Resources on Faith, Ethics and Public Life

United Nations Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen

The United Nations Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen (COP15) marked the international community's first attempt to draft a legally binding successor to the Kyoto Protocol. Though no such document emerged from the summit, the non-binding "Copenhagen Accord" was drafted by the United States, China, India, Brazil, and South Africa and has been signed by over 130 countries. The summit was characterized by the persistent divide separating developed and developing countries, who disagree on whether current or future sources of greenhouse gas emissions bear the greatest responsibility for reducing climate change. A great deal of international anticipation and activism surrounded the event, including campaigns by faith-based groups and congregations using religious ideologies and prayer to promote solutions to climate change. Around 15,000 people attended, including political leaders (with about 110 heads of state and government), UN personnel, NGO observers, and members of the media.

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