Katrin Stjernfeldt Jammeh speaking as the new ICLEI President at the ICLEI World Congress 2024 in São Paulo (Brazil), Source: ICLEI

Find out the key announcements from the ICLEI World Congress 2024 in São Paulo

Find out the key announcements from the ICLEI World Congress 2024 in São Paulo

The event set the stage for a more prominent role at COP30 in Belém, Brazil in 2025

The ICLEI World Congress 2024, which concluded yesterday, brought together over 1,500 global urban leaders to address critical issues in local climate and resilience action, multilevel governance, and the unique role of the Amazon region in global sustainability.

The event marked significant strides in sustainable urban development and set the stage for COP30 in Belém, Brazil, according to its organizers. It also served as the platform to welcome the newly elected ICLEI President, Katrin Stjernfeldt Jammeh, Mayor of Malmö (Sweden). She advocated for a stronger inclusion of women in urban and sustainable development:

“ICLEI is a strong global force and an important network that gives voice to the cities globally. Cities stand for 70% of the greenhouse gas emissions, and it is within the cities a lot of climate adaptation has to be done. The transition cannot be sustainable if it’s not affordable. We need to put people at the center of our work, including the situation for women globally.”

The ICLEI World Congress was also the main event of the São Paulo Urban Summit, a week full of activities that highlight the fundamental role of cities. Here are some of the

Main announcements from the event

  1. ICLEI’s Strategic Vision 2024-2030 Release

The Power of Our Network in a Changing World – ICLEI’s strategic vision for the next three years – sets a way towards the transformation to sustainable development. This vision, set forth in the voice of the local and regional governments of the ICLEI network, creates a picture of what is needed for a truly sustainable urban world. 

  1. ICLEI Gender Declaration announced

ICLEI’s new Gender Declaration marks a significant commitment to embedding gender equity into the organization’s core mission. This declaration will serve as a guiding framework for ICLEI’s network of over 2,500 local and regional governments, focusing on empowering women, addressing gender-specific challenges, and fostering inclusive governance and planning. The announcement highlighted the critical need for gender-responsive urban planning to ensure equitable benefits for all genders, emphasizing the importance of inclusive and equitable urban development practices.

  1. Call to national associations of local governments to support CHAMP and multilevel climate action

Mayor Katja Dörner, City of Bonn, Germany, and chair of the Climate Action Governance Portfolio for ICLEI’s Global Executive Committee announced a call-to-action inviting all ICLEI leaders to proactively approach their national governments and national associations of local governments for multilevel NDCs by 2025, building on COP28 outcomes and CHAMP initiative, COP28’s Coalition for High Ambition Multilevel Partnerships for Climate Action, which has been signed by 72 countries and is an effort intended to enhance cooperation with subnational governments in financing, implementation, and the monitoring of climate strategies. Leaders were also invited to report their progress at the annual Daring Cities Forum. This followed an announcement on the first day of the Congress that  Frente Nacional de Prefeitas e Prefeitos (FNP) – Brazil’s national association of cities – released a letter of commitment (PT) in which mayors pledged their support for CHAMP. This was followed by a similar resolution by the United States Conference of Mayors later in the week. 

  1. ICLEI and Climate Bonds Initiative partner to boost sustainable development projects

ICLEI and the Climate Bonds Initiative (CBI) announced a strategic partnership within the framework of the Transformative Actions Program (TAP). This collaboration aims to catalyze sustainable development by linking high-impact subnational climate projects with essential financial resources and expertise.

  1. Youth Manifesto launched at the Opening Ceremony

The launch of the Youth Manifesto took place at the opening ceremony of the World Congress with the presence of Darlisson Ramos (Original Communities in the Amazon) and Henrique Barbosa (Institução A Vida no Cerrado). The document, prepared by young people from different institutions and volunteers, aims to promote a just transition, which prioritizes safeguarding human rights and promoting the political autonomy of young people with recommendations and actions for local governments and society in general. It implores local and regional governments to fulfil their responsibilities and cooperate to achieve sustainable, low-emission and climate-resilient development in their territories and globally, in line with the 2030 Agenda and the Paris Agreement with the priority of safeguarding human rights and promoting the political autonomy of young people.

  1. ICLEI – IFRC coastal cities initiative kick-off

Building on a global partnership announced at COP28, ICLEI and IFRC kicked off development of a coastal cities initiative for the Asia-Pacific, Africa and Latin America regions, to reduce risks for coastal cities and nurture resilience. 

  1. New contributors to the Local and Subnational Governments Coalition to end plastics pollution

In April 2024, with the Government of Quebec, the Government of Catalonia, UCLG, and further partners, ICLEI launched the Local and Subnational Governments Coalition to End Plastic Pollution. The purpose of the Coalition is to ensure that an ambitious but practical instrument is collectively shaped with local and subnational governments and ensures the participation and resourcing of local and subnational governments to contribute to ending plastic pollution. During the Congress, cities and subnational governments from five continents added their voice to the Coalition.

  1. Brazilian National Urban Afforestation Plan announced

ICLEI, the Brazilian Ministry of Environment and INESC R&D Brazil, together with various Federal Universities and the Brazilian Society of Urban Afforestation signed a partnership that will be a significant milestone for urban afforestation in the country towards greener, more resilient, sustainable and healthier cities. Among many initiatives, they will collaborate in the preparation of the National Urban Afforestation Plan, in a participatory process involving various sectors of society, to expand biodiversity and ecosystem services in Brazilian cities.

  1. A growing network of local and regional governments

Since June last year, 133 cities and regions have joined ICLEI. While in São Paulo, Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality decided to join ICLEI, making the city the very first new ICLEI Member emanating from the Congress.



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