This Conference of the Parties (COP 22) is supposed to be the COP of implementation. It is the first UN Climate Negotiations after the Paris Agreement was created, and has not gone exactly according to plan. Wednesday morning we all woke up to a surprise, a Trump presidency. No one knew exactly what happened. There was anger, tears, and confusion. However, among all these feelings, there was also a sense of community and support from the international and domestic community. There is more solidarity between countries and civil society than I have ever seem before. People here are going to fight for action on climate now, and they are determined to work together to do this! It has made the negotiations more challenging, but countries are moving forward with their commitments and intend to keep the US accountable.
People power will also keep the US accountable. Throughout Marrakesh there has been art demonstrations, flash mobs, and a climate march. US citizens have been coming together for strategy meetings, and overall there is a sense of urgency to ensure the Trump administration addresses climate change for our future.
Thursday Care About Climate hosted a press conference to give the opportunity for youth to speak on the US elections. The overall message from them was that there is hope.
The next day we all received good news, Our Children’s Trust, the organization that is representing 21 youth suing the US government for not addressing climate change learned that their case would go to trial. This is an opportunity for the judicial branch to legally ensure that the US government takes steps to act on climate because it had not protected its citizens adequately from potential climate change impacts in the past. This was the talk of the COP, and offered a lot of hope in what seemed to be a lot of darkness.
The weekend was filled with activities that engaged people from around Morocco and around the world to demand climate action from the COP. We as a world are moving forward.
The Care About Climate team is excited for this second week and has started strong.