Every year, countries from around the world gather to coordinate their response to the climate crisis. Those meetings, known as the Conference of the Parties (COP), are part of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). The UNFCCC was created during the Rio Earth Summit in 1992 and is the parent treaty of the Kyoto Protocol (1997) and the Paris Agreement (2015). Built around national level climate plans, the aim of the Paris Agreement is to keep the global average temperature rise this century to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels. The goal of each COP is to identify avenues of global cooperation, whether it is ratcheting up national commitments to reduce emissions, coordinating global adaptation strategies, or setting structures and priorities for climate finance for countries facing the most severe effects of the climate crisis.

At the Rio Earth Summit, IATP reported on how multinational corporate influence was undermining urgent action to protect the climate and global biodiversity. Since then, IATP has attended multiple COPs and related preparatory meetings as part of civil society contingents working to pressure governments to act more boldly to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and to invest more deeply in a just transition, particularly as this relates to food and farming. Over the years, IATP’s analysis of the role of farm policy on climate change, rising meat and dairy emissions, strategies to support agroecology, and the risks of supporting carbon markets, have been used by country-level delegates, civil society partners and the media.

As we head into COP 26 in Glasgow, IATP’s analysis and advocacy will focus on the following: Exposing weak net zero pledges by big agribusiness firms; discrediting carbon market development by global financial firms; and supporting agroecology as a climate resilient path forward for future climate finance investment. This work builds on more than two decades of IATP research, analysis and advocacy on the necessity for strong global cooperation to address the urgency of the climate crisis.