Local authorities want the EU to stay the course on the Green Deal, Source: Depositphotos

European grand alliance urges EU to find new ways to effectuate Green Deal

European grand alliance urges EU to find new ways to effectuate Green Deal

The Local Alliance unites eight organisations, which advocate for the sustainable interests of local and regional communities

In a joint letter sent to EU leaders, the Local Alliance, made up of eight leading networks of regions and cities from across the continent, highlights that Europe's pace of success in achieving the Green Deal objectives will depend on the provision of more robust support and help for cities and regions. 

The organisations are urging the EU Commission to stay the course regardless of who takes over the helm in the next term after the elections.

Specifically, the Alliance is asking for more joined-up support for investments from the EU, national and regional funds across different funding programmes and actors, which are more responsive to locally developed integrated and holistic action and investment plans. This would also be a prerequisite for creating local jobs and markets for the European green industry.  

Recent challenges, such as the passage of the Nature Restoration Law, which still languishes with the European Council, or the last-minute setbacks suffered by the internal combustion engine phase-out, are undermining the Green Deal objectives. As the European elections approach, the EU must ensure it remains a global beacon for climate leadership. 

Given the more complicated arena for climate legislation that lies ahead, local leaders are adamant that the EU's commitment to achieve climate neutrality by 2050 should remain a top priority, delivering a just transition that works for people and planet.

Cities are where the green transition happens chiefly

Cities and regions are where at least 70% of the European Green Deal legislation must be implemented. European local and regional governments have already embarked on the journey to climate neutrality and started to transform European cities and regions, as well as ways of living, heating and cooling, housing, mobility, producing and consuming for millions of citizens. Today, the EU's subnational governments mobilise around 58% of climate-significant public expenditures, surpassing their central governments.

"Cities and regions have proven their commitment to work with decision-makers at EU and national level to ensure a climate-neutral future for Europe. However, if the European Green Deal is truly to become a reality, the EU must empower local and regional governments with the funding, policies and cooperation mechanisms they need to ensure a just, resilient future for everyone," said André Sobzcak, Secretary General of Eurocities. 

"European cities and regions have embraced the EU Green Deal and engaged their local communities in bringing about sustainable local change. We call on EU and national decision-makers to take the next step in providing clarity, financial support and meaningful cooperation mechanisms to help put policy into practice. In this EU election year, it is more urgent than ever to bring on board local governments as serious partners for shaping a sustainable, fair, democratic and just European future," stated Wolfgang Teubner, Regional Director, ICLEI Europe.

Local leaders highlight that partnership between all levels of government is key as "Financing the local transition to climate neutrality will require mobilising the EU and national budgets."

Scaling up skills

Cities and regions need adequate in-house skills and a workforce to successfully do their part of the climate neutrality transition and by doing so, to create demand for European businesses and industries.  

"These opportunities are the best way to create local investment potential for European industry, and to share the transition benefits for all EU citizens," said the Local Alliance leaders.

Establishing structured dialogues with the local and regional levels at the EU and national level will be critical to achieving the necessary transformation and societal resilience at scale in Europe. 

The Local Alliance further repeats its commitment to work with national governments, the European Council, the Commission and the Parliament to turn the European Green Deal into reality for every citizen across Europe.

The Local Alliance is composed of the following organisations: Eurocities, ICLEI, ACR+, CEMR, Climate Alliance, Energy Cities, FEDARNE and POLIS.



Growing City


Smart City


Green City


Social City


New European Bauhaus




ECP 2021 Winner TheMayorEU