In April 2021, the United States and Canada launched a new global effort—the Greening Government Initiative (GGI)—to engage and support governments around the world in greening national government operations. This first-of-its-kind international community of practice will enable countries to share knowledge and lessons learned, promote innovation, and help meet Paris Agreement commitments.
The Greening Government Initiative serves as a platform for country representatives to share information and best practices, showcase innovation and success, and develop collaborative relationships with one another to accelerate national efforts to green national government operations and build climate resilience in the public sector.
Government operations are an important area for emphasis because in many countries, the government is the largest real estate holder, fleet owner, electricity consumer, and purchaser of goods and services. Government decarbonization efforts not only have direct emissions impacts, but also send demand signals that can spur economy-wide actions, drive zero-carbon technologies and markets, lower decarbonization costs, and demonstrate leadership by example.
Common areas of interest for GGI participants include activities such as increasing government's use of renewable energy, transitioning national government buildings and fleets to net-zero emissions, enhancing the resilience of government buildings, establishing governmental sustainable procurement policies, and identifying nature-based solutions.
All countries are invited to participate in GGI. To be considered a GGI participating country, a country representative may endorse the GGI Concept Note by sending confirmation of endorsement to GGI@ceq.eop.gov.
|Date||Meeting Topic and Readout|
|September 22, 2021||Approaches to Greening National Government Operations|
|January 19, 2022||Sustainable Public Procurement|
|April 20, 2022||Carbon-Free Electricity|
|June 22, 2022||Climate Adaptation and Resilience|
|September 20, 2022||National Government Net-Zero Emissions Vehicle Fleets|
|January 2023||Achieving Higher Levels of Sustainability across Government-Owned and Government-Leased Facilities|
The Greening Government Initiative (GGI) is an international community of practice that was launched by the Governments of the United States and Canada, in April 2021. GGI is a new initiative that enables countries to exchange information, promote innovation, and share best practices in order to green government operations and help meet Paris Agreement commitments.
The scope of GGI is limited to national government operations. Greening government includes activities such as increasing government's use of renewable energy, transitioning national government buildings and fleets to net-zero emissions, enhancing the resilience of government buildings, and establishing governmental sustainable procurement policies, and identifying nature-based solutions. We welcome input from participating countries on topics that will help them green their government operations.
The efforts of GGI are related to, but separate from efforts such as nationally determined contributions (NDCs) or Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which focus on sectors beyond government operations. While greening government strategies may contribute to achievement of NDCs and other goals, such as SDGs, they are not a focus of GGI's activities.
Through this effort, we seek to:
This initiative builds a community of practice for leaders and teams directly responsible for national government sustainability operations. The title will vary depending on government's organization.
There will be up to four sessions organized each year for countries to share ongoing efforts, present initiatives, discuss new ways to work together, and help each other recognize and address challenges involved in the process of greening national government operations. Ahead of these sessions, there will be opportunities to suggest ideas, initiatives, challenges or other topics of interest to the community. As a community of practice, we also expect that governments will elect to collaborate on a bilateral basis as the United States and Canada has done over the past six years. We hope all nations will participate in bringing ideas to the group. Email GGI@ceq.eop.gov if you are interested in speaking at or attending future meetings.
All countries can participate in GGI. Governments are working to address common challenges to green their own government operations, GGI simply brings them together. Country representatives are being asked to endorse the Concept Note to be considered participants.
There is no commitment required other than sharing and learning from others through GGI activities. There is no expectation for financial commitments or setting new goals. The GGI is intended to be a forum where government sustainability leaders navigating similar issues can engage in conversation to support best practices and further national objectives.
Participation is expected to be broad as all national governments face challenges in greening their operations. Governments who elected participation between the Climate Week September 22, 2021, formal launch and November 2021 COP26 ministerial are considered inaugural participants. Other government participants will be welcomed on a rolling basis.
GGI is a forum to share best practices, learn from colleagues and discover relevant tools and strategies to advance government sustainability agendas. There is, however, no funding available through this Initiative.