The World Economic Forum (WEF) has launched a digital toolbox with more than 200 leading practices and case studies to boost sustainability and reduce emissions of cities.
Cities have a crucial role to play in the race to reach net-zero emissions by 2050. The platform focuses on solutions that address clean electrification, efficiency and smart infrastructure across sectors including energy, buildings and mobility, the WEF said in a statement this week.
The toolbox draws on input and case studies from more than 110 cities, businesses, academics, civil society leaders and other urban stakeholders around the world and across sectors to capture best practices and case studies for urban transformation and decarbonisation.
The solutions include policy, business and finance models that result in reduced emissions and other valuable outcomes such as job creation and improved air quality. These solutions are also tailored to specific city attributes including the electricity grid’s health, local population density and income level.
With the percentage of people living in cities projected to rise to 68% by 2050, resulting in high energy consumption, greater infrastructure needs and, carbon emissions, cities have a critical role to play in the race to reach net zero.
Achieving net-zero emissions at city-scale will require a transformation in how energy is produced, distributed and consumed. The built environment and mobility can serve as a catalyst for urban transformation and decarbonisation anywhere in the world, according to the recent WEF Urban Transformation Integrated Energy Solutions report.
The toolbox is an interactive digital platform containing the practical solutions to help city leaders, national governments and businesses evaluate and identify optimal solutions for near-term implementation, kick-starting their decarbonisation journey, the WEF said.
“Decarbonisation solutions already exist and we don’t need to wait for the next big innovation. This platform provides examples of policies and business models that have been used successfully around the world. We are starting with 200 solutions and expect to have many more over the course of the next year,” said WEF Energy, Materials and Infrastructure Programme Net-Zero Carbon Cities head Kristen Panerali.
The first iteration of the WEF Toolbox of Solutions was designed and built in collaboration with information technology multinational Accenture.
“Urban ecosystems are pivotal in our global journey to net zero, driven by clean and smart electrification. These sustainability initiatives can help accelerate efforts to address climate change with practical and integrated energy solutions for urban transformation for cities of any size around the world,” said Accenture Europe CEO Jean-Marc Ollagnier.
The Toolbox of Solutions is part of the WEF Net-Zero Carbon Cities programme, which brings together businesses with city, regional and national government leaders to accelerate urban transitions to a net-zero future. The programme’s objective is to align and scale efforts across businesses, cities and national-level governments to deliver urban ecosystems that are sustainable, resilient and equitable.
The Net-Zero Carbon Cities programme aims to enable transformation towards clean electrification and circularity, using integrated energy solutions to address energy, buildings and mobility. The programme is co-chaired by electricity and automation multinational Schneider Electric chairman and CEO Jean-Pascal Tricoire and energy multinational Enel CEO Francesco Starace.