Climate change is a reality and it is caused by humans. There is already proof of its impact and we have to take steps to counter it.
Cities are especially vulnerable, as most of the world's population lives in them, and they are the places where energy is consumed most intensively, generating 70% of all greenhouse gas emissions.
Barcelona is a Mediterranean city which does not consume much energy nor generate large levels of per capita emissions in comparison with other similar cities. However, it has a long way to go, as it is very dependent on fossil-fuels and nuclear resources.
The effects of climate change may pose a risk to people’s health and well-being (heat waves) their safety (guarantee of water and energy supplies, vulnerability of infrastructures, risk of fires) and to the natural environment. These risks must be taken into account and prevented at a global level.
On the occasion of the Paris COP21 conference, the 21st Conference of the Parties of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, and as part of the Citizens Commitment to Sustainability, Barcelona produced its Commitment to the Climate in which it made a commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 40% by the year 2030, compared to 2005 levels, and to increase urban green areas by 1.6km2 as an adaptation measure.
The City Council and the general public established a 2015-2017 road map, with municipal and citizen projects aimed at achieving these objectives. Based on these two years of experience, the City Council now wishes to undertake a more powerful and structured response to this commitment. It therefore proposes uniting all the actions it is carrying out to counter climate change under a single plan that includes all its lines of action: the Climate Plan.
This plan also specifies all the international commitments undersigned by the City Council, including the Covenant of Mayors Sustainable Energy and Climate Action Plans.
The Climate Plan works on 4 major aspects:
Mitigation: what are we going to do about reducing emissions?
Adaptation and resilience: how are we going to prepare, so that we are less vulnerable to climate change?
Climate Justice: what are we going to do about guaranteeing the rights of the most vulnerable people?
Promoting citizen action: how are we going to support projects undertaken by organisations and the general public?
The City Council wishes to base this plan on a joint-production process with the general public. Areas of work will be opened with the signatories of the Barcelona + Sostenible [More Sustainable Barcelona] network and a space on the Decidim Barcelona [Let's decide Barcelona] open platform in order to gather proposals from the general public.
Action is being taken to foster energy saving and increase energy efficiency, to renovate buildings and to achieve greater production of local, renewable energy.
Barcelona City Council, the Catalan Meteorological Service and Barcelona Regional have carried out various studies in order to find out how Barcelona will be affected by climate change.
The general public and the more vulnerable groups are at the centre of the city's climate policies.
Fostering citizen action through Barcelona's Climate Commitment and other co-creation projects.