Climate Justice Collab


CultureCOP is an emergent initiative using the power of arts, culture, heritage and creative practices to centre climate justice in the work of the annual UN climate summits called COPs (Conference of the Parties) and the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Climate lawyer, activist and campaigner Farhana Yamin is Culture COP’s creative director bringing together the expertise, skills and voices of existing and new partners who seek to understand and engage with the Annual UN COP cycles.

Urgent systemic shifts are needed to defend nature and implement global agreements like the 2015 Paris Agreement and the SDGs to achieve global justice on the basis of agreed science leaving no-one behind. Their implementation has been too slow and incremental.

The intersecting climate, social and ecological crises we face call on us to use more creative and participatory tools for change, enabling us to reflect, imagine and co-create a more interconnected and just future for all. We need courage as well as new spaces to reimagine systems not based on extractivism, colonisation, consumerism and a single story of progress.

Throughout time arts and culture have been at the heart of our worlds, connecting us and giving expression and voice to our experiences. They have the power to transform, heal and activate us. They help us look at the past, acknowledge the present and use our imaginations to vision and rehearse the future.


In 2023 CultureCOP is bringing together the expertise, skills and voices of existing and new partners who seek to understand and engage with the Annual UN COP cycles.

2nd CultureCOP International Virtual Assembly, Date TBC

In preparation for COP 28 taking place in the United Arab Emirates from 30th November to 12th December, this second online CultureCOP Assembly will take place in the summer


  • Advocate for art, culture, and  heritage perspectives that centre climate justice to be mainstreamed into climate change policymaking
  • Educate and engage COP delegates on the loss of culture and heritage globally especially in front line communities facing the devastating impacts of climate change
  • Convene international cultural practitioners to share practice and information  about the routes emerging for the sector to influence and play a more active part in climate change policymaking at COPs  and why this is important to the COP process
  • Shine a light on how aspects of the global arts, culture and heritage industries are complicit in causing harm, and the radical systemic changes needed within the sector in order to be part of creating a more climate just future.
  • Bring creative participatory processes to COP proceedings that catalyse dialogue, exchange, emotional depth, connection and transformation
  • Programme and commission artistic inputs and creative interventions at the COP summits that centre the lived experience of those marginalised or on the frontlines such as indigenous peoples and those in the Global South
  • Support Movement Building at the COP Summits through cultural and heritage led exchange events and visits
The 2022 Assemblies asked participants to:

Imagine if there was a seismic shift in which arts and cultural practices across the whole world centred on climate and ecological justice, safety and joy


CultureCOP International Virtual Assembly, October 31st 2022

The first CultureCOP Assembly was virtual and attracted 700+ global registrants with over 300 artists and cultural organisers attending the online session to discuss and reimagine the role of culture in meeting the climate and ecological emergency. Through a process of speaker inputs, small group deliberation and plenary feedback.


For a full write up of all responses to the virtual and in person Assembly 

Download PDF report

CultureCOP COP27
Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt

Initially the main CultureCOP programme was to be an in person, three day ‘festival in the desert’ event hosted in Dahab. Deliberately set a little distance away from the intensity of the conference, which would be more accessible by a broad range of participants. But like many other civil society gatherings at COP27, there were significant obstacles to delivering this plan including restrictions on movement and accommodation cancellations by the authorities. However the steering group, partners and creative collective iterated and within less than two weeks notice had reimagined much of the programming into the heart of the conference at Sharm El-Sheikh through representation on panels in the Blue Zone, at gatherings in Goals House, Hope House and the New York Times Hub as well as delivering a new programme of curated events. This was supported by the tireless efforts of our partner Doc Society, our local Egyptian partners as well as the support of other civil society allies at the conference, especially Climate Heritage Network and Julie’s Bicycle.  

Friday 11th, #ArtCultureHeritageCOP27 at Sharm El Sheikh Museum of Antiquities

Saturday 12th, Connecting and strengthening movement building at
Aida Hotel Sharm El Sheikh

Sunday 13th, Cultural Exchange and Connection on the Sinai Trail

Additional events at COP27

Rather than being concentrated into a single venue, different members of the CultureCOP collective represented on panels in the Blue Zone, at gatherings at Goals House, Hope House and at the New York Times Hub – engaging a range of stakeholders in multiple zones over the week. Examples included: the CultureCOP nightcap at Goals House in partnership with the Blue Marine Foundation, celebrating the power of storytelling and creativity in inspiring action towards a fairer, joyful future where no one is left behind. The Doc Society gathering of cultural workers from broadcast TV, film + radio hosted at the New York Times Hub. Farhana Yamin speaking on ‘Losing the Irreplaceable: Loss & Damage, Culture & Heritage’ at the Resilience Hub in the Blue Zone. Emily Wanja presenting at the UNFCCC organised event: ‘Implementing Climate Action in Entertainment & Culture – Inclusive and Equitable Pathways Towards a More Sustainable Sector’ in the Blue Zone


CultureCOP in Sharm El Sheikh was designed as a decentralised collective with a steering committee comprised of:

Farhana Yamin – Creative Director + Co-Coordinator
Sophie Shnapp – Artistic Director + Co-Coordinator
Leo Cerda – Black Indigenous Liberation Movement BILM & If Not Us Then Who
Ashraf Kenawy – House of Arts and Culture DAR
Faisal Kiwewa – Bayimba
Nadine Wahab – Eco Dahab
Naza Alakija – Sage Foundation
Beadie Finzi – Doc Society


The activities of CultureCOP at COP27 were supported financially by a bold group of funders including:

Climate Justice & Just Transition Donor Collaborative (CJ-JT)
Doc Society
Porticus Foundation
USAID (via Climate Heritage Network)
Sage Foundation
Synchronicity Earth
Black Indigenous Liberation Movement

Alongside the steering committee, the programming was co-created with the participation of 60+ multi-disciplinary practitioners and community organisers, contributing to the art, music, film, education hubs. The on the ground producing team was Nadine Wahab (ECO Dahab), Simon O’Kelly, Jack McCutcheon (UMA Group) + Beadie Finzi (Doc Society) with support from Sophie Schnapp.


We wish to share heartfelt gratitude to all our friends, colleagues and partners who we worked with and alongside and who made our events and activities so special, our deepest thanks goes to:

Climate Emergency Collaboration Group
Climate Justice Resilience Fund
Climate Strategies
Climate Vulnerable Forum
Climate Works Foundation
Doc Society
Green Africa Youth Organization
Greenhouse Agency
High Level Champions Team
IKEA Foundation
Impatience Ltd
Just Transition Centre
Kite Insights
Oak Foundation
Open Society Foundation
Robert Bosch Foundation
Sage Foundation
UMI Fund
Youth Advisory Group, to UN SG
Egypt Ministry of Culture
Egypt Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities


Aida Hotel Sharm El-Sheikh
Bayimba Foundation
Black Indigenous Liberation Movement
CCOP Steering Group
Climate Heritage Network
Goals House
House of DAR
Julie’s Bicycle
Letters to the Earth
Lily Cole
Minga Indígena
Nadine Wahab, EcoDahab
Nest Collective
Project Everyone
Ruth Ben-Tovim
Sacred Headwaters Project
Sharm Museum of Antiquities
Sierra Quitiquit, Hope House
Sinai Trail
UMA Entertainment Group
Wisdom Keepers

Joshua Amponsem

Joshua Amponsem is a Ghanaian climate activist and Co-Director of the new Youth Climate Justice Fund initiative. He is the former Climate Lead at the Office of the UN Secretary General’s Envoy on Youth. He has over 8 years of experience working with young people on Climate Action, Disaster Risk, and Resilience Building. He founded Green Africa Youth Organization (GAYO), served as a member of the IRENA Global Council on Enabling Youth Action for SDG 7, and has been an Adaptation Fellow at the Global Center on Adaptation (GCA). In the past two years, Joshua has focused on supporting grassroot youth-led organisations and is continuously engaged in the advocacy to shift climate philanthropy to youth and locally-led organisations. He has initiated locally-led projects like the Water for Adaptation, and Sustainable Communities Project in sub-Saharan Africa which is creating jobs for over 100 people and he is championing the establishment of Youth Climate Councils across the Global South.

Dominique Souris

Dominique Souris is a climate activist and impact strategist working at the intersection of climate justice, philanthropy and technology. She is the co-founder and Founding Executive Director of Youth Climate Lab (YCL), a global organisation accelerating youth-led climate ventures, policy ideas and community projects in over 77 countries. Dominique now supports the Climate Justice-Just Transition Donor Collaborative, advises climatetech companies, and explores new ways to deliver capital to climate solutions rooted in justice. She is also the co-founder of Queering Climate, a collaborative studio for new ideas connecting, supporting and celebrating queerness in climate spaces and beyond, and serves an advisor to the Oxford Future of Climate Cooperation Initiative, Board Member of a youth-to-youth climate fund, and member of the World Economic Forum Global Shapers. She has won national and global awards for her work, including Top 30 under 30 Sustainability Leaders in Canada, Top 21 Founders to Watch, and Top 100 Visionary Leaders.

Sriranjini Raman

Sriranjini Raman is a seasoned climate justice organiser and is a core team member of Fridays for Future India. She is passionate about connecting youth to nature and creating opportunities for youth leadership in environmental policymaking. She created Pluriversity, a foundational climate justice course that empowers youth grassroots leaders. She represented Indian Youth at COP 26 and is interested in youth participation & resource mobilisation for climate justice. Sriranjini is completing her degree in Environmental Resource Studies & International Development at the University of Waterloo and is a Social Innovator at GreenHouse, a social impact incubator. She has worked with India’s biggest grassroots movements, not for profits, social enterprises, and impact firms on Intersectional Environmental Justice.

Chandelle O’neil

Chandelle is a Sustainable Energy Systems Designer and Human Rights Advocate in Trinidad and Tobago. Chandelle has Bachelor of Engineering (with distinction) in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Guelph and worked in process engineering for waste reduction and improving efficiencies. Having worked in human rights advocacy for over 10 years (since they came out) and currently volunteer with CAISO Sex and Gender Justice pushing the LGBTQ+ agenda in TT, Chandelle completed the Post-Grad Diploma in Global Leadership focusing on Regenerative Leadership from the University For Peace. 


Chandelle is a social entrepreneur with their own enterprise, Mawu Energy Services, that supports energy efficiency, sustainable design and resource management in residential and commercial buildings/ properties. They were a Global Water Partnership-Caribbean (GWP-C) Young Caribbean Water Entrepreneurs Shark Tank Competition Finalist in December 2020 and got bronze with UNLEASH Hacks Caribbean in June 2021.

Paloma Costa

Paloma Costa is a young climate-activist from Brasília, basis of Brazilian government, who has a Bachelor in Law and is finishing her studies in Social Science, both at the University of Brasilia. She is a researcher in the Juridical Clinic of Human Rights – Juridical Office for Ethnic and Cultural Diversity (JUSDIV). She’s legal advisor at Instituto Socioambiental, on social-environmental rights, including indigenous and traditional peoples, being responsible for bringing the youth perspective to the organization. From 2018-2020, she coordinated the Working Group of Climate in the youth-led organization Engajamundo and the brazilian youth delegations to COP24th, COP25th, UN LAC Climate-Week and #AmazonCenteroftheWorld. She co-created EduClima – a Climate Education Program for the Youth and the Youth Demands for the development of Brazil. She is a member of the Feminist Coalition for Climate Action at UN Women and as a member of the Abu Dhabi Youth Voices (#Super30), alongside 30 different Climate Activists from different parts of the Globe, she supported the UN Youth Envoy’s Officer on the delivery of the 1st UN Youth Climate Summit. On the same occasion, she participated in the opening of the Climate Action Summit, alongside the UN Secretary-General and the activist Greta Thunberg. She is also part of several networks and co-founded #FreeTheFuture movement and Ciclimáticos. She represented the NGO’s at the 43º session of the UN Humans Rights Council. She is a Youth Advisor to the UN Secretary-General as part of the UN SG’s Youth Advisory Group on Climate Changes. She participated at COP 26, COY 16 and RCOY/LAC. In 2019, she was appointed as one of the 20 women that makes the difference in Brazil by  UOL. In 2020, she was appointed as one of the 100 most influential Latinos in the climate agenda by Sachamama. And in 2021 she was recognized as one of the Climate Influencers by Época Negócios. She has been personally supporting indigenous youth initiatives, awareness and meaningful participation in decision making processes, as well as bringing Climate Education to the different spaces.

Bowen Gu

Bowen Gu is PhD researcher at the Institute of Environmental Science and Technology, Autonomous University of Barcelona (ICTA-UAB). Her research looks into coal and environmental justice in China and broader regions under the Belt and Road Initiative. She received her undergraduate degree in mathematics and physics from Tsinghua University in China and her master degree from the Erasmus Mundus program in environmental sciences, policy and management (MESPOM) at Central European University and the University of Manchester. Besides her PhD, she has worked for almost 10 years in socially responsible and sustainable investment to support institutional investors integrate environmental and social issues, including climate and global health topics, in their engagement with companies.

Doreen Aluoch

Graduated with a degree in International Relations which acted as a strong foundation to developing my analytical and research skills and currently doing my masters in the same field. I have so far had experience in government and the private sector working or volunteering on issues related to peace, security, human rights and the sustainable development goals (SDGs). For the past four years, I have overseen or assisted in the implementation of maternal and child health programs in Nairobi, Meru and Kwale counties Kenya. I currently work in the humanitarian sector where I assist in systems change work in the aid sector, WASH and humanitarian programming.

Maria Reyes

Maria Reyes is a 20-year-old queer  Mexican climate and human rights activist with Fridays for Future MAPA and the Indigenous Futures Network in Mexico. She fights for a systemic and intersectional change that prioritizes the well-being of the most vulnerable communities in the face of the Climate Crisis. She is an international spokesperson and has collaborated with UNICEF to highlight the water scarcity in Mexico, and with UN Women and the Center of Feminist Foreign Policy to voice the intersection between the Climate Crisis and gender inequality. She sailed to the UN Climate Conference (COP26) with the Rainbow Warrior of Greenpeace last year, and has campaigned for fossil fuels divestment from banks, and for climate reparations.

Desouza Henry Nelson

Desouza Henry Nelson is a multifaceted creative, photographer, cinematographer, filmmaker, and graphic designer.


Desouza (he/him) uses graphics, photography and film to retell the single narrative of authentic African stories. He started his creative journey by replicating his visual environment, mainly through board games he created when he was a child. As he grew up, he took that unique perspective into, first, graphic design, then photography, and then film. 


He is passionate about using his arts to showcase the vulnerable, especially women and children – he has done that in collaboration with artists and international organisations. For example, as a Cinematographer, he has worked with UNICEF in postnatal care and adolescent programmes, he has worked with Bloomberg on their global road safety campaign in Ghana, the NFL scouting in Africa, Solidaridad, and the EU. He has worked with award-winning musicians in Ghana such as Manifest, Wiyaala, MzVee, Worlasi, Adomaa, and Ghana’s premier women fellowship programme for artists. Also, he has been the chief photographer, graphic designer, and filmmaker for the current second lady of Ghana.


Desouza’s latest project which is yet to be published highlights the works of organisations and individuals who are championing climate change awareness by  providing audacious, inventive, and practical climate solutions that uphold the rights of local communities and promote the systemic change required for our collective well-being.”

Mahfudh Khamisi Omar

Mahfudh is a 21-year climate activist, environmentalist and ocean conservationist from Mombasa Island, a coastal city in the Sub-Saharan African country of Kenya. He is a young professional and educator currently studying Diploma in Education in Emergencies under University of Nairobi to better understand how children and young people are affected by migration and displacement as a result of climate change and on how they can continue their education and access inclusive and quality learning that optimises retention and transition.


Coming from a country bordering the Western Indian Ocean and hosting the two largest refugee camps in Africa, Mahfudh clearly sees the impact of climate mobility and the vulnerability of those affected, who are yet to be universally accepted under existing international law. Mahfudh spearheads to involve his community in climate action and climate justice work through adaptation and mitigation methods.


Coming from the Global South, Mahfudh has partnered with local and international stakeholders in spotlighting the climate and ecosystem situation of Kenya. He has partnered with organisations including CJ-JT Donor Collaborative for the CJ-JT Fellowship, UNESCO-IOC and also serving in EarthEcho International’s Youth Leadership Council.

Margaret Impraim

Margaret Impraim is a climate change advocate who has been working within the youth climate movement in sub-Saharan Africa for the past three years. Providing voluntary support to multiple youth-led initiatives, she has accumulated practical experiences to the injustices faced by the youth due to climate vulnerability and structural inequalities. Currently, she works as the Capacity Building and Education Officer in the Youth Climate Council Ghana where she contributes to the meaningful inclusion of the youth in national and international climate decision-making processes. In her position, she leverages her experience in youth-government partnerships to provide guidance to youth movements in other countries who are seeking to work closely with diverse stakeholders to influence climate policy. She serves as the Conference Coordinator for LCOY Ghana and the Country Contact Point for COY 17, both events serving as precursors to COP 27

Máximo Mazzocco

Máximo Mazzocco. UNDP Generation 17 Global Ambassador. Founder of Eco House Global (an Action for Sustainability youth-led non profit with more than 30 ongoing projects at local, regional and global level, and many political achievements). Pangeist. Author of the best-seller “Apuntes de un ambientalista”. Coordinator in Youth4Climate. Co-organizer of the RCOY LAC. Youth International delegate and speaker. Declared as an “Outstanding Personality” by the Buenos Aires City and recognized with national and international awards. Environmental & SDG advisor to dozens of politicians and businessmen. Co-founder of several socio-environmental federations. He has an active presence in mainstream media. Primer mover in developing the School Network for Sustainable Development, the Environmental Library, (SocioEnvironmental Database), the SocioEnvironmental University, among other notable initiatives for spanish speakers. Cancer survivor who helps in related initiatives.

Andréia Coutinho Louback

Andréia Coutinho Louback is a journalist from PUC-Rio, with a Master’s degree in Ethnic-Racial Relations from CEFET/RJ and a Fulbright Alumni from the University of California, Davis. She is an expert in climate justice and recognized as one of the exponent voices in the debate of race, gender and class in the climate agenda in Brazil. She is an advisor to Casa Fluminense, Climate HUB (Columbia Global Centers | Rio de Janeiro), Rio de Janeiro City Hall and ActionAid. As part of the Humphrey Fellowship, she did a professional residency at the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), located in New York, as an expert on climate justice. 

Sophia Kianni

Sophia Kianni is an Iranian-American activist studying climate science and health policy at Stanford University. She is the founder and executive director of Climate Cardinals, an international nonprofit with 9,000 volunteers in 40+ countries working to translate climate information into over 100 languages. She represents the U.S as the youngest member on the inaugural United Nations Youth Advisory Group on Climate Change. She sits on boards and advisory councils for The New York Times, World Economic Forum, Inkey List, Iris Project, JUV Consulting, Ashoka, and American Lung Association.

Archana Soreng

Archana Soreng, belongs to Khadia Tribe from Odisha, India. She is one of the seven members of the United Nations Secretary General’s Youth Advisory Group on Climate Change. She is experienced in research and advocacy . She is a researcher and advocate working  on indigenous peoples and climate action, documenting and preserving and promoting the  traditional knowledge and practices of indigenous and local communities. She is also the board member of Land Rights Now. She is also the member of Indigenous Solidarity Working Group of YOUNGO ( Official children and youth Constituency of UNFCCC).