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Mayor Sowah gave global mayors an African perspective on climate change

“Yet another global conference with a lot of words on climate change and little action,” some would say. But not Mayor Sowah: “It is not just about talk; it is about action. An international conference as this also serves as a platform for us to share ideas, to meet your peers, and see and learn from what others are doing.”

C40 brings together 94 of the world’s megacities, and in Copenhagen they agreed on an ambitious Global Green New Deal on climate action. C40 is also assisting the cities in the C40 network to make concrete climate action plans. Durban presented its plan during the summit. “

And Accra is also on the verge of developing a similar plan. Hopefully, by the end of November, December, we should also have a climate action plan,” Mayor Sowah announced.

Royal banquet 

Denmark did not only serve as host country to the Summit but is also a source of inspiration: “There is a lot to learn from Denmark and the Scandinavian countries.  I am seeking to engage with Danish companies on some of the projects, I am planning to do back home in Accra,” Mayor Sowah said. During his stay in Denmark, he met with – among others - world-leading water pump manufacturer Grundfos and BioBag, which produces bio-degrable wastebags.
One of the highlights, though, was a royal court dinner for the C40 Mayors hosted by the Danish Crown Prince Frederik and Princess Mary at the Christiansborg Palace.
“That is an indication of Denmark’s commitment to climate change, and I am told that at the recent national election, the main subject the citizens demanded from all the parties was the issue of climate change,” Mayor Sowah said and conceded, that Denmark is far ahead of Ghana, when it comes to climate consciousness.
“But let us also face the fact that 4 per cent of the global emissions come from Africa. We are the least pollutant of the earth. Probably that is why little climate action is expected from us and much more from those who are polluting the earth. But it doesn’t mean that our 4 per cent should be overlooked. And that is why I am here, that is why my colleagues are here, and that is why many national governments are also playing their part.”
Accra awarded for citizen engagement

Part of the programme in Copenhagen was the C40 Bloomberg Philanthropies Awards Ceremony on Thursday, October 10th, where mayors from around the world were recognized for their outstanding performance and leadership in addressing climate change.
Here, Accra received the 2019 C40 Award for Citizen Engagement: 
“We are very grateful for this award. It is a recognition that we are on the right path. And this is just the beginning. Thank you, thank you, thank you,” Mayor Sowah said when accepting the award.

Going home to yet another climate summit

Before leaving Copenhagen Mayor Sowah assured that he and his fellow mayors are even more focused on the goal ahead: 
“There is no doubt about it any longer: Climate change is a global concern, and what is required is more action, action and action. And we are committed to make sure that we save our planet for the next generation,” Mayor Sowah said before returning to Accra to host yet another climate summit: The Climate Chance Summit – Africa 2019.
The Summit takes place in Accra from October 16th until October 18th at the International Conference Center and will gather 2000 non-state actors fighting climate change on the African continent, including local governments, businesses, trade unions, environmental NGO’s, farmers, women and youth organisations, researchers, etc. It will highlight the engagement of Ghana and more broadly the African actors in fighting climate change.


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