Global Cities Must Act "With or Without Government Backing" to Protect Urban Living, Urges WBCSD

  • 70% of world's population - around 7 billion people - will live in cities by 2050
  • Cities account for 75% of global resource use and emissions

MONTREAL, June 20, 2017 /CNW/ - Cities must act now - with or without government backing - to secure a sustainable future for billions of people, Peter White, Vice-President of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) will tell delegates at the 12th Metropolis World Congress in Montreal later today.

"Almost three quarters of the world's population will live in cities by 2050, so they have a huge role " Mr White said. "Our goal is to help cities become more sustainable through collaboration with business partners with the solutions, capacity and finance to create cleaner and more sustainable environments."

Increasingly, cities are working on their own initiative to address sustainability challenges, Mr White said, collaborating with other cities and private sector partners around the world on best practice, innovation and projects across emissions, energy efficiency and transport. WBCSD is calling for more cities to work like this, and providing methodologies and frameworks for action.

"City mayors can do more to realize a more sustainable future- they must overcome the barriers that have frustrated many efforts in the past," he continued. "A major obstacle for engaging more strategically with business has been around rules on procurement and tendering, which many private companies have feared might disqualify them from public sector tenders and contracts."

WBCSD has developed a Sustainable Cities Engagement Model, providing a clear process for city-business collaboration now delivering results . For example, in Houston, an energy efficient buildings project ("EEB Houston") anticipates savings in energy use of 30% could add over US$500m annually to the city economy from the commercial sector alone. Annual investment in energy efficient buildings in Houston is now set to double to US$ 215 billion by 2020.

Note to editors

The World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) is a global, CEO-led organization of over 200 leading businesses working together to accelerate the transition to a sustainable world. With the contribution of non-business partners, WBCSD helps make its member companies more successful and sustainable by focusing on the maximum positive impact for shareholders, the environment and societies.

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SOURCE World Business Council for Sustainable Development

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