Green Cities

Earth Day 2020 must kick off decade of action for cities, says ICLEI President Ashok Sridharan

Cities around the world know that 2020 marks the start of a critical decade for climate action. ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability, the network of over 1750 cities and regions representing more than a fifth of the global population, is rising to the challenge.

Ashok Sridharan — Mayor of Bonn, Germany, and President of ICLEI — released a video today urging cities and local governments everywhere to seize the moment on the 50th anniversary of Earth Day to kick off this year and this decade of action.

“This moment marks a critical turning point for action and sustainability,” Mayor Sridharan said. “Local and regional governments are key players in driving the transition to a sustainable world.”

Earth Day Network and ICLEI are partnering to elevate the leadership of local governments and engage millions of people globally to take action. On April 22, millions of people will mobilize to put climate action at the top of the global agenda. Cities will launch new initiatives and major events will bring together youth activists, artists, businesses and community organizations.

Earth Day is the moment for local governments and the people to have their demands for sustainability heard. Still, a lot of work must be done to implement the necessary climate solutions. That’s why ICLEI and the City of Bonn are launching Daring Cities, a forum in June to showcase radical, ambitious climate adaptation and mitigation strategies.

Following on the heels of Earth Day, Daring Cities is “an event that will bring together diverse stakeholders to tackle the climate emergency together, through innovation, good governance and sustainable urban development,” said Mayor Sridharan, in the video.

Demonstrating the vein of environmental urgency running throughout 2020, Mayor Sridharan notes that 2020 is also the year that nations will establish a new framework for biodiversity. Cities have an important role to play in supporting biodiversity and investing in green space as urban areas continue to grow.

“We must act now to ensure a livable future for all,” he said.

It all starts on Earth Day, April 22. Find an Earth Day event near you or register your own.

Mayor Sridharan concludes, “I encourage everyone to take Earth Day 2020 as a kickstart for change in your life, community, city and nation because we need all our passion, all our heart, to save this planet and our future.”