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COP 28 took place from 30 November until 12 December 2023, with pre-sessionals from 24 to 29 November. Members of the UKYCC travelled to COP28 to demand climate justice, doing so alongside many other youth delegates.

UKYCC primarily campaigned for the implementation of a Conflict of Interest (COI) policy that will fundamentally oppose the undue influence polluting industries have on the UNFCCC processes. We also continued to advocate for countries to take action on loss and damage.

We were active in as many spaces as possible at COP28, including at the Children and Youth Pavilion and within negotiations. To find out more about what we got up to, see below.


Read our demands to the UK Government delegation on conflicts of interest


Find out more about conflicts of interest at COPs

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We also campaigned on a number of other issues such as Loss and Damage.


At COP28 we ran a side event on the influence of fossil fuel lobbyists at COP.

Demands to the UK Government Delegation

We are calling for the end to the filibustering, delay and distraction by polluting industries which undermines vital climate action.

Polluter Presence and Influence within the COP Process must be reduced:

In 2022, despite the world’s largest oil and gas companies more than doubling their combined profits to $219 billion, average investment in renewable energies was found to remain at only a mere 5% of company spending [1].

  • COP27 hosted over 630 fossil fuel delegates - a group larger than all but one country’s delegation [2].

  • Following decades of climate denial, the fossil fuel industry has continued to invest over $160 billion into exploration for new fossil reserves since 2020.

  • Not one of 39 major global oil and gas companies has adopted a business strategy that would limit warming to safe levels.

1 Channel 4. 2022. “Energy companies investing just 5% of profits in renewables.” August 2022. 
2 Global Witness. 2022. “636 fossil fuel lobbyists granted access to COP27.” November 2022. 

Conflict of Interest in the UNFCCC

‘A conflict of interest (COI) is a situation in which a person or organization is involved in multiple interests, financial or otherwise, and serving one interest could involve working against another.’

The UK Youth Climate Coalition (UKYCC) expresses our profound concern that the current rules governing the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) permit polluting industries to exert undue influence on policymaking, and believe that such industries hold an unequivocal Conflict of Interest (COI) with urgent and just climate action. 


COI refers to the notion that progressive climate policy can never be made with corporate interests - such as those of the fossil fuel industry - present within policymaking dialogues, due to the two holding irreconcilably conflicting motives.


Curtailing the influence of such companies is, therefore, imperative to protect the legitimacy of international climate diplomacy. As a self-proclaimed leader on international climate action, with an established and respected diplomatic position following COP26, we believe the UK Government has a significant opportunity to advocate for a robust COI framework. 


We urge for the implementation of a robust ‘Conflict of Interests’ policy by both the UK Government and the UNFCCC to prevent filibustering, delay, and distraction from further undermining climate action. Read our Briefing Note on COI here.

The world cannot afford anymore denial, delay, or distraction. The UK Government must live up to its title of a “Climate Leader” and support effective COI policies that hold both itself and the UNFCCC to account.

Loss and Damage

In the Sixth Assessment Report on Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability, the IPCC Working Group II share the most extensive assessment of losses and damages to date [3]

Four key messages from the report are:

  1. Losses and damages are already being experienced

  2. Future losses and damages will rise with increased global warming

  3. Losses and damages are unavoidable and are unequally distributed

  4. Losses and damages are not comprehensively addressed by current financial, governance and institutional arrangements

'Loss and damage refers to the impacts of climate change that go beyond what people can adapt to' (LDYK).


Article 8 of the Paris Agreement outlines the responsibilities of countries to take action on loss and damage. Addressing loss and damage stands alongside mitigation and adaptation as a fundamental pillar of climate action. At COP27, in Egypt in November 2022, after days of intense negotiations, an agreement was reached on establishing a fund to compensate vulnerable nations for ‘loss and damage’ from climate-induced disasters. However, UKYCC is disappointed and frustrated by the inaction since 2022 therefore call on leaders to urgently mobilise and fulfil commitments to frontline nations.

Learn more about Loss and Damage here.

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