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Local governments add their voices to the UN Environment’s Clean Air Week in Bangkok

Delegates from Beijing, Jinan, and Ulaanbaatar represented city voices as part of the local government session of the Asia-Pacific Clean Air Partnership Joint Forum, held within the Clean Air Week in Bangkok at the United Nations Conference Center 19-23 March 2018.

Clean Air Week is a week-long series of events bringing together government, experts, private sector, and civil society to focus on solutions for improving air quality in the Asia-Pacific region. As part of the week, the second Asia-Pacific Clean Air Partnership (APCAP) Joint Forum was held under the theme of “Solutions Landscape for Clean Air”. Over the course of the two-day forum, each session brought out a distinct voice of stakeholders, ranging from professors in academia to ministers in national government, celebrities spearheading citizen movements to entrepreneurs driving private sector innovation.

Under the framework of EACAC, the ICLEI-Local Governments for Sustainability East Asia Secretariat (ICLEI East Asia) co-organized session four of the APCAP Joint Forum on “Inspiring action by local government and citizens for clean air” with UN Environment. The EACAC cities of Beijing, Jinan, and Ulaanbaatar took part in the panel to share their experiences and perspectives. Key messages from the session included the need for longer term planning where air quality policies are integrated into comprehensive city plans, the importance of partnerships between the local government, the business sector and the civil society group to develop, fund, and implement air quality policies.

City associations were highlighted to have played key roles in promoting city-to-city collaboration through their membership system. “In the field of urban air quality, city associations can act as resource and knowledge centers,” said Ashish Rao Ghorpade, Deputy Director of ICLEI South Asia, “they motivate cities by showcasing best practices, and provide support in connecting with peers, experts, partners and stakeholders to foster actions on the ground.” ICLEI along with other city associations is recognized as important catalyst to urge local governments to measure air quality, plan interventions, and act urgently to improve air quality.

In addition to the APCAP Joint Forum, EACAC city delegates also participated in the Regional Training on Co-benefits of Air Pollution and Climate Change organized by Institute of Global Environmental Strategies and Clean Air Asia on the last day of Clean Air Week. As part of the training the delegates worked together to identify, quantify, and integrate co-benefits of a potential sustainable transportation project, maximizing these by setting up the best enabling environment.

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#Beijing #Ulaanbaatar #Jinan

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