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The IPCC's ‘Global Warming 1.5 degrees’ report published last month was a clear warning of the ambitious action needed to prevent the worst of climate change. A swift shift away from fossil fuels is needed, but as Christiana Figueres observes, ‘the determinants of whether we head for 2C or for 1.5C are mainly political; they are not technical or economic.’ This observation rang true when visiting China last week to deliver the annual C40 Zero Emission Vehicle network workshop. Bringing together delegates from 11 global cities to problem solve and work together to transition to zero emission vehicles.

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According to the world’s leading scientists, global emissions must peak by 2020 and then begin to decline rapidly if there is any hope of delivering the Paris Agreement and keeping global average temperature to rise to between 1.5 and 2 ̊C. Today, C40 announced that 27 of its cities have reached peak emissions . Peaking defines the point in time where emissions switch from increasing to decreasing, and represents a critical turning point in converting the Paris Agreement from aspiration into reality. The longer peaking is delayed, the later global emissions start to decline, and the more difficult it will be to limit global warming. 

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For more than a decade, C40 has been working with cities to develop and share policies and practices that help address climate change. We know that technological innovations cannot, in isolation, solve the challenges that cities face. Autonomous vehicle (AVs) technology is advancing at such a rate that it is now only a matter of time until AVs become the norm. Read more from C40 Executive Director Mark Watts. 

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C40 and CIFF recently launched a new online tool that will help cities understand the relationship between mitigation measures, which reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and adaptation measures, which reduce climate risk. Based on cities’ experiences and designed for cities, this is the first tool available that will help policy-makers systemically analyse potential interactions between mitigation and adaptation as they develop climate action plans.

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