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The Coordination of Local, Regional, and National Policies on Climate Change

We are the first generation to feel the sting of climate change, and we are the last generation that can do something about it. The time is past when humankind thought it could selfishly draw on exhaustible resources. We know now the world is not a commodity, not a source of revenue; it’s a common good, it’s our heritage. And the consequences of climate change are fully known now – we’re not talking about theories anymore; we’re talking about certainties.

Projects aiming to address global climate change, its drivers, and impacts have emerged and taken center stage in a broader context of ongoing development discourses, policies, and practices. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), launched and supported by the World Meteorological Organization and the United Nations, has framed since the mid-1990s the significant discourses and policies about climate change, reflecting scientific evidence of the current and future impacts of climate change and how this evidence relates to development processes more generally.

Climate change discourses of mitigation, adaptation, and resilience have gained hegemonic status within these processes, profoundly influencing development policies and other policy domains (World Development Report, 2010). They are, however, not uncontested. At the juncture of climate change and development policies, there is a growing concern, especially among critical scientists and governments, development organizations, and civil society organizations worldwide, about the possible impacts of these climate-focused discourses, policies, and interventions urgent policy action needed.

However, the bulk of the effects will be felt at the regional and local levels. And these levels of governance hold many of the competencies to implement the policy actions. Therefore, regional governments are important actors and should be incorporated into the negotiation rounds and their voices heard.

Climate change policies need to be designed and implemented at the global and local