As part of COP28, the Pavilion will be a dedicated space for different faiths, traditions, and perspectives to come together to achieve a better future for planet Earth and humanity. The Pavilion will provide an opportunity to connect with religious representatives, practitioners and activists dedicated to environmental protection and climate justice, while engaging new audiences on innovative solutions to the climate crisis.
The Pavilion will consist of programming centered around three strategic objectives:
1) Encourage faith-based organizations (FBOs) to engage with country delegates and increase their capacity to advocate for human and nature centered negotiation outcomes at COP28 and beyond.
- a) Hold daily updates on the negotiations and provide guidance to FBOs for engaging with their country delegates or other delegates who share their religious affiliation.
- b) Identify priority negotiation topics where FBOs can most effectively use their knowledge and experience to impact negotiation outcomes and make an ethical and spiritual case for climate justice.
- c) Work alongside other observers including youth, women organizations, and Indigenous groups to support their ongoing advocacy efforts.
2) Increase visibility for environmental advocacy work by FBOs and other spiritual and religious actors, particularly those on the frontlines of the climate crisis and how this work contributes to the goals of the Paris Agreement.
- a) Highlight the many intersections between religion and the science of climate- related issues including climate justice, adaptation, mitigation, cultural heritage and nature-based solutions.
- b) Partner with other observer NGOs, constituencies, and Pavilion organizers to raise awareness about the intersection between religion and sustainable development, reach new audiences and highlight existing and potential synergies between FBOs and other parts of civil society.
3) Promote multifaith understanding and create a space for spiritual reflection, artistic expression, contemplation and prayer.
- a) Mobilize global multifaith collaboration and articulate expectations for sustainable and ongoing action needed by FBOs beyond COP28.
- b) Hold sessions for personal reflection or interfaith prayer, as well as workshops focusing on building resilience, spiritual care, faith-based ecology and coping with climate grief.
For many years, faith-based organizations and religious representatives have been present as advocates at intergovernmental meetings such as the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Conference of Parties and have attempted to raise the profile of religious engagement on climate issues. This engagement has become more needed as the impacts of climate change increase and the international community continues to struggle to implement a “whole of society” approach that demands and values contributions across sectors.
The UNEP Faith for Earth Initiative and its partners have engaged faith-based organizations at COP26 and COP27. They have demonstrated how moral and ethical perspectives are crucial for the effective multilateralism necessary to address environmental issues including biodiversity loss, pollution and climate change. Past engagements at COPs have included pre-COP capacity building sessions, advocacy at COP in the form of panels, news conference and other actions, as well as post-COP reflections on how to continue mobilizing faith-based action.
At this year’s COP28 in Dubai, UNEP Faith for Earth and its partners, including the Diocese of California, the Interfaith Center for Sustainable Development, the International Partnership on Religion and Sustainable Development (PaRD), the Muslim Council of Elders, Peace Department and the World Evangelical Alliance have formed a strategic partnership with other faith-based organizations and global initiatives to host a first-of-its-kind Faith Pavilion. This presence at the international climate negotiations will provide a unique opportunity for dialogue, capacity building, information sharing, and engagement with key stakeholders including civil society actors, negotiators and political decision makers.
Tags: COP28 Faith for Earth Pavilion, Faith for Earth Pavilion Strategic Framework