UN Secretary-General Calls for US Mayors’ Leadership on Climate Change
19 June 2011: In his address to the US Conference of Mayors in Baltimore, US, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon underlined that cities consume more than two-thirds of the world's energy and account for roughly the same percentage of global carbon dioxide emissions. He called on US mayors to help address climate change and other energy challenges.
In his statement, Ban stressed the need for US mayors to "do their part to address our energy and climate change challenges." He warned against the costs of inaction, highlighting the increased frequency of extreme weather events, market disruptions, and sea-level rise.
On climate negotiations, he indicated that the UN "continues to push for success," noting the need for mayoral delegations to attend the UN Climate Change Conference in Durban, South Africa, at the end of the year. Ban outlined progress achieved in US cities towards greater energy efficiency and use of renewable energy. He congratulated those that signed the US Conference of Mayors' Climate Protection Agreement, which commits cities to reducing carbon emissions below 1990 levels. He also mentioned the efforts carried out under the C40 initiative and the United Cities and Local Governments. He concluded by outlining examples of cities around the world that have adopted climate-smart technologies, and called on all US cities to "join this movement." [UN Press Release] [Ban's Statement]