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Young climate activists are doing their own COP26 to highlight the failure of world leaders to address the climate crisis. “Crunch negotiations aimed at fulfilling the Paris climate agreement, called Cop26, were to be hosted by the UK this November, but have been delayed by the coronavirus crisis,” reports The Guardian.

But the climate can’t wait. We have an entire year to wait until COP26 begins in Glasgow.

Mock COP26

“Frustrated by the lack of progress in addressing the climate emergency and appalled by the UK’s pallid efforts to promote the pandemic-delayed COP 26, young activists will be holding their own “Mock COP” this November,” writes The Energy Mix.

From the 19th November to the 1st December youth organizers will fill the void of the postponed COP26 with a big, inclusive online Mock COP. Following is the Press Release by MockCop.Org.

“Our Leaders Have Failed Us at Every COP. So We’re Building Our Own”: Youth Hold Virtual COP November – 01 December 2020

  • Two weeks of virtual climate talks mirroring the real COP, except run by young people, for young people. Mock COP26 is being held between 19 November – 01 December 2020, in the same time period that COP26 would have been held in Glasgow.
  • This event is being held because young people have watched world leaders squander every opportunity to act on the climate emergency and we have no confidence that COP26 will be any different.

At COP26 in 2021, young people demand that leaders match the scale of the solution to the scale of the problem. In Mock COP26, the message is clear: young people are no longer waiting to be given permission to speak, but are taking the floor themselves. “Climate leaders have slammed the door of climate negotiations in our faces. Since they won’t listen, we won’t play their game anymore. We are building our own COP”, said Dom Jaramillo from Ecuador.

COP25 failed the world. The hashtag #TimeForAction was plastered across the conference centre, but there was no ‘action’ to be found. Sofía Hernández, a young member of the COP25 Costa Rican delegation, said ‘global leaders neglected human rights- the human face of the crisis- and prioritized their economic interests’. The COVID-19 crisis has shown how fast governments can act if they want to, but they don’t treat the Climate Emergency with the same urgency, despite it being a crisis that is already causing suffering across the world, and without action will cause the death of billions. “Marginalized communities are underrepresented, or have been drowned out by the most powerful countries”, said Mitzi Jonelle Tan from the Philippines. “We demand urgency and for those being most affected by the crisis to have a seat at the table”.

3-5 delegates per country will participate in Mock COP26 and will receive targeted opportunities for education and to express their own ideas: The aim of the event is to empower young people to be able to engage with their local, national and international leaders about the Climate Emergency. At the end of the event, delegates will present a collective high-level statement to leaders, summarizing what they believe should be prioritized at COP26 in 2021. “Mock COP26 gives us – the youth- a stage to resonate our concerns”, said Prithvesh Ashok from India. “it gives us a way to put our voice out there amongst all the noise”.

The discussions will be framed around five conference themes:

• Climate Justice
• Climate Education
• Climate-resilient Livelihoods
• Health and Wellbeing
• Nationally-determined Contributions: The carbon commitments for each country or negotiating bloc

The event is being hosted by Students Organizing for Sustainability UK, with student staff members and volunteers taking the lead in organizing.

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.Creative Commons License

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