Boris Johnson will warn world leaders of the fact that humanity is in peril Climate change must be ‘run down’ and we must take action in our speech to the COP26 summit in Glasgow.
The Prime Minister will make a speech at UN climate conference’s opening ceremony and urge countries to go beyond talk and debate to take concrete action.
He will push for action to reduce coal power, protect and restore forests, finance countries to tackle climate change, and increase electric vehicle production.
The Prime Minister is also pledging an extra £1 billion in climate finance to support developing countries by 2025 if the economy grows as forecast and the UK’s aid budget returns to the 0.7 per cent of GDP level.
Boris Johnson will warn world leaders about climate change in his speech to COP26 summit
Security fencing and staff outside the COP26 venue at Glasgow, Scotland today
The UK Government has been criticised for cutting its aid budget in the lead-up to the talks. Delivering a long-promised 100 million US dollars per year by 2020 to poorer countries is a key issue facing developing nations.
A report revealed that the Cop26 summit was delayed by the revelation that the goal of 100 billion dollars for public and private finance would not be met by developed countries until 2023.
The UK doubled its promised climate aid to £11.6bn over five years in 2019 and the new announcement would bring that to £12.6bn if it is delivered.
Separately, the UN warned that countries’ plans to reduce climate-warming emissions over the next decade are not sufficient to keep the world on track for limiting warming to 1.5C. Beyond this point, more severe extreme weather, rising seas, and increased crop and animal damage will be felt.
Johnson will declare: “Humanity long ago has run down the clock regarding climate change.
“It’s one minutes to midnight and we have to act now.
“If we don’t act now on climate change, it will be too late tomorrow for our children.”
He is expected to also say: “We must move from discussion and debate to concerted, real world action on coal, cars and cash.
“None more aspirations and targets, although they are valuable, but clear commitments with concrete timeframes for change.
“We must be realistic about climate change, and the world must know when it will happen.”
Earlier today, the Prime Minister warned world leaders their promises on tackling climate change are starting to ‘sound hollow’ as he read them the riot act ahead of the COP26 summit in Glasgow.
The Prime Minister stated that there are “no compelling excuses” for our procrastination in reducing harmful emissions, and that the action taken amounts to “drops in an ocean rapidly warming”.
He spoke at the G20 summit, Rome, and stated that only 12 members of the club have committed to net zero emissions by 2050.
He said that if the upcoming gathering in Glasgow does not achieve a major breakthrough, then the whole thing will fail.
Mr Johnson said world leaders must now flesh out the 2015 Paris Agreement on climate change, warning that failing to do so will leave ‘the world’s only viable mechanism for dealing with climate change… holed beneath the water line’.
The premier escalated his rhetoric amid fears the summit in Glasgow could become a flop as he agreed the G20 pledge to achieve carbon neutrality ‘by or around mid-century’ is too vague.
Johnson stated that he agreed with the goal when questioned during a press conference. He said that it was a function of the differences between some colleagues.
“Some countries have made commitments to 2060 instead of 2050, as you may know. They have stated 2060 or earlier. We want to bring those commitments forward sooner.
The PM has been trying the Rome summit of powerful countries, including Russia and China, to build momentum for COP26. This afternoon officially got underway and will see world leaders meet tomorrow.
Although the G20 communique supported urgent action, it allowed more room for emissions to continue. The original goal of 2050 was replaced by looser language.
Johnson has already admitted to being lied to by Xi Jinping, China’s top economic official, in a phone call where he suggested that the giant economy should aim for carbon production to peak by 2025 rather than 2030.
Thousands of delegates have been unable to travel to Glasgow due to disruptions caused by storms in the UK.
Boris Johnson warned world leaders that their climate change promises are beginning to’sound hollow’ today as he read them the riot act in advance of the COP26 summit at Glasgow
The Prime Minister stated that there are ‘no compelling reasons for our procrastination on reducing harmful emissions’ and that the amount of action already taken amounts only to ‘drops within a rapidly heating ocean’
Johnson stated that world leaders must now implement the 2015 Paris Agreement regarding climate change. He warned that failure to do so will leave the world’s only viable mechanism to deal with climate change ‘holed beneath the waterline’
Alok Sharma, President, COP26, stated that it will be’really really tough’ for world leaders if they try to strike a deal.
Mr Sharma said there are now two weeks to get an agreement ‘over the line’ as thousands of delegates from across the globe arrive in Glasgow for the gathering.
The UN summit aims at persuading countries around the globe to agree to limit global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees.
Sharma called on world leaders to “leave behind the ghosts of history” because he said that they had to fulfill the promises they made to cut harmful emissions.
Both President Xi and Vladimir Putin, the Russian President, are omissionists at the COP26 summit. However, they will both be there virtually.
Addressing reporters in Rome this afternoon, Mr Johnson said that after ‘hundreds of summits, speeches, press conferences’ the promises made by world leaders are ‘starting to sound, frankly, hollow’.
He stated that the science was clear that we must act now to reduce emissions by half by 2030 and keep 1.5 degree Celsius within reach.
There are no compelling excuses to procrastinate. We have not only acknowledged the problem, but we are already witnessing the devastation caused by climate change. This includes heat waves and droughts, wild fires, and hurricanes.
‘Unlike many other global problems, the solution to climate changes is simple. It involves putting aside dirty fossil fuels such as coal, reducing the use of gas-guzzling transport, and acknowledging the importance of nature in preserving the planet’s life.
“And harnessing nature’s power through renewable energy, rather than attempting to destroy it.”
“If we fail to act now, the Paris Agreement is not going to be remembered as the moment humanity first saw the problem, but as the moment we fled the scene.”
Johnson outlined a list of countries that had made promises to address climate changes, but said none of them were sufficient.
He said that these commitments, while they are welcome, are only drops in a rapidly heating ocean when we think about the challenge we all have to face.
Today’s weather chaos resulted in the death of campaigners, journalists, and delegates travelling by train to the Glasgow conference on climate change. Pictured: London Euston is closing due to overcrowding, suspended services
Only 12 G20 members have made a commitment to net zero by 2050 or earlier. We have only half the number of improved plans for reducing carbon emissions since 2015’s Paris summit.
“We have also failed our commitments of providing $100 billion per year to support developing countries to grow in clean and sustainable ways.
The UN estimates that emissions will rise 15% by 2030. They need to reduce this figure by half. The countries that are most responsible for historical and current emissions are not doing enough.
“If we want to stop COP26 becoming a failure, then this must change. It is clear that if Glasgow fails, then the entire thing will fail.
“The Paris Agreement will be rewritten at the first count.” The water line will soon be the final frontier in the search for a viable mechanism to address climate change.
Jose Manuel Barroso (the former president of European Commission) expressed concern over the international level of cooperation on climate change.
Barroso stated that it was logical for all the major players in the world to work together to achieve ‘global public good’.
But comparing the current situation to that of the 2008 financial crash, he said: ‘I can tell you from experience that today’s atmosphere, the political understanding and level of cooperation, is clearly below what was before when we saw the financial crisis.’
Pictured: Vehicles traverse standing water in Bromsgrove during heavy rains this morning.
The conference, which was held just before COP, saw leaders from the G20 agree on carbon neutrality by or around midcentury’.
The event in Rome saw politicians pledge to end public funding for coal-fired power generation overseas.
They didn’t set any target for the elimination of domestic coal.
According to the summit’s final communiqué, the G20 reiterated past commitments of rich countries to provide 100 billion US Dollars annually to poorer countries to combat climate change.
Leaders agreed to ‘end the provision of international financial finance for new unabated coke power generation overseas by the end 2021’.
G20 leaders stated that they will accelerate our actions in mitigation, adaptation, and finance. They recognize the importance of achieving global net zero greenhouse gases emissions or carbon neutrality by mid-century.
Downing Street stated that COP26 would be the largest event the UK has ever hosted with 25,000 delegates from 196 countries and within the European Union.
During the two-week conference, ministers, climate negotiators as well as civil society and business leaders will be participating in discussions and debates.
Johnson stated last week that it would be ‘touch-and-go’ if the gathering is a success, having previously been bullish about the chances of a breakthrough.
Last night, the Prime Minster stated that the summit will be the “world’s moment for truth”.
When Sharma was told that countries have failed climate change commitments made in the 2015 Paris Agreement, Mr Sharma replied: “Well, you are correct, this is on world leader at the end of it all. They made the commitments in Paris that temperature rises would be well below two degrees Celsius, pursuing efforts towards 1.5 and now they have to deliver.
“We have got the G20 going right now, and those world leaders will be arriving here tomorrow for the summit of world leaders. My message is very clear to them: Let’s forget about the past. It’s Halloween today, but let’s forget about the past. Let’s concentrate on the future, and unite around one issue that is important for all of us, which is protecting the planet.
Ms. Sharma responded to the claim that Mr. Johnson had changed his tone on the likelihood for success at the summit. He said: ‘The Prime Minster is absolutely right, it will be really hard at this summit.
“We have two weeks to finish this. He also mentioned that when he assumed the presidency at COP26, less than 30 percent of the global economic system was covered by a net zero goal.
“We are now at over 80%, almost all G20 nations that are being discussed have set a net zero goal for the middle century.”
When asked directly if a deal would be made at the summit, Mr Sharma did not respond.
He told Sky News: ‘That is what I am driving towards and I think what I have always said is that what we need to come from out of Glasgow is to be able to say with credibility that we have kept 1.5 alive.’
During an interview on BBC’s Andrew Marr Show, Mr Sharma was asked three times if a deal would be made in Glasgow.
He replied: ‘As you said in your introduction, my job is effectively to act as shepherd in chief. This is on leaders.
“It was leaders who made Paris the commitment. Leaders of the largest economies are meeting at the G20 now and they must come forward. Collectively, we need to agree on how to close this gap.
Sharma stated that he expected COP26 would be ‘in many respects tougher than Paris’ since the 2015 pact had been a ‘framework agreement and some of the most challenging rules are still unwritten six years later’.
He stated, “That makes the task really challenging, and, of coarse, we know the geopolitics is more complicated than it was at Paris’ time,”
COP26 was hit hard last week when President Putin and President Xi announced that they will not be attending in person.
China has come under fire for its climate plans since Beijing reiterated its old goals on emissions and did not set any new ambitions.
When asked if China or Russia should do more, Mr Sharma replied: “I want more from every country but I think that the point is that we have made some progress and then we will have to take stock of where there is a gap between what the commitments are and what we need to do.”
Following his trip to Rome for the G20, Johnson will arrive in Glasgow today.
He expressed concern last Wednesday that the climate summit could ‘go wrong’ and end in failure.
He said: ‘We need as many people as possible to agree go to net zero so that they are not producing too much carbon dioxide by the middle of the century.
“I believe it can be done. This summit is going to be very difficult.
‘And I’m very worried, because it might go wrong and we might not get the agreements that we need. It’s just a matter of time.
In comments made last night, Mr Johnson stated that he hopes world leaders arrive in Glasgow ready for ‘decisive actions’.
The city will host world leaders who are expected to reach an agreement to reduce harmful emissions and limit global heating to 1.5 degrees.
Boris Johnson stated last week that it would be ‘touch-and-go’ if the gathering is a success, having previously been bullish about the chances of a breakthrough
He said: ‘Cop26’ will be the moment when the world sees the truth. Everyone is asking whether we seize the moment or let it slip away.
“I hope world leaders will hear them, and come to Glasgow ready with decisive action.
‘Together, we can mark the beginning of the end of climate change – and end the uncertainty once and for all.’
An earlier claim was made that Mr Sharma was upset at Mr Johnson for setting up expectations ahead of the summit amid Cabinet concerns it would be a ‘damp and squib’.
Mr Sharma was said be ‘raging’ at the PM for allegedly ‘ramping up’ his hopes of a breakthrough to Glasgow.
Some ministers believe that the Government’s message ahead of the summit was too bullish, and is ‘completely out-of-control’. Allies of Mr Sharma denied that he was angry about the PM.