The 26th United Nations Climate Change Conference – also known as COP26 – takes place between November 1 and November 12, 2021, in Glasgow, Scotland.
It has been delayed from its scheduled date of November 9 – 19, 2020, because of the COVID-19 global pandemic.
The eyes of the globe will be upon them in the hope that, as with the Paris Agreement, that they can strike an accord to accelerate action and work together to overcome the greatest challenge the planet has ever faced.
If this can be done, it would become The Glasgow Agreement.
COP 26 GLASGOW PRESIDENCY
The Presidency of Cop 26 is currently held by the UK Government but it is being co-hosted with Italy.
Alok Sharma , the UK Government’s Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy will act as President for the conference.
On being appointed he said: “It is a great honour to take on the role of COP26 President.
“I have started working with my new team ahead of the summit in Glasgow (this November) where we aim to speed up the global journey to net zero carbon.
“We will be building on efforts to urge all countries to bring forward ambitious plans to curb their emissions ahead of the event itself.
“It is vital everyone comes together to deliver the change needed to tackle climate change and protect our planet.”Alok Sharma, President, COP26
However his leadership sparked some early controversy when it was revealed his top team would contain no women in it.
That announcement came after a row was sparked when the former head of the summit Claire O’Neill was dismissed from the role.
She later claimed that the UK Prime Minister Biros Johnson ‘didn’t get’ climate change and that the nation was ‘miles off’ target.
SCOTLAND’S ROLE AT COP 26
Preparations for the event got off to a further rocky start when it was claimed the UK Government wanted to move the conference from Glasgow to a venue in England in what was dubbed a turf war over who would host the event.
It included a row over the Scottish Government booking out the SEC campus in Glasgow before the UK government who had wanted to use it themselves.
Ministers and officials on bother sides of the border worked to diffuse the differences which had threatened to overshadow the planned focus.
Political observers wait to see what role – if any – the UK government may ask Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon to play.
The conference will take place after the forthcoming summer Scottish Parliamentary Elections which could further ignite calls for Scottish independence, potentially putting further strain on Westminster and Holyrood relations.
But since then both governments have stressed their commitments to both the event and tackling the climate emergency, raising hopes that their could be some breakthrough collaborations.
WHAT WILL BE DISCUSSED AT COP 26 IN GLASGOW
All those signatories to the Paris Agreement had agreed to further review and enhance their climate commitments by 2020.
This will be the first major opportunity to scrutinise those commitments after the planned date for COP26 was postponed by a year to 2021 because of the global coronavirus pandemic.
Talks will include reducing harmful greenhouse gas emission with a focus on things such as energy, pollution and agriculture.
Mitigating climate through mass tree planting, peatland restorations, architecture, transitioning form oil and gas and electric transport will feature.
Food security and production will also be high on the agenda along with how to protect island nations from rising sea levels.