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World’s largest subnational climate leadership group now represents 1.75 billion people and 50% of the global economy

21 July 2021, 11:13 BST 4 min read

Wednesday, 21 July, 2021: Today, the Under2 Coalition – the world’s largest community of state and regional governments committed to ambitious climate action in line with the Paris Agreement – is celebrating an impressive milestone. Since the start of 2021 it has welcomed a wave of new members and now represents 1.75 billion people and 50% of the global economy.

Among the recent arrivals are Isle of Man (United Kingdom), Guanajuato (Mexico), Maharashtra (India), Nevada (United States) and Northern Ireland (United Kingdom). In joining the Coalition, they commit to keeping global temperature rises to well below 2°C with efforts to reach 1.5°C. 

The Coalition is also working to support its members to set more ambitious targets, and the Isle of Man and Nevada join the Under2 Coalition’s growing group of states and regions targeting net zero emissions by 2050 or earlier.

“States and regions are increasingly recognised as crucial actors in the fight against climate change. And, through the Under2 Coalition, they’re becoming more ambitious, setting long-term goals and delivering on critical climate action.

“We’re delighted to welcome so many new members from across the globe and look forward to working together to build a more sustainable, equitable future.”

Tim Ash Vie, Director of the Under2 Coalition Secretariat at Climate Group

Edwin Poots MLA, Minister for the Environment, Agriculture and Rural Affairs for Northern Ireland, said: “I am delighted that Northern Ireland has been formally accepted for membership of the Under2 Coalition. The Northern Ireland Executive through the ‘New Decade, New Approach’ deal set out our commitment to tackle climate change head on.

"By Northern Ireland joining the Under2 Coalition it helps to further strengthen this commitment on a global scale. It is also very timely for Northern Ireland to be joining in the year when the UK, as hosts of COP26, seek to drive forward action to tackle climate change. I look forward to Northern Ireland being able to collaborate with other regions around the world.”

Hon Howard Quayle CBE MHK, Chief Minister, Isle of Man Government, said: “Climate change is the defining issue of our time, and UNESCO Biosphere Isle of Man is committed to playing our part in tackling the global emergency.
 
“Our new Climate Change Bill makes a legal commitment to reaching net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 while protecting our valuable ecosystems and all in our community.
 
“Being part of the Under2 Coalition further affirms our pledge and we look forward to collaborating with nations and states around the world to turning our net zero ambition into action.”

Aaditya Thackeray, Minister of Environment, Government of Maharashtra, said: "Maharashtra is committed to making the region climate-resilient with ambitious and accelerated actions. The state is taking concrete green steps in coordination with other ministries, from energy to tourism, to tackle climate change. 

“As we enhance our efforts, we are delighted to join the Under2 Coalition and collaborate with other states and regions addressing environmental challenges worldwide. Maharashtra is keen to work with its global counterparts and share the critical insights we all have observed through our interventions.”

Bradley Crowell, Director of the Nevada Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, commented: “Nevada is excited to join the Under2 Coalition and join forces with other state and local climate leaders as we each do our part to tackle climate change. 

“Climate action is truly a collaborative and cooperative effort. Together, with key partners like the Under2 Coalition, we are committed to doing our part to help lead the way to a more sustainable, resilient, climate-friendly future for all.” 

Regional voices in the Climate Decade

Through the Under2 Coalition, formed in 2015 by California (United States) and Baden- Württemberg (Germany), states and regions are setting more ambitious goals, delivering on critical areas like transport emissions and renewable energy, and increasing their influence on the global climate agenda.

Now in its sixth year, the Coalition has grown from strength to strength: delivering world-leading capacity-building projects, encouraging states and regions to set net zero targets and join the UN’s Race to Zero campaign, and supporting vital climate activities in developing and emerging economies. 

As COP26 approaches, hosted by Under2 Coalition Europe Co-Chair, Scotland, in November, state and regional leadership is in high demand, with many Coalition members now calling for even greater ambition and engagement. This year, more than ever, subnational governments need to have a voice in international climate negotiations so that they can support urgent action to prevent the worst effects of climate change. 

-ENDS-

For any media enquiries, including interview requests, please contact: Sophie Benger, Senior Communications Manager, Climate Group, sbenger@theclimategroup.org 

Notes to Editors

About Under2 Coalition 
Climate Group is the Secretariat to the Under2 Coalition, which is a group of ambitious state and regional governments committed to keeping global temperature rises to well below 2°C. The Coalition is made up of 260 governments, which represent 1.75 billion people and 50% of the global economy. Follow us on Twitter @ClimateGroup, #Under2Coalition.

About Race to Zero
Race to Zero is the UN-backed global campaign rallying non-state actors – including companies, cities, regions, financial and educational institutions – to take rigorous and immediate action to halve global emissions by 2030 and deliver a healthier, fairer zero carbon world in time. As a partner to the Race to Zero, the Under2 Coalition supports individual states and regions to join the campaign.