A Call to Action from California
The Global Climate Action Summit (GCAS) in San Francisco for business, city and state leaders closed with a call on national governments to increase their pledges to the Paris Agreement. Subnational actors asked nations to update their pledges to reach the 1,5 degree goal. The message from Governor James Brown and Michael Bloomberg was clear: Even without President Trump and his administration, the US is upholding the Paris Agreement.
Hundreds of commitments have been announced by states, regions, cities, businesses, but also by investors and NGO´s showing that it is possible and urgent to step up climate action together, for instance:
12 regions - including Catalonia, Lombardy, Scotland, and Washington State, representing over 80 million people and over 5 percent of global GDP will have 100 per cent zero emission public fleets by 2030.
21 companies announced the Step Up Declaration, a new alliance dedicated to harnessing the power of emerging technologies and the fourth industrial revolution to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions across all economic sectors and ensure a climate turning point by 2020. Including: Autodesk, Bloomberg, BT, Cisco Systems, Ericsson, HP, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, Lyft, Nokia, Salesforce, Supermicro, Symantec, Tech Mahindra, Uber, Vigilent, VMware, WeWork, Workday, and Zoox.
42 financial institutions representing over $13 trillion in assets announced a commitment to helping cities, states, and regions finance climate action including European Investment Bank, Work Bank, IFC and APG Active.
ROAD TO KATOWICE AND BEYOND!
The R20 AUSTRIAN WORLD SUMMIT is part of an ever-growing community. We have outlined the most important milestones of this global process in a timeline up to our next conference on 28 May 2019 - also to clearly emphasize that the R20 AUSTRIAN WORLD SUMMIT is not a one-day event.
What has been going on since the last conference?
We just finished the first phase of the postprocessing: We have summarized all immediate results from the sessions of the second R20 AUSTRIAN WORLD SUMMIT in May, 2018.
What are the next steps?
For the submission to the Talanoa Dialogue our results will be synthesized and structured along the guiding questions. In a more comprehensive follow up report we will go more into detail which also brings us important inputs and questions for the next R20 AUSTRIAN WORLD SUMMIT in May, 2019.
About the milestones
As representatives of the R20 AUSTRIAN WORLD SUMMIT we will visit the next important events as further milestones in the run-up to COP24 in Poland: The European Forum Alpbach, the Global Climate Action Summit in San Francisco and the Climate Week in New York amongst others.
DONATION FOR “HOPE FOR BATWA CHILDREN”
We are happy to support a very special project of naturalist and chimpanzee specialist Dr. Jane Goodall and the Jane Goodall Institut – Austria: „Hope for Batwa Children“.
At the beginning of her work, the focus of Jane Goodall was on research into wild chimpanzees. Then she realized that the rescue of chimpanzees and the nature of Africa can only be successful if the projects are planned holistically and implemented together with the people of these regions. “Education is the key to a better future!”, Jane Goodall is convinced. Therefore, the Jane Goodall Institute - Austria initiated the project "Hope for Batwa Children". Currently, 12 children of the BATWA Pygmies, one of Africa's oldest hunting and gathering tribes are being cared for in an own house. They have - for the first time in their lives - a real roof over their heads, enough food and go to school.
R20 AUSTRIAN WORLD SUMMIT would like to make a contribution and pass on some of the success of the conference bysupporting this great project. R20 Austria & EU Director and organizer Monika Langthaler presented the donation to Jane Goodall at the R20 Movie Night following the conference on May 15.
ANTONIO GUTERRES COMES TO VIENNA
It is a special honor for us that António Guterres visits Vienna for the first time in his function as UN Secretary-General on the occasion of the R20 AUSTRIAN WORLD SUMMIT. Joining the R20 AUSTRIAN WORLD SUMMIT is a clear commitment for climate action.
António Guterres recently issued an urgent warning at a press conference in New York about the consequences of climate change. The headlines would be dominated by the escalation tensions and conflicts around the world, The UN Secretary-General said. “But the truth is that the most systemic threat to humankind remains climate change and I believe it is my duty to remind it to the whole of the international community.” Nevertheless, he was optimistic: “What the world needs is a race to the top – with political will, innovation, financing and partnerships. And I remain convinced we have what it takes to prevail.”
OUR R20 AUSTRIAN WORLD SUMMIT TRAM IN VIENNA!
Transportation is one of the largest and a growing sector for increasing energy demand and CO2-emissions: with a share of 29 percent, it contributes significantly to greenhouse gas emissions in Austria. In the EU is about 25 percent, globally the share of this sector is approx. 15 percent. In order to achieve our climate targets, urgent measures must be taken in the transport sector. A climate friendly infrastructure and a sustainable design our mobility system is therefore a particular priority.
The R20 AUSTRIAN WORLD SUMMIT wants to underline the important role of public transport in this context: For this reason, a specially branded tram is now on the way in Vienna. This not only draws attention to our conference, but also encourages climate-friendly transportation with its slogan: „Umwelt schützen – Bim benützen“ (Protect the environment – use the tram).
Vienna City Councillor Ulli Sima and Wiener Linien joined as partners for the branding of the tram. The R20 AUSTRIAN WORLD SUMMIT Bim will run until May 22nd.
Top Ten Best Practice Projects selected
Numerous companies and organizations followed our call for Best Practice Projects focusing on Biomass & Waste to Energy. The top ten projects have now been selected and will be part oft he R20 Austrian World Summit in May. The projects, ranging from „Sustainability Packages“ for Ethiopian housholds to municipal solid waste treatment systems in Mumbai, will be presented here during the next weeks. The selected companies and organisations all have one thing in common: They make a significant contribution to realise sustainable projects with their technologies and know-how in developing and emerging countries.
The call was part of the brainbows Post-Paris-Navigator, an initiative supported by the Austrian Development Agency and the Austrian Economic Chambers.
Primatologist Jane Goodall on new documentary “Jane”
The career of naturalist and chimpanzee specialist Jane Goodall is one of the most inspiring and intriguing stories of 20th century research. A new cinema-release documentary, JANE, tells the astonishing story of her life.
Jane Goodall, now 83, is still tirelessly travelling around the world for her mission: to win over people for the protection of animals and the environment. We are very proud to welcome the trailblazing British researcher at the R20 AUSTRIAN WORLD SUMMIT.
Arnold Schwarzenegger plans to Sue the Oil Industry
The fossil fuel industry has been hiding the truth about their product for years. Arnold Schwarzenegger is suing to hold them accountable: "They know they are killing people and they continue doing the same thing over and over."
FIRST OFFICIAL SUMMIT OF THE INTERNATIONAL SOLAR ALLIANCE
On March 11, the heads of around 40 countries came together in New Delhi, India, for the first official summit of the International Solar Alliance (ISA). This non-profit Association of 121 countries who are solar-rich and energy-deficient is promoting the use of solar energy.
At the summit, the ISA’s goal of making solar power, technology, and financing more accessible to different countries were discussed - an idea that Indian prime minister Narendra Modi first presented at the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris in November 2015. Launched officially in December 2017, the ISA is bringing together resource-rich countries on one platform.
We are very proud to welcome Mohua Mukherjee, the Program Ambassador for ISA, at the R20 AUSTRIAN WORLD SUMMIT.
Active Energy Building: new exhibition in Los Angeles by the Austrian architects Anton Falkeis & Cornelia Falkeis-Senn
A new exhibition titled "falkeis2architects: active energy building” by Austrian architects Anton Falkeis & Cornelia Falkeis-Senn is starting today in Los Angeles. The project successfully implements a building-integrated energy production system developed for this new type of building. The importance of the building sector for the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions will be discussed at the R20 AUSTRIAN WORLD SUMMIT in the “Building the City of the Future” session. Anton Falkeis will be one of the panelists exchanging concrete solutions, technological approaches and instruments for implementation.
For falkeis2architects the "active energy building" means to integrate PV tracking systems and PCM (phase change material) climate wings, as a part of a moving building envelope, to harvest solar and interstellar radiation, producing solar power and controlling the building climate. The building also demonstrates its high adaptability to changing spatial requirements, which is achieved by an extremely effective load-bearing structure. The project demonstrates that innovation is a key strategy in tackling major societal challenges, such as climate change, energy and resource scarcity.
Maroš Šefčovič will continue dialogue with Arnold Schwarzenegger in Vienna on May, 15th
Maroš Šefčovič, European Commission Vice-President for Energy Union, is currently visiting Vienna. We are very proud to welcome him back in Vienna on May, 15th at the R20 AUSTRIAN WORLD SUMMIT
Then he will meet Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger again. The EU Commissioner and the former California Governor Schwarzenegger already exchanged their ideas to maximize the Climate Action outreach at the COP23 talks in Berlin and at the One Planet Summit in Paris last year. A focus of their talks is further cooperation to finance and leverage climate action by bankable low carbon and climate resilient infrastructure projects from African sub-national authorities.
Content Partner of the R20 AUSTRIAN WORLD SUMMIT: Xenia zu Hohenlohe and the Langenburg Forum for Sustainability
Today, approximately 55% of global population live in urban areas. Cities generate over 70% of global greenhouse gas emissions. In an era of rapid urbanization, it is not only cities but also their surrounding regions in more rural areas which play a key role in the transformation process towards sustainability. But how can we ensure that the urban-rural linkage becomes a major element of sustainable development? In an afternoon session “The Interactions of Cities and their Surroundings” will be discussed at the 2nd R20 AUSTRIAN WORLD SUMMIT
We are happy to announce the collaboration with Langenburg Forum for Sustainability as a content partner for this session. Princess Xenia zu Hohenlohe-Langenburg, Member of the Board, will moderate the panel discussion including high level experts and stakeholder from various sectors: „The core reason of being of the Langenburg Forum is to highlight the challenges and opportunities around the alliances between rural and urban businesses, administrations and organisations. Each area cannot exist without the other, in particular when viewed from a sustainable development point of view and are crucial partners in combating climate change. The Langenburg Forum aims to create lines of communications and frameworks with which these alliances can be strengthened and we are extremely excited to integrate these discussions into the broader conversations taking place at the Austrian World Summit
Langenburg Forum for Sustainability takes place every two years and creates a space for interaction and debate. Through conferences and at round table meetings, the question how the transition to a sustainable lifestyle and sustainable economic growth can be reached in the era of exponential population growth is in focus. On these grounds, the Langenburg Forum brings together decision-makers and lateral-thinkers, multipliers and start-ups from management, civil society and politics in topic specific forums.
It is a great privilege for R20 to include the know-how and expertise of the Langenburg Forum for Sustainability in the 2nd R20 AUSTRIAN WORLD SUMMIT.
Bertrand Piccard: The Solar Energy Pioneer
On July 26, 2016 a very special plane landed at Al Bateen Executive Airport in Abu Dhabi. The aircraft, called Solar Impulse 2, had flown 42,438 km in 558 Hours, becoming the first manned solar-powered plane to circumnavigate the globe. The initiator and visionary behind Solar Impulse and its pilot is Bertrand Piccard.
In the new documentary “The impossible flight”, you get an inside look at the Solar Impulse pilots Bertrand Piccard and André Borschberg, Co-founder, CEO and Pilot of Solar Impulse and the ground team as they experience moments of hair-raising crises, remarkable endurance, and ingenious problem solving. But you also see that it was not just about circumnavigating the world’s first solar-powered aircraft around the planet. Bertrand Piccard also had an important message in mind. His ambition has been to leverage a pioneering spirit for a useful contribution to the cause of renewable energies and clean technologies: “Solar Impulse was not built to carry passengers, but to carry messages. What we can achieve in the air, anyone can do on the ground. Let’s replace old polluting devices with modern and efficient technologies.”
Therefore, Piccard has made it his business to accelerate development of clean technologies through a world alliance for efficient solutions, an initiative of the Solar Impulse Foundation. The goal of his alliance is to identify 1,000 clean solutions that can protect the environment in a profitable way. They will be labelled as Efficient Solutions and presented to governments, businesses and institutions at COP 24 (December 2018) to encourage them to adopt more ambitious environmental targets and energy policies. At the R20 AUSTRIAN WORLD SUMMIT, he will give us an insight into his visions and ideas. We are proud to welcome Bertrand as one of our speakers
Save the Date for the second R20 AUSTRIAN WORLD SUMMIT in Vienna
On May 15, Arnold Schwarzenegger co-hosting the second R20 AUSTRIAN WORLD SUMMIT in Vienna together with the President of Austria Alexander Van der Bellen. Today they had a meeting in Vienna with the R20 Austria&EU Director Monika Langthaler and the Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz to talk about the details and to announce this joint initiative for climate action.
World leaders meet at One Planet Climate Summit in Paris
On 12 December, global heads of state, mayors, business leaders and major financial actors gathered in Paris on the second anniversary of the Paris Agreement. The One Planet Summit, convened by President Emmanuel Macron of France, United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres, and World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim featured a range of high profile announcements on climate finance from a variety of stakeholders, including governments, banks, businesses, and investors. The goal of the summit (two years after the adoption of the Paris Agreement) was to bring together local, regional and national leaders, as well as public and private organizations with a focus on finance to discuss how to together they could support and accelerate the ongoing global efforts in the fight against climate change. 12 commitments were made and the One Planet Coalition was created. It will ensure that the commitments are kept. Arnold Schwarzenegger was at the One Planet Summit in Paris to celebrate the two-year anniversary of the Paris Agreement and he had an important message about the power of cities and regions to deliver on the Paris Agreement. “Do not worry about the United States dropping out of the Paris Agreement, because our states and cities is where the real action is and they are picking up the slack. In reality, the USA did not drop out of the Paris Agreement, Donald Trump dropped Donald Trump out of the Paris Agreement”.
UN Climate Change Conference in Bonn, achieves progress on implementing the Paris Agreement
The COP 23 climate change conference, presided by Fiji, took place in Bonn, Germany, from 6 to 17 November 2017. The programme focussed on the implementation of the Paris Agreement. The participating countries continued to negotiate the details of how the agreement will work from 2020 onwards. Over the two weeks, a total of 22,000 participants attended, with more than 4,500 volunteers.
197 Parties drafted texts for the rulebook for the Paris Agreement on all issues to be finalised and adopted by the COP 24 in Katowice (Poland) in 2018. Bonn was also the first Climate Change Conference following the announcement by the Trump administration of US withdrawal from the Paris Agreement. Nevertheless the UN Climate Change Conference in Bonn came to a successful end. The Parties achieved important progress on implementing the Paris Agreement. In parallel to the negotiations, the implementation agenda was also advanced: Countries, industry and civil society presented a broad spectrum of climate action solutions in hundreds of events. This was an important step on the road to the COP 24 in Katowice.