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Building Climate Resilience in Cities: Lessons from New York

We live in an urbanizing world. Up to two-thirds of the world’s population – some six billion people – may live in cities by 2050.

Cities have emerged as first responders to climate change because they experience the impacts of natural disasters firsthand and because they produce up to 70 percent of greenhouse gas emissions.

To protect urban dwellers from climate change impacts, such as more frequent and more intense heat waves, heavy downpours and coastal flooding, cities need to make themselves more resilient.

That’s why cities figured so prominently at the Paris climate conference last month, where hundreds of mayors pledged to reduce emissions and improve city resilience. As of today, 447 cities have signed on to the Compact of Mayors, a coalition of city leaders who have pledged to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, track progress and prepare for climate change impacts.



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