Foto: Jasmin Sessler via Unsplash

Press release | 14.09.2022

Municipalities call for climate action to be anchored as a mandatory municipal task

Climate Alliance and further non-profit organisations present joint position paper

Frankfurt, 14 September 2022. Today, with the support of numerous organisations including the Association of Cities and Towns of Baden-Württemberg, Germanwatch, WWF, the Deutsche Umwelthilfe and Klima-Allianz Germany, Climate Alliance presented a central demand for municipal climate action to the members of the Bundestag and the federat state governments. In a joint position paper, they call on politicians to anchor climate action as a mandatory municipal task. The demands were developed by Climate Alliance Germany, which represents more than 560 member municipalities throughout Germany (about 54% of the population). These demands come about a week after the German government published its third relief package, with measured criticised by many as insufficient in terms of climate action.

"There is no way around it: climate change mitigation and adaptation must be made mandatory municipal tasks!" explains Andreas Wolter, Climate Alliance President and Mayor of the City of Cologne. "Cities and towns are obliged to actively prevent damage to the population, which today also includes climate action measures that can only be implemented at the local level. In accordance with treaties such as the Paris Agreement, cities and towns must be provided with appropriate funds by the federal government and the states, as stipulated by law in accordance with the 'connexity' principle".

The position paper names elements crucial to the success of municipal climate action activities. These include, among others, the anchoring of climate change mitigation and adaptation as objectives of overriding public interest in all municipal areas of responsibility, the comprehensive development and implementation of ambitious climate action concepts, basic funding for investments independent of subsidies and sufficient personnel for all German municipalities. The necessary institutionalisation of climate action in German can only succeed if it is made a mandatory municipal task.

Download the position paper (in German): Executive summary | Full version


Sarah Mekjian
Communications Director, Climate Alliance
T. +49 69 7171 39 -20

Svenja Schuchmann
National Coordinator for Germany, Climate Alliance
T. +49 69 7171 39 -21

Climate Alliance

For over 30 years, Climate Alliance member municipalities have been acting in partnership with indigenous rainforest peoples for the benefit of the global climate. With nearly 2,000 members spread across more than 25 European countries, Climate Alliance is Europe's largest city network dedicated to comprehensive and equitable climate action. Each member city, town and district has committed itself to continually cut greenhouse gas emissions, aiming for a 95% reduction by 2050 (as compared to 1990 levels) in line with IPCC recommendations. Recognising the impact our lifestyles can have on the world's most vulnerable people and places, Climate Alliance pairs local action with global responsibility.