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November 4, 2003



     Mayor Jeremy Harris will address more than 400 city government leaders from around the world this week in Athens, Greece, at the World Congress of the International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives (ICLEI).  The Mayor has been asked to speak to delegates on the success of the Mayors’ Asia-Pacific Environmental Summit, which was created by the City and County of Honolulu in 1999.

      Honolulu’s program for the Asia-Pacific region has been so successful that the International Council is considering using it as a model for global application.  For three of the last five years the Mayors’ Asia-Pacific Environmental Summit (MAPES) has brought regional urban leaders to Honolulu to share information, forge environmental partnerships, and promote sustainable development in their cities. 

      The MAPES program is a critical component of the city’s economic development effort to diversify Honolulu’s economy into knowledge and environmental technology-based industries.  Participants have hailed the Honolulu process as a way for mayors and other urban leaders to pool their knowledge in advancing the environmental health of one of the world’s most populous regions.

       In his report to the World Congress, Mayor Harris will focus on the encouraging progress that has been achieved throughout the Asia-Pacific region as a result of the Honolulu Summit process, in which mayors make specific sustainable pledges such as the expansion of wastewater treatment facilities and improvement of trash collection and recycling programs.  Some 27 cities—including Honolulu—were honored at last month’s environmental summit for meeting their most recent sustainable commitments.

       “I’m looking forward to sharing the details of our Asia-Pacific program with my international colleagues,” the Mayor said.  “Now that we’ve established the effectiveness of the Honolulu process as a vehicle for regional environmental progress, it’s time to examine its potential as a model for building sustainable cities on a global level as well.”

       ICLEI is an international environmental agency that helps local governments improve the global environment through cumulative local actions.  Member cities represent Africa, Europe, Latin America, the Middle East, and North America, as well as the Asia-Pacific region.

       Mayor Harris has been a member of the ICLEI executive committee since 2000.




Tuesday, November 04, 2003

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