Some 21.5 million people per year on average over the past decade have had to flee their homes due to climate related reasons. By 2050, over 200 million people will be forced to leave their homes because of climate change. Mayors are optimally placed to address local challenges associated with climate displacement, undertake concrete steps to prepare for and adapt to the impact of climate change and work in tandem with their national and regional counterparts.

The GPM supports city leaders as they address this global challenge and has joined forces with the British Council to put a spotlight on city leaders and the importance of local action through the project “Uniting Mayors for Local Solutions to Global Climate Challenges”. Under the leadership of GPM Champion Climate Mayors Lowe (Banjul, the Gambia), Orlando (Palermo, Italy) and Rio (Braga, Portugal) more than 75 mayors from around the world, representatives of city networks such as the Mayors Migration Council  (MMC) and OECD, and international organizations like the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) and UN Habitat contributed to the dialogue on Climate Related Migration through panels, interviews and Roundtables. The research group have shared their research findings in the High Level Meeting. This report covers the lively debate of more than twenty mayors and city leaders regarding the urgent issue of climate-forced displacement. Representing 19 countries from around the world, they debated how to move forward both in their own communities, to protect their citizens from the threats of climate change, and together as a governance body to build up a coalition of mayors and communities to have a global impact. Kamal Amakrane, Adjunct Professor of International and Public Affairs from Columbia University, and Sheila Foster, Professor of Law and Public Policy from Georgetown University, investigated the level of awareness among mayors about how climate-forced displacement and migration is affecting their communities, as well as the extent to which they are preparing, with or without support from other levels of government, to protect displaced communities and help receiving ones. The research was also designed to identify the desired, and required, city leadership and to propose a toolkit with options for leaders to address the issue of climate-forced displacement.

CALL TO ACTION

The output of this global dialogue is captured in a multi-level Call to Action on Climate Change, Cities and Forced Migration: Advancing Knowledge, Action and Collaboration. The goal of this Call to Action is to unite mayors on this urgent issue, and make their voices heard in the lead up to the United Nations Climate Change Conference 2021 (COP26) hosted in Glasgow (UK) from 31 October – 12 November 2021. Mayors and their cities, city networks and international organisations that support the Call to Action, will be included in the final document. The Call to Action will be presented in the lead up to COP26 and part of the GPM Annual Summit in Palermo (21-23 October).

Mayors from around the world, representatives of city networks, NGO and international organisations are invited to support the Call to Action on  “Climate Change, Cities and Forced Migration: advancing knowledge, action and collaboration”.

You can submit your supportive vote on the GPM Virtual Parliament or by email. Please contact the GPM Secretariat at gpm@denhaag.nl

Call to Action
research
instructions
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Signatory Mayors

Amman, Jordan

Mayor Yousef Shawarbeh

Banjul, the Gambia

Mayor Rohey Malick Lowe

Beira, Mozambique

Mayor Albano Carige

Bristol, United Kingdom

Mayor Marvin Rees

Columbia, USA

Mayor Stephen Benjamin

Durban, South Africa

Mayor Mxolisi Kaunda

Nijmegen, the Netherlands

Mayor Hubert Bruls

Freetown, Sierra Leone

Mayor Yvonne Aki-Sawyerr

Ghent, Belgium

Mayor Mathias de Clercq

Afanloum, Cameroon

Mayor Marie Angele Meyanga

Braga, Portugal

Mayor Ricardo Rio

Mannheim, Germany

Mayor Peter Kurz

Brussels, Belgium

Mayor Philippe Close

Nebbi, Uganda

Mayor Geoffrey Ngiriker

Rabat, Morocco

Mayor Mohamed Sadiki

Palermo, Italy

Mayor Leoluca Orlando

Vyas, Nepal

Mayor Baikuntha Neupane

The Hague, the Netherlands

Mayor Jan van Zanen

Hebron, Palestine

Mayor Tayseer Abu Snienah

Wroclaw, Poland

Mayor Jacek Sutryk

Mansakonko Council, the Gambia

Mayor Landing B. Sanneh

Katowice, Poland

Mayor Marcin Krupa

Hoima, Uganda

Mayor Grace Mary Mugasa

Mafra, Portugal

Mayor Helder Sousa Silva

Leicester, United Kingdom

Mayor Peter Soulsby

Cape Town, South Africa

Mayor Dan Plato

Dayton, Ohio, USA

Mayor Nan Whaley

Puli Alam, Afghanistan

Mayor Naseer Ahmad Lilizai

Tallinn, Estonia

Mayor Mihhail Kõlvart

Nicosia, Greece

Mayor Constantinos Yiorkadjis

Pittsburgh, USA

Mayor William Peduto

PROJECT UNITING MAYORS:
LOCAL SOLUTIONS TO CLIMATE CHALLENGES

Mayors are optimally placed to address local challenges associated with climate displacement, working in tandem with their national and regional counterparts. The GPM will support these city leaders with tools and resources to take local action to address this global challenge. With the project ‘Uniting Mayors for Local Solutions to Global Climate Challenges’, the GPM will empower city leaders, from the Global North and South, especially low-lying areas threatened by rising sea levels, to ensure that their voices are heard among decision-makers on the global climate emergency. The GPM will also ensure that the voices of women, young people and diverse voices are included in the debate. Join the project ‘Uniting Mayors for Local Solutions to Global Climate Challenges’ to take part in an innovative urban response to climate change and climate-related migration and drive real global change! Visit the GPM Uniting Mayors webpage for more information: https://globalparliamentofmayors.org/unitingmayors/

THE DELIVERABLES

Two dynamic and engaging virtual debates for mayors have been organised in April and June. Mayors have debated how to move forward both in their own communities, to protect their citizens from the threats of climate change, and together, as a governance body, to build up a coalition of mayors and communities to make real change. In October, Mayors will deliver a Call to Action, a uniting front to accelerate action on climate-related migration by promoting, guiding, monitoring and sharing experience on climate resilience amongst mayors. City networks, NGOs and international organisations will also be invited to support the Call to Action. This Mayors Call to Action will be an integral framework, bringing together mayors to present their plans and push for climate-resilient action at COP-26 that will take place from 1-12 November 2021 in Glasgow (UK).