C40 Cities Forum debates sustainable urban development in Africa

Both developed and under development countries are responsible for the polluted environment, but this is a time of unity. So thinks the mayor of Johannesburg, Herman Mashaba. “We need to focus on what each nation can do at this time to improve our common future. Instead of worrying about who has brought us to this point, we should focus on putting sustainable development at the forefront of all our work,” he explains.

On June 12, the South African city hosted the Sustainable Cities Funding Forum. Organized by the C40 Cities, the meeting brought together officials and representatives of African civil society to discuss sustainable development models. The transformational potentials of African cities and the need for inclusive financing models were the main themes discussed.

Instead of worrying about who has brought us to this point, we should focus on putting sustainable development at the forefront of all our work

“By developing funding solutions among City Hall and city officials and investors that can deliver essential sustainability solutions, we are building a sustainable urban future for the next generations,” argues James Alexander, director of the City Finance Program of the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group. According to him, the forum enables the construction of a promising future in which the environment is not destroyed in the process of evolution of human production and, consequently, not prevent the survival of those who inhabit the planet.

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The meeting served as a platform for more than 50 African municipal officials to share experiences, challenges, and opportunities with present investors, government representatives and non-profit organizations. In addition, it also made it possible to present climate action needs and the potential of African cities for investments in sustainable infrastructures.

By presenting recent innovations in African cities, the experts urged investors to recognize the potential of these important cities and to promote inclusive financing models. The need for global collaboration was the consensus among the participants.

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“In recent years, the world has begun to awaken to the potential of cities to save us from the climate disaster. Cities are where action happens and global leadership is in evidence. However, securing funding to unlock the potential, impact, and innovation of cities is still a key issue and that is why it is so important to bring together the leaders of cities, governments, and investments through the Sustainable Cities Funding Initiative,” concluded James Alexander.

What is the C40 Cities?

The C40 Cities connects 94 of the world’s leading cities to carry out climate actions that enable a more healthy and sustainable future. Representing more than 700 million citizens and a quarter of the global economy, the C40 City Council Presidents are committed to meeting the more ambitious goals of the Paris Accord at the local level, as well as a commitment to clean the air we breathe.