Celebrating Climate Action: COP26 in Camden

COP26 took place in Glasgow from 31 October – 12 November 2021 and brought together world leaders to reach an agreement on how to tackle climate change. This year the conference centred around 4 key goals:

  • Secure global net zero by mid-century and keep 1.5°C in reach
  • Adapt to protect communities and natural habitats
  • Mobilise finance
  • Work together to deliver

Camden Council and the Camden Climate Change Alliance (CCCA) held a celebration event at SamsungKX, Coal Drops Yard to mark climate action in Camden and beyond. With support of funding from the Greater South East Energy Hub through the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) COP26 Domestic Campaign, the event was featured as part of the COP26 Regional Roadshows.

The event served to bring together organisations, third sector and community to share knowledge, network, find new ways to collaborate and inspire the next wave of climate action initiatives.

Speakers included:

  • Cllr Georgia Gould, Leader of Camden Council
  • Cllr Adam Harrison, Cabinet Member for a Sustainable Camden
  • Climate Justice Keynote – Ebony Holland, Nature-Climate Policy Lead, International Institute for Environment and Development

The Camden Climate Citizen Panel also spoke about how they’re tackling the climate crisis and delivered their calls to action of other Camden citizens. Watch the short video here.

This was followed by a panel debate facilitated by Chandrima Padmanabhan from the Centre for Public ImpactPanellists included:

  • Benaifer Bhandari – CEO of Hopscotch, Chair of Voluntary Action Camden
  • Aliza Ayaz – UN Goodwill Ambassador & International Climate Activist
  • Paul King – Managing Director Sustainability and Social Impact, Lendlease
  • Ryan Jude, Programme Director, Green Finance Institute

The debate addressed some challenging questions and a powerful debate emerged around social and climate injustice and how some of the most basic human needs aren’t being met in Camden with respect to those unable to afford food and with nowhere to live.

Emphasis was placed on the need for collaboration between business, community and third sector will be the only way to mobilise and finance the scale of action required and work even more closely with the charities that are already working with and know how to reach some of the most vulnerable people in Camden.

The event closed with networking and a digital showcase of climate action with a particular focus on collaboration between community and businesses, where social impact was also delivered as a co-benefit of climate work. The case studies featured in the showcase will feature in a brochure (coming soon).

Watch the recording of the event here

Read about the outcomes of the COP26 Glasgow Climate Pact here

CCCA also worked with or supported a number of organisations in the borough on activities during the COP26 period, find out more on each of the initiatives below: 

  • Thursday 7th October – Walk2COP26, a team of 6 began their 500 mile walk from London to Glasgow. They started from Think and Do Camden base No. 19 Highgate Road, where volunteers stocked the team of walkers up with snacks and supplies from the Community Fridge.
  • Over 30 NHS healthcare professionals took part in Ride for Their Lives across October and November, starting their ride from Great Ormond Street Hospital and finishing up to Glasgow. The team cycled to bring awareness to the impacts climate change, environmental degradation and air pollution have on human health and in particular, children. A installation of ‘Pollution Pods’ accompanied the cyclists on their journey to COP26 to help bring awareness to the severity of air pollution experienced across the world.
  • Wednesday 3rd November – Camden Council and the CCCA hosted the Schools Summit and Celebration Event. Camden officially launched the School Climate Charter and 5 schools have already signed up.
  • Thursday 11th November – COP Explained Webinar in collaboration with Knowledge Quarter. The webinar featured as part of Getting to Net Zero, a new series of workshops and masterclasses from the Knowledge Quarter designed to help members understand their carbon emissions and develop strategies to help reduce them.