Climate Activists Call for Fossil Fuel ‘Criminals’ to Be Kicked Out of COP

Climate justice activists from around the world protested in the main courtyard of the United Nations climate summit demanding that the UNFCCC kick out big polluters from COP 27. 

There are more than 600 fossil fuel lobbyists at this year’s climate summit, affiliated with some of the world’s biggest polluting oil and gas giants.

A new analysis calculated a record number of fossil fuel lobbyists at COP 27, putting the number at 636 registered to attend. This is up more than 25 percent from last year. 

Protesters gathered today on Youth Day to stand against the polluters flooding this year’s climate talks. 

The protesters said: “All we are saying is kick polluters out.” 

Many people are wearing white at the summit today in solidarity with the thousands of land and environmental defenders killed and criminalized around the world and with the tens and thousands of political prisoners here in Egypt and around the world.

Lobbyists were everywhere while those on the frontline of the climate crisis cannot get access to Cop.

The number of lobbyists is larger than any single national delegation except the United Arab Emirates. 

Despite being the “African COP” there are more fossil fuel lobbyists registered than any national delegation from the African continent.

It comes as Global South activists, indigenous communities, and others who are disproportionately bearing the brunt of the climate crisis have effectively been shut out of the talks by high costs, visa challenges, and repressive actions by the hosting country.

“We are here representing millions of people who are demanding that the polluters be kicked out of the Cop space and policy making. For more than half a century they kept the truth about the harm from the people. They delayed action because of greed. You can let the criminals set the rules, we have to reset the system. We are calling them out,” said Aderonke Lge from Public Participation Africa.

Nishant Kumar Alag from India added: “We call them polluters and violators, but we’re talking about criminals. We demand the right to clean water, air, and land, and no safe haven for the criminals.”

This year’s COP conference has been surrounded by criticism and controversy. Exorbitant hotel and travel costs, visa delays, and accreditation limits have made access to Cop27 incredibly challenging for activists and grassroots leaders including those from Africa – despite this being dubbed the African Cop.

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