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Published on 12 November 2021

Blue zone and beyond

As COP26 enters its final phase there’s much that remains at play and the lack of funds being committed by the richer nations to reflect the loss and damage done to the most vulnerable remains a key sticking point.

And while there have been some encouraging announcements about specific issues such as methane, overall we remain way off track to make the urgent, firm, global commitments required to keep the hope of limiting warming to 1.5 degrees alive. Christian Aid’s delegates, and those of our partners, have also been deeply frustrated by the barriers to accessing COP26 faced by global civil society. 

Read our latest media statement

Faith leaders call for urgent action at COP26

Some of our own colleagues and partners did have the opportunity to meet with Scotland’s First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon this week.

The Scottish Government made the very welcome announcement that it is to further increase financial support for Climate Justice and specifically on the issue of Loss & Damage. 

Our climate justice advisor Nushrat Chowdhury from Bangladesh had this to say after meeting the First Minister earlier in the week.

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Nushrat Chowdhury and First Minister Nicola Sturgeon Credit: Colin Hattersley
Nushrat Chowdhury and First Minister Nicola Sturgeon greet each other by bumping elbows

As a climate activist, it can be hard to work on these issues, hard to get global leaders to engage. It was so refreshing to hear someone like Nicola Sturgeon talk so openly and I hope it can help others to follow suit.  Climate change loss and damage is a reality, and the emitting countries need to step up and support accordingly. This message needs to be clear. Scotland’s announcement of 3 million pounds for loss and damage is a boost up for the loss and damage finance ask.

- Nushrat Chowdhury, Christian Aid's Climate Justice Advisor .

Rising to the moment

Global Day of Action

Supporters across Scotland have been raising their voices in prayer and protest during this second week of COP26. Saturday was a very memorable day and the rain didn’t put people off coming out in force. 

Over 100,000 campaigners met in Glasgow on the Global Day of Action with many other protests happening in Elgin, Orkney, Iona and elsewhere in Scotland and around the world.

View more photos of the march on our Facebook page.

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COP26 march in Glasgow Credit: Amy Menzies/ Christian Aid
COP26 march Glasgow November 2021

The Time is Now

Glasgow Cathedral was the venue for a very special musical event on Monday night to mark the urgency of climate action with performances from gospel choir The Kingdom Choir and inspiring words from Professor Robert Beckford and our Chair Dr Rowan Williams (in his last sermon as Chair of Christian Aid).

Christian Aid is grateful to Sony Music Publishing and the Marvin Gaye estate for allowing The Kingdom Choir to perform their version of the song, especially arranged by choir member Clinton Jordan.  The original song was written by Marvin Gaye 50 years ago and is well known for its references to the climate and caring for creation (long before the climate change movement began). Conductor Karen Gibson from The Kingdom Choir says: 

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The Kingdom Choir performing at The Time is Now event Credit: Colin Hattersley
The Kingdom Choir performing at The Time is Now event

It was a privilege to be invited by Christian Aid to sing the iconic Mercy, Mercy Me during COP26, a song which feels more relevant than ever. Climate change is an issue that we cannot ignore and we were delighted to accept the invitation to be here in Glasgow during this historic climate summit and do what we do best. We hope the event has helped draw attention among diverse communities of the need for real and urgent action on climate change.

- Karen Gibson, Conductor of The Kingdom Choir.

Ecumenical service for Philanthropy  

We held an ecumenical service of Climate Justice at Sandyford Henderson Memorial Church – our base in Glasgow for the last couple of weeks. The service celebrated the resilience of Amazonian communities and indigenous peoples.  

We heard powerful messages directly from partners and affected communities about how the climate crisis is directly impacting their lives today and how we can stand in solidarity with them. 

A recording of the event will be available soon.

Amanda Mukwashi making a service for climate justice COP26

“Creation is eagerly waiting to be set free so we can stop treating it like it’s a bottomless pit. Let the glory of God manifest itself in us so we can be freed to stand in solidarity with our sisters and brothers in the Amazon for climate justice.” 

- Amanda Khozi Mukwashi, CEO, Christian Aid.

Setting sail for climate justice with the Young Christian Climate Network (YCCN)

The boat of prayers continues to attract huge attention, sailing into Glasgow Cathedral, Sandyford Henderson Memorial Church and Broomhill Hyndland Parish Church this week. The paper prayer boats are an important reminder of how we must continue to pray for COP26 decision-makers, those excluded from climate conversations and those impacted first and worst. If you would like one of the boats to visit your church please do get in touch! 

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Leanne Clealland with YCCN boat
Leanne Clealland with YCCN boat
A birds-eye view of COP26

Kathy Galloway, former Head of Christian Aid Scotland has blogged each day of COP.

BBC Songs of Praise

Finally, did you manage to see Songs of Praise on Sunday?  It’s a lovely watch.  Grab a cup of tea and see if you can spot members of the Young Christian Climate Network and the COP26 protest art which has been touring Glasgow.

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Protest Art: a Lament in Black Paint is a new exhibition visualising the impact of climate injustice on the world’s most vulnerable communities. Credit: Colin Hattersley
Kelvingrove Art Gallery

If you missed our events, you can watch them again.

You’ll find more details over on our COP26 page.

Catch up with COP26

Rewatch COP26 events and read our COP blogs.