The first day of the Faith Pavilion at COP28 discussed the role of religions in achieving climate action goals and the importance of engaging youth in efforts to address the climate crisis. The shared efforts aimed at finding effective and tangible solutions to tackle the consequences of climate change.
Organized by the Muslim Council of Elders in collaboration with the COP28 Presidency, the Ministry of Tolerance and Coexistence in the United Arab Emirates, and the United Nations Environment Programme from December 1 to 12, 2023, at Expo City Dubai. A total of four sessions attracted a significant audience from the Blue Zone associated with COP28, featuring diverse activities and events.
The first session, titled “Faith Matters in Achieving the Global Goal on Adaptation,” discussed the leading roles played by religious organizations and institutions worldwide in supporting efforts to achieve the global goal on adaptation. This contributes to meeting the needs of communities most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, particularly in the global South. The session emphasized the importance of religious organizations and institutions forming partnerships and enhancing collaboration with other sectors, supporting religious leaders at all global levels.
In the second session, titled “Contribution of Faith-Based Organizations to Building Climate Resilience and Adaptation – Youth-Led Climate Action,” participants highlighted the urgent need for attention, care, and interconnectedness to bring about tangible and real change in addressing the climate crisis. They emphasized that addressing the root causes of the climate crisis requires raising awareness in communities about the importance of preserving our shared planet.
The third session, “Interfaith Youth Dialogue on Climate Justice,” underscored the importance of youth in confronting the climate crisis by promoting cooperation, collective action, and placing climate justice at the core of all efforts. The session aimed to enhance awareness in different communities about the climate issue.
Under the title “Holistic Environmental Protection: Integrating Spiritual Wisdom for Sustainable Development,” the fourth session discussed the importance of integrating spiritual teachings and religious traditions in efforts to achieve sustainable development. These efforts should not rely solely on science, political decisions, and government actions.
The first day concluded with a session titled “Dubai Convergence” where participants emphasized the necessity of knowledge to guide decision-makers in making the necessary changes regarding climate change. They praised the efforts of religious leaders in highlighting the challenges faced by communities regarding the climate crisis and issued a clear invitation to commit to climate action and find concrete and effective solutions to the climate issue.
The Faith Pavilion will host over 65 dialogue sessions and approximately 325 speakers during its duration, bringing together 9 religions and 54 countries from around the world, along with 70 organizations and institutions working on problem-solving, partnership enhancement, and providing comprehensive recommendations to achieve environmental justice. The Pavilion seeks to activate the participation and contributions of religious communities, scholars, academics, indigenous peoples, youth, and representatives of civil society in climate action. It also aims to promote collaboration to create a better future for the Earth and humanity, engaging new audiences in finding innovative solutions to the climate crisis.