Disclosure report shows states and regions set the pace on climate action

The Climate Group and CDP (Climate Disclosure Program) have released the Annual Disclosure Update for 2017, finding that many state and regional governments are making more progress on climate action than are national governments.

The report showed that sub-national governments took 80% more climate actions in 2017, across ten sectors, including buildings, energy, transport and land use. On average, there was an 8.5% reduction in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions compared to the state and regional governments’ base years.

The four Australian regions that disclosed in 2017 – South Australia, Queensland, ACT and New South Wales – are all committed to achieving zero net emissions by 2050.

The report also found that on average, the ambition of the states and regions’ 2020 targets exceeds that of their national counterparts. And while they are on course for limiting global temperature rise to below two degrees by 2020, this is not the case in 2050, which will require states and regions to set more ambitious emissions reduction targets.

Helen Clarkson, CEO, The Climate Group said the Update shows that states and regions are now moving into the implementation phase of the Paris Agreement, and are key players in its delivery.

“Knowing what other governments have done reinforces the case for action, with visible progress being made against headline commitments and targets. This proves that we can continue to raise ambition and drive the world to an under 2 degrees Celsius economy without delay.”

“This momentum is both driving up standards of climate leadership and putting transparency and accountability at the heart of government environmental action. Now we need to see longer-term targets from states and regions to ensure their ambition is aligned with limiting global warming to well-below 2 degrees.”

The Climate Group and CDP report is an analysis of the annual disclosure of climate targets, GHG inventories and climate actions from states and regions around the world. It is released together with the States and Regions Climate Action Tracker developed by The Climate Group and CDP in partnership with Climate-KIC’s flagship initiative, the Low Carbon City Lab. The tracker contains the latest climate data from disclosing states and regions and showcases their increasingly important role in driving climate action.

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