Forum 15 Has Signed on for Clean Air!

In recent years, the climate crisis has received global attention and many institutions have begun to take an active part in the global efforts to mitigate and prevent an increase of more than 1.5-2 degrees in the average global temperature.  Alongside these efforts, it is necessary to enhance the efforts to prepare humanity for the inevitable changes and extreme climate events that are already taking place in recent years, and that are expected to become even more severe in the coming years.

In the past few decades, there has been a worrying increase in the levels of air pollution, as well as a sharp escalation in greenhouse gas emissions. In the cities of Israel, where the majority of greenhouse gases are emitted, environmental and health damages are being felt already.

In recognition of the imperative for urgent and decisive action, Forum 15 cities became the first governmental institution to resolve on playing a central role in tackling and preparing for climate change. In 2008, Forum 15 cities as well as Jerusalem, Ashkelon and Bat-Yam, joined cities in the world by committing to taking climate action, in the framework of ICLEI's climate campaign. The cites inaugurated "The Climate Convention", a local version of ICLEI's international convention for climate protection. Ratification of the convention is a central tool for promoting a strategy of urban sustainability. The convention commits cities to preparing municipal plans for the reduction of air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions within their boundaries (by no less than 20% by the year 2020).

Forum 15’s Climate Convention is a part of a new agenda in urban Israel. For the first time, the major cities united for promoting a public cause, aligning them with other major cities across the globe.
The Climate Convention includes three steps:
  1. Preliminary Phase - Studying the subject, summoning a municipal steering committee, approving a budget and choosing professional consulting teams.
  2. Planning Phase - Preparing city emission surveys, defining goals, vision and policy, preparing a master plan and setting forth with immediate projects.
  3. Implementation Phase - Organizing managerial patterns, precise budgeting and planning, execution, education and edification, and monitoring. 
In order to take real action, a specific plan is required. Thus, the Cities Alliance for Quality of Life & Environment was formed. This plan is the next step of the Climate Convention. It has the form of a guide, including a list of concrete actions to be integrated in the municipalities’ work plans.

Steering and Control Committee of the Climate Convention

In order to prepare the convention and to outline related activities, the Forum has established a professional Committee for steering the process. The Committee includes members of Forum 15, municipalities, different government offices, as well as members of environmental organizations.

Professional Support Team

Forum 15 regularly deploys a team of professionals and consultants to cities seeking to execute the Climate Convention. These professionals provide instruction and training, conduct seminars, round tables, professional guidance, colleague gatherings and networking, as well as making tools and knowledge on the subject accessible. Such tools include projects implementation guides (“practices”), examples of projects from municipalities in Israel and abroad and relevant public appeals, calls for applications, and more. 

Periodic Reports to ICLEI

By signing the Convention, Forum 15 and the municipalities have committed to maintaining maximal transparency to ICELI organization and to the Israeli public. In this context, the Forum has published two comprehensive reports on the municipalities’ activitiy, as well as on the Steering and Control Committee’s activity.