Press releases

New tool to track initiatives to reduce greenhouse gas emissions

Published: 15/10/2015

Joint press release by Ecofys, the Nordic Council of Ministers and University of Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership

London/Copenhagen/Cambridge, 15 October 2015 – As the world is working on solutions to tackle climate change, the Climate Initiatives Platform, a new online database, allows users to track initiatives that aim at solving the challenges we presently face. The more than 180 climate initiatives embedded in the tool have the potential to be significant on a global scale and include more than twenty thousand participants.

It is widely acknowledged that the greenhouse gas emissions reduction pledges made by national governments are insufficient to achieve what is required by science to avoid dangerous levels of global warming. In parallel to the formal climate negotiations, a multitude of international climate initiatives involving actors such as cities, companies and NGOs are now engaging in efforts to address the growing emissions gap. There are high aspirations that these initiatives will catalyse non-state climate action. Climate initiatives not only deliver emission reductions, they also play an important role in bridging the emissions gap through strengthening and raising ambition of national government commitments.

Wikipedia for emissions gap

The most current and comprehensive publically available collection of information on such initiatives can now be found in the database commissioned by the Nordic Council of Ministers and developed by Ecofys with support from the University of Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership and the World Resource Institute. The database includes details of more than 180 mitigation-focused initiatives, involving more than twenty thousand participants. These initiatives have the potential for impact at the global scale. The database can be accessed login-free at As of fall 2015 the database is being updated in order to present the most recent data and developments during COP21 in Paris. On 1 January 2016, the database will be transferred to the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) to allow for regular maintenance of the database, while simultaneously raising its profile.

Additionally, one of the project objectives s to strengthen (existing) and seed (new) climate initiatives which will generally contribute to more action globally on climate change mitigation. The Nordic countries have a very strong brand in providing solutions, including technology and services, for mitigation. The project would provide an avenue for good so called International Cooperative Initiatives (ICIs) to inform on their performance and thereby facilitate prospects for replication and additional financing.

The project also makes recommendations for continuing support for and increased use of the database to inform negotiators and other stakeholders. The report is available for download at

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Ecofys – Experts in Energy
Established in 1984 with the mission of achieving “sustainable energy for everyone”, Ecofys has become the leading expert in renewable energy, energy & carbon efficiency, energy systems & markets as well as energy & climate policy. The unique synergy between those areas of expertise is the key to its success. Ecofys creates smart, effective, practical and sustainable solutions for and with public and corporate clients all over the world. With offices in Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany, the United Kingdom, and the US, Ecofys employs over 200 experts dedicated to solving energy and climate challenges. — Follow us on Twitter: @Ecofys

Yvonne Offermann
Press Office Ecofys
T: +49 221 270 70 110

Nordic co-operation
The Nordic Council of Ministers is the forum for Nordic governmental co-operation. They represent one of the world’s most extensive forms of regional collaboration, involving Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, and the Faroe Islands, Greenland, and Åland. — Follow us on Twitter: @Nordic_Climate

Johannes Magnus
Communication adviser
Nordic Council of Ministers
T: +45 21 71 71 27

About the Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL)
For 800 years, the University of Cambridge has fostered leadership, ideas and innovations that have benefited and transformed societies. The University now has a critical role to play to help the world respond to a singular challenge: how to provide for as many as nine billion people by 2050 within a finite envelope of land, water and natural resources, whilst adapting to a warmer, less predictable climate.

Within the University, the Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL) empowers business and policy leaders to make the necessary adjustments to their organisations, industries and economic systems in light of this challenge. By bringing together multidisciplinary researchers with influential business and policy practitioners across the globe, it fosters an exchange of ideas across traditional boundaries to generate new, solutions-oriented thinking. CISL’s latest initiative, Rewiring the Economy, was launched by The Prince of Wales in July 2015. ­­— Follow us on Twitter: @CISL_Cambridge

Sylvain Biville
Media & Communications
University of Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership
T: +44 7771 894 345