Launched in 2008, the Covenant of Mayors is the world’s largest movement for local climate and energy actions.
The Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy brings together local and regional authorities voluntarily committing to implementing the EU’s climate and energy objectives on their territory. This unique bottom-up movement, which started in 2008 with the support of the European Commission, now counts over 7,700 signatories.
In 2015, the initiative took on new objectives: the Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy steps up the initial CO2-reduction commitment and includes adaptation to climate change. Signatory local authorities share a vision for making cities decarbonised and resilient, where citizens have access to secure, sustainable and affordable energy. They commit to developing Sustainable Energy and Climate Action Plans for 2030 and to implementing local climate change mitigation and adaptation activities.
Signatory cities pledge action to support implementation of the EU 40% greenhouse gas-reduction target by 2030 and the adoption of a joint approach to tackling mitigation and adaptation to climate change. In order to translate their political commitment into practical measures and projects, Covenant signatories commit to submitting, within two years following the date of the local council decision, a Sustainable Energy and Climate Action Plan (SECAP) outlining the key actions they plan to undertake. The plan will feature a Baseline Emission Inventory to track mitigation actions and a Climate Risks and Vulnerability Assessment. The adaptation strategy can either be part of the SECAP or developed and mainstreamed in a separate planning document. This bold political commitment marks the beginning of a long-term process with cities committed to reporting every two years on the implementation progress of their plans.
The Global Covenant of Mayors is capitalising on the experience gained over the past eight years in Europe and beyond, and is building upon the key success factors of the initiative: its bottom-up governance, its multi-level cooperation model and its context-driven framework for action.
FEDARENE is part of the consortium running the Covenant of Mayors Office, together with 5 other European networks of local and regional authorities: Energy Cities, Climate Alliance, Eurocities, CEMR and ICLEI Europe. FEDARENE participates in defining the strategy behind the initiative and has been actively involved in mobilising regions and energy agencies around Europe, through promotion, a continuous helpdesk, events and seminars, conferences and exchange of best practices.
Provinces, regions and energy agencies are key to the success of the initiative, notably in terms of:
• The promotion they do of the Covenant in their territory;
• Increasing the organisation’s capacities by providing decentralised support on the ground and ensuring tailored interaction with signatories;
• The support provided to signatories including technical assistance;
• Mobilising other stakeholders – such as associations, private companies and universities.