Climate Change: Implications for Cities

Cities are on the front line of climateImplications of climate change change and the Mayors’ Adaptation Forum was briefed today on the latest scientific findings and action areas relevant to addressing climate change at the local level. A new report that explores the roles cities will play in the fight against climate change was launched during a panel discussion at the Resilient Cities Congress 2014, which featured lead authors involved in the urban chapters of the Fifth Assessment Report (AR5) of Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and the Assessment Reports on Climate Change and Cities (the ARC3 series) prepared by Urban Climate Change Resource Network (UCCRN).

Urban areas account for more than half of the world’s population, most of its economic activity and the majority of energy-related emissions. One of the key messages that emerged from today’s discussion is that steps to build resilience and enable sustainable development in urban areas can accelerate successful climate change adaptation globally. An infographic in the report brings together mitigation and adaptation through examples of how climate change is expected to affect various aspects of urban life.

Actionable information to guide decision-makers in shaping strategies and developing policy is a primary concern for the global experts and local policy leaders who are in Bonn to discuss emerging opportunities and challenges around climate change. The attention paid to cities in AR5 was unprecedented, but more and better information targeted specifically at city decision-makers is still needed. After the introduction of the briefing document, Cynthia Rosenzweig and William Solecki detailed a separate initiative: the ARC3, coordinated by UCCRN, which is an ongoing assessment process to synthesize scientific, economic, and planning-related research specifically for local policy makers.

Written by Lynn Rosentrater
Climate CoLab Contest Winner