Basque Country President becomes acting co-chair of Alliance

28 June 2011

The President of the Basque Country, Lehendakari Patxi Lopez, has agreed to become the European acting co-chair of the States and Regions Alliance, which is managed by The Climate Group.

During their visit on June 27, The Climate Group's CEO, Mark Kenber, and Director of European Programs, Luc Bas, met with the President and Ministers Unda and Unzalu in the capital Vitoria-Gasteiz. As well as discussing the Basque Country's impressive steps to drive low carbon investment across a range of sectors, they agreed to further collaboration.

The Lehendakari joins the current Alliance co-chairs for North America and Asia-Pacific, Quebec Premier Jean Charest and South Australia Premier Mike Rann.

The Climate Group’s States and Regions Alliance has drastically extended in Europe over the last three years, to complement membership in North America and Australia.

European regional governments now include: Basque Country, Bavaria, Brittany, Catalonia, Ile de France, North Rhine-Westphalia, Rhone-Alpes, Scotland, South Holland, Upper-Austria and Wales.

Patxi Lopez, President of the Basque Country said: ‘The Basque Government has been working successfully with The Climate Group’s States and Regions Alliance in the last years, and is proud to take its commitment a step further by becoming the European co-chair. As climate and energy policies are at the heart of the strategy for a clean, healthy and prosperous Basque Country, I am personally deeply involved in the development herein and we look forward to sharing with, and learning from other members of The Climate Group.’

Mark Kenber, CEO, The Climate Group, said: ‘The Basque Country has shown real leadership through smart policies to promote renewable energy, energy efficiency, smart grids and electric mobility and through ambitious public-private partnerships. The Climate Group is honored that President Lopez has accepted the offer to co-chair the Alliance and looks forward to it being confirmed by the other Alliance members later this year.’

Luc Bas, Director of European Programs, The Climate Group, added: ‘Their recently voted Climate Change law - which together with Scotland's, is one of only two in Europe - introduces a carbon budget in all departments and activities of the government, and is the latest proof of its leadership towards a Clean Revolution.

In the sidelines of the visit, The Climate Group met with Xabier Viteri, CEO, Iberdrola Renovables, to explore closer involvement and collaboration.

See our States and Regions work.

Watch the press conference video.

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