Flint woman heads to Poland to represent North Wales at UN climate conference
A 22-year-old woman from Flint is heading to Poland in December to join thousands of people calling for world leaders to take action on climate change at a major UN conference.
Harriet Rees, who is a volunteer for the Catholic development charity CAFOD, will travel to Katowice, Poland, from the 5-11 December for the 24thConference of the Parties – known as COP24.
Passionate about tackling climate change, Harriet is making the trip to call on UN member states to ensure the full implementation of the 2015 Paris Agreement.
Campaigners are hoping that member governments will show greater ambition in restricting global temperature rises to 1.5 degrees and take action to have net zero emissions by 2050.
Harriet will join campaigners from across Europe to share ideas for bringing about action back home in Flint to live more simply and sustainably.
Harriet, who is a masters student focusing on the environment and climate change, said: “The environment and climate change has always been of interest to me to academically, but has always seemed like a scientific phenomenon that isn’t really happening in my world.
“But since I became a CAFOD Climate Champion in 2016, learning about sustainable living, I’ve realised that actually we all have a really important role to play in protecting our planet and that it really is easy to play your part.
“I want to be able to share that message with people, leading by example of how we can help tackle climate change, at a local and personal level but also at an international policy level.”
CAFOD’s Head of Advocacy, Neil Thorns, said: “It is great that Harriet is able to travel to COP24 in Katowice to represent Catholics in North Wales and surrounding areas. COP24 represents an opportunity for CAFOD alongside its partners and sister organisations to ramp up the pressure on national governments to follow through on the commitments they made as part of Paris Agreement in 2015.
“The historic agreement that so many of CAFOD’s supporters like Harriet pressed to be signed has now been ratified by 183 of the 197 Parties to the Convention. However, as the recent IPCC Special Report on the impacts of global warming of 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels so clearly illustrates, the current global ambitions are not going to prevent this global temperature rise.
“This is why CAFOD will push for greater ambitions to be set and an agreed framework that ensures immediate and effective action on climate change at the national level at the upcoming COP, highlighting the need to keep to 1.5, particularly for the poorest and most marginalised.”
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