Covenant of Mayors on Climate and Energy
Raising the profile of local authorities
From the beginning, Climate Alliance has argued that local authorities have an important role to play in climate action, often forming the basis for the implementation of national and international climate goals. This standpoint was given a significant and official backing of the European Commission in the form of the Covenant of Mayors.
The Covenant of Mayors
Since its launch in 2008, the EU initiative known as the Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy has brought together thousands of local authorities who have voluntarily committed to implementing EU climate and energy objectives within their territories. New signatories of the Covenant commit to reducing CO2 emissions by at least 40% by 2030 and to adopting an integrated approach to tackling climate change mitigation and adaptation. Each signatory is charged with creating a so-called “Sustainable Energy and Climate Action Plan” (SECAP), in which the local authority outlines the actions it plans to carry out in order to meet or exceed national targets for the European 2030 Climate and Energy framework.
Covenant signatories also endorse a shared vision for 2050
- Accelerating the decarbonisation of their territories
- Strengthening their capacity to adapt to unavoidable climate change impacts
- Ensuring their residents access secure, sustainable and affordable energy
The origins of the movement
The European Commission launched the Covenant of Mayors in 2008, the same year in which the EU’s 2020 Climate and Energy Package was adopted, in order to support the efforts of the local level promoting action of sustainable energy. Five years later, the Mayors Adapt initiative was brought onto the scene, inviting cities to make political commitments and take action on the unavoidable impacts of climate change.
The current Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy, made official in late 2015, combines these two powerful EU initiatives under the new integrated Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy, which adopts the EU 2030 objectives as its basis along with an integrated approach to climate change mitigation and adaptation. Climate Alliance has been deeply involved in each of these initiatives from their very beginnings.
Climate Alliance’s role
The Covenant of Mayors is the result of our advocacy and positive collaboration with the European Commission. Climate Alliance plays a leading role in technical and administrative support for European local authorities both as partner in the Covenant of Mayors Office and as an official Covenant Supporter. Outside Europe, the Climate Alliance European Secretariat is also active in helping to spread the successful examples and lessons learned via the Covenant of Mayors.