Hundreds of Mayors Will Be in Boston this Weekend for Annual Conference

Mayor Marty Walsh will host at least 244 municipal leaders from across the country and around the world in a series of talks. Special attention will be paid to climate change.

Photo via Mayor’s Office/Jeremiah Robinson

They may lead Houston, Baltimore, Providence, and any number of other cities across the country, but for a few days, the nation’s mayors will call Boston home—and Mayor Marty Walsh isn’t letting the chance to address an audience of his peers pass him by.

At least 244 municipal leaders are expected to descend upon the Hub from Thursday thru Monday for a series of discussions and workshops on everything from opioids to community colleges. And though the U.S. Conferences of Mayors’ annual meeting will focus on a broad swath of policy issues, the first day of talks will be devoted to one topic: climate change.

Boston will host the International Mayors Climate Summit at Boston University with an eye toward affecting local and global environmental progress on Thursday. Former Secretary of State John Kerry and Gina McCarthy, who served as Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency during President Obama’s second term, will address the mayors. And, according to the Boston Globe, Mayor Walsh intends to announce a new, cross-city effort to buy renewable energy.

“Climate change and climate resiliency is not a city issue, it’s a nationwide issue,” Walsh told the Globe. “And any time we can partner with other cities and towns, it’s important for us to do so.”

The initiative—through which Boston will partner with cities including Los Angeles, Chicago, and Portland, Oregon—aims to encourage communities to go green despite a federal turn away from renewable resources. By joining with other municipalities, leaders will, the logic goes, be able to buy more green resources and encourage the production of efficient energy, according to the Globe.

The annual mayors’ conference, which follows the environmental summit, will include panels focusing on municipal economic resources, housing affordability, infrastructure, and more.