Earlier today, Swedish climate-action technology company ClimateView announced that it has made certain parts of its ClimateOS platform available to cities free of charge. ClimateView says the technology will help cities develop strategies to cut their greenhouse gas emissions in line with Paris Agreement commitments. Microsoft and environmental nonprofit Carbon Disclosure Project are partners in the initiative and will promote ClimateOS through their networks.
Describing the platform, ClimateView wrote,
“It creates a digital twin city, reflecting the complexity of each city’s unique economy, and models the impact of dozens of separate low-carbon transitions across a range of sectors.”
The specific part of the ClimateOS platform ClimateView is offering gratis is the “critical analysis functionality,” which allows cities to comprehensively assess the emissions of each sector of their economies, including transport, buildings, industry, energy and waste. The “digital city” function then allows cities to model their economies and explore the impact of multiple carbon-cutting initiatives and how they interact. Cities then choose a combination of initiatives that best suits their local circumstances to cut emissions while maintaining a healthy economy. The technology will also monitor the progress of each city and provide updates on how fast it needs to reduce emissions to stay on track to meet its Paris Agreement commitment. By supplying the best available data, ClimateOS frees up time for cities to focus on strategy, reduces the risk of errors, and makes it easy to compile and disclose emissions data.
ClimateView provides the following example of how its technology may facilitate decarbonization:
“The ClimateOS Analysis toolkit will allow cities…to navigate the complexity of their transition by breaking down their citywide economy into 80 manageable transition elements. Each represents a shift to a low-carbon way of meeting a specific need, such as moving from petrol and diesel cars to electric vehicles. Cities can then plan actions to drive each shift, such as subsidising EV purchases and building charging infrastructure.”
Optional paid upgrades include,
- The ClimateOS Collaboration toolkit, which gives access to multiple users across different city departments, providing a single platform on which they can manage their transition to a net zero economy, integrating targets, plans and budgets. This encourages collaboration and decision-making at speed and scale. It also provides interactive tools and dashboards that help build broad support for action, allowing a range of stakeholders to understand and engage with the strategy.
- The ClimateOS Implementation toolkit, currently in beta testing, which will help cities make the business case for action and secure investment. It will enable them to identify the costs of each of the numerous shifts they can take to cut emissions – from encouraging uptake of EVs to retrofitting old buildings to make them more energy efficient – and their co-benefits, such as better health through cleaner air and warmer homes.
More than 35 cities in seven countries — The United States, The United Kingdom, Germany, Switzerland, Sweden, Spain, and Canada — are already using the ClimateOS platform. Given that national governments are not on track to meet their climate targets, subnational governments, such as states and cities, must pick up the slack if the world is to to keep global warming under 1.5 degrees Celsius. Speaking on the subject, UN Secretary General Antonio Gutteres commented,
“Cities are where the climate battle will largely be won or lost.” He added, “The choices that will be made on urban infrastructure in the coming decades — on construction, housing, energy efficiency, power generation and transport — will have tremendous influence on the emissions curve.”
Cities are home to more than half the world’s population and generate 70% of global energy-related greenhouse gas emissions. More than 1,000 cities and local governments with a population of 722 million have already pledged to reach net-zero emissions by 2050.
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