Ada Colau, Mayor of Barcelona, Spain has been elected as Vice Chair of the C40 Steering Committee, the governing body providing strategic direction for the global network of 97 cities committed to addressing the climate crisis.

Ada Colau Ballano is the first woman mayor in Barcelona’s history. She has dedicated a large part of her life to social and human-rights activism. She helped to launch the Platform for People Affected by Mortgages (PAH) in 2009. She founded Guanyem Barcelona (subsequently Barcelona en Comú) in 2014, a political resident platform that won the municipal elections in 2015. In 2019 she was re-elected Mayor of Barcelona.

She has given priority at the City Council to public policies focusing on the fight against inequalities, the right to decent housing, the launch of a more sustainable city model and the strengthening of resident participation. She has also opted for regulating the impact of tourism, for a diversified, inclusive and green economy and for boosting public services. Feminism, the promotion of diversity and solidarity also occupy a central place in municipal policies. Besides being the Mayor and the President of the Barcelona Metropolitan Area (AMB), she is also the United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG) special envoy for relations between cities and the United Nations.

In her new role on the C40 Steering Committee, Mayor Colau will be a leading voice in promoting and advocating for bold and innovative climate action in cities around the world and inspiring change for a better future for all people. As Vice Chair, Mayor Colau will support the mayors of C40 Cities as they accelerate efforts to secure a green and just recovery to the COVID-19 crisis, and ensure national governments match the ambition of cities in delivering a meaningful outcome to COP26 in Glasgow. Mayor Colau was elected to represent C40’s European Cities. 

C40’s member cities represent 700 million residents and one quarter of the world’s economy. Through collaboration and innovation, the mayors of C40 Cities are determined to deliver on the Paris Agreement’s highest ambition and keep global temperature rise to below 1.5 degrees, and to do so in an equitable way. 

Mayor Colau said: “I would like to thank C40 for this appointment and I would like to emphasize the importance of C40 and the role that cities are playing, with better coordination and agility than the States in the fight against the climate emergency. There is no ‘planet B’ and we need to push the states, which are late. I plan to continue working in a coordinated way with the rest of the cities and being in the management of the network is a recognition of the policies that the city of Barcelona is developing.”

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