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“We need a respectful, mutual listening, free of ideology and predetermined agendas.” Pope Francis, Let us Dream, December 2020

CAFOD laments lack of action at COP24

World leaders failed to listen to the cries of the poor and those on the frontline of the climate crisis during the recent COP24 UN climate talks in Katowice, Poland, CAFOD has said, after the talks ended shortly before Christmas.

CAFOD believes countries’ efforts so far have been inadequate to the challenge in front of the world. While the UN summit in Katowice, Poland agreed on most of the foundational aspects to implement the Paris Agreement, the responses to the urgent and vital questions on increasing governments ambitions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions did not match the scale of the problem.

CAFOD said that while leaders achieved the minimum of what is needed at COP24, it is no way near what is required.

“Once again, leaders have ignored the science and the urgent cries of the poorest communities who are on the frontline,” said Neil Thorns, advocacy director of CAFOD.

“Governments must go home, raise the ambition in their national plans and bring them to the UN Secretary General summit in September. As we’ve heard often in the last two weeks, tomorrow is today – we cannot wait.”

As previously reported in The Catholic Universe, the message before COP24 from scientists, backed by many poor communities across the world and from CAFOD supporters and Church leaders, was that the world needs immediate and transformational action to keep global warming below 1.5°C.

The IPCC report released in October from the leading scientists was clear and unequivocal on the need for urgent action and increased ambition.

Picture: CAFOD campaigners. (Rosie Heaton/CAFOD).