During the recent MENA Climate Week, held from 8 to 12 October in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, UN-Habitat advocated for sustainable urbanization in a series of events that highlighted the need for localized actions in achieving the Paris Agreement goals – particularly in a region where more than 65 per cent of the population resides in urban areas.

Collaboration was a central theme across the events, with United Nations agencies and key partners demonstrating their commitment to aligning urban development and environmental protection.

The discussions at MENA Climate Week echo discussions taking place in other regional climate weeks and global events. These will feed into COP28, to be held at the end of November 2023.

A recurring theme seen in Riyadh and beyond is the crucial role of finance in combating climate change: the current lack of funding mechanisms represents a major threat to climate action.

To accelerate local climate finance for a more integrated approach to addressing climate change, UN-Habitat will convene key ministers of environment, urban development and finance in addition to various other stakeholders at the 6 December Ministerial Meeting on Urbanization and Climate Change.