Copenhagen

Denmark
Lord Mayor Frank Jensen, Elected 2010

Copenhagen in our Blog

The Lord Mayor of Copenhagen, Frank Jensen, today officially opened C40’s permanent office in the city. Drawing on the unique expertise in sustainable urban development found in Copenhagen, the new C40 office will serve as a centre for the network’s global Business, Economy and Innovation Programme. By supporting greater cooperation between C40 cities and the private sector they will help to overcome one of the major barriers to mayors delivering on their ambitious climate change agendas.

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Nuestras ciudades están en el frente de la crisis del cambio climático. La subida del nivel del mar amenaza a millones de ciudadanos con inundaciones y, a su vez, los inviernos más fríos y los veranos más calurosos afectan especialmente a las zonas más vulnerables de nuestras ciudades. Las emisiones nocivas de los vehículos que circulan por el centro de nuestras ciudades contaminan el aire que respiran nuestros hijos. 

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Nos villes sont en première ligne de la crise du changement climatique. L’élévation du niveau de la mer menace des millions de personnes avec des inondations, pendant que des hivers plus froids et des étés plus chauds accablent les plus vulnérables de nos villes. Les émissions nocives des véhicules qui roulent dans nos centres urbains polluent l’air que nos enfants respirent.

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Our cities are on the frontline of the climate change crisis. Rising sea levels threaten millions of citizens with flooding, while colder winters and hotter summers take their toll on the most vulnerable in our cities. The noxious emissions from vehicles passing through our city centres pollute the air that our children breathe. 

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Today, C40 announced the 35 finalists competing in ten urban climate action categories for the fourth-annual C40 Cities Awards, sponsored by Bloomberg Philanthropies and BYD. The winners will be announced on December 1, 2016, at a ceremony in Mexico City, held alongside the sixth biennial C40 Mayors Summit.

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Yesterday, C40 and the Singapore National Climate Change Secretariat (NCCS) held an event at the World Cities Summit (WCS) 2016, a global platform for government leaders and industry experts to address liveable and sustainable city challenges and forge new partnerships. “From Ambition to Action: The Vital Role of Cities in Achieving the Paris Agreement” drew together C40 mayors and city experts from around the world to share insights on the actions they are taking – on mitigation, adaptation and increasing resilience – as well as the key challenges they face in doing so.

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Cooperation. Including our citizens. Getting the companies on board. These are all ways that we – that I – have talked about partnerships and cooperation in the past. Yet there has always been a tiny bit of doubt hovering in the back of my mind. This approach suggests that we, as the city government, always know best and are simply convincing the rest to run with us. In fact what we are looking for is cooperation in its truest form. Where we reap the benefits of shared knowledge, shared experiences, shared ownership and shared responsibility. Where we all play the best part we can in the process.

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For a number of years, a group of C40 cities active in the Green Growth Network have been working to understand the size and nature of their green economies. This information - including economic value, number of jobs, number of companies, specialist sectors, exports, and green growth potential - is crucial to help cities identify where the most effective interventions can be made and help make the case for further sustainable policies that help grow the green economy. 

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Today, the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group (C40) and research partner Arup released Climate Action in Megacities (CAM 3.0), a groundbreaking and definitive assessment of how the world’s leading mayors have taken on the urgent challenge of climate change. CAM 3.0 presents major new insights into the current status, latest trends and future potential for climate action at the city level. Since the last major COP in Copenhagen, C40 cities have taken 10,000 climate actions – a doubling of actions in just six years – and have committed to reduce their CO2 emissions by 3 Gt CO2 by 2030, equivalent to the annual carbon output of India.

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Members of C40’s Adaptation Team recently attended the European Climate Change Adaptation (ECCA) Conference in Copenhagen, Denmark and the North America National Adaptation Forum (NAF) in St. Louis, U.S. Both events brought together a number of C40 cities in each of the respective regions and emphasized the important role cities play in climate change adaptation.

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In Copenhagen, we aim to achieve carbon neutral status in 2025 – becoming the first major global city to do so. However, we want to link efforts to reduce the impact of global warming with economic growth and job creation. Our main focus has been on creating a clean, green city with high standards of living. We want a city where people can enjoy living and working without harming the planet – we strongly believe this vision is possible and even more so when cities work collaboratively with each other and the private sector.

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In this latest edition of our ongoing Research Spotlight series, we hear from Eric Ast, C40 Research Analyst on an important new research project to understand and advance the efforts of global cities leading the way in setting the most ambitious emissions reduction targets – Seth Schultz, C40 Director of Research, Measurement and Planning.

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Next week, C40 and Siemens will announce the finalists for the second annual C40 & Siemens City Climate Leadership Awards. But before that happens, we wanted to take a moment to reflect on some of the projects that won last year for demonstrating climate leadership in areas as diverse as urban transportation and adaptation and resilience.

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The London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) and the City of Copenhagen recently released a report showcasing Copenhagen as one of the world’s leading green urban economies and a guidepost for other cities looking for green growth. Copenhagen: Green Economy Leader Report outlines the strategic choices facing Copenhagen as it builds on its pioneering work, and features a wealth of new research findings.

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Nordhavn, a project aiming to create ‘the sustainable city of the future’, has joined C40’s Climate Positive Development Program, bringing the City of Copenhagen into a global network of cities committed to carbon neutral development. With this addition, Climate Positive now convenes 18 cutting-edge urban development projects that serve as living laboratories for sustainable solutions in cities around the world.

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In October 2012, C40 and the City of Copenhagen invited 15 C40 cities to participate in an inaugural workshop of the C40 Green Growth Network. The aim was to share and discuss best practices for themes such as how to work with private sector organisations and green clusters to drive innovation, how to determine the economic rationale for green policies and how to justify such policies by showing their wider economic benefit.

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This week, Lord Mayor of Copenhagen Frank Jensen will lead a workshop with 15 megacities to collaborate and share best practices on integrating sustainable solutions, economic growth, and job creation. The cities – which include Bogotá, New York, Jakarta and London – are all members of the C40 Green Growth Network, and this meeting will mark the first time they convene to discuss the rationale, methods, and effects of implementing green growth policies.

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Today 15 C40 cities are gathering in Copenhagen for the first workshop of the C40 Green Growth Network. Hosted by the City of Copenhagen, who became chair of the Network earlier this year, the event comprises three days of focused presentations on key aspects of green growth, inputs from knowledge partners, as well as dialogue and sharing of best practice among participating cities.

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Last week Mayor of Beijing, Mr. Guo Jinlong -- a fellow C40 Mayor -- and I signed a mutual agreement between our two cities to collaborate in the areas of sustainable solutions, energy efficiency, water, culture, health and science. The agreement is not only a sign of the good relations between China and Denmark. It is also clear evidence of our shared interests in the area of sustainable urban development.

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The Mayor of Copenhagen Frank Jensen is attending the C40 Summit in Sao Paulo this week, and has brought with him a list of sustainable solutions from Copenhagen. Looking to move beyond isolated equipment or practices, Mayor Jensen is focused on applying a combination of technology, knowledge and organization to the difficult problems associated with climate change. Please visit the Copenhagen website for more information about how this C40 City is developing innovative solutions to climate change.

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The global transition to a green economy is at the top of the international agenda. Taking a look at the negotiations leading up to the Rio +20 summit, there is a growing understanding that green growth is a key concept in the pursuit of a common sustainable and economically viable future. I believe that cities play a crucial role in making this transition. Cities control significant environmental, economic and social assets. And in cities we are often able to decide on more ambitious green policies than our national governments.

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