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Executive Summary


CDP and C40 joined together in 2010 to extend CDP’s proven reporting platform to the C40 Climate Leadership Group—a network of the world’s largest mega-cities around the world dedicated to climate change leadership. CDP Cities builds on the last 10 years of CDP’s work collecting climate change- related data in a standardized way and making it available to the global marketplace.

City governments sit at a critical climate change nexus. They are responsible for large amounts of greenhouse gas (GHG). Their populations and infrastructure are immensely vulnerable to the damaging effects of warming temperatures, sea level rise, and increased occurrences of catastrophic storm events. And they are often well-positioned to act quickly and convincingly due to their governmental structures and deep understanding of the complexity of local conditions. As such, a number of cities have pioneered extraordinary approaches to GHG reduction and climate resilience. The CDP process provides a common framework for cities to report publicly on their GHG emissions and climate change risks, how they are measuring them, and how they are tackling the challenges presented by a changing climate.

This report, prepared by KPMG, analyzes the responses from C40 cities to the CDP Cities 2011 information request.


In November 2010, through a partnership between C40 and CDP, New York Mayor and C40 Chair Michael Bloomberg invited the C40 cities (40 participating cities and 18 affiliate cities) to report their climate change-related data to CDP by filling in the answers to an online questionnaire. 42 cities answered our call.

Throughout this report, most response rates reflect the full number of disclosing cities (42). However, due to the nature of the information request — not all cities had the opportunity to answer all of the questions — we present some statistics out of the number of cities who answered a particular question. Tables and charts clearly indicate the sample size used for evaluation.

The CDP questionnaire covered 4 main areas: governance, greenhouse gas emissions, adaptation, and strategy. CDP offered cities the chance to report 2 separate emissions inventories —1 for the emissions from their city government (also known as “local government” or “municipal”) operations, and also 1 for the emissions from their entire city (often referred to as “community” or “city wide” emissions). The questionnaire was entirely voluntary, and cities were not scored. Cities had the opportunity to make their response available to the public or keep it private solely for use by CDP and C40.

6 non-C40 cities also participated in the first year of the CDP Cities program, choosing to voluntarily report climate change-related data to CDP. These cities are included in this report in the Voluntary Cities section; we have separated them from C40 cities for analytical purposes.

Highlights from 2011 disclosure

• C40 cities show extraordinary awareness and commitment on climate change issues. An impressive 42 out of 58 cities responded to CDP this year, a 72 percent response rate. 38 cities made their responses available to the public. Such high rates are unusual in what is for many cities the first year of reporting and demonstrate clear leadership by C40 cities.

• Responsibility for climate change sits at the highest level in C40

© 2011 Carbon Disclosure Project

cities. Nearly every responding city reports the involvement of their senior leadership in taking responsibility for climate change. Many cities also make special note of their efforts to engage local citizens, businesses, and other stakeholders in climate change-related decisions.

• Large city governments are keeping pace with major corporations on greenhouse gas measurement and disclosure. 2 out of every 3 responding cities measure and report their GHG emissions, a number just slightly lower than the equivalent metric for the Global 500, the largest 500 companies in the world.

• Climate change risks to cities are serious and immediate. Over 90 percent of disclosing cities identify themselves as at risk due to climate change. And a further 43 percent report that they are already dealing with the effects of climate change in their areas.

• Businesses in major cities could be at risk due to warming temperatures. 79 percent of cities report that climate change could affect the ability of businesses to operate successfully in their cities. As cities grow and the climate changes, maintaining safe, resilient environments for people and businesses will be increasingly important.

• C40 cities report city-wide GHG emissions totaling 609.5 million* metric tons CO2

-e. This figure is

equivalent to the total emissions from a country like Canada.

• Voluntary cities lead the way among non-C40 cities in reporting their climate change-related data. 6 non-C40 cities participated in the CDP process this year, joining the world’s largest cities in standardized, international climate change reporting.


* Note this figure has changed from a previous version of the report due to an amendment to a city’s response. This version is updated as of June 10 2011

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