You may have heard on the news recently that our new Prime Minister, Rishi Sunak, will be attending COP27.

COP27, also referred to as The United Nations Climate Change Conference, kicked off yesterday in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt.

The conference, which will take place until November 18, will see world leaders, climate groups, and activists meet to talk through plans on how to protect the future of the planet.

What is COP27?

United Nations (UN) climate summits are held every year so that governments can agree how to limit global temperature rises.

These meetings are referred to as COPs, which stands for “Conference of the Parties”. The parties refer to the countries who attend the conference after signing up to the original UN climate agreement in 1992.

COP27 is the UN’s 27th annual climate meeting.

Why is COP27 important?

The world is getting hotter because of a build up of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, mostly caused by humans burning fossil fuels like coal, oil and gas. 

Global temperatures have risen by 1.1C and are on the way to reach 1.5C, according to the UN’s climate scientists, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

If temperatures continue to rise in this way, the IPCC estimates that half of the world’s population could be exposed to deadly levels of heat and humidity.

To prevent this, 196 countries signed the Paris Agreement in 2015, promising to take action to limit global temperature rises to 1.5C.

This year COP27 “seeks renewed solidarity between countries, to deliver on the landmark Paris Agreement, for people and the planet.”