West-African municipal and regional leaders debate how to finance local action on climate

Cities worldwide need to take action to fight against and adapt to climate change, and African cities are no exception. But municipalities often face the challenge: how can such projects be financed to make them happen?

That’s why UCLG-Africa partnered with the West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU), a key multinational organisation in the region, to organise a joint event on how to finance local climate action. The event, held on 3 March (see online recording here), brought together local, regional and continental players active on climate policy for a genuine multi-level political dialogue on how to tackle this pressing issue.

The mayors of Tsévié in Togo and Boundiali in Ivory Coast said it was urgent to address climate change’s consequences in their cities. These cities face a number of key challenges in this area: developing the capacity of the city agents, attracting private sector investments and the difficulty of attracting funds for climate action in mid-sized cities.

The French Development Agency (AFD) presented its ongoing activities in support of cities within the Covenant of Mayors in Sub-Saharan Africa, for instance through specific feasibility studies supporting the development of local projects. Similarly, the Centre of Regional Cooperation (CRC), based in Lomé in Togo, is supporting the preparation of climate-related projects in the region, such as through the financing of project preparation and capacity building in countries such as Ghana, Ivory Coast and Togo.

Concluding the discussion, the Green Climate Fund and the Africa Adaptation Initiative (AAI) expressed willingness to collaborate on WAEMU’s suggestion to create a regional financial instrument that would support local climate action in West Africa. UCLG-Africa will continue to engage African policymakers to make the case for local climate action and the development of the Covenant of Mayors in Sub-Saharan Africa.

Read the Webinar Report here (available in French)