Events and support will boost calls for climate justice at Dubai summit

Ashden brings Global South voices to COP28

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Posted By:

Craig Burnett

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Image: USAFI Green Energy CEO Brian Onyango, who will speak at the COP28 climate summit

Ashden is supporting Global South organisations to take part in the COP28, so the crucial climate summit better reflects the views and needs of those at greatest risk from climate change.

Ashden will also host two events at the summit Dubai, both on December 8. As a key member of the Power Up energy access campaign, we will explore how investment in clean energy can boost adaptation and resilience in Africa. Another event will explore powering gender equity for refugees and displaced people. Both will be streamed online.

Organisations taking part in the events will include USAFI Green Energy – earlier this month, the cookstove enterprise won the Ashden Award for Powering Refugees and Displaced People. Other panellists will include Sustainable Energy Access Forum Kenya, and the Alliance of Civil Society Organisations for Energy Access.

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Ashden is giving all three organisations financial support to attend the summit. And many more Ashden Award winners will be in Dubai to share their inspiring, inclusive climate solutions. Our own staff, including CEO Ashok Sinha, will also attend. Throughout the summit, Ashden’s online storytelling will highlight climate innovation – and call for action on key issues.

Ashden’s message: time to back energy access, natural climate solutions and a fairer COP

COP28 must unlock greater investment in access to clean energy, so people in the Global South can cope with climate threats and enjoy a brighter future. Global funding for energy access – married with effective national policies – will unlock a host of benefits, from resilient farming and healthcare to effective early warning systems for communities at risk of extreme weather. And it will lay the foundations for sustainable, inclusive economic development. Ashden is making this call as a key member of the Power Up energy access campaign.

Those in greatest need of access to clean energy include refugees and displaced people. Ashden is urging participants at COP28 highlight and respond to the unique challenges faced by refugees, building on the first COP declaration on Climate, Relief, Recovery and Peace on 3 December.

Ashden is also promoting the power of Indigenous-led natural climate solutions, and calls on all at COP to empower Indigenous communities and those who work with them. Indigenous people have a unique power to defend and steward our forests and other natural resources. But only if they are supported to earn a sustainable living and defend their land.

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COP participants should work to ensure global investment in energy access, natural climate solutions and other climate action should be channelled to frontline organisations working with the world’s most vulnerable communities. These organisations are best placed to deliver inclusive, enduring impact and ensure climate justice. But they often struggle to access finance and support.

Ashden’s work to address this includes the 2024 Ashden Awards. The award will boost Global South organisations with grants, publicity, and connections to new funders and partners. Entries are open now and close on 25 January 2024.

Finally, COP itself should be rebalanced to offer more platforms and opportunities for people and organisations from the Global South. Those most affected by the climate crisis are too often sidelined or silenced in discussions about our shared response to it.

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