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European regional leaders gather to claim role in international climate processes

22 June 2023, 0:00 UTC 3 min read

22 June 2023, Brussels - Regional leaders from across Europe are meeting today at the Under2 Coalition’s Ministerial meeting to advocate for greater subnational involvement in international climate processes.

As the level of government closer to people, states and regions have unique powers to set laws, implement policies and drive green practices at a local level. In the EU, governments spend around 14% of EU GDP on works, goods and services, with subnational governments accounting for a larger share of this budget than national governments. This gives them unparalleled opportunities to drive impact at pace and at scale.

Climate Group, as Secretariat of the Under2 Coalition, will also renew its partnership with the European Committee of the Regions and will welcome Kata Tüttő, Deputy Mayor of Budapest and First Vice-Chair of the ENVE Commission to celebrate the moment. She will reiterate the call to strengthen networks of subnational governments and climate organisations into one collective voice. As the Secretary General of the UN said earlier this year, “Our world needs climate action on all fronts: everything, everywhere, all at once.” 

Champa Patel, Executive Director, Governments and Policy of Climate Group, said: “Alongside the European Committee of the Regions, we look forward to uniting regional leaders in Brussels to accelerate climate action across the continent. From expanding solar energy in Baden-Württemberg, to pioneering offshore wind in Scotland, states and regions have long been leaders in this area - but they can't turn the tide alone. We need cooperation at all levels when it comes to climate. That means states and regions engaging with international climate processes, as well as those at the national and EU level. Only by working together will we see the change we need to see - before it's too late”.

Today’s meeting comes with less than six months to go until COP28, where governments will discuss concrete ways of addressing the climate crisis and will be held accountable for their Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs). His Excellency Mr Raúl Fuentes Milani, Deputy Ambassador to the Permanent Representative of Spain to the EU, will be today addressing an audience of up to 56 delegates from regional governments across Europe. As Spain becomes President of the Council of the EU next month, he will lay out the Spanish Presidency’s climate priorities that will help shape the EU’s mandate at COP28.

Kata Tüttő, Deputy Mayor of Budapest and First Vice-Chair of the ENVE Commission, said: “COP28 must deliver for cities and regions. This means that we need a meaningful inclusion of subnational governments in all major climate decision-making structures. We also need to make sure that women leaders are equally represented in this process, and we urge all Parties to continue advancing gender-responsive climate policy. Inclusion and equality are essential ingredients for keeping 1.5° alive.”

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For any media enquiries, including interview requests, please contact: Hannah Davies, Communications Officer at Climate Group: [email protected]

Notes to Editors

About Climate Group   

Climate Group drives climate action. Fast. Our goal is a world of net zero carbon emissions by 2050, with greater prosperity for all. We focus on systems with the highest emissions and where our networks have the greatest opportunity to drive change. We do this by building large and influential networks and holding organisations accountable, turning their commitments into action. We share what we achieve together to show more organisations what they could do. We are an international non-profit organisation, founded in 2004, with offices in London, New Delhi and New York. We are proud to be part of the We Mean Business coalition. Follow us on Twitter @ClimateGroup.   

About the Under2 Coalition

Climate Group is the Secretariat to the Under2 Coalition, which is the largest global network of states, regions, provinces and other subnational governments committed to achieving net zero emissions by 2050 at the latest.