Race to zero


Race to Zero is a campaign of the United Nations (UN) to bring together leadership and support from companies, cities, regions, and investors for a healthy, resilient recovery and with zero carbon that prevents future threats, creates decent jobs and unlocks sustainable and inclusive growth. 

To be part of the commitment to the Race to Zero cities must, among other things, publicly support the following principles:

  • Recognize the global climate emergency      
  • Commit to keeping global warming below the 1.5 ° C target of the Paris Agreement      
  • Put climate action at the center of all urban decision-making, to create prosperous  and equitable communities for all.      

The Race to Zero campaign aligns with the vision and mission of the Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy (GCoM) and shares the same goal of accelerating climate action and strengthening the resilience of communities against the effects of climate change. Cities that join the GCoM already commit to setting measurable emissions targets equal to or more ambitious than the Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) of their respective governments under the Paris Agreement. Thus, it will not be seen as a separate campaign, but rather as a mechanism to increase the ambition of the cities’ current objectives in mitigation or adaptation.

The Global Covenant of Mayors can provide direct support to local governments and cities interested in joining Cities Race to Zero. Cities can sign the campaign pledge on the website or by contacting GCoM Americas. In turn, they have the opportunity to continue reporting their progress through the CDP – ICLEI unified reporting platform.

Cities Race to Zero is an initiative of C40 Cities, of the Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy (GCoM), of ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability (ICLEI), of United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG), of CDP, the World Wildlife Forum (WWF) and the World Resources Institute (WRI).

Learn more about the Race to Zero

For more information, contact [email protected].


Race to Zero in Latin America : the example of Brazil

In Latin America the movement of local governments that decide to get involved in the campaign is growing.  A recent example is that of Brazil. In July, a ceremony celebrated the entry of new states, cities and companies to the Race to Zero campaign in the country. The States of Pernambuco and Pará joined Minas Gerais, the first State to join the campaign in Latin America, and also São Paulo, the first State to sign its commitment in the form of a decree. Together, the four states represent 33% of Brazilian emissions. New States are in the process of completing their membership: Amazonas, Espírito Santo, Maranhão and Mato Grosso do Sul. When confirmed, it will mean that the eight States responsible for 48% of Brazilian emissions and more than 50% of the country’s GDP will be committed to reaching zero carbon emissions by 2050.