corp., the group was inspired by United States’ We Are Still In, a movement that WWF helped to establish in June 2017 after the Trump Administration announced that the US would pull out of the Paris Agreement.
Japan and Mexico’s climate coalitions are members of the Alliances for Climate Action (ACA), a new global network—supported by WWF and our partners—working to accelerate individual countries’ progress towards climate targets. Alliances for Climate Action will work collaboratively with We Are Still In in the States, which has grown to nearly 3,000 signatories collectively representing 155 million Americans and $9.5 trillion of the U.S. economy.
According to the United Nations, action by businesses and local leaders around the globe has the potential to halve the emissions gap. But if we’re going to avoid 2°C of global warming, then greater collective action is needed.
Through the Alliances for Climate Action, WWF and partners will continue to support and grow a contingency of leaders dedicated to pursuing immediate climate action. Across the globe, we’re empowering domestic coalitions to accelerate the transition to a low-carbon, climate resilient society, ensuring that national and local governments, businesses, universities and communities maintain critical momentum towards meeting the goals set out in Paris.
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