C40 and Arup announce new support for innovative climate action in cities

Arup’s chairman Alan Belfield (right) and C40 Cities executive director Mark Watts signing their three-year climate partnership in Amsterdam.

World cities network to collaborate with Arup to drive global decarbonisation efforts.

C40 Cities and Arup have announced new efforts to help cities reduce greenhouse gas emissions and become more resilient to climate change.

Arup will invest up to $300,000 a year to help C40 Cities by providing research, advocacy and technical support in areas such as green shipping corridors, green and thriving neighbourhoods and climate resilience. Much of the investment will come from pro-bono staff time in support of projects that align with C40’s mission and draw on Arup’s global technical and advisory skills.

Work will include projects to leverage specific technical expertise from Arup to overcome barriers to climate action in cities. It will also focus on the development of new and innovative approaches to reduce emissions, increase climate resilience and improve the wellbeing of C40 cities.

C40 is a network of nearly 100 mayors of the world’s leading cities who are working to deliver the urgent action needed right now to confront the climate crisis. Arup has more than 17,000 members and offices in 46 of the 97 cities that make up C40’s global network.

C40 and Arup have collaborated for more than a decade on foundational pieces of research on the climate crisis, including Deadline 2020 and, more recently, Green and Thriving Neighbourhoods, a guide published by C40 and Arup for creating people-centred net-zero neighbourhoods that has become a recognised tool for city and national governments as well as private sector developers and community leaders.

The new three-year partnership was signed in Amsterdam by Arup’s chairman Alan Belfield and C40’s executive director Mark Watts. Arup chair Alan Belfield said: “We know that the next decade is critical for addressing climate change. Cities will be at the front line, feeling the impacts, but they’ll have the ability to take bold and innovative action. We are committed to working alongside C40 Cities, bringing our expertise, to help cities shift from ambition to delivery at scale.”

C40’s Mark Watts added: “It’s remarkable what cities are achieving, particularly given the multiple challenges of recent years. Cities are able to move quickly due to their capacity to work with one another, whether that’s technical collaborations, such as Beijing and Copenhagen swapping expertise to slash fuel consumption in district heating, or Tokyo and Kuala Lumpur’s collaboration to decarbonise the building sector.

“We need to continue making ambitious progress to be truly on track to halve emissions by 2030 in line with a 1.5°C trajectory. We are pleased to be continuing to support cities to accelerate climate action in partnership with Arup, building on our 10-year collaboration.”