At COP21, in an unprecedented and unanimous agreement from 195 countries, the Paris Agreement was adopted by the Conference of the Parties to the UNFCCC – what this means is that its content and form were accepted. Since April, countries have been able to sign up to the Agreement and then become parties to it by ratifying it – this means incorporating it into their own legal system.
At the start of October, the Paris Agreement reached the threshold of official ratification, with 55 countries representing 55% of global emissions signing up. It will officially enter into force on the 4th November 2016. The speed with which this has been achieved is almost unprecedented for a global deal of this scale and ambition. The Agreement provides a framework and official target (limiting global warming to no more than 2 degrees), but the details of how this will be achieved and how progress will be measured is yet to be determined.
Global policymakers will meet again at the next UN climate talks, COP22, which takes place from 7th-18th November 2016 in Marrakech to work out the detail. The huge swell of civic support and engagement during COP21 was a key ingredient for its success. What is needed now is for this movement and community – across the arts, culture, NGOs, businesses, faith groups, community groups – to maintain momentum, hold the Agreement commitments to account, show policymakers that the world is still watching and that citizens want to work with governments to translate the Paris Agreement into reality.
‘How to be a COPtimist' Film
Julie's Bicycle is delighted to announce the release of our latest film, 'How to be a COPtimist’ in the lead up to COP22 in Marrakech.
The film documents our How To Be A COPtimist: Culture, Creativity and COP21 conference held in May 2016 at King's College London with an audience of creative professionals from across the arts and culture, fashion, design, advertising and TV and film sectors.
Watch our film and use #COPtimism to connect with the creative community around environmental sustainability in the lead up to and during the climate talks at COP22.
How To Be A COPtimist conference partners:
Arts Council England, Centre for Sustainable Fashion, King's College London, Knowledge Transfer Network, Good Energy, D&AD, BAFTA albert, Somerset House Utopia, Neal's Yard Remedies
Background on COPtimism
#COPtimism = Culture + Optimism + COP
#COPtimism expresses the joy and hope that followed the historic outcome of the 2015 COP21 climate change talks: the Paris Agreement to limit global temperature rise to below 2°C.
#COPtimism celebrates and strengthens the momentum of COP21 and is a call to action to put culture and creativity at the heart of the climate movement.
The COP21 climate talks in Paris in 2015 were incredibly successful, with almost 200 countries agreeing to adopt the first-ever universal, global climate deal. Lead negotiator, Christiana Figueres credits this success to the idea of ‘relentless optimism’, as, in her view, “there is no victory without optimism.”
The creative and cultural sector also mobilised around COP21 with campaigns, events and performances. Julie’s Bicycle convened a letter, signed by more than 350 artists and leaders from the creative community including music, film, theatre, fashion, literature and art, calling for an ambitious climate agreement. According to Figueres this letter, along with displays of solidarity from many other communities, helped to encourage and secure the outcome.
To translate the Paris Agreement into reality, we need to continue showing our support for policymakers and politicians at future COP climate change conferences to push them to ambitious commitments. We must continue to take action on our own impacts, inspiring others to work with us and do the same.
Are you a #COPtimist?
· Are you publicly celebrating your successes in environmental sustainability?
· Do you commission or make work around environmental content?
· Are you working with other organisations to share knowledge about environmental sustainability?
· Do you take action on your environmental impact through energy, water, waste, travel etc.? Do you invest your – capital, equipment, banking, pensions etc. – sustainably?
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