Today, the Climate and Clean Air Coalition (CCAC) has approved USD $1.8M in funding to expand and accelerate the work of its Municipal Solid Waste Initiative, which C40 helped to launch at Rio+20 in June, 2012. The countries of US, Canada and Mexico, along with the World Bank, C40, and the United Nations Environment Programme, founded the CCAC Municipal Solid Waste Initiative to reduce Short-Lived Climate Pollutants (SLCP) from the waste sector.   

SLCPs, like methane, HFCs and black carbon, have shorter lifetimes than CO2, which remains in the atmosphere for approximately a century, so taking action to reduce their emission can quickly lower their atmospheric concentrations, yielding a relatively rapid climate response, and have the potential to slow down the warming by 2050 by as much as 0.5 C. 

CCAC partners began working directly with eight pilot cities to gather baseline data and implement concrete plans of action.  Now, two years on, more than 20 cities are signed on to take rapid action (12 of which are C40 cities with more signing on this year). Additional partners with strong waste leadership have also joined the Initiative, including Japan and the International Solid Waste Association.  

“Today’s funding approval of the third phase of the Initiative’s activities builds on the overwhelming success of the last two phases, where C40 has worked together with a core set of cities from the African, Asian, and Latin American regions to design a scalable program,” said Ricardo Cepeda-Marquez, Director of C40’s Solid Waste Initiative.  “This new funding will not only help the network of cities to expand, but will also deepen the support provided, from technical assistance and city-to-city exchanges to the development of financing tools.”

By participating in the Initiative thus far, C40 cities are undertaking ambitious projects and working with expert international partners to advance their goals. For example, Lima is implementing a large-scale restructuring of their waste management system and working with the US EPA to identify compatible technologies that are able to significantly reduce the amount of organics it sends to landfills; Dhaka is exploring contracting mechanisms for Public-Private Partnerships for resource recovery projects and working with the US EPA to develop capacity to improve its landfill operations and increase its collection efficiency. Dar es Salaam is improving its waste collection, transportation and disposal through socially inclusive strategies and will work with the International Solid Waste Association to develop an integrated plan and legal framework to support the infrastructure development and private sector participation.

According to C40 research, 53 percent of C40 cities own and operate municipal solid waste services, and 58 percent have the powers to set and enforce waste policies. But even cities without strong waste powers can benefit by aligning policy and institutional approaches with national governments in order to boost success of their local programmes.  Indeed, the Initiative will highlight the collaborative relationships between governments that demonstrate successful local and national sustainable development frameworks.

To read more about the funding announcement, click here.