Consistent representation on A List shows climate action is the new norm for many cities, including in Global South

New cities in Global South – including Indonesia, Türkiye and Vietnam – on A List for first time

47 new cities (40% of total group) on 2023 A List

Highest ever number of UK, Brazilian, Filipino and Turkish cities on A List

Top ranking cities report four times as many mitigation and adaptation actions as non-A List cities

119 cities from across the world have been named as leaders in environmental action and transparency in 2023 by CDP. The cities, many of which are returning to the ‘A List’, show that action to tackle climate change is becoming mainstream for many of the world’s urban areas, including in the Global South.

The sixth annual Cities A List published by CDP – the non-profit which runs the world’s environmental disclosure system for companies, cities, states and regions – celebrates cities that, through transparency, ambition and bold action to tackle climate change, are recognized as global environmental leaders.

This year, 939 cities reporting through CDP-ICLEI Track were scored by CDP, with 13% of them receiving an A. Spanning every continent, as well as large and small urban areas, cities on the 2023 A List include Barcelona (Spain), Denver (USA), Mexico City (Mexico), Cape Town (South Africa), Quezon City (the Philippines), and Canberra (Australia).

With recent CDP data showing that 80% of cities are facing climate hazards (such as heatwaves and floods), and with 70% expecting those hazards to become more intense, concerted climate action from cities is crucial.

Many cities are building on the momentum in their environmental action, making it mainstream to their operations. This is reflected in the growing number of cities that are consistently receiving an ‘A’, despite the fact that the criteria to score an A have tightened. This is also noticeable in the Global South, with cities in Ecuador, Peru and Jordan receiving their second ever A; cities in Chile and Malaysia receiving their third A; and cities in Argentina and South Africa receiving their sixth A. Two fifths of cities (40%, or 47 cities) are new to the A List this year, with the Global South being well represented again – Istanbul (Türkiye), Jakarta (Indonesia), Bogotá (Colombia) and Can Tho (Vietnam – the first time the country has appeared on the A List) – all receive their first A.

Moreover, continuing the strong environmental performance of Global South cities, a number of countries have received their highest ever number of A List cities. These include Brazil (3), Colombia (2), The Philippines (2) and Türkiye (2).

Europe is the region with the largest share of cities (48) on the 2023 A List. North America has the next highest number of cities (42) on the A List, followed by Latin America (11), Asia (8), Oceania (6), the Middle East (3) and Africa (1).


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The USA has the most A List cities of any one country (35), from Los Angeles to Philadelphia. Meanwhile, the UK has continued the steady rise in the number of its local authorities on the A List, from 19 in 2022 to 26 in 2023. New cities include Birmingham, Brighton & Hove and Cambridge.


“2023 will be remembered as the year when centuries-long climate records weren’t just broken, but smashed, in mere days and weeks. While cities around the world felt the full force of the year’s climate disasters, from heatwaves to floods, it’s positive that many are leading by example in tackling climate change with tangible action.

“Today, we are delighted to celebrate the 119 cities, from Lima to London, whose effective action makes them global climate leaders. Even more encouragingly, this is not the first time that many – including from the Global South – are on CDP’s A List, showing that serious climate action is now mainstream for many of the world’s cities.

“This is no time for complacency, though. Cities not reporting environmental data must step up their transparency, while many more need to accelerate their efforts to reach net-zero and create a more sustainable future for all, especially the most vulnerable.”

-Maia Kutner, CDP Director of Cities, States and Regions



| City climate leadership in action

A List cities are demonstrating their climate leadership through tangible and effective action.

For example, CDP analysis shows that renewable energy use is rising amongst A List cities, with some cities reporting that renewable energy makes up the vast majority of their energy consumption, such as San Francisco (84%), Quito (86%) and Trondheim (91%).

CDP analysis also shows A List cities report taking four times as many mitigation and adaptation measures as non-A List cities. For example:

In Lima, the Nestlé company donates its treated wastewater produced in its waste water treatment plant. 21,000 cubic meters of treated water are reused for the irrigation of green areas each year, irrigating 9% of the green areas of Peru’s capital.

Guadalajara has 38 100% electric buses that are part of the first completely electric route of transport units in Mexico.

Cape Town is developing a number of small, city-owned renewable-energy generation installations at its own buildings and facilities. The city is installing approximately 1.5 MW of solar panels at municipal facilities in 2023, with an additional 5MW planned for installation between 2024 and 2026.

Five of Istanbul’s municipal Sea Taxis are electric-hybrid, the first electric vehicles used in the city’s maritime transportation.

Paris is mobilizing citizens, with nearly 27,000 Climate Volunteers who participate in information meetings and training sessions, spread mitigation and adaptation awareness and knowledge in their communities and promote sustainable practices.

Since 2019, Oslo has restored 260 acres of bogs, which prevent flooding and absorb water runoff. It plans to develop nature-based solutions and restore at least one bog a year going forward, in collaboration with national nature management authorities.

Since 2009, over 71.5 million litres of stormwater – equal to 8,850 Olympic-sized swimming pools – have been diverted from Toronto’s sewer system by over 500,000 m² green roofs funded through the city’s Eco-Roof Incentive Program. Toronto has more green roofs installed per year than the rest of Canada combined.

Denver’s Single-Use Accessory Restriction Ordinance requires all retail food establishments to provide single-use service ware only upon request by a customer, to drastically reduce the amount of condiments, plastic silverware, and straws used.

Can Tho in Vietnam will replace 30,579 current high-voltage street lamps with LED lights; and create 381 smart light poles.

Quezon City in the Philippines has heavily invested in Early Warning Systems (EWS) and Automated Weather Stations. These are strategically placed in hazard-prone districts of the city to issue timely, localized advice to identified, at-risk communities which are most impacted by tropical storm and flooding.

Adelaide has a sustainable supply of up to 1.1 billion litres of recycled water a year to maintain green open spaces, trees, ornamental water bodies and public amenities, a long-term solution reducing dependency on other fresh water sources.

As part of the Charged Up Capital Programme, Wellington is installing around 60 electric vehicle fast chargers across 30 public locations around the city by June 2025.

A digital twin of the City of London’s famous ‘Square Mile’ was created to determine the areas most vulnerable to heat stress and flooding impacts. To mitigate these impacts, intervention measures will be implemented on existing buildings.

Sunderland is installing living roofs on 90 bus shelters across the city to enhance local biodiversity. Nicknamed ‘Bee Bus Stops’, the living roofs sit atop shelters made of recycled materials and are planted with a mix of native wildflower species to support bees and other pollinators, whose numbers are declining. The living roofs also help provide natural cooling to counteract the effects of ‘urban heat islands’, absorb rainwater to alleviate flooding, and filter fine dust particles from the air.


| about

CDP is a global non-profit that runs the world’s environmental disclosure system for companies, cities, states and regions. Founded in 2000 and working with more than 740 financial institutions with over $130 trillion in assets, CDP pioneered using capital markets and corporate procurement to motivate companies to disclose their environmental impacts, and to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, safeguard water resources and protect forests. Nearly 20,000 organizations around the world disclosed data through CDP in 2022, including more than 18,700 companies worth half of global market capitalization, and over 1,100 cities, states and regions. Fully TCFD aligned, CDP holds the largest environmental database in the world, and CDP scores are widely used to drive investment and procurement decisions towards a zero carbon, sustainable and resilient economy. CDP is a founding member of the Science Based Targets initiative, We Mean Business Coalition, The Investor Agenda and the Net Zero Asset Managers initiative. Visit or follow us @CDP to find out more.


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