More than 20,000 people from 195 countries will gather next month in the remote town of Sharm el-Sheik, Egypt for the Conference of the Parties of the UNFCCC (COP) 27 climate summit. Among them will be two third-year biology students from Trinity Western University (TWU) intent on doing their part to help the world.
Rea Klar and Sarah Demian’s official status as observers will allow them to help influence negotiators, report back to their students and others in B.C., as well as further mobilize for climate action.
Klar is originally from Williams Lake, and Demian is from Chilliwack – both are active members of the environmental club at TWU and recently met with mayoral candidates in Langley to discuss local climate action.
As observers, both women will be officially representing the Christian Reformed Church of North America as part of the Christian Climate Observers Program (CCOP2022).
Klar said that she is attending COP27 because “my generation will face the worst of the repercussions of global warming and so, it’s incredible that I get to educate myself through attending COP27. I get to build relationships of a lifetime with like-minded individuals from around the world and learn more about the direction we are heading globally regarding the climate crisis. Above all, I feel strongly called by God to be a steward of His glorious creations.”
Demian’s hope for COP27 is “to see some sort of global change to reach climate action goals. The climate crisis is serious, and too many people don’t realize that we need to act now. I’d love to see observers at COP27 share tangible steps for people to adopt in their own routines, but I’d also like to see world leaders making changes in their countries as a result of what was shared at COP27.”
Egypt is the host of COP27, scheduled from Monday, Nov. 7 to Friday, Nov. 18, in the Red Sea resort town of Sharm el-Sheik.
On the COP27 agenda:
1. Important preparations for the first ‘global stocktake’ – a process for taking stock of the implementation of the Paris Agreement – scheduled for 2023 when the nations will report on the progress of their carbon reduction targets.
2. Nations delivering more ambitious emission reduction plans, called Nationally Determined Contributions, or NDCs, to better align with what scientists say is required to prevent no more than a 1.5°C (2.7°F) average global warming.
3. Developed nations fully honouring commitments they have made to finance mitigation and adaption projects in developing nations.
4. Conducting a good-faith discussion toward actual plans on loss and damage (compensation to low-emitting countries for irreparable damage from climate change).
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