By Bridget Stuart
What you need to know about COP26
Despite being the longest-ever running in history, COP25 was far from a success (more in OCS blog article). However, 2020 promises to be a crucial year for climate negotiations and action on a global scale. Glasgow is hosting the 26th Conference of Parties (COP26) on the 9th - 20th of November, with Italy hosting the preparatory events.
The location is significant; Glasgow is one of the UK’s most sustainable cities and Scotland was one of the first countries to formally recognise the global climate emergency. Scotland has pledged to be net zero by 2045. The UK itself has committed to net zero by 2050 and has succeeded in reducing emissions by 45% since 1990 while growing the economy by 75%. This sets a leading example for the other G7 countries.
The COP26 conference is a chance for the UK to strengthen its position as a global climate leader, in order to further encourage greater climate ambitions and mitigation goals.
Key Aims of COP26
Key Issues for COP26
Climate science has clearly stated all global nations need to reach net zero by 2050 to have any chance of limiting temperature rise to 1.5 degrees above pre-industrial levels. If there are insufficient greenhouse gas emissions reductions between 2020-2025 (next 5-year ratchet), then it may be too late to meet the 1.5 target. This emphasises the critical importance of COP26: It is clear that COP26 will be remembered as either a momentous success or an unfortunate failure for the UK as a political entity and as part of our planet.
Other important events for the diary:
21-24 Jan: World Economic Forum (Davos-Klosters, Switzerland)
1-11 Jun: UNFCCC Intersessional (Bonn, Germany)
10-12 Jun: G7 Summit (Camp David, USA)
22-27 Jun: Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (Kigali, Rwanda)
Date TBC: BRICS Summit (Russia)
Date TBC: EU/China Summit, under German EU presidency (Leipzig, Germany)
15-30 Sep: UN General Assembly/ Climate Week (New York, USA)
Date TBC: Pre-COP26 events (Italy)
15-28 Oct: UN Biodiversity Conference (Kunming, China)
21-22 Nov: G20 Summit (Riyadh, Saudi Arabia)
3 Nov: US presidential election
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OCS Media Team
The latest in climate science, policy, perspectives and more from the OCS team.