City of Bonn: Getting Ready for COP 23

The 23rd Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP 23) will take place in Bonn from 6 to 17 November 2017. The conference is organized by the Bonn-based UN Climate Secretariat (UNFCCC), with support rendered by the German Federal Government, the State of North Rhine-Westphalia and the City of Bonn. The World Climate Conference will be convened under the presidency of Fiji. To offer meeting space for the great number of conference participants, a new innovative approach has been found with the ‘one conference – two zones’ principle.

The City of Bonn gladly provides support to the United Nations and the Federal Government for the smooth organization and running of this very large conference. At this time, the two conference zones are being put up in the city. Apart from that, an incredible variety of related activities, events and programs are under preparation.

Bonn’s Mayor Ashok Sridharan, in his capacity as Mayor of Bonn and First Vice President of ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability, has invited to a Climate Summit of Local and Regional Leaders during COP 23.

For the City of Bonn, this important conference will be a unique opportunity to present itself to the world as an international and cosmopolitan location, hub for sustainable development, top conference venue with state-of-the-art facilities and, finally, as birthplace of famous composer Ludwig van Beethoven.

One Conference – Two Zones: Bonn and Bula
Preparations for the upcoming Climate Summit in Bonn are well under way. At this time, the so-called Bonn Zone and Bula Zone are being set up at Rheinaue Park.
The Bula Zone comprises the World Conference Center Bonn, the UN Campus and the temporary buildings that will be put up behind Deutsche Welle. This is the area where the climate negotiations will take place. Apart from that, it will also feature office space for the delegations, additional meeting rooms and rooms for press conferences.
The Bonn Zone with its temporary buildings and tents will host exhibitions and events around climate protection. It will also provide the opportunity to introduce related initiatives and projects in the immediate vicinity of the main conference area.

Beyond the Zones – COP all over Bonn!
Academic conferences, thematic networking, civil society activities or cultural events: COP23-related programs will not only take place inside the conference zones this November. All over the city, key players in science, culture and civil society initiatives will display exhibitions, perform in art and music or offer platforms for networking, knowledge exchange and education for sustainable development.

Between June and August 2017, the City of Bonn offered event organizers with events in Bonn and the region to apply for an endorsement process steered by the incoming Fijian Presidency, the UNFCCC, the German Federal Government and the City of Bonn. Meanwhile, more than 170 events and programs have applied. By the end of September, the City of Bonn will publish an online event calendar with all endorsed events. Many of these events will be open to the public.

Furthermore, the City of Bonn is supporting local organizations with a special event in the city center. The launch of “Climate Tour Bonn” will be parallel to “Bonn leuchtet”, the festival marking the start of winter holiday illuminations (with efficient LED lights, of course!). The tour will unite five events in the city, bringing together diverse partners from civil society, gastronomy, local businesses, art and music.

On the occasion of COP 23, Bonn will not only perform as part of the “venue-host” team supporting UNFCCC and the incoming Fijian COP 23 Presidency, but also as a valuable platform and partner to Climate Action!

Mayors Summit
Ashok Sridharan, as Mayor of Bonn and First Vice President of ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability, has invited to a Climate Summit of Local and Regional leaders, to be held in Bonn on 12 November, parallel to COP 23. The summit is co-hosted by the City of Bonn and the State of North Rhine-Westphalia, with support from the German Federal Government. It will be organized in partnership with the UNFCCC Secretariat, UN and EU institutions, as well as all major networks and initiatives of local and regional governments.

The Summit will serve as a platform to highlight the commitment of local and regional leaders and will offer a unique opportunity to announce new initiatives and strategic coalitions to the global community at COP 23. A number of special side events and gatherings will be organized before and after the Summit.

Source: Bonn International Newsletter, 13.09.2017