Compact of States and Regions

The Compact is an initiative that provides a transparent, global picture of efforts to tackle climate change from state and regional governments. It is designed to catalyze climate change mitigation through inventory development, target setting and strategy development.

Less than two years after its launch, the Compact of States and Regions, an initiative driven by The Climate Group and CDP, has become the global go-to platform for states, provinces and regions to measure and manage their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions - already collecting climate data from 62 governments representing 17% of the global economy.

This pioneering group of governments includes states that rival some of the largest and most developed nations in the world, as well as rural areas and territories already heavily affected by climate change. With a great diversity in geography, culture, and socioeconomics, they are united in taking their collective responsibility to monitor progress against their climate targets. See our infographic below for further details.

Ban Ki-moon Compact of States and Regions
Image: United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon being presented with an advance copy of the Compact of States and Regions Disclosure Report by Premier Jay Weatherill of South Australia, at COP21 in Paris.

The first Compact of States and Regions Disclosure Report was released at the 21st session of the Conference of the Parties (COP21) to the UNFCCC in Paris in December 2015 and applauded by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.

The second edition of the Disclosure Report was launched on December 1, 2016 during a webinar introduced by Roseanna Cunningham, Cabinet Secretary for Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform of the Scottish Government.

The 2016 Disclosure Report showed that the short-term ambition of the disclosing governments is in line with keeping global temperature rise within a 2 degrees Celsius scenario. However, ambitious long-term targets are needed to match the rate of decarbonization required up to 2050.

The targets disclosed in 2016 will result in:

In the coming years, the annual disclosure report will continue to showcase the level of ambition of states and regions globally, while at the same time taking stock of progress on mitigation.

The Compact commitments are also included in the Non-state Actor Zone for Climate Action (NAZCA) platform, the online tool developed by the United Nations with the governments of France and Peru for COP21. Through NAZCA, businesses, cities, regions and investors have already showcased over 12,500 climate initiatives.

By reporting to the Compact of States and Regions, governments are leading the way to a more transparent and collaborative approach to climate action. The Climate Group invites all states, provinces and regions around the world to signal their intent to start reporting in 2017. The next reporting period will be announced early 2017.

Together, we can ensure a prosperous, resilient, low carbon future for all.

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The Compact showcases individual and cumulated GHG reduction targets made by sub-national governments around the world. Each year, an assessment of progress toward those commitments takes place through the disclosure of GHG inventory data. All data is collected and analyzed in partnership with the CDP.

Importantly, the Compact supports the Paris Agreement and global climate governance by providing a clear and accurate picture of sub-national governments’ contributions through reliable and publicly available data. The Compact’s partners believe all state and regional governments – considering their different capabilities and circumstances – should measure GHG emissions and set ambitious reduction goals, because these are the pillars of a robust climate strategy.

By acting locally, the Compact proves that state and regional governments are global climate leaders. Their engagement is increasingly being recognized, particularly through the UNFCCC NAZCA platform (Non-state Actor Zone for Climate Action) launched at COP20 in Lima – which the Compact supplies data to.

State, provincial and regional governments can join or observe the Compact by publicly reporting on an annual basis.

To join the Compact, governments are required to report:

  1. A public commitment* to reduce GHG emissions; and
  2. Region-wide GHG inventory data.

To become an observer to the Compact, governments are required to report:

  1. A public commitment to adopt a GHG emissions target within a two-year period; and
  2. Region-wide GHG inventory data within a two-year period, while reporting existing data until that time.

* Includes targets that have already been adopted. This commitment includes the following target types: base year emissions goals, base year intensity goals, baseline scenario goals, and fixed-level goals. More information on these types of targets can be found in Chapter 2 of the GHG Protocol Mitigation Standard report that provides guidance for designing national and sub-national mitigation goals, and a standardized approach for assessing and reporting progress toward goal achievement.

Governments without existing GHG reduction targets and inventories can “observe” the Compact by stating their intent to develop a GHG target and inventory within two years. They are also encouraged to submit existing data to a recognized reporting platform on an annual basis, to build the capacity needed to eventually develop an inventory.

How to get started

  1. Assess whether your government meets the Compact criteria (as outlined above)
  2. Indicate your intent to join or observe the Compact of States and Regions. Email Jean-Charles Seghers, Compact of States and Regions Manager at The Climate Group to participate in the 2017 reporting cycle.
  3. Upon receiving the reporting guidance and login details, complete and submit your data prior to the 2017 deadline. Technical support and guidance will be provided throughout the reporting process.
  4. Feature in the annual Disclosure Report.

Forward-thinking governments recognize that measurement, management and reporting of GHG emissions and climate change data is of growing importance. This is because measurement and reporting helps governments to better understand the risks and opportunities of climate change and increase the impact of climate actions, both within and beyond state borders.

By reporting to the Compact of States and Regions, governments:

  • Feature in the annual Compact of States and Regions disclosure report
  • Showcase climate ambition on the UNFCCC NAZCA platform
  • Ensure their climate commitments are backed by reliable, publicly available data
  • Demonstrate their climate change leadership to companies, investors, other governments and the international community
  • Identify climate-related risks and cost saving opportunities
  • Optimize environmental data management through the use of a single comprehensive platform
  • Benchmark their climate actions against those of other reporting governments.
This data is evidence of what we have long understood — that sub-national governments have an important role to play in reducing greenhouse gas emissions, combatting climate change and supporting the transition to a low carbon economy.
Kathleen Wynn, Premier of Ontario

Join the Compact

For more info – or to join this initiative – contact:
Jean-Charles Seghers, Compact of States and Regions Manager, The Climate Group
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