COP27 delivered partial success in the agreement to create a loss and damage fund. Still, climate talks failed to deliver agreement on the most basic requirements of stopping climate breakdown — to rapidly slash the burning of fossil fuels. 

National governments of the most polluting countries are still not willing to commit to contributing their fair share to halving global emissions by 2030 and meeting the 1.5°C Paris Agreement target. As a result, the urgent need for cities and other non-state actors to lead immediate science-based climate action gets ever greater. 

The failure to include the phase-out of fossil fuels in the official COP27 decision text does not reflect a choice between development and environment. As research by C40 and so many others shows, investing in renewable energy and energy efficiency will cost less, create more jobs, and result in far less pollution than burning more gas, oil and coal. Continuing to use fossil fuels is particularly harmful to city residents, who disproportionately suffer from the pollution and health effects resulting from fossil fuels.

C40 cities are leading the fight to stop fossil fuels while working together to create 50 million good, green jobs by the end of the decade. C40 continues to provide technical support as well as helping catalyse more climate investment for cities.

COP27 highlights

  1. Egypt launched Sustainable Urban Resilience for the next Generation (SURGe), the first time a COP presidency has made an urban climate issue a key priority. C40 is a partner and co-leads the building working group alongside France, Morocco, the UN Environment Programme and World Green Building Council.
  2. The National Development Banks (NDBs) Urban Climate Action Programme was launched by the International Climate Initiative. The programme will build capacity within NDBs and cities to improve framework conditions for urban climate finance. C40 serves as a technical partner. NDBs will play a key role as cities continue to innovate on green financing solutions to support their ambitious climate action projects.
  3. The first-ever Ministerial Meeting on Urbanisation and Climate Change hosted by a COP Presidency put an unprecedented spotlight on urban climate solutions. Atiqul Islam, C40 Vice Chair and Mayor of the Dhaka North City Corporation, represented C40 at the event, while C40 Vice Chair and Governor of Tokyo Yuriko Koike spoke alongside heads of states at the World Leaders Summit and the Global Climate Action Plenary. C40’s mayoral delegation was led by Mayors Islam and Mayor of Freetown Yvonne Aki-Sawyerr, recognising the importance of Global South voices in the fight against climate breakdown.
  4. C40 unveiled the NDC Ambition Handbook for countries to identify the most impactful and inclusive actions to be implemented across sectors, including energy, transport, buildings, waste, construction and urban planning. The handbook is inspired by the experience of cities taking climate action, and builds on the Multilevel Climate Action Playbook, whose second edition was published on 15 November by the Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate & Energy.