OECD work on Cities

A territorial approach to climate action and resilience


Cities and regions play a pivotal role in climate action and resilience. This OECD programme aims to support cities, regions and countries in their efforts to accelerate the zero-carbon transition and build systemic resilience. 

  • What's the issue?

Global warming is likely to reach 1.5°C between 2030 and 2052 at current rates. As greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions continue to rise, the impacts of climate change will worsen in the short, medium and long-term. Globally, cities account for more than 70% of energy-related CO2 emissions and two thirds of energy demand, and these shares are expected to increase significantly over coming decades without significant climate action. Climate change also poses unique challenges for adaptation, requiring a locally tailored approach.

Cities and regions are at the forefront of implementing ambitious measures to mitigate and adapt to climate change. Many cities and regions have adopted climate targets and actions that are more ambitious than those of their national governments. However, acting alone, their full potential in the response to climate change remains untapped. Local governments are estimated to have direct power to cut up to one-third of GHG emissions in their cities, with the remaining two-thirds of urban emission reductions depending either on national and state governments or on co-ordination across levels of government.

Cities and regions require a clear evidence base and rationale to identify, prioritise and implement climate action measures and policy priorities as well as to monitor progress and scale-up ambition. In this process, national governments have a crucial role in enabling and supporting local governments for their place-based actions to drive the zero-carbon transition and build systemic resilience.


  • What can the OECD offer?

The OECD Programme A territorial approach to climate action and resilience supports countries, regions and cities in their efforts to develop and implement their climate plans, strategies and policy instruments, through:

  • Localised reporting and monitoring: demonstrating the significant potential of subnational action by strengthening localised reporting and monitoring frameworks, including local climate investment and financing, for the zero-carbon transition and climate resilience;

  • Place-based recommendations and action checklists: assessing national and subnational policy and governance frameworks and providing locally-tailored recommendations to support policy reforms towards a place-based implementation of climate mitigation and adaptation policies;

  • Dialogue and knowledge sharing: sharing and disseminating innovative policies, strategies and programmes applying a territorial approach to drive the zero-carbon transition and climate resilience. 



Read the flyer in English, French or Spanish

Read the programme overview


Watch the webinar Building Systemic Climate Resilience in Cities

Meetings & events




For further information, contact

Tadashi Matsumoto, Head of Unit, Sustainable Development and Global Relations, CFE

Aimée Aguilar Jaber, Programme Manager, Climate Change Mitigation, ENV

Catherine Gamper, Programme Manager, Climate Change Adaptation, ENV


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