The 23rd Conference of the Parties (COP23) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) held in Bonn, Germany from November 6 -17 2017, provided the framework for the launch of the UCLG Africa Climate Task Force and the presentation of its members to the political authorities and the general public.
The official launch of the UCLG Africa Climate Task Force was held in Bonn on November 14, 2017 under the chairmanship of His Excellency Mr. Barnabé Dassigli, Minister of Decentralization and Local Governance of Benin, Chairman of the Specialized Technical Committee N° 8 of the African Union, in the presence of representatives of the first institutions that volunteered to join the Task Force.
Jean Pierre Elong Mbassi, Secretary General of UCLG Africa, stated the intention of the Task Force to bring together, within the same ecosystem, the various stakeholders working with climate issues. This is to enable them to support local governments in Africa in the implementation of NDCs and in the access to climate finance and most notably the Green Climate Fund. This is open to all those who wish to join it who can do so by applying to the General Secretariat of UCLG Africa.
On behalf of the African Ministers of Public Service, Urban Development, Local Governments and Decentralization, the Hon. Minister Barnabé Dassigli of Benin, Chairman of the Specialized Technical Committee N° 8 of the African Union, commended UCLG Africa for its wonderful initiative, supported by STC N° 8.
He expressed confidence that the UCLG Africa’s Climate Task Force would have a significant impact on the engagement of African local governments in the implementation of the Paris Agreement and pointed out that within the same support platform for local governments, development banks, institutions specializing in the financing of local governments, technical support agencies for local governments, academic and research institutions, associations of local governments and NGOs active in the field of climate, was a commitment to the synergy of the different stakeholders around the Climate Agenda.
The role of territories was recognized as essential for the realization of NDCs (Nationally Determined Contributions). Local policy choices in terms of infrastructure, equipment and basic service delivery methods have made an impact on energy efficiency and greenhouse gas emissions. Priorities for elected officials include giving a climate perspective to the everyday actions they carry out.