Accelerating Cities’ Net Zero Action

In partnership with Boston University Institute of Sustainable Energy, the British Embassy Washington and its US network released the Accelerating Cities’ Net Zero Action report, highlighting key takeaways from partnership and innovative financing visioning labs.

The goal of the report is to increase the ambition of cities in the UK and the U.S. to set and achieve net zero greenhouse gas emissions targets, to encourage more cities to commit to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) “Race to Zero” in advance of COP26 in Glasgow November 2021, and to promote cross learning and collaboration between U.S. and UK cities. The visioning labs convened a total of 51 stakeholders including representatives of 28 cities.

To support this, the Boston University Institute for Sustainable Energy (BU ISE) worked with the FCDO to deliver two virtual roundtables, branded as visioning labs to emphasize the interactivity, which convened stakeholders from city government, academia, and net zero experts from North America and the UK.

The participants included representatives of cities who have already set a net zero target as well as representatives of cities who are considering a net zero target. The participation of academics and net zero experts from nonprofit groups – C40, PCAN, UK100, Climate and Urban Systems Partnerships (CUSP), Climate Mayors, and MetroLab Networks – served to illuminate for cities that networks can support them and provide additional capacity to develop net zero roadmaps.

“Getting towards the green economy of the future will not be a drag on our overall economic development,” said Peter Abbott OBE, British Consul General to New England. “Studies suggest that for every dollar spent on climate action $3-$8 are returned to the economy. This Net Zero Action Report is a road map for our regional partners to help take their first steps towards making that green economy future a reality.”

“City-university partnerships can be a powerful accelerant to our decarbonization transition, supporting the crucial effort to achieve dramatic emissions mitigation in the coming decade to maintain a sustainable future,” Dr. Jacquie Ashmore, Executive Director, Boston University Institute for Sustainable Energy.

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