Regional Partnership worldwide

Under2 Coalition

 Map of the Under2 Coalition members and supporters of the Under2 MOU
The map shows the members of the Under2 Coalition (blue), national endorsements (blue), cities and local governments (dots) supporting the Under2 Coalition.

The Under2 Coalition is a network at the subnational level, which represents states, provinces, regions and cities from six continents with a joint commitment to an ambitious climate protection policy. Since its inception, the Under2 Coalition has acquired more and more members. The number of states and regions that have signed the Under2 Memorandum of Understanding (Under2 MOU) exceeds now 170. The Under2 Coalition thus represents more than 1.75 billion people from more than 40 countries on six continents and about 50 percent of the global economy.

„This is the most ambitious commitment made to date from states and provinces worldwide. It could be a game changer.“
Ban Ki-moon, former Secretary-General of the UN

This article provides an overview of the objectives and contents of the Under2 Coalition, the background and the development of the alliance, the role of Baden-Württemberg and of the different projects of the coalition.

Purpose and intent

The basis of the Under2 Coalition is a signed memorandum of understanding (Under2 MOU) drawn up by California and Baden-Württemberg in advance of the UN Climate Change Conference in Paris (COP 21) in 2015. It contains the central targets of the coalition and represents the fundament for further cooperation of the members. It builds on existing international agreements of the subnational level such the Montreal Declaration (2005), the Cancún Statement (2010) and the Lyon Declaration (2011) as well as the Rio Declaration (1992) and the Paris Agreement (2015).

In the course of 2021, the Under2 MOU was revised by the members of the Steering Group and aligned with the 1.5 degree target of the Paris Agreement, taking into account the latest scientific findings. It will now be successively signed by the members in the new version.

The following fold-out box provides an insight into the Under2 MOU. You can also find out where the name “Under2” stems from:

Background and Development of the Under2 Coalition

In the past, the United Nations Climate Change Conferences were dominated exclusively by nation states as Parties to the convention or signatory states. Jurisdictions at the subnational level did not play an active role. However, a growing number of states, regions and cities were unsatisfied with this status and looked for ways to take an active part in international climate protection.

States and regions are in many cases responsible for the development and implementation of policies that have the largest impact on the climate. They have authority over fields such as air quality, transportation, energy, the built environment, or research and technology. According to the United Nations Development Programme, regional and local governments can influence 50 to 80 percent of greenhouse gas emissions.

As a signatory of the Under2 MOU, Baden-Württemberg joined other regions in sending out a clear message to the public at the UN Climate Change Conference in Paris in 2015 and subsequent climate conferences. Baden-Württemberg and California successfully drew attention to the role of subnational governments in climate protection.

Now participation at the subnational level is seen as critically import to the success of the Paris Climate Agreement. However, many efforts were required for this to come about:

November 30th
COP28 in Dubai
September 18th 2023
Climate Week New York
June 2023
International climate protection meeting of the Under2 Coalition in Brussels
6th to 20th November 2022
COP27 in Sharm el-Sheikh
7th November 2021
General Assembly during COP26 in Glasgow
May 2021
Newly appointed Global Ambassador from Baden-Württemberg
May 2020
Five year anniversary of the Under2 Coalition
8th December 2019
COP25 in Madrid: General Assembly
7th of October 2019
Meeting in Brussels
23rd to 29th of September 2019
Climate Week in New York
22nd and 23rd May 2019
ICCA2019 in Heidelberg
11th December 2018
COP24 in Katowice
12th September 2018
General assembly at GCAS
12th to 14th September 2018
Global Climate Action Summit in San Francisco (GCAS)
30th of May 2018
Meeting in Brussels
17th of May 2018
New office at EU
11th December 2017
UN climate conference in Bonn
20th September 2017
Climate Week in New York
14th September 2017
Summer Academy in Berlin
14th of June 2017
Jerry Brown is appointed as special advisor for states and regions
7th June 2017
Christiana Figueres is appointed as first Global Ambassador
1st of June 2017
US withdrawal from the Paris Agreement
14th September 2016
COP22 in Marrakesch
19th to 21st September 2016
Climate Week in New York
1st and 2nd June 2016
Clean Energy Ministerial in San Francisco
25th April 2016
Panel discussion in Brussels
9th December 2015
COP21 in Paris
December 2015
The Climate Group
26th October 2015
EXPO in Milano
24th September 2015
Climate Week in New York
1st July 2015
16th June 2015
Governors‘ Climate and Forests Task Force in Barcelona
19th May 2015
The first signatories
7th July 2014
Foundation of the Under2 Coalition
COP28 in Dubai
COP28 in Dubai (from left): Gabriel Souza, Vice Governor of Rio Grande del Sul (Brazil), Gillian Ertel, Senior Program Manager, North America, The Climate Group, Liane Randolph, Chair of the California Air Resources Board (USA), Wade Crowfoot , Secretary for Natural Resources in California (USA), Humza Yousaf, First Minister of Scotland (Great Britain), Kim Tae-heum, Governor of Chungcheongnam-do Province, (South Korea), Thekla Walker, Minister for Environment, Climate and Energy Baden- Württemberg (Germany)


The world climate conference COP28 took place in Dubai from November 30th to December 12th, 2023. The main results of this year's COP were:

  • “Global Stocktake” (GST): For the first time, a global inventory was created as to whether the greenhouse gas reductions promised so far are sufficient to achieve the 1.5° degree target and which “gaps” still need to be filled to achieve this. The result of the “Global Stocktake” was that humanity is heading towards an increase in the global average temperature of 2.1 to 2.8 degrees if all of the states’ current voluntary commitments are implemented. According to the final document, in order to further reduce global warming, a “comprehensive, rapid and sustainable reduction in global greenhouse gas emissions” of 43 percent by 2030 and 60 percent by 2035 compared to 2019 levels is required. By 2050, net carbon dioxide emissions should be zero (Number 27 in the final document).
  • “Loss and Damage” compensation fund for poorer countries: So far, these countries have only received financial resources for adapting to the climate crisis and for projects to reduce emissions - but not for damage and losses. The fund is based at the World Bank for a transitional period. At the start of the conference, Germany and the United Arab Emirates each pledged 100 million dollar for the fund (as of December 12, 2023: a total of around 800 million dollar).
  • Triple global renewable energy capacity by 2030
  • Doubling energy efficiency by 2030
  • Attempt to find a common position on ending the use of fossil fuels

Until the final declaration was passed, the last point was the main issue. It is an achievement that such wording was included in the final document. The call to triple renewable energy capacity by 2030 is also welcome. In the same period, energy efficiency is to be doubled.

The next world climate conference COP29 will take place from November 11th to November 22nd, 2024 in Baku/Azerbaijan.

Activities of the Under2 Coalition

The Under2 Coalition has not only set itself ambitious targets, it also implements climate action. For this purpose, three workstreams have been defined:

  • 2050 Pathways: Members support each other in drafting long-term decarbonisation strategies with a time horizon until 2050.
  • Policy Action: By sharing experiences and implementing concrete projects, the Under2 Coalition spreads best practices, innovative solutions and lessons learned around the globe.
  • Transparency: Regional governments are supported to accurately and adequately record and report their greenhouse gas emissions. This way, they can review and improve their climate mitigation and adaptation measures.

The following fold-out box includes further information on the different workstreams and the project work. It also contains information on the Future Fund of the Under2 Coalition.


Anke Obenland-Spyra
Phone: 0049 711 126-1851


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