Purposes and Aims

The purposes and aims of C40 Cities UK, as set out in the objects contained in the company’s Memorandum and Articles of Association, are:

  • The advancement of environmental protection and conservation of the natural environment, particularly by promoting the reduction of greenhouse gases (including carbon dioxide, methane and any other gases that may be identified from time to time as having a global warming potential);
  • To promote sustainable development for the benefit of the public by the promotion of sustainable means of achieving economic growth and regeneration;
  • To advance the education of the public in subjects relating to global warming, climate change, sustainable development and the protection, enhancement and rehabilitation of the environment and to promote study and research in such subjects provided that the useful results of such study are disseminated to the public at large; and
  • Such other objects, as shall be exclusively charitable by the law of England and Wales as the Trustees shall decide.

Sustainable development means “development which meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs”.

Role in the C40 Cities Network

C40 Cities UK plays a key role in the C40 network and delivers on its mission by working and leading on a number of projects. C40 Cities UK substantively contributed to providing direct support to 97 cities of the C40 Cities Network in 2020. C40’s key programmes are driven by data-based reports like Deadline 2020 and assigned quantifiable targets. Our progress on these targets is monitored thanks to reporting frameworks like the Global Protocol for Community-Scale Greenhouse Gas Emission Inventories (GPC), the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP), and the Global Covenant of Mayors’ Common Reporting Framework (CRF), ensuring consistency across our regions and with the work of partner organizations.

Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, C40 also supported member cities in their response and recovery, while building on sustainability principles. The C40 peer sharing networks were quickly repurposed to enable rapid exchange of lessons learned and even direct support between cities, like personal protective equipment. For example, the food systems network normally focuses on city policies for healthy and low carbon food in places like schools. It quickly pivoted to helping cities share lessons on distributing sustainable food packages to the most vulnerable. The air quality and transport networks helped cities open up over 220km of new bike lanes. The building networks advised cities on how to generate jobs quickly through building retrofits. The waste networks helped cities provide for vulnerable residents and protect key workers across public services. The land use planning network turned its attention to identifying sites for virus testing and to repurposing buildings as hospitals and homeless shelters.

Notable Deliverables

Cities Finance Facility (“CFF”)

The C40 Cities Finance Facility (“CFF”), work undertaken substantially by C40 Cities UK, continues to support cities to access financial resources. In 2020, the initiative supported 20 projects in 17 cities with in-depth technical assistance and capacity development. In December 2020, the CFF was recognised as one of the winners of the United Nations Awards in the category of Financing for Climate Friendly Investment.

Financing Sustainable Cities Initiative (“FSCI”)

FSCI, substantially undertaken by C40 Cities UK, helps cities accelerate and scale-up investment in sustainable urban solutions through capacity building, peer knowledge-sharing, and technical assistance across clean energy, transportation and adaptation projects. From 2018-2020, the program has provided technical assistance to at least 25 C40 cities through six Finance Academies.

C40 Divest/Invest Forum

The Divest/Invest Forum is a first-of-its-kind initiative to help urban leaders make the leap to effective and efficient divestment and accelerate green investment. The Forum is designed to support cities and their pension funds in developing Divest/Invest strategies. The new C40 Accelerator “Divesting from Fossil Fuels, Investing in a Sustainable Future”, launched in November 2020 and signed by 10 major C40 cities, champions fossil fuel-free, green finance as a key strategy for rebuilding equitable, sustainable urban economies and increasing resilience against future crises.