Local Authorities

The city of Busan, Korea

Local Government Organisations, represented by the Local Authority Major Group, have an important role in environmental matters and can help to implement global agreements, influence policy and also contribute to safeguarding global common goods. Local Authorities or local governments can act at local level and when united through global Local Government Organisations, the collective impact can be significant.  Local Authorities are often close to people and their local issues including matters as they relate to energy, waste, water, sanitation, land use, etc. which are of direct relevance to the local environment and health and well-being of people. 

The following examples are only a small part of UNEP’s numerous partnerships with Local Authorities at the global, regional and local level.

Side event at Rio+20

On June 18, 2012, UNEP and ICLEI organized a side event at the Rio+20 summit entitled Cities and Sustainable Development: Contributions of Local Authorities and Businesses to Achieving Sustainable Development - Special Focus on China. The event presented challenges and solutions to the rapid urbanization, showing in particular examples from China, within a global sustainable development context, looking at how the Green Economy concept can contribute to Sustainable Development at the local level.

Participants discussed issues relating to:

  1. Innovation in building/city design to accommodate the massive urban growth in the country;
  2. Policy measures (incentives/disincentives) taken at the national and city level to address the problem of urban growth;
  3. Urban environmental management, including air pollution and public transport.

Perspectives article: "Models for Local Government Organizations involvement in a strengthened UNEP"

In collaboration with ICLEI, UNEP has published a perspectives issue on “Models for Local Government Organizations (LGOs) involvement in a strengthened UNEP” by Susanne Salz. This article explores options for an increased participation of Local authorities in the context of a strengthened UNEP. 

Rio+20 in June 2012 provided the rare opportunity to address sustainable development issues in a unique global setting. In order to address the complex, severe and interconnected challenges that the world is facing, all actors must work together. This paper makes concrete proposals how to involve Local Government Organizations (LGOs) in a strengthened UNEP. LGOs have significant power in environmental matters and thus can help to implement global agreements, shape policy, and ultimately contribute to safeguarding global common goods. 

Accredited organizations

Find here a list of all Local Authorities' organizations accredited with the United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA) of UNEP.