The new urban politics (NUP) literature has helped to draw attention to a new generation of entrepreneurial urban regimes involved in the competition to attract investment to cities. Interurban competition often had negative environmental consequences for the urban living place. Yet knowledge of the environment was not very central to understanding the NUP. Entrepreneurial urban regimes today are struggling to deal with climate change and reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. Carbon reduction strategies could have profound implications for interurban competition and the politics of urban development. This paper explores the rise of a distinctive low-carbon urban polity-carbon control-and examines its potential ramifications for a new environmental politics of urban development (NEPUD). The NEPUD signals the growing centrality of carbon control in discourses, strategies and struggles around urban development. Using examples from cities in the US and Europe, the paper examines how these new environmental policy considerations are being mainstreamed in urban development politics. Alongside competitiveness, the management of carbon emissions represents a new yet at the same time contestable mode of calculation in urban governance.