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Thenumberofpeopleintheworldwithout accesstoadequatewaterandsanitation facilitieshasrisenswiftlyinrecentdecades,due torapidurbanisationwhichhasoutpacedthe world’scapacitytoprovideessentialservices. BothUNEPandUN–Habitathavesaidthat withinAfricaalone,theurbanpopulation lackingaccesstosafedrinkingwaterrose fromcloseto30 millionin1990tomorethan 55 millionin2008. Habitat’sJoanClos:‘Ascitiesexpand, wemustimproveoururbanplanningand managementinordertoprovideuniversal accesstowaterandbasicserviceswhile ensuringourcitiesbecomemoreresilientto theincreasingeffectsofclimatechange.’ Applying efficient technologies Urbangrowthisexpectedtooccurmostrapidly inthedevelopingworld,withrisingdemandfor land,housing,basicservicesandinfrastructure. Scienceandtechnologywillplayapivotalrole tobuildmoreeffectivecities. Acollectivechallengewillbetostimulate urbandevelopmentusingtechnologyin cities’transitionstogreeneconomies.The OrganizationforEconomicDevelopment (OECD)hassuggestedthatanyonewithan internetconnectioncanparticipateinthe knowledgeeconomy.Althoughglobalisation hasbroughtthe‘deathofdistance’,theOECD reportInfrastructureto2030notedthat (physical)proximitystillplaysanimportant roleasinnovationcontinuestoclusteraround regionswithvibrantcommunities,skilled peopleanduniversities.Highereducation institutionsalsoareunexploredlinkstothe globalknowledgeeconomyandcanprovide gatewaystotheprivatesector. UN Secretary General Ban Ki–moon recently announced: ‘Cities play a central role, as they have for centuries, in the advancement of human progress. Let us ensure that all citizens enjoy the well–being they need to continue making those unique and invaluable contributions.’ Infrastructure Globalinfrastructureinvestmentneedsare growing,witharoundUS$50trillionrequired forinvestmentinroads,water,electricity, telecommunicationsandrailinOECD countriesbetween2005and2030. A2008OECDreportonInfrastructureto 2030statesthatnewapproachestofinancing infrastructurescouldincludepublic–private partnershipsandgreaterrecoursetopension fundsandotherlargeinstitutionalinvestors. Governmentswillcontinueplaying majorrolesininfrastructureinvestment globally.Butiftheywanttoattractsignificant privateinvestment,theymustcreatethe rightconditions,namelystableregulation andframeworkstoimprovereliabilityand establishstandards. TheUN–HabitatWorldUrbanCampaign isanewprojectthatisintendedtofoster urbanisationsolutionsthroughacoalition ofpublic,privateandcivilsocietypartners. Itseekstoensurethattheworldstaysalert totheproblemsofrapidurbanisationand allitsramifications,especiallyindeveloping countries.Thecampaignalsopromotes learningfromoneanotherandencourages sustainabledevelopmentinurbanplaces.The campaignisbeingpromotedthroughUN– Habitat’snewwebsiteforurbandevelopment urbangateway.orgwhichwaslaunchedin April2011. Climate change Citiesarethemajorsourceofgreenhouse gasemissionsanditisincitiesthatthebattle againstclimatechangemustbewaged. In November 2010, Marcelo Ebrard Casaubon, Mayor of Mexico City, hosted the United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG) World Congress of Mayors and Local Governments. In his opening address, Mayor Ebrard emphasised that cities need to take account of the risks they face in development and in particular the risks arising from climate change, which has caused a three degree rise in the temperature of Mexico City, changing rain patterns and longer periods of drought. ‘Wemusttelltheinternationalcommunity thatitisinthecitieswherethebattlewill bewontostopglobalwarming,’saidMayor Ebrard.‘[Itisincities]whererelevantchanges arebeingintroducedinmobility,energy sources,manufacturing,economicactivities andintheregulationsthatdefinewhattypes ofbuildingsarebeingconstructed.The solutionsaretobefoundincities.’ Withthesupportoflocalgovernment associationsUCLGandICLEI,andinhis capacityasChairoftheWorldMayorsCouncil onClimateChange,MayorEbrardcalledonhis fellowmayorstosignavoluntarypacttoreduce greenhousegasemissions.Atthesummit,135 mayorssigneduptoalistoftencommitments tointroducemeasurestocombatclimate change.AtNovember2011,250cities, representingmorethan250 millioncitizens, hadsignedtheMexicoCityPact(MCP). AkeycomponentoftheMCP(orGlobal CitiesCovenantonClimateasitsformal name)isthecarbonCitiesClimateRegistry, wherecitieswillreportdatarelatingtotheir climatepoliciesandcommitments.The registry,basedinBonn,willallowcitiesto compareperformancesandwillserveasa transparentsourceofreferenceforcities whichhavesignedthepact. TheMCPwasrepresentedbyMayorEbrard inDecember2010attheSixteenthSessionof theConferenceoftheParties(COP16)tothe UnitedNationsFrameworkConventionon ClimateChange(UNFCCC).Thepurposeof thepre–COP16summitandMexicoCityPact wastoraisetheprofileofcitiessothatcities couldplayanactiveroleintheUNtalks—in contrasttothepreviousmeeting,wherecities wereexcluded. ‘Copenhagen[COP15]wasaseriousfailure forhumanitybecauseasmayors,weknow thatthemajorityofpeopleliveinourcities anditisinthecitiesthatwehavethebiggest emissions,’saidMayorofParis,Bertrand Delanoë,attheMayorsSummitonClimate. CitiesfaredmuchbetteratCOP16.For thefirsttime,theroleofcitiesincombating climatechangewasrecognisedwith referencetotheroleoflocalgovernmentsas ‘governmentalstakeholders’intheUNFCCC officialdocuments.Lobbyingbythelocal 113 home GLOBAL STRATEGIES