CES-MED organised on November 7, 2016, a side event in the context of the COP 22 in Marrakech, with the lead participation of the Ambassador of the European Union Delegation in Rabat, Mr. Rupert Joy, Mr Gerhard Krause, Head of the Economic Reform Sector and the representatives and delegations of the Moroccan communes of Agadir, Oujda and Benslimane. The objective of the event was to present the regional results of the project since its launch, with a special focus on Moroccan pilot projects.
After an introduction by Ambassador Joy, and the presentation of the regional activities of CES-MED in the context of the Covenant of Mayors, the Moroccan cities of Agadir, Oujda and Benslimane each presented the results of their SEAPs - and emphasised the link between urban and common strategies and energy aspects, in line with the Moroccan institutional context.
A debate then took place on the best approach to support the sustainability of CES-MED actions, and the development and funding of action plans and their projects, during which Ambassador Joy and Mr. Krause pointed out that the European Union would consider, together with national authorities, the possibility of a regional budget support in the framework of the decentralization policy launched in Morocco. The issue of action on sustainability and continuity of the SEAPs approach in Morocco was raised acutely by many representatives of the affiliated cities.They agreed that the training initiatives that will be developed by the project in the first half 2017 will contribute to sustainability, particularly in view of the involvement and support to the project expressed since 2013 through the services of the MEMEE and DGCL.
CES-MED also participated in “The European Union in Action: Implementing the Paris Agreement in the Southern Mediterranean” side event on the 15th of November. The topic focused on how a major part of any future transformation will take place in cities and urban communities, and how the actions to stall and reverse climate change will have to be implemented at city level, under the participation of all relevant stakeholders, through the cooperation of the EU European Neighbourhood Initiative (ENI 2014 -2020) programme within southern Mediterranean countries.
Mr. Michael Köhler, director for Neighbourhood South, European Commission, DG for Neighbourhood and Enlargement Negotiations opened the session with an overview of the pollution situation in South Mediterranean cities and climate change. He pointed out the importance of work done at national, regional and local level through EU-funded projects in the region, seeking to implement Sustainable Energy on the local level.