Berlin, 18 October 2017-UN-Habitat, together with its partners, the Wuppertal Institute of Climate, Energy and Environment and UN Environment launched the “ Urban Pathways-Supporting Low Carbon Plans for basic services at a two-days’ workshop in Germany.

The Urban Pathways project will make a direct contribution to the implementation of the New Urban Agenda framework that lays out how cities should be planned and managed to best promote sustainable urbanization and the Paris Agreement. It will also help in delivering on the Sustainable Development Goal 11, by making cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable. This will include access to sustainable transport (11.2), improving air quality and waste management (11.6).

This global project will develop normative guides and national action plans and local implementation concepts in emerging economies in Brazil, India, Kenya and Vietnam with replication to be taken up in several other countries. These plans will include assessment of political, technological, socio-economic and financial viability. The project will support capacity building and sharing of lessons learned between cities where the local implementation concepts will be developed into bankable projects, focusing on the access to urban basic services to create a direct link between climate change mitigation and sustainable development goals. This process will be replicated widely with policy development and implementation support and advice on stakeholder engagement and financing mechanisms.

Ms. Anke Brummer-Kohler, Director General Urban Development, Federal Ministry for the Environment (BMUB) Germany, opened the workshop which was held at the BMUB offices in Berlin. Highlighting the challenge of reducing emissions, Ms. Kohler said “I welcome this project that will demonstrate practical actions in improving efficiency of basic services in urban areas.”

Mr. Andre Dzikus, a representative from UN-Habitat in his opening remarks outlined UN-Habitat’s work in the area of basic services and highlighted the advent of new developments such as the sharing economy and artificial intelligence that are already playing a role in the planning and delivery of urban basic services. He said “Urban Pathways builds on ongoing and previous initiatives such as the EU supported project SOLUTIONS that created valuable city collaborations on innovative low carbon urban mobility solutions.”

Dr. Uwe Schneidwind, President of the Wuppertal Institute, mentioned the institute’s work in the areas of sustainability and resource efficiency. “We are happy that this project is being launched swiftly bringing cities and stakeholders together for a better cause”.