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COP20 - calling for a fair and ambitious global climate deal

2 December 2014 | by Fran Witt

Climate change is hitting the world’s poorest first and worst. To help the most vulnerable, we urgently need a fair and ambitious global climate deal.

People gather for the Fast for the Climate vigil

People gathering for the Fast for the Climate vigil on 30 November

Christian Aid staff and partners will be calling for this over the next two weeks (1-12 December) as world leaders meet at the UN climate talks (COP20) in Lima.

They aim to build a foundation strong enough to support a new climate agreement in Paris in December 2015.

China, the US and the EU recently unveiled climate action plans, lending a sense of political momentum to the talks. Nearly $9.6 billion has been raised in climate finance pledges.

But governments can’t afford to ignore calls to scale up their transition from dirty fossil fuels to renewable energy.

Commitments to act

Over the next six months, every country will put forward specific climate action commitments.

COP20 needs to provide clarity on what these commitments should be, how long they should last, and ensure that the commitments made are the strongest a country has to offer.

To remind governments of their responsibility to act, the Christian Aid contingent in Lima joined thousands of others in the world’s biggest global climate fast on the first day of COP20.

On the eve of the fast, they gathered on the streets for a candlelit vigil to reflect on those who have already lost their homes, lives and livelihoods to climate change. 

Fasting for action on climate change

People holding a candlelit vigil

The candlelit vigil

Fast for the Climate is a global movement made up of representatives from youth, environmental and faith groups who fast on the first day of every month to call for urgent action on climate change.

The movement began at the UN climate talks last year as Yeb Saño – the Climate Commissioner from the Philippines – said he would not eat during the conference until the countries present acted to stop the climate crisis.

Since then, people from all over the world have fasted in solidarity with him every month.

Our aims

For the rest of the two weeks, we – together with the ACT Alliance – will continue to campaign for:

1. Adaptation: support for the world’s poor to adapt to the impact of climate change.

2. Low carbon development: states to fulfil their responsibility to reduce emissions and promote environmentally sustainable development.

3. Finance: new, additional and adequate finance to support climate change adaptation and mitigation.

4. Equity: fair commitments from all countries based on their contribution to climate change.

For more information about what we’re calling for, check out our briefing. Otherwise, watch this space for weekly updates of COP20 activities!

About the author

Frances Witt

Frances Witt is international advocacy adviser for Christian Aid

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