February 10, 2017

Portland and Mayor Hales were honored at the C40 Conference awards ceremony in Mexico City. The C40 Cities Awards recognize the world’s most inspiring and innovative cities tackling climate change. The C40 Cities Awards ceremony was held during the C40 Mayors Summit, where more than 40 mayors from around the world gathered to create sustainable and livable cities for their communities.

“Portland has been a world leader in ‪climate action for over two decades. We were the first U.S. city to adopt a climate action plan. We were the first to bring back the modern streetcar. Now with our updated 2015 Climate Action Plan and proposed Fossil Fuel Terminal Zoning Amendments, we’ll be the first to deliberately transition from dirty, dangerous fuels to ‪clean, ‪renewable ‪energy,” said Mayor Hales. “I want to thank the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group and my mayoral colleagues for recognizing Portland’s trailblazing efforts to make our city one of the most sustainable in the world."

The collaborative plan created by Portland and Multnomah County, the 2015 Climate Action Plan (CAP), won this year’s award in “Climate Action Plans & Inventories.” The overarching goal of the CAP is to deliver an integrated set of strategies by 2020 to reduce GHG emissions in Portland and Multnomah County 40% by 2030 and 80% by 2050. The proportion of citizens traveling primarily by public transport, cycling or walking is expected to rise to 50%, and the number of electric vehicles is set to increase four-fold to 8,000. The CAP aims to reduce energy use in existing buildings by 1.7 percent annually, resulting in an annual GHG emissions reduction of 280,000 metric tons in 2020. 

View Portland and Multnomah County's 2015 Climate Action Plan.

"Not only will Portland’s bold climate actions make positive benefits to our local community for years to come, it shows the way for many more mayors and national leaders to follow our lead before it’s too late to stave off some of the most catastrophic effects of climate change,” said Hales. 

"Cities are a key part of the solution to climate change. Thanks to the efforts of residents, businesses and organizations, Portland’s carbon emissions continue to decline – already 21 percent below 1990 levels," said Susan Anderson, Portland Bureau of Planning and Sustainability Director. "With direction from the Climate Action Plan, Portland is ready to take the next steps to reach our ambitious goals – like energy scores for residential and commercial buildings, expanding our share of electric vehicles, and investing in infrastructure, such as community solar projects, that advance equitable climate action outcomes." 

“The C40 Cities Awards recognize the best and boldest work being done by mayors to fight climate change and protect people from risks,” said C40 President of the Board and U.N. Secretary General’s Special Envoy for Cities and Climate Change Michael R. Bloomberg. “The winning projects show that great progress is being made on every continent, and they serve as an inspiration to other cities. They also show how cities can help the world meet the ambitious goals set a year ago in Paris.” 

An expert jury panel comprised of former mayors, climate experts and others, selected ten winning urban sustainability projects based on excellence in urban planning and dedication to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and improving resiliency. The selected cities exemplified the best policies, projects and programs globally, and for the first time included a category recognizing social equity.                           

Earlier in the day during the C40 Mayors Summit, C40 unveiled a report, Deadline 2020: How cities will get the job done, outlining a vision to reduce emissions by 2020 and help meet the Paris Agreement targets.  

For more information on the Awards and the winning projects, visit: http://www.c40.org/awards

Follow the C40 Cities Awards on social media with #C40Awards and the C40 Mayors Summit with the hashtag #Cities4Climate. 

About the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group

The C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group, now in its 11th year, connects more than 85 of the world’s greatest cities, representing 650+ million people and one quarter of the global economy. Created and led by cities, C40 is focused on tackling climate change and driving urban action that reduces greenhouse gas emissions and climate risks, while increasing the health, wellbeing and economic opportunities of urban citizens. The current chair of the C40 is Rio de Janeiro Mayor Eduardo Paes; Mayor of Paris Anne Hidalgo is Chair-elect; and three-term Mayor of New York City Michael R. Bloomberg serves as President of the Board. C40’s work is made possible by our three strategic funders: Bloomberg Philanthropies, Children’s Investment Fund Foundation (CIFF), and Realdania. To learn more about the work of C40 and our cities, please visit www.c40.org, follow us on Twitter @c40cities or Instagram @c40cities and like us on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/C40Cities.