Council of European Municipalities and Regions (CEMR)
European section of United Cities and Local Governments

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Congress of European Municipalities and Regions

CEMR Policy Committee - 07.06.2010

Euro crisis reveals lack of governance
The Council of European Municipalities and Regions (CEMR) Policy Committee meeting, held from 3 to 4 June in Oslo, Norway, saw mayors and elected representatives of Europe's local and regional governments agree upon a final declaration.
The Oslo Declaration, sub-titled 'For a common political effort to overcome the financial and economic crisis in Europe", underlines the 'lack of political, economic and financial governance" notably revealed by the Euro-crisis. Indeed, one of the EU's main weaknesses is that it 'has remained to a large extent intergovernmental in nature, [which] has not helped Europeans to effectively combat the financial problems of some Eurozone countries" and the crisis in general.
Tackling climate change through cooperation

Climate change is now a reality and actions have to be taken to prepare for environmental, political and socio-economical consequences. In this context, the mayors and elected representatives present at the Oslo Policy Committee meeting agreed upon a resolution.

The Oslo Resolution notably stipulates that the way forward in the fight against climate change is through 'cooperation between local and regional authorities" thanks to initiatives such as the Covenant of Mayors. For that matter, it was decided during the Committee that CEMR would become a Covenant supporting structure, thus providing strategic guidance and financial and technical support to municipalities with the political will to sign but which lack the skills or resources to fill the requirements.

Cooperation between the public and the private sector is 'an essential part of the solution to finance local and regional climate policies". The resolution stated that 'constructive collaboration through public-private partnerships should be further exploited," as well as advocating for 'a greater offer of financial tools by private banks".

Financing local and regional climate change actions

Local and regional authorities require a certain amount of funding to implement adapted climate policies. The Oslo Resolution notably underlined a will to encourage the European Commission 'to propose funding tools more adapted to smaller municipalities, in order to enable all local and regional government to take part and contribute with their citizens" in tackling climate change.

The European Commission has already pledged to use the unspent money from the European Recovery Plan, a minimum of €115 million, to support energy efficiency and renewable energy projects at the local and regional level. 'It is now essential that the Commission turns this announcement into concrete action [and] we also invite the member states to back this proposal as soon as possible."
The review of the post-2013 EU budget should also provide new ideas for local and regional climate action financial mechanisms. Cohesion policy, structural funds and Common Agricultural Policy are areas where we can look for additional funds to be allocated for climate change adaptation or mitigation.
The Policy Committee was hosted by CEMR's Norwegian member, the Norwegian Association of Local and Regional Authorities.
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