Local Alliance to the EU: stay the course on Green Deal implementation

Letter from the new Local Alliance, eight leading networks of European cities and regions, to EU leaders on Green Deal implementation



Publication date


Related legislative initiative

The Local Alliance: a new alliance formed at a pivotal moment

We’ve come together with seven other leading networks of European cities and regions – ACR+, CEMR, Climate Alliance, Eurocities, FEDARENE, ICLEI Europe and POLIS – to form the Local Alliance to send unified messages to EU leaders.

In a joint letter, the Alliance calls on EU leaders with one clear message: to stay the course on the European Green Deal under this and the next mandate of the European Commission.

Recent challenges and backlash to some Green Deal policies are undermining the Green’s Deal objectives. This specific context, also as the European elections approach, has urged us networks to unify our voice and ensure that the EU continues to lead on climate action. And most importantly, to make sure that, in this next phase, cities have what they need to implement European ambitions on the ground.

Given the more complicated arena for climate legislation that lies ahead, local leaders are adamant that the EU’s commitment to achieve climate neutrality by 2050 should remain a top priority, delivering a just transition that works for people and planet.

Local grounds for climate action

Cities and regions are where at least 70% of the European Green Deal legislation must be implemented. European local and regional governments have already embarked on the journey to climate neutrality and started to transform European cities and regions, as well as ways of living, heating and cooling, housing, mobility, producing and consuming for millions of citizens. Today, the EU’s subnational governments mobilise around 58% of climate-significant public expenditures, surpassing their central governments.

“The European economy, whether we speak about industrial champions or local businesses, is always grounded somewhere: businesses need access to public services for their workers, they need functioning supply chains, resource material, energy… All of which is delivered locally. Europe will only be stronger if every community is. And to strengthen them, it’s time we move from regulation to implementation, from sectorial projects to long-term placed-based planning.”

Claire Roumet, Executive Director of Energy Cities

Our main asks

In the letter sent to EU leaders, the Local Alliance highlights that Europe’s pace of success to achieve the Green Deal objectives will depend on the following help for cities and regions:

  • More joined up support for investments from the EU, national and regional funds across different funding programmes and actors, which are more responsive to locally developed integrated and holistic action and investment plans. This would also be a prerequisite for creating local jobs and markets for the European green industry.
  • Local leaders highlight that partnership between all levels of government is key as “Financing the local transition to climate neutrality will require mobilising the EU and national budgets.”
  • Cities and regions need adequate in-house skills and a workforce to successfully do their part of the climate neutrality transition and by doing so, to create demand for European businesses and industries. “These opportunities are the best way to create local investment potential for European industry, and to share the transition benefits for all EU citizens,” we state in the letter.
  • Establishing structured dialogues with the local and regional level at the EU and national level will be critical to achieving the necessary transformation and societal resilience at scale in Europe.

It is only with cities, regional and local governments on board – the closest level of government to people and the one responsible for implementing most of the European Green Deal legislation – that we can fully meet the objective of a climate neutral Europe by 2050.

We, as the Local Alliance, further repeat our commitment to work with national governments, the European Council, Commission and Parliament to turn the European Green Deal into reality for every citizen across Europe.