Danish contribution to develop green climate solutions in cities around the world 101019

10. October 2019

The Danish Minister for Development Cooperation and the philanthropic association Realdania, are to boost work on climate solutions in the global C40 cities network. With significant contributions and a stronger strategic partnership between Denmark and C40, cities around the world will have better opportunities to deliver on the Paris Agreement and the Sustainable Development Goals to benefit the climate and people in cities.

Rasmus Prehn, Danish Minister for Development Cooperation, has entered into strategic cooperation with C40 and has earmarked DKK 67 mill. (USD 10 mill.) over a five-year period for the network in the draft legislation for Finance Bill 2020. The contribution will focus on climate initiatives in cities in developing countries, especially in Africa. 

Realdania is also strengthening its existing partnership with C40, and in the same period the association will be contributing around DKK 170 mill. (USD 25 mill.) to C40. Realdania has also earmarked DKK 20 mill. to ensure that knowledge and experience from C40 cities can be used in Denmark to benefit Danish cities and municipalities.

The overall strategic partnership is coming at a crucial moment in C40's work. Cities’ ambitious climate plans are now being translated into action and genuine results for people and for the world. By coordinating their efforts, the Danish Government and Realdania are reinforcing the total Danish footprint on C40. It is a public-private partnership to benefit the climate, Denmark and the world’s poor.

“The developing countries are particularly exposed to the consequences of climate change. Not at least in Africa as a result of the urbanization. With the contribution of DKK 67 million as part of the government's Finance Bill and our new strategic partnership with the C40 Cities, we want to boost climate solutions in the cities,” said Rasmus Prehn

In recent years, cities outside the C40 have also started to use C40's standards and tools in their climate work. The proposed Danish support over the next five years will also enhance opportunities for smaller cities throughout the world to take advantage of the tools developed by C40. For example, the 20 municipalities that are part of the DK2020 initiative supported by Realdania, in which Danish municipalities are following in the tracks of C40 cities and drawing up binding climate plans.
Jesper Nygård, CEO at Realdania, stresses that it is vital to share knowledge and solutions between small and large cities throughout the world.

“The large cities in the C40 network are essential to reverse the trend, but if we are to achieve our objectives in full, we must have all cities with us – large and small. I’m extremely proud that now, together with the Danish Government, we can ensure that the work of the C40 can enter a completely new and even more action-oriented phase. I’m also proud that we can make sure that international knowledge benefits Danish cities and municipalities as much as possible."

C40 welcomes the support and strategic partnership with Denmark.

“Denmark and Danish cities are standing front and center in advancing global climate action by strengthening the work, security, and futures of cities on the front lines of the climate crisis,” said Eric Garcetti, Mayor of Los Angeles and Chair-Elect of C40 Cities. “This new support for C40 ensures that leaders throughout Africa and across the globe have the resources and tools to protect their environment, bolster their economies, and build a more sustainable tomorrow.” 


    The announcement comes in connection with the C40 Mayors Summit being held in Copenhagen with participation of mayors and delegates from more than 80 of the world's major cities. The network has a key role in mobilising the world’s cities to deliver on the Paris Agreement. A total of 94 cities and particularly innovative cities such as Copenhagen are members of the network. They represent 25% of the global economy and 10% of the world population. This gives cities a decisive influence on global developments, both in relation to emissions of greenhouse gases and in managing climate change. Now, up to half of the cities in the network have peaked their emissions and are reducing their emissions of greenhouse gases or have committed themselves to doing so in 2020 at the latest.   

    C40 - Cities Climate Leadership Group - is a network of 94 of the world's biggest and most innovative cities, working together to develop, exchange and implement solutions for meeting the climate crisis. Taking outset in the Paris Agreement 1.5°C goal, the C40 network is working to prove that the green transition in cities goes hand in hand with increased economic opportunities and enhanced quality of life for citizens. C40 is headquartered in London. The network has had an office in Copenhagen since 2017. 

    Copenhagen is a member of the C40 as an innovator city. C40's office in BLOX in Copenhagen is growing and among other things, it acts as a platform to showcase Danish green solutions and models for public-private partnerships. With a grant of DKK 15 mill. (USD 2.2 mill.) for 2018-2020, in addition to development assistance Denmark is supporting C40's work to help five cities develop climate action plans. C40 is a partner in P4G, and C40's Executive Director (Mark Watts) is a member of the Board. 

    Realdania has supported C40 financially and strategically since 2013, together with two other international philanthropic funds Bloomberg Philanthropies (US) and The Children's Investment Fund Foundation (UK). Realdania’s field of work is the built environment, and the association supports C40 because climate change has an enormous influence on the built environment, for example when increased precipitation and sea-level rise impact both large and small cities. The CEO at Realdania, Jesper Nygård, is a member of the C40 Board.