Tanger has taken over the debate on the implementation of the Paris climate agreement. It hosted the MedCOP Climate conference, the forum of state and non-state stakeholders in the Mediterranean organized in preparation of the COP22 in Marrakesh. The European Committee of the Regions was present. The Forum concluded with the adoption of the Tanger Declaration, a set of common priorities and action lines that strengthen the Mediterranean regional approach in the fight against global warming.
The European Committee of Regions did not miss the climate meeting point in Tanger. The city counsellor from Rakvere Andres Jaadla (ET/ALDE) was present together with Abdelmasih Hani Al Hayek, Mayor of Beit Sahour, Palestine, and co-chair of the Euro-Mediterranean Regional and Local Assembly (ARLEM).
Representing the European Committee of the Regions and its President Markku Markkula, Andres Jaadla declared: "T he Euro-Mediterranean region is a region of opportunities. Not only because of its climate conditions but also because of its predisposal to become a focal point in the fight against global warming ". Andres Jaadla highlighted three elements that he sees as indispensable for the successful implementation of the Paris climate agreement: the autonomy of action of mayors and regional presidents in the development of climate adaptation and mitigation actions, the efficiency of multilevel governance and the expansion of initiatives such as the Covenant of Mayors. " Good governance does not only mean enhanced cooperation between different levels of power. We must emphasize horizontal governance and impulse closer collaboration between departments within the same administration, from energy to environment, civil protection and health " said Andres Jaadla.
The MedCOP lead to the adoption of the Tanger Declaration, a set of climate resolutions advocating for a collective mobilisation of Mediterranean countries and the "need to build and carry a common word" to Marrakesh for the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) next November. The Declaration establishes priority lines of action in several areas such as water, energy, food security and protection of the marine and coastal environment, including biodiversity, fisheries and tourism. The declaration also covers public health, air quality and the effective management of resources in order to advance towards a circular economy based on sustainable production and consumption models and an effective waste management policy.
Next 14 and 15 November, during the COP22 in Marrakesh, the European Committee of the Regions will organize the second World Climate Summit of Elected Representatives in collaboration with Moroccan authorities and the cities of Marrakesh and Rabat. The first edition was held in 2015 during the COP21. The Summit will bring together hundreds of local and regional elected representatives concerned by global warning and its direct consequences on their territories. They call for concrete solutions such as climate action investment funds.
Marrakesh will also be the meeting point for the Euro-Mediterranean Regional and Local Assembly (ARLEM), a platform that brings together 80 local and regional representatives from the EU and other countries on the shores of the Mediterranean. Two reports will be discussed: " The energy and climate change in the Mediterranean region ", from rapporteur Mohamed Sadiki, Mayor of Rabat, and "Cross-border cooperation in the Mediterranean region" whose rapporteur is the President of Sardinia Francesco Pigliaru.
The CoR will organise in Marrakesh a presentation of the Covenant of Mayors to promote this initiative in Morocco and throughout Africa. The Covenant of Mayors gathers more than 6.800 European local and regional authorities voluntarily engaged in the fight against climate change through concrete action plans, a model that many communities worldwide wish to replicate. Thirty members of the CoR recently committed as Ambassadors of the Covenant of Mayors. They will be present in Marrakesh to explain the benefits of joining the Covenant, the largest EU initiative on energy and climate.