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Solidarity with those most affected by the climate crisis

Why the Alliance is giving our COP27 badges to Loss and Damage campaigners and indigenous land rights defenders.

COP27 is going to be facing enormous challenges. It’s being billed as the ‘implementation COP’ and ‘the African COP’, both of which look in question at this point.

Introducing a Loss and Damage finance facility is the number one talking point for climate campaigners and it’s a key win if this is to be an implementation COP. Despite the Scottish Government’s gesture of pledging funds for Loss and Damage at COP26, global leaders failed to reach an agreement on a finance facility, and instead agreed to open a three year dialogue on the topic. With the climate crisis clearly here, right now, campaigners are calling for agreement on a facility at COP27. The Alliance conference last month discussed climate justice and the urgent need for a Loss and Damage facility, and you can hear from activists, politicians and economists all explaining what climate justice means in action and the compelling case for Loss and Damage finance here.

As for being an ‘African COP’, human rights campaigners are calling out COP27 for lack of African, and notably Egyptian civil society, representation. There are disturbing stories of Egyptian activists who were planning to protest at COP being detained. For some time, those voicing criticism to the political, economic or social conditions in Egypt have faced arrest and thousands of people have been reportedly arbitrarily detained on political grounds since 2013.

The Alliance has secured places for COP27 and, finding it hard to justify the carbon emissions and expense of travel, felt we should use these places to show solidarity with those likely to be on the harsh end of the COP27 outcomes. We had hoped to give places to civil society organisations in Egypt but recent reports indicate that even attending may put them in danger.

So we’ve chosen to give a place to the Indigenous Futures Network whose mission is to give a voice to indigenous people, particularly indigenous women. Indigenous peoples preserve 80% of the world’s remaining biodiversity in less than 25% of the world’s land, yet their views are rarely given sufficient space in policy processes. We’ve also given places to the Loss and Damage Youth Coalition and the UK Youth Climate Coalition in the hope that they can help make the case for the much needed finance facility and truly make COP27 one of implementation. Two of our places are going to representatives from Rwanda and Zambia, Scotland’s partner countries, giving more voices to the African COP.

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