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Home  >  News  >  Faith Groups Present COP26 Demands


Faith Groups Present COP26 Demands

Wednesday November 3 2021

Picture: Lutheran World Federation

Representatives of faith movements from around the world gathered in Glasgow last night to present their demands for climate justice at the start of the COP26 climate conference.

More than 150,000 actions, including petition signatures and prayer boats, were gathered together at St George’s Tron Church, alongside statements from religious leaders and young climate activists.

Sally Foster-Fulton, Head of Christian Aid Scotland, said: “As Glasgow welcomes COP26, the decisions by world leaders will define the shape and sustainability of the dear green place we all share. We in the faith community stand together against the climate crisis, demanding ambitious action and praying for lasting change.”

This event brought together multi-faith representatives to make collective demands of political leaders at COP26.

These demands include calling on governments to: 

  • Put in place legislation and policies that will limit warming to 1.5C and achieve global net zero emissions;
  • Deliver on existing climate finance commitments without delay and provide new and additional finance for people already experiencing the worst impacts of climate change;
  • Shift investment from fossil fuels to sustainable renewable energy; 
  • Reaffirm and respect obligations to protect and respect human rights, including in particular the rights of Indigenous peoples, women and local communities in climate action;
  • Recognize human-induced climate change and biodiversity as part of one and the same crisis and implement solutions to climate change based on locally-led ecosystem preservation and restoration and protection of biodiversity;
  • Listen to those on the front line of the crisis and make sure their voices are at the heart of climate talks and decision making.

Jen Morris of the Young Christian Climate Network said: “The climate crisis is both a symptom and a cause of global injustice, with the world’s poorest paying the heaviest price for the actions of the richest. YCCN is calling on the UK government to put people before bank balances and use its role as hosts of COP26 to push for urgent action on climate finance.”

Also at COP26:

Tonight (Wednesday) at 7.30pm, the writer and activist Ruth Valerio, Tearfund's Global Advocacy and Influencing Director, will speak at the Renfield Centre, Bath Street.

Tomorrow night (Thursday November 4) at 7pm there will be a vigil in Glasgow Cathedral, led by John Bell and Jo Love of the Wild Goose Resource Centre / Iona Community.

Glasgow Churches Together have a daily guide to faith and spirituality events here.

Adrian Shaw, Eco-Congregation Scotland volunteer and the Church of Scotland's former climate change officer, has blogged his first impressions.

Around 40 faith communities, students and staff from across Scotland have contributed patches to Edinburgh University's New College for the 'Art for the Planet' installation. The installation consists of two 22-metre banners, made from patches of natural and recycled materials on the theme of Creation Care, and are hung from the New College towers to show support for climate justice.

The Presbytery of Glasgow, in association with Glasgow Churches Together and Interfaith Scotland is offering a confidential Chaplaincy/Pastoral Support Service for all those in Glasgow for COP26. This service can be accessed by calling +44 [0] 7947 4548 942

Read more about COP26 and how the churches are responding in Life and Work’s free digital supplement.

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