COP27: UN climate talks start in Egypt
6 November 2022
The COP27 climate conference has started in Egypt with calls for leaders to act after a year in which the destruction caused by the climate crisis has become even more stark.
Communities and campaigners around the world are urging negotiators attending the UN climate talks in Sharm El Sheikh to set up and contribute to a fund to support communities hardest hit by the climate crisis.
The summit comes 12 months after leaders left Glasgow at the end of COP26, where governments took some steps to move away from fossil fuels but failed to commit to the deep and rapid emissions cuts required to keep global temperature rises below the catastrophic 1.5C threshold
The COP27 conference will take place between 6-18 November 2022.
Action needed after year of climate disasters
The need for governments to act has been made even more urgent after a year in which millions of families have been pushed to the brink of starvation in East Africa and millions in Pakistan have lost homes and livelihoods to monumental floods.
Campaigners are demanding rich countries commit at COP27 to set up and contribute towards a 'loss and damage fund', meaning the countries that have historically polluted the most provide financial support to countries that have contributed least to the climate crisis but are being hardest hit.
CAFOD supporters are calling for the UK government to reiterate its commitment to ending support for fossil fuels overseas and put an end to further fossil fuel support domestically - including new oil and gas drilling in the North Sea - as well as to commit to measures to tackle the role the global food system has in driving the climate crisis.
Polling undertaken ahead of COP27 shows that a majority of people in the UK feel the government must do more to tackle the climate crisis.
The poll, conducted by YouGov on behalf of CAFOD, showed that nearly six out of 10 people feel the government has done too little to tackle the climate emergency.
Leaders must 'seize opportunity' to care for our common home
Ramiro García, Director of Urban Programmes at DESCO, a civil society organisation CAFOD works with in Peru, said his hopes for the Egypt summit were that “the voice of the populations that have been affected by the impacts of climate change can be heard. But above all, that they are heard so that their demands are converted into concrete measures of action”.
“The holding of COP27 on the African continent is a scenario for solidarity and fraternity of peoples, as it is a continent where colonialism and the exploitation of natural resources has enriched the countries of the North for many years, so we ask (as we have previously stated) to move towards global climate justice.
“This is fundamental for the peoples who have historically been exploited to demand the justice that was denied to them in the past and that needs to be addressed in the present, so that we are not all left without a future.”
Bishop John Arnold, Chair of CAFOD, said:
“The environment cannot be isolated from our relationship with God. We are blessed with stewardship over the earth, but with this comes the responsibility to protect our planet and preserve it for future generations.
“For too long, we have been reliant on fossil fuels which are causing devastation to communities around the world.
"As the world’s eyes descend on COP27, I pray the government and world leaders will seize this opportunity and invest in renewable energy so we can protect our planet for future generations."
How to campaign for climate action at COP27
There are various ways we can campaign to call for leaders to act at COP27 - whether it's sending a message to ministers, taking to the streets to demand action or praying for leaders as they gather in Egypt.