Cities around the world are facing the negative effects of climate change such as increased floods, droughts and storms, all of which have a costly impact on cities’ basic urban services, infrastructure, and the health and livelihood of its population. At the same time, estimates suggest that cities are responsible for about 75 percent of the global CO2 emissions and a key driver of climate change, necessitating a coordinated approach and climate action at the local level. Thus, it is essential to make cities an integral part of the fight against climate change.
Local governments need to “adapt” or make changes to prepare for and negate the effects of climate change by developing a detailed and strategic climate action plan for measuring, planning, and reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and for building resilience against related climatic impacts. Climate action plans designed at the local level will provide evidence-based measures for GHG emission reduction and can be utilized as a comprehensive and customized roadmap to help cities in making informed decisions and understanding on where and how to achieve the largest and most cost-effective emissions reductions. Such plans will also demonstrate how the city will adapt and improve its resilience to climate hazards that impact the city today as well as risks that may increase in the coming years.
Climate action plans, at a minimum, should include an inventory of existing GHG emissions, reduction goals or targets, and prioritized reduction actions. Ideally, a climate action plan should also include an implementation strategy that identifies required resources and funding mechanisms.
In Phase 1 of the CapaCITIES project, a comprehensive ClimateResilientCities methodology was developed that addresses both mitigation and adaptation aspects of climate change action and also guides the cities throughout the entire process of prioritization of climate actions, implementation and monitoring of actions, and reporting the actions at the global level. However, considering the resources and the time involved in adoption of the comprehensive methodology, in Phase 2 of the project, a simplified CRC process has been developed to fast track the development and implementation of climate action plans in the new Phase 2 cities.
The CapaCITIES Phase 2 project cities are being encouraged to adopt this approach, which has a strong monitoring and evaluation framework and linkage to the Climate Smart Cities Assessment Framework of the Ministry of Housing & Urban Affairs, to develop an abridged climate action plan that can support the city’s foray into local climate action.
Comprehensive ClimateResilientCities Methodology for Local Climate Action Planning
The Climate Resilient Cities Action Plan Process is tailor made for Local Governments (LGs), providing step by step guidance for the development of a climate resilient city action plan that addresses both, climate change adaptation and climate change mitigation. This process is based on the premise that climate resilience refers to both climate change mitigation (reduction of GHG emissions) and adaptation (addressing climate change impacts such as sea level rise, precipitation changes, temperature changes and extreme events), and linkages therein. The process is built on ICLEI’s Cities for Climate Protection (CCP) Campaign, ICLEI’s flagship mitigation program; the Green Climate Cities (GCC) program and ICLEI’s adaptation toolkit, the ICLEI Asian Cities Climate Change Resilience Network (ACCCRN) Process or IAP toolkit.
The Climate Resilient Cities Action Plan Process is a 9-step process in 3 phases: Analyze, Act and Accelerate; outlining how climate fragility can be assessed and climate resilient options (to achieve low emissions development and climate adaptive development) can be identified and integrated into urban development policies, plans and processes. It consists of a wide range of tools and guidance notes to support LGs to deliver effective local climate action.
To read more about the methodology, its steps and outcomes and to download the entire methodology encompassing the tools and guidance notes, please click the below button.
Simplified ClimateResilientCities Methodology for Local Climate Action Planning
The Simplified ClimateResilientCities Methodology is a tailor made process for Local Governments (LGs), providing step by step guidance to prepare, implement and monitor Climate Resilient City Action Plans, to support LGs in their endeavor to move towards climate resilient development. LGs could choose to initiate climate action by adopting a simplified 3-phase, 5-step process, defined by the Simplified ClimateResilientCities Methodology. This methodology is based on a predefined set of comprehensive climate actions that are presented in the Basket of Solutions tool. It is envisaged that the simplified methodology would support the city in preparing a quick climate action plan within 3 months, that is to be implemented over a two year period, with detailed annual action plans.
Cities should subsequently endeavor to adopt a more comprehensive climate action planning methodology – the ClimateResilientCities Methodology, which is the basis for the Simplified Methodology. It is to be noted that the comprehensive ClimateResilientCities Methodology meets international climate action planning guidelines such as that of the Global Covenant for Climate and Energy and is based on detailed assessments of the greenhouse gas emissions and climate vulnerabilities of the city. Towards the second semester of year 2 of the action planning process, the LG should consider adopting the comprehensive planning process. Ongoing implementation of actions from the initial action plan, should continue in subsequent climate action planning cycles, as per already defined timelines.
The Simplified ClimateResilientCities Methodology allows cities to quickly embark on a path of climate resilience through a process that consists of three phases – Analyse, Act and Accelerate, it guides the LGs through a process that includes 5 steps as depicted in the following picture:
The Simplified Climate Resilient Cities Methodology in its entirety, 7 tools and guidance note, is available for download here.
This simplified methodology consists of 7 tools that guide the LGs through the 5 steps. The tools support LGs in setting up institutional mechanisms to undertake a baseline climate assessment, identify climate actions, define targets, allocate budget for implementation, monitor implementation of climate actions and assess climate performance annually. These tools are listed below:
Tool 1: City Commitment Announcement
Tool 2: Climate Core Team and Stakeholder Consultation
Tool 3: City Profile
Tool 4: Basket of Solutions
Tool 5: Identification of Climate Actions and Budget Allocation
Tool 6: Approval for Climate Actions
Tool 7: Implementing and Monitoring Framework
Pre-defined climate actions included in the Basket of Solutions also consider and are in sync with the indicators included in the Climate Smart City Assessment Framework (CSCAF) and the Livability Index, initiated and implemented by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, Government of India. The direct linkages between the Basket of Solutions tool and CSCAF are explained below.
Linkages of Simplified CRC Methodology with CSCAF indicators
The Government of India’s Ministry of Housing & Urban Affairs (MoHUA) initiated the Climate Smart City Assessment Framework (CSCAF) as a first of its kind city assessment framework on climate relevant parameters for Indian cities. It serves as a tool for cities to assess their current climate situation and provides a roadmap for cities to adopt and implement relevant climate actions. The predefined climate actions included in the Basket of Solutions (BoS) tool of the Simplified CRC Methodology consider and sync with the indicators included in the CSCAF and the Liveability Index, initiated and implemented by the MoHUA. The BoS tool meets common ground with the CSCAF across its sectors and indicators with its broad thematic areas such as City Planning, Urban Biodiversity, Energy/Energy-Infrastructure, etc.
The Simplified CRC Methodology could further strengthen the CSCAF assessments by enabling cities and states to better comprehend the processes involved in the assessments through its 5 steps, 3 phase process. It is envisaged that the methodology will enable LGs in undertaking climate action planning and implementations which in the long run will support the Government of India’s goal of climate sensitive urban development and development of “Climate Smart Cities”, for a green, sustainable and resilient urban habitat.
To read more on the Simplified CRC methodology and its linkages to the CSCAF, please click below