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G7 states and regions demand greater national action on climate change and finance

11 June 2021, 11:00 UTC 3 min read

Friday 11 June, London: State and regional governments of the G7 are urging their national leaders to align economic and financial agendas with keeping global temperature rises to 1.5°C. By seizing this opportunity now, they can ensure a healthy, equitable and sustainable future for all.

Governors and Finance Ministers from significant regional economies are increasingly concerned about balancing their finances while anticipating the potential impacts – and costs - of climate change. In a statement issued today they are therefore calling for greater financial responsibility and cooperation with subnational governments given the physical and transitional risks faced both nationally and regionally due to climate change.

To tackle the climate and biodiversity crises, these leaders are calling on their national governments to:

  • Make climate a financial responsibility and priority
  • Increase enforcement of environment and climate conditions in all trade agreements in compliance with the Paris Agreement
  • Put just transition and environmental equity at the core of all recovery efforts
  • Commit to the goals of the 30 x 30 campaign by protecting and enhancing 30% of land and sea by 2030

State and regional governments are on the frontlines of climate change. And have suffered the brunt of the economic impacts from the COVID-19 pandemic. A lifeline for local and indigenous communities, they’re providing support through public assistance and community relief programmes. As a result, they’re pushing G7 leaders to take on the political and moral responsibility of changing existing finance models and addressing both crises by adopting a system that works for everyone.

Often responsible for infrastructure and investment delivery that addresses the economic impacts and risks of climate change, states and regions are paving the way to a better future. By partnering with national governments, they can show that economic growth and fiscal stability not only withstand climate action, but in fact require it.

To make this happen they have recommended creating a new working group within the existing Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action to bring national and regional ministers together and to align policies for maximum effect. They also propose a stronger global push for sustainable energy and transport systems.

Dr Danyal Bayaz, Minister of Finance, Baden-Württemberg, said: “We must mobilise private capital on a large scale in order to achieve our climate goals. We are not talking about millions – we are talking about trillions. To make this happen we have to continue sharpening the laws on a global level.”

Tim Ash Vie, Director of the Under2 Coalition Secretariat at the Climate Group, added: “To address the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and climate change, all levels of government must work together. To create a climate-safe and prosperous future for all.  

“As the Secretariat of the Under2 Coalition, it is our recommendation that a state and regional taskforce is created ahead of the next G7 summit, to ensure stronger collaboration between national and subnational leaders on these crucial calls for action.”

States and regions of the Under2 Coalition represented in today’s statement include:

  • Baden-Württemberg, Germany
  • California, United States
  • Emilia-Romagna, Italy
  • Hawai’i, United States
  • Lombardy, Italy
  • Sardinia, Italy
  • Washington, United States

Statement and recommendations to the G7 leaders

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Date added: 10/06/21