NOVEMBER 2022 NEWSLETTER
In UrbanShift's last newsletter of 2022, we hear from our lead agency, UNEP, on the program's efforts to promote biodiversity in cities, highlighting resources and webinars that explore the power of nature to enhance climate resilience and equity. We also celebrate the launch of our first annual report!
Dear friends and colleagues,
Welcome to the end-of-year edition of UrbanShift’s quarterly newsletter! I am pleased to write to you on behalf of the UN Environment Programme. We are proud to serve as the lead agency for this ambitious GEF-funded initiative to create nature-positive, carbon-free cities, the relevance of which is confirmed every day.
The 2022 UNEP Emissions Gap report highlights that only an urgent, system-wide transformation can deliver the 45% emission reductions needed to limit warming to 1.5°C by 2030. To get on track, it is crucial that cities contribute to the effort and shift towards a more sustainable urban future.
UrbanShift supports local governments to tackle this challenging transformation. We recently celebrated our first anniversary with the launch of our inaugural annual report. Please spend some time exploring what we have collectively achieved in the past year.
2022 was an important year for biodiversity, with the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration and preparations for the Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework picking up speed. At UrbanShift, we made it a priority to advocate for increased financing for nature in cities, conveying this message at key global events like UNEA 5, WUF11, Climate COP27, and very soon, at the Biodiversity COP15 in Montreal. Thank you for your continued support and engagement. We wish you a very happy holiday season and new year!
Sharon Gil / Head, Cities Unit, UN Environment Programme
URBANSHIFT: ONE YEAR OF ACTION & IMPACT
Annual Report 2021-2022
UrbanShift's inaugural annual report serves as an inspiring portfolio of the program's first year in action as well as a handbook for our strategy to achieve sustainable, low-carbon growth in more than 23 cities across three continents. Browse the report to learn more.
NEWS & UPDATES
Resilient Urban Sierra Leone Project (RUSLP) Launches in Freetown
UrbanShift’s local project in Sierra Leone, implemented by the World Bank in partnership with the Government of Sierra Leone and participating city administrations, officially kicked off on October 6 in Freetown. Watch the recording.
Pune and Freetown Receive Accolades at the C40 World Mayors Summit
UrbanShift cities Pune and Freetown won the C40 Cities Bloomberg Philanthropies Award in Buenos Aires on October 19. The awards recognized the most impactful projects spearheaded by C40 mayors to tackle the global climate crisis. Read the press release.
GEF-Funded "Green and Carbon-Neutral Cities" Project Initiated in China
UrbanShift's local project in China was formally launched in Beijing on November 16 at a workshop hosted by the World Bank and the China Center for Urban Development (CCUD), under the National Development and Reform Commission. Read more.
BLOGS & RESEARCH
Buenos Aires Hosts UrbanShift's Second City Academy
The three-day workshop brought together 24 Latin American cities to learn about and exchange ideas on developing vibrant, sustainable neighborhoods and promoting urban biodiversity as strategies to create greener and more resilient cities.
The Potential for Nature-Based Solutions Initiatives to Incorporate and Scale Climate Adaptation
This paper explores how existing NbS initiatives can better incorporate climate adaptation. It investigates the barriers these initiatives face, as well as new opportunities and lessons learned in implementation.
BiodiverCities by 2030
This report provides a vision for cities of the future and the needed systemic shifts to develop "BiodiverCities" that place nature at the heart of decision-making and infrastructure investments.
Integrated Guidelines for Sustainable Neighbourhood Design
This online resource provides a roadmap for city leaders to respond to urban growth by planning at the neighborhood level.
Kigali: On the path toward green, climate-resilient growth
Faced with a fast-growing urban population, the Rwandan capital is working to transform itself into a model green city. We spoke with Mayor Pudence Rubingisa about his sustainability goals and priorities for Kigali.
WRI Report Launch: How Better Forests Lead to Better Cities
Cities and forests may appear unrelated at first glance, but the latest science reveals that they deeply impact each other. This webinar will launch a first-of-its-kind report that evaluates the benefits that forests, at multiple scales, provide to cities and their residents, including health and water security. Register. November 29, 2022.
UrbanShift Webinar: Leveraging Urban Nature to Create Inclusive and Equitable Cities
As cities expand their built environment and services to accommodate growing populations, ensuring equal access to urban nature becomes even more critical. Showcasing examples from Mexico City, this webinar will explore how nature can be used to promote equity in cities. Register. December 7, 2022.
Transformative Actions Program (TAP)
The TAP supports local and regional governments to transform their resilient development infrastructure concepts into mature, bankable projects ready for financing and implementation. Submit your project. December 15, 2022.
CBD COP15: 7th Summit for Subnational Governments & Cities
The 15th UN Biodiversity Conference will convene governments from around the world to agree to a new set of goals for nature over the next decade, with the vision of creating a harmonious relationship with biodiversity by 2050. Register. December 7 – 19, 2022.
Urban Cable Cars in Medellín
This Peer-to-Peer Exchange brought together 20 participants from Freetown, Lima and Medellín to discuss planning and implementing urban cable cars within an integrated transportation system.
UrbanShift at COP27
UrbanShift led and participated in crucial discussions around climate finance, multi-level governance, and nature-based approaches in Sharm el-Sheikh, providing our stakeholders with a space to share their climate goals and challenges.
Buenos Aires City Academy
The first UrbanShift City Academy in Latin America and the Caribbean brought together participants from 25 cities to receive training on urban biodiversity planning and management and designing vibrant, people-centric neighborhoods.
CDP-ICLEI Track: Climate Change Mitigation & Adaptation Planning in Cities
Data-driven decision-making is key to delivering on climate action policies and plans. Join us to learn more about the CDP-ICLEI Track, a unified climate reporting system.
Engaging youth in climate action: Pragmatically moving forward
Young people must be involved in critical decisions concerning their future and given an active role in addressing the climate emergency. Join UrbanShift for a lively discussion on this topic on International Youth Day.
UrbanShift's mission is to transform cities for people and planet through integrated urban development. We engage with more than 23 cities across nine countries (China, India, Indonesia, Sierra Leone, Rwanda, Morocco, Costa Rica, Brazil and Argentina), bringing together local and global stakeholders to build a resilient, inclusive, zero-carbon urban future. Learn more.