According to a new report released today, cities and other sub-national bodies can and should take advantage of upcoming investments in urban development and find climate finance solutions to play a major role in tackling climate change.
The report by the Cities Climate Finance Leadership Alliance (CCFLA) and partners looks at subnational and local climate finance activities and pinpoints gaps that require urgent attention to harness subnational and city-level climate responses.
Cities, as population epicentres, account for three-quarters of the world’s energy use and some 70% of the world’s carbon emissions. These figures are likely to increase if no action is taken, with around 60% of people expected to live in urban areas by 2030, according to the United Nations.
Subnational and city actors have shown commitments by submitting pledges to the Non-State Actor Zone for Climate Action (NAZCA) Platform, but they can do much more, the report finds.
“We have a unique window of opportunity, with large investments in infrastructure and housing to be made in the coming years to cater for needs of the growing number of urbanites,” said Martina Otto, who heads UN Environment’s work on Cities and Lifestyles.
Let’s make sure these investments are future-proof: that means low-emission, resource-efficient and resilient.
“Let’s make sure these investments are future-proof: that means low-emission, resource-efficient and resilient. We urgently need the mechanisms in place to bridge potentially higher up-front cost with longer-term savings at all levels.”
Although great efforts are being made to align the financial system with sustainable development, trillions of dollars still need to be mobilized to meet the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the Paris Agreement, and to overcome the financing barriers at the subnational and city levels.
“We have reached a turning point,” said Carlos de Freitas, Director of Programs of FMDV, which co-hosts the Secretariat of the CCFLA, “showcasing that many actors are working together to provide complementary financial solutions to support the mobilization of climate finance at local and subnational levels. This is where transformative action for climate takes place.
“The next step is about scaling up the promising initiatives, and taking into account the co-benefits of local climate investments in order to better price ‘green capital’. This will foster private investment and expand green capital from billions to trillions.”
“The CCFLA’s ultimate goal is to scale-up the deployment of low-carbon, climate resilient solutions at the sub-national level, and to accelerate investment in them,” said John Tidmarsh, Chief Investment Officer of the R20 Regions of Climate Action and co-host of the CCFLA Secretariat.
“The CCFLA aims to develop a collective and individual awareness of objectives and their enabling factors that will accelerate the value chain of project identification, development and financing. The scoping report is an important early initiative that will help us more rapidly to deliver upon our ambitions.”
The scoping report calls for deeper analysis of the projects and financing currently available at a sub-national level. Having a greater understanding of the best practices currently being implemented will help to overcome barriers and further reduce financial risk. The report finds that major advances need to be made in order to create incentives for investment in local resilience. This in turn will then support local and subnational governments in building fiscal autonomy, integrating and further adopting standards, operational frameworks and measurement tools.
The CCFLA also calls for more training and awareness building initiatives and to further explore derisking instruments and dynamics aiming at reducing the perception of risk, aiming to both empower local and subnational governments to understand the environment and players, and responsible investors to adapt to local needs in order to better catalyze climate finance flows.
The report was developed in partnership with Climate-KIC, FMDV, R20 Regions of Climate Action and UN Environment.
“The mapping seeks to be representative of the variety of initiatives that have been recently developed by the CCFLA members to support the localization of climate finance,” said Victor Gancel, Climate-KIC’s Flagship Programme Manager. “Policy makers, cities, developers, public and private investors need practical information about the growing number of initiatives addressing the funding gap for low carbon urban action. This first mapping serves a dual purpose by engaging practitioners and laying out foundations for a global coordination on the urban climate finance challenge.”
Extra-Mile Water Conservation Efforts Amidst Shortage
While some states are literally flooding due to heavy rains and run-off, others are struggling to get the moisture they need. States like Arizona and California have faced water emergencies for the last few years; water conserving efforts from citizens help keep them out of trouble.
If your area is experiencing a water shortage, there are a few things you can do to go the extra mile.
Repair and Maintain Appliances
Leaks around the house – think showerheads, toilets, dishwashers, and more – lead to wasted water. Beyond that, the constant flow of water will cause water damage to your floors and walls. Have repairs done as soon as you spot any problems.
Sometimes, a leak won’t be evident until it gets bad. For that reason, make appointments to have your appliances inspected and maintained at least once per year. This will extend the life of each machine as well as nip water loss in the bud.
When your appliances are beyond repair, look into Energy Star rated replacements. They’re designed to use the least amount of water and energy possible, without compromising on effectiveness.
Only Run Dishwasher and Washer When Full
It might be easier to do a load of laundry a day rather than doing it once per week, but you’ll waste a lot more water this way. Save up your piles of clothes until you have enough to fully load the washing machine. You could also invest in a washing machine that senses the volume of water needed according to the volume of clothes.
The same thing goes with the dishwasher. Don’t push start until you’ve filled it to capacity. If you have to wash dishes, don’t run the water while you’re washing. Fill the sink or a small bowl a quarter of the way full and use this to wash your dishes.
Recycle Water in Your Yard
Growing a garden in your backyard is a great way to cut down on energy and water waste from food growers and manufacturers, but it will require a lot more water on your part. Gardens must be watered, and this often leads to waste.
You can reduce this waste by participating in water recycling. Using things like a rain barrel, pebble filtering system, and other tools, you can save thousands of gallons a year and still keep your landscaping and garden beautiful and healthy.
Landscape with Drought-Resistant Plants
Recycling water in your yard is a great way to reduce your usage, but you can do even more by reducing the amount of water required to keep your yard looking great. The best drought-resistant plants are those that are native to the area. In California, for example, succulents grow very well, and varieties of cactus do well in states like Arizona or Texas.
Install Water-Saving Features
The average American household uses between 80 and 100 gallons of water every single day. You obviously can’t cut out things like showering or using the toilet, but you can install a few water-saving tools to make your water use more efficient.
There are low-flow showerheads, toilets, and faucet aerators. You could also use automatic shut-off nozzles, shower timers, and grey water diverters. Any of these water saving devices can easily cut your water usage in half.
Research Laws and Ordinances for Your City
Dry states like California, Arizona, New Mexico, and Nevada must create certain laws to keep the water from running out. These laws are put into practice for the benefit of everyone, but they only work if you abide by the laws.
If you live in a state where drought is common, research your state and city’s laws. They might designate one day per week that you’re allowed to water your lawn or how full you can fill a pool. Many people are not well versed in the laws set by their states, and it would mean a lot to your community if you did your part.
Cyprus is the Forerunner for Ecotourism
When I was looking for a second citizenship, I happened to see One Visa’s offer on Cyprus Citizenship by investment program. I had heard about Cyprus being a beautiful country, but I did not know much else, so I decided to start my own research about this gem of a place.
After I did some research, I discovered that Cyprus is a popular destination for tourists. Unfortunately, heavy tourism and the associated development affected villages here and there, with some communities being slowly abandoned. To avoid this from happening any further, Cyprus went into ecotourism, and today, it is the forerunner in this arena. Let’s look in further detail at ecotourism in Cyprus here.
How was it started?
It all started in 2006 with the launch of the “Cyprus Sustainable Tourism Initiative.” This program has the sole scope of promoting ecotourism developments in the tourism industry. It concentrates on those areas which require conservation and environmental safety. At the same time, it helps develop social, as well as economic statuses in the rural parts of Cyprus. Through this program, the government was able to acknowledge that ecotourism will play an essential role in the future of Cyprus, with the concept gaining momentum among tourists from all over the globe.
How to go about it?
So, now you are interested in going for an ecotourism vacation in Cyprus. How will you go about it? I would immediately say that everyone should visit the quaint Cypriot villages spread throughout the island. These communities have a smaller population, and not many tourists visit. They make for a great relaxing spot. Enjoy seeing the bustle of village life go by where simple pleasures abound. Most hamlets are linked by specific minibus tours which ferry tourists to these havens. These trips will have a regular schedule, aimed at promoting ecotourism further. Such tours will be regulated to ensure that while the villages can benefit and develop, they do not get overpopulated or overcrowded with tourists. Therefore, you can be sure to enjoy the beautiful sceneries that nature has to offer here.
If you are wondering if there are any activities to do here, my answer would be: “Yes, plenty.” You can go for some guided walks across various regions here. Here you will be able to explore the diversified natural beauty and wildlife of the area. Several agritourism activities and services are planned to open shortly. Once launched, you will be able to engage in picking olives, milking goats, and several other such events here.
What can be learned?
Although we are aware that natural resources need to be preserved, we do not always remember it in real life. When we go on tours such as these, we can realize the significance of protecting nature. Also, when more and more people visit these places, the concept of ecotourism will become popular among more people. Awareness about ecotourism is set to grow and spread throughout the world. Subsequently, sustainable tourism will gain popularity around the globe with Cyprus being the forerunner for ecotourism .