What is it?

Every year the COP meets to discuss how they can work together to respond to the global challenge of climate change. This year governments and world leaders will gather in Germany between the 6th and 17th November for COP23, the 23rd (see what they did there…) annual meeting.

 

What does COP actually stand for?

Combat outpost? Canada Olympic Park?  Cost of power? Call of Pripyat? Not quite. It actually stands for ‘Conference of the Parties’ which refers to a meeting of 197 UN countries, coming together to talk about climate change.

 

Why is COP23 important?

It doesn’t maybe sound like much but COP will shape our future and our fight against poverty. We’re at the end of a year where extreme weather events have pummeled communities all over the world. There is a clear relationship between climate change and recent events in Bangladesh, Nepal and India.

Every year the COP is led by a different country and this year’s is led by the Fijians, so naturally attention will be drawn to the urgent need for progress for the most vulnerable communities. But will governments take big strides forward?

 

Why do we need to do something about climate change?

Our world is out of balance, people are being pushed further into poverty around the world because the climate is changing fast- there are more extreme droughts and floods, and less reliable rain. For many people around the world that means less to eat. So if we want to beat poverty and injustice, we need to tackle climate change and the decisions made at COP23 have the power to shift this balance.

 

What’s the Paris Agreement, and what does it have to do with COP?

A couple of years ago at COP21 in Paris, we saw governments around the world take huge steps forward by committing to the Paris Agreement – the first of its kind to unite 197 countries (almost all the countries in the world!) behind the goal of keep global temperatures well below 2 degrees.  

However, this promise is only as good as its word so this year we are joining together with Christians around the world as part of the Renew Our World campaign to ask our global leaders not to miss the opportunity to turn their paper promises into reality.

 

What can I do to support this year’s COP23?

Write to your local MP to call on the UK Government to turn their paper promises into reality for those living in poverty. You can use this handy tool to do it.

Join us in praying for COP23, we believe that the God we worship is alive and active today so sign up for an hour slot at our digital 24/7 prayer room.

 

How do I find out more about COP23?

Follow @TearfundAct for updates throughout COP23, and there’s also lots more information on the COP23 website.