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UCC students and researchers to attend crucial COP27 talks

University College Cork (UCC), as the only Irish university with official observer status at the United Nations COP27 conference, is sending a delegation of researchers and students to the upcoming global summit in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt.

COP27 (November 7-18) will bring together nations that have signed and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, the Kyoto Protocol, or the Paris Agreement to assess global efforts to limit the levels of global warming and climate change. 

The UCC delegation has been organised by a working group within the President's office in association with the University's flagship Environmental Research Institute (ERI). Over 400 researchers from across the University work on climate change in the Institute.

Hannah Daly, Professor in Sustainable Energy and Energy Systems Modelling at UCC and MaREI, the SFI Research Centre for Energy, Climate and Marine/ERI who will be attending COP27 as part of the UCC delegation, said:

“Against a backdrop of worsening impacts of climate change at home and across the world, it’s impossible to overstate the importance of this climate summit. While countries have made strong commitments to decarbonisation, that ambition is being realised only at a snail’s pace relative to what is necessary. This will be the COP of implementation: governments, businesses and civil society must come together to collaborate on the millions of individual actions essential to drive emissions down rapidly.”

Included in the delegation is Natasha Sutton, an undergraduate from UCC’s School of Law and the UCC Students’ Union Environmental & Sustainability Representative. She said:

“I believe it is incredibly important that young people be at the forefront of discussions around climate destruction etc. UCC are sending a very young delegation which reflects on the fact that they will be affected by climate change in years to come - and are already affected.

“My expectations of COP are that hopefully the seeds can be sown for a more global community effort in achieving the SDG's and alleviating to some respect the damage done. It is my expectation that a wide variety of voices will be listened to and their opinions acted on.

“I hope to immerse myself in COP as much as possible. I look forward to meeting people of different backgrounds, interests etc. and collaborating towards a sustainable future,” she said.

Egyptian citizen Omar Ibrahim from UCC’s School of Engineering and MaREI/ERI will also be among the UCC delegation. He said:

“Personally, COP27 is not just special because it’s a representation for Africa - it’s held in my home country. Joining the Irish delegation under UCC’s flag as an Egyptian is live evidence that different perspectives are encouraged to engage in the conversation, and even shape it. I hope to see an implementation COP, where countries share clear roadmaps and strategies about meeting climate targets relative to their contribution to carbon emissions.”

Wishing the delegation well ahead of their attendance at COP27, UCC President John O’Halloran said:

“It is imperative that universities are central to the discussions on our planet’s future, and there is an onus on us to demonstrate how we can lead the way on tackling climate change. Our UCC Futures programme of research, together with our practice-focussed award winning green campus,  has singled out Sustainability as an area of strategic importance, and we are working on creative, innovative, and inter-disciplinary solutions to the greatest challenge facing us all.”

The UCC delegation also consists of experts in carbon emissions & budgets, transport, societal change, sustainable cities, air & water pollution & energy efficiency. Follow the UCC delegation in Egypt at #UCCatCOP27

Members of the UCC COP27 delegation and colleagues