Tag Archive: local government

  1. European grand alliance urges EU to find new ways to effectuate Green Deal

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    Source: The Mayor

    The Local Alliance, a coalition of eight leading networks of regions and cities from across the continent, is dedicated to advancing the sustainable interests of local and regional communities. In a joint letter addressed to EU leaders, the Local Alliance emphasises that the success of Europe’s Green Deal will depend on the provision of more robust support for cities and regions. They urge the EU Commission to maintain its commitment regardless of leadership changes following the elections.

    Specifically, the Alliance calls for enhanced coordination in investment support from EU national, and regional funds, ensuring responsiveness to locally tailored and holistic action and investment plans. Such support is deemed essential for creating local jobs and markets for the European green industry. Recent challenges, such as delays in passing the Nature Restoration Law and challenges in phasing out internal combustion engines, are undermining the Green Deal’s objectives. As European elections approach, the EU must ensure it remains a global beacon for climate leadership.

    With the complexities of forthcoming climate legislation, local leaders stress the importance of the EU’s commitment to achieving climate neutrality by 2050, ensuring an equitable transition for all.

    Cities’ role in the green transition

    Cities and regions are where at least 70% of the European Green Deal legislation must be implemented. European local and regional governments have already begun transforming their communities, emphasising sustainable practices in various aspects of daily life. Today, the EU’s subnational governments mobilise around 58% of climate-significant public expenditures, surpassing their central governments.

    Cities and regions have proven their commitment to work with decision-makers at EU and national level to ensure a climate-neutral future for Europe. However, if the European Green Deal is truly to become a reality, the EU must empower local and regional governments with the funding, policies and cooperation mechanisms they need to ensure a just, resilient future for everyone,” said André Sobzcak, Secretary General of Eurocities.

    “European cities and regions have embraced the EU Green Deal and engaged their local communities in bringing about sustainable local change. We call on EU and national decision-makers to take the next step in providing clarity, financial support and meaningful cooperation mechanisms to help put policy into practice. In this EU election year, it is more urgent than ever to bring on board local governments as serious partners for shaping a sustainable, fair, democratic and just European future,” stated Wolfgang Teubner, Regional Director, ICLEI Europe.

    Local leaders highlight that partnership between all levels of government is key as “Financing the local transition to climate neutrality will require mobilising the EU and national budgets.”

    Improving skills

    Cities and regions need adequate in-house skills and a workforce to successfully do their part for the climate neutrality transition and by doing so, to create demand for European businesses and industries.

    The Local Alliance reaffirms its dedication to collaborating with national governments, the European Council, the Commission, and the Parliament to translate the European Green Deal into tangible benefits for all citizens.

    The Local Alliance include the following organisations Eurocities, ICLEI, ACR+, CEMR, Climate Alliance, Energy Cities, FEDARNE, and POLIS.

  2. New York City set to launch ‘Department of Sustainable Delivery’

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    Source: Bloomberg

    To regulate the e-bikes, mopeds, and motorbikes that New Yorkers rely on for delivery services, Mayor Eric Adams announced a new city agency for micromobility oversight.

    New York City announced plans to create a new municipal department to account for the increasing number of electric bikes, scooters, mopeds, and motorcycles that travel the streets to haul packages and deliver food.

    Mayor Eric Adams proposed, in his State of the City address, the creation of the Department of Sustainable Delivery to regulate commercial delivery services that rely on 2 and 3 wheeled micromobility vehicles. These battery-powered vehicles are essential for combating pollution and traffic congestion, however, their emergence has brought controversy around pedestrian and rider safety, the risks posed by e-bike battery fires, and the rights of delivery workers.

    New York City Mayor, Eric Adams, stated “New Yorkers have been clear: We welcome the future of transit and mobility, but we cannot have mopeds speeding down our sidewalks, delivery apps exploiting workers, or chaos on our streets

    Our streets — and how they’re used — have changed, and we’re changing with them. The Department of Sustainable Delivery will be a first-in-the-nation way to let us retake the reins of our streets and ensure that the next generation of mobility innovation works for our workers, our neighbours, and our city, as we continue to deliver on our vision to protect public safety, rebuild our economy, and make this city more liveable for working-class New Yorkers.”

    In a conversation with Bloomberg CityLab, Meera Joshi, the deputy mayor for operations in the city, explained that the newly established organization aims to highlight the positive aspects of the industry while addressing the negatives. The goal is to ensure that New Yorkers maintain their crucial access to 24/7 takeout without facing detrimental consequences. Joshi expressed the desire for a diverse range of items, from a 4 a.m. burger to furniture, to be deliverable to people’s doorsteps.

    She acknowledged the recent growth in app-driven delivery as beneficial for the economy, expanding business bases and fostering innovation in logistics. Joshi noted the positive impact on workers, creating accessible job opportunities. However, she also recognized the challenges associated with this expansion.

    Joshi characterized the current regulatory approach as a reactive “whack-a-mole” game, with different departments handling various aspects. She highlighted the confusion among companies looking to adapt to changes, emphasizing the need for a unified regulatory framework. Drawing parallels to her experience leading the Taxi and Limousine Commission, she advocated for a comprehensive structure for micromobility vehicles, anticipating and managing issues like e-bike congestion and preparing for future technologies like delivery drones and robots.

    The city aims to gather valuable data from on-demand app companies through the new entity, focusing on trip details and demand patterns. This data will inform infrastructure development, such as wider bike lanes on busy avenues to accommodate the growing number of micromobility users.

    Looking ahead, City Hall plans to collaborate with City Council and convene a task force, involving representatives from labour groups and app companies, to shape the regulatory mission of the newly established office. Transportation and labour advocates express concern about potential duplication and added burdens for workers, especially undocumented immigrants. The goal remains to create a safe e-micromobility landscape, encouraging New Yorkers to shift away from cars and trucks. Advocates emphasize straightforward solutions like prioritizing protected bike lanes for safety, liveability, transit justice, and climate benefits.

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