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Mock COP26

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Mock COP26

05 October, 2021

Led by Size of Wales, a Welsh charity with a mission to sustain an area of tropical forest twice the size of Wales in response to climate change, and in collaboration with education providers across Scotland, Wales, and England, the Centre for Global Education is taking part in a virtual Mock COP26 event that aims to help young people share perspectives and debate the issues of climate justice with their peers. The event will replicate a digital UN model, with strategies and suggestions on how to tackle climate change.

All pupils taking part in this event will experience:

  • Global Negotiations - as they represent a different COP26 country and seek to negotiate an outcome that's based on a real-world position(s) and priorities for that country
  • Formulating Resolutions - the young people involved will be facilitated and supported in putting forward their own views on COP26 itself
  • Local Action Marketplace - everyone involved will showcase examples of climate actions and advocacy from within their own schools and local communities

On behalf of the Centre for Global Education, Rosie McCreanor, a development educator (and Schools Advisor for Global Learning Schools NI) will take the lead in facilitating Northern Ireland's role in Mock COP26, coordinating activities and collaborating with schools across the province in this four nations event.

Two local schools, with teams made up of Geography sixth form students from Ulidia Integrated College, Carrickfergus and St. Colman's High and Sixth Form College, Ballynahinch will be prepped in advance through pre-event workshops. Rosie spoke to Global Learning Schools NI and told us what this means to her and the importance of her involvement. 

"Recent studies have shown that more than two thirds of students want to learn more in school about climate change and the environment. The chance for them to participate in events like the virtual Four Nations Mock COP26 is a fantastic opportunity for young people in Northern Ireland to do just this.  At the Centre for Global Education, we want to inspire and equip their advocacy for action on climate change, at local, national and global levels." 

Where did Mock Cop come from?

In 2020, when world leaders were due to come together to address the climate emergency in the 26th climate change event, the pandemic hit and worldwide travel was ground to a halt. Not being put off, 350 young people from over 150 different countries came together - online - to make sure that their voices were heard.

They put forward a Conference Declaration that included actions on Climate Education, Climate Justice, Climate Resilient Livlihoods, Protecting Biodiversity - and much more.

All four nations pupils in this 2021 event will be required to have a general COP26 understanding, derived by researching the background to COP26. In addition, pupils will have researched their nominated country ahead of Mock COP, being briefed in advance by Rosie, with the expectation that they should research relevant material independently to equip them with the task of writing and preparing the one minute task of delivering a statement of impact and effect. 
Stephen McCloskey, Director for the Centre for Global Education says, 
“Young people have led the campaign for action and effective policy-making to tackle global warming.  The ‘Fridays’ for Future’ movement has galvanised millions around the world to join the campaign to implement the Paris Climate Agreement.  The Mock-COP event gives our young people an opportunity to have their say on the importance of the upcoming COP-26 climate conference and what it needs to achieve to mitigate global warming. "
As Greta Thunberg says, "We can’t save the world by playing by the rules because the rules have to be changed. Everything needs to change – and it has to start today."
Size of Wales will capture parts of the virtual Four Nations event that will include students presenting their conclusions in the last session - we will share these with you post-event. For live tweets on the day, please follow ©ClimateVoicesUK @scotdeclearning  @sizeofwales.

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