Cop26 — latest news: Boris Johnson warns world at ‘one minute to midnight’ as summit opens in Glasgow – The Independent

Watch live as world leaders arrive at Cop26

Glasgow’s Cop26 climate summit begins in earnest today with world leaders facing calls for urgent action to limit dangerous temperature rises.

Boris Johnson will tell them that humanity has “long since run down the clock on climate change” and must act now to tackle the crisis, with the planet now at “one minute to midnight”.

Speaking this morning, Liz Truss, the foreign secretary, said success at the climate summit was still “touch and go”.

China’s president, Xi Jinping, will address the climate conference in the form of a written statement on Monday, according to an official schedule, but will not be attending.

Russia’s Vladimir Putin will also be absent and Turkey’s Tayyip Erdogan flew home from the G20 meeting in Rome rather than take part. Meanwhile climate activist Greta Thunberg says she wasn’t even invited to join the conference by the organisers.

Monday will see the world leaders summit with statements by heads of state and government and separate meetings at a morning event on forests and land use and afternoon discussion about accelerating clean technology innovation and deployment.

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Sturgeon ‘shares’ Johnson’s Cop26 pessimism

Nicola Sturgeon has said she “shares” Boris Johnson’s pessimism of a positive outcome to the climate talks at Cop26.

Scotland’s first minister told Sky News: “The prime minister is right to be pessimistic at this stage – I share his pessimism.

“We’ve all got to put the pessimism to one side and put our shoulders to the wheel.

“The UK, having the presidency of this Cop, has a particular responsibility to corral the leaders, to bring them together, to encourage them to do more than they are currently committed to do.

“There’s a big gap on emissions, a big gap on climate finance – so much, much work to be done, and I will do everything I can to push it in the right direction.”

Tom Batchelor1 November 2021 08:58

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Erdogan skips Cop26 over security issue – report

Turkey’s president, Tayyip Erdogan, cancelled plans to attend Cop26 after the UK failed to meet his demands for security arrangements, two Turkish officials have told Reuters.

Mr Erdogan returned to Turkey from a G20 summit in Rome instead of travelling to the climate summit in Glasgow, and the Turkish presidency gave no reason for his return.

One official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said there were protocol issues over the president’s planned attendance at the meeting. Another Turkish official said UK authorities had not met Turkey’s requests over protocol and security, Reuters reported.

“The president took such a decision because our demands regarding the number of vehicles for security and some other security related demands were not fully met,” the senior official told the news agency.

Tom Batchelor1 November 2021 08:50

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‘Touch and go’ whether Cop26 will succeed, says Truss

Liz Truss has said it is “touch and go” whether Cop26 will succeed as she called on world leaders to go further on net-zero pledges.

She told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “We need to make those commitments much more concrete, we need to make them much more deliverable, we need more action by 2030.

“There’s a lot of detailed negotiation that needs to take place, there are going to be some tough decisions that need to be made by world leaders attending the conference, and we’re by no means there yet – it really is touch and go.”

Tom Batchelor1 November 2021 08:39

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Truss opposed to carbon ‘meat tax’

Liz Truss has said she would not support a “meat tax” on foods with a high-carbon footprint, which is hailed as one way to reduce the environmental impact of the food chain.

She told Sky News: “I wouldn’t support a meat tax.

“I think it’s really important that we support our fantastic British farming industry and I think it’s important that rather than using the stick to encourage people to become more climate friendly we use the carrot, if that’s not mixing metaphors with meat.

“And we actually make a climate-friendly lifestyle more affordable for people.”

Tom Batchelor1 November 2021 08:24

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Johnson offers extra £1bn for climate crisis fund, but only if UK economy bounces back

Boris Johnson is pledging to put an extra £1bn into a climate crisis fund for poor nations – but only if the UK economy bounces back from Covid.

The cash would fund programmes for developing nations to cope with the devastating impact of climate change, helping to protect nature and supporting a transition to clean and green energy.

Tom Batchelor1 November 2021 08:14

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Truss: UK ‘putting a lot of pressure’ on Russia and China

Liz Truss has said the UK is “putting a lot of pressure” on Russia’s president Vladimir Putin and Chinese president Xi Jinping amid their absence in person at Cop26.

“Both of those leaders are sending senior delegations to Glasgow so there will be representation in person here in Glasgow,” she told BBC Breakfast.

“The prime minister has spoken to both Vladimir Putin and President Xi, we’re putting a lot of pressure on those countries.

“Because in order to tackle climate change it needs to be global action and those countries are high emitters of carbon dioxide.”

She also defended world leaders flying on private planes to Glasgow.

The foreign secretary said: “I think everybody who has ever done a Zoom call knows that they are quite useful for some things but when you really get into crunch negotiations, when you want to look somebody in the eye and talk to them face-to-face you do need to meet in person, and this is really critical.

“World leaders are going to have to make some tough decisions about what’s going on in their own countries, they’re going to have to commit to things they didn’t necessarily want to when they arrived at the conference and that’s why it’s really important that we do have people face-to-face.”

Tom Batchelor1 November 2021 07:59

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World at ‘one minute to midnight’, says PM

Boris Johnson, who will welcome leaders to Glasgow for the Cop26 talks as they get underway on Monday, will tell them that humanity has “long since run down the clock on climate change”.

“It’s one minute to midnight and we need to act now,” he will say. “If we don’t get serious about climate change today, it will be too late for our children to do so tomorrow.”

He is also expected to say: “We have to move from talk and debate and discussion to concerted, real-world action on coal, cars, cash and trees.

“Not more hopes and targets and aspirations, valuable though they are, but clear commitments and concrete timetables for change.

“We need to get real about climate change and the world needs to know when that’s going to happen.”

Tom Batchelor1 November 2021 07:46

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Cop26 must not become a ‘greenwash summit’, says Miliband

Cop26 must not become a “greenwash summit” or a “climate delay summit”, Ed Miliband has said.

Labour’s shadow energy secretary, speaking at the premiere of The Green Planet, a new television series by Sir David Attenborough, said: “We know what the task is, this decade – to halve global emissions.

“Now Glasgow may not get all the way there but we have to get as far as we possibly can.

“And that’s going to require tough conversations with some leaders who are not doing enough.

“The experts tell us no G20 country is doing enough, so everybody’s got to step up.

“We don’t want a greenwash summit, we don’t want a climate delay summit, we want a climate delivery summit.”

Tom Batchelor31 October 2021 22:46

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Prince Charles calls for ‘war-like footing’ to tackle climate crisis

The Prince of Wales will argue that a “war-like footing” is needed to tackle the climate crisis, as he opens the Cop26 summit.

Charles is expected to call for a “vast military-style campaign” to address urgent environmental issues.

The royal, who has spent decades trying to raise awareness of the growing crisis, will speak at the opening ceremony of the major conference in Glasgow on Monday.

He is expected to stress the urgency of dealing with the climate crisis, saying: “We have to put ourselves on what might be called a war-like footing.”

He will go on to urge leaders across the globe to systematically engage with business to solve the climate problems the world faces.

He is expected to say: “We need a vast military-style campaign to marshal the strength of the global private sector. With trillions at its disposal.”

Tom Batchelor31 October 2021 22:29

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How green are climate summit’s key sponsors?

The sponsors of the Cop26 climate summit have made bold pledges to get to net zero, but an investigation by The Independent has uncovered a substantial – and often hidden – reliance on controversial carbon offsets to get there, which environmentalists have branded “a license to keep polluting” and “a greenwashing scam”.

These 11 firms – Microsoft, Unilever, Sky, SSE, Scottish Power, Sainsbury’s, Reckitt, National Grid, Hitachi, GSK, and NatWest Group – have had their logos plastered all over the website of the biggest climate change event of the year, and inside its Glasgow venue, with each company hyped as a leader in their sector trailblazing the way “towards net zero”.

Last year they generated £260bn in revenue, but collectively pumped out more than 375m tonnes of carbon.

Tom Batchelor31 October 2021 22:14