COP26 latest news LIVE: Attenborough says humanity ‘already in trouble’ and Biden ask world to ‘seize moment’

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·37-min read
COP26 latest news LIVE: Attenborough says humanity ‘already in trouble’ and Biden ask world to ‘seize moment’
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Sir David Attenborough warned that humanity is “already in trouble” as he addressed delegates at a rousing speech at the opening ceremony of COP26.

The climate campaigner stressed that our motivation “must not be fear but hope” for change and that young people “give us the impetus we need to rewrite our story”.

Elsewhere, the Prince of Wales told delegates that nations “must come together to create the environment that enables every sector of industry to take the action required”.

He added: “We know this will take trillions, not billions, of dollars. We also know that countries, many of whom are burdened by growing levels of debt, simply cannot afford to ‘go green’.”

The conference in Glasgow is seen as the moment when countries must deliver on pledges made in the accord agreed in Paris six years ago, to limit temperature rises to well below 2C above pre-industrial levels and pursue efforts to curb warming to 1.5C – beyond which the worst impacts will be felt.

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21:43 , Matt Watts

That’s it for today’s coverage. Please check back tomorrow for the latest news from the COP26 conference.

Joe Biden and Prince William meet at COP26 reception

21:41 , Matt Watts

Joe Biden and Prince William in warm meeting at COP26 reception

India sets out 2070 net-zero emissions target at Cop26 conference

18:21 , Matt Watts

Modi: India will meet net zero emissions target by 2070

17:15 , Matt Watts

India will meet a target of net zero emissions by 2070, the country’s prime minister Narendra Modi has told the Cop26 global climate summit.

This was one of five pledges he listed at the world leaders’ summit at the UN conference in Glasgow.

The others included that India will increase its non fossil energy capacity to 500 GW by 2030 and it will get half of its energy from renewable resources by the same date.

He also pledged that India will reduce its projected carbon emissions by one billion tonnes between now and 2030, and reduce the carbon intensity of its economy by 45%.

Archbishop of Canterbury apologises for Nazi comparison

16:50 , Matt Watts

The Archbishop of Canterbury has apologised for suggesting in a BBC interview that failure to act at Cop26 in Glasgow would be possibly more grave than leaders who ignored warnings about the Nazis in the 1930s.

He tweeted: “I unequivocally apologise for the words I used when trying to emphasise the gravity of the situation facing us at Cop26. It’s never right to make comparisons with the atrocities brought by the Nazis and I’m sorry for the offence caused to Jews by these words.”

Putting a price on pollution is key to reducing global emissions, says Canadian PM

16:29 , Laura Sharman

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has said that putting a price on pollution is key to pushing down global emissions.

“Just as globally we’ve agreed to a minimum corporate tax, we must work together to ensure it is no longer free to pollute anywhere in the world,” he said at the Cop26 climate conference in Glasgow.

“That means establishing a shared minimum standard for pricing pollution.

“We know pollution pricing is key to getting emissions down while getting innovation up and running.”

Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (AP)
Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (AP)

Biden’s closing remarks from climate change speech

16:20 , Laura Sharman

Concluding his speech at the Cop26 climate summit in Glasgow, US President Joe Biden said: “Let this be the moment when we answer history’s call, here in Glasgow.

“Let this be the start of a decade of transformative action that preserves our planet and raises the quality of life for people everywhere.”

He continued: “We can do this, we just have to make a choice to do it. So, let’s get to work.

“Those of us who are responsible for much of the deforestation and all the problems we have so far have an overwhelming obligation to nations who, in fact, are not there and have not done it.

“We have to help much more than we have thus far.”

 (REUTERS)
(REUTERS)

US is “back at the table” with latest emissions target, says Biden

16:16 , Laura Sharman

Joe Biden said it has “not been the case” that the US has been “at the table” of combating climate change.

He told Cop26 his administration would commit to meeting a goal of reducing US emissions by 50% to 52% below 2005 levels by 2030.

This would “demonstrate to the world that the US is not only back at the table but will hopefully lead by the power of our example,” he said.

“I know it hasn’t been the case and that’s why my administration is working overtime to show that our climate commitment is action and not words,” he added.

Glasgow must “kick-off” a decade of ambition to preserve our future, says Biden

16:02 , Laura Sharman

Climate change is not a “hypothetical threat”, Joe Biden has said as he addressed the opening session of Cop26.

The US President said: “Glasgow must be the kick-off of a decade of ambition and innovation to preserve our shared future.

“Climate change is already ravaging the world. It’s not hypothetical. It’s not a hypothetical threat. It is destroying people’s lives and livelihoods, and doing it every single day.”

 (AP)
(AP)

Biden on climate: “This is the decade that will determine the answer”

16:00 , Laura Sharman

“We meet with the eyes of history upon us and profound questions before us,” Joe Biden said.

“It is simple. Will we act? Will we do what is necessary?

“Will we seize the enormous opportunity before us or will we condemn future generations to suffer?

“This is the decade that will determine the answer, this decade.”

The US President told leaders at Cop26 that “the science is clear” but there is only a brief window left to raise ambitions and meet the “rapidly narrowing” task.

Joe Biden speaks at the UN Climate Change Conference Cop26 (AP)
Joe Biden speaks at the UN Climate Change Conference Cop26 (AP)

“This is a decisive decade in which we have an opportunity to prove ourselves,” he continued.

“We can keep the goal of limiting global warming to just 1.5 Degrees Celsius within our reach if we come together.

“If we commit to doing our part of each of our nations with determination and ambition. That’s what Cop26 is all about.”

Merkel: Germany aims to boost climate finance aid to €6bn by 2025

15:51 , Laura Sharman

Angela Merkel told leaders at Cop26 that Germany and Canada have taken a closer look at the delivery plan on the 100bn US Dollar climate finance target in 2023.

“I believe it to be central for the credibility of industrialised countries that we provide the finance we promised,” she said.

“Germany is already making a substantial contribution and we intend to increase that contribution by 2025 to 6bn Euros per year.”

German Chancellor Angela Merkel speaks during the UN Climate Change Conference (via REUTERS)
German Chancellor Angela Merkel speaks during the UN Climate Change Conference (via REUTERS)

Germany aims to cut emissions by 65% by 2030 and be climate neutral by 2045

15:39 , Laura Sharman

Angela Merkel said Germany has once again raised its target on emissions during her speech to world leaders at Cop26.

The German Chancellor said the country has increased its Nationally Determined Contributions and aims by 2030 to have cut emissions by 65% from 1990 levels.

“We want to be climate neutral by 2045,” she said adding that developed countries “bear a special responsibility.”

“We all know that the impact of climate change is devastating. We must and we can implement the Paris Agreement I believe.”

‘Climate Chancellor’ Angela Merkel speaks at last Cop as German leader

15:28 , Laura Sharman

Angela Merkel told world leaders “we are not yet where we have to be” during her speech at the last Cop she will attend as German Chancellor.

“Today in Glasgow, Cop26 will be the last UN climate change conference for me to attend in this capacity and thus the question we have to address is where do we stand?” she said.

“We have taken a number of decisions as we did yesterday at the G20 summit in Rome and also we have the Paris Agreement of the year 2015 as a guiding line.

“But we are not yet where we need to get, where we have to be.”

Prime Minister Boris Johnson greets German Chancellor Angela Merkel (Getty Images)
Prime Minister Boris Johnson greets German Chancellor Angela Merkel (Getty Images)

Spain slashes its coal electricity generation by 90%

15:10 , Laura Sharman

Spain has reduced its coal electricity generation by 90% in just four years according to prime minister Pedro Sanchez who has urged other world leaders to drop fossil fuels.

Speaking at Cop26, Mr Sanchez outlined three objectives to reduce emissions and increase “the level of ambition” to achieve the 1.5 Degree target.

This also includes opting for renewable energy, energy efficiency and clean transport and abandoning fossil fuels, he said.

“We know what needs to be done but we need political determination and immediate action,” he added.

“Our societies must perceive the green transition not as a threat but rather as a great opportunity for inclusive, economic growth.”

Spain's Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez speaks during the UN Climate Change Conference (REUTERS)
Spain's Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez speaks during the UN Climate Change Conference (REUTERS)

President Biden accused of falling asleep during Cop26 speeches

14:50 , Laura Sharman

US President Joe Biden seemed to be struggling to keep his eyes open at the Cop26 summit in Glasgow.

A video circulating on social media prompted speculation that the US leader fell asleep at his desk during the opening ceremony on Monday.

Biden appeared tired as Barbados Prime Minister Mia Mottley delivered a speech on her nation’s role in tackling climate change.

However, it is not clear whether he nodded off or simply closed his eyes momentarily during the event.

Washington Post journalist Zach Purser Brown shared the video, commenting: “Biden appears to fall asleep during COP26 opening speeches.”

14:40 , Daniel Keane

Boris Johnson has compared the plight of the planet to James Bond strapped to a doomsday device and hurtling towards a destruction that will end human life as it currently exists.

Opening the Cop26 climate change conference in Glasgow, the Prime Minister said the world stood at “one minute to midnight” facing catastrophe if it failed to act.

Before the assembled world leaders he painted an apocalyptic picture of the future with wildfires, drought, collapsing food supplies and cities disappearing under the seas.

He warned that the “anger and impatience” of the world’s population will be “uncontainable” if the leaders did not “get real” over the coming two weeks about the dangers they faced.

“We are in roughly the same position as James Bond today, except that the tragedy is that this is not a movie, and the doomsday device is real,” he said.

‘Try harder’, Mottley tells world leaders

14:09 , Daniel Keane

Ms Mottley urged world leaders to “try harder” to prevent climate change.

She said: “1.5C is what we need to stay alive – two degrees is a death sentence for the people of Antigua and Barbuda, for the people of the Maldives, for the people of Dominica and Fiji, for the people of Kenya and Mozambique – and yes, for the people of Samoa and Barbados.

“We do not want that dreaded death sentence and we’ve come here today to say ‘try harder, try harder’.

“Because our people, the climate army, the world, the planet, needs our action now – not next year, not in the next decade.”

‘Try harder’, Mottley tells world leaders

14:09 , Daniel Keane

Ms Mottley urged world leaders to “try harder” to prevent climate change.

She said: “1.5C is what we need to stay alive – two degrees is a death sentence for the people of Antigua and Barbuda, for the people of the Maldives, for the people of Dominica and Fiji, for the people of Kenya and Mozambique – and yes, for the people of Samoa and Barbados.

“We do not want that dreaded death sentence and we’ve come here today to say ‘try harder, try harder’.

“Because our people, the climate army, the world, the planet, needs our action now – not next year, not in the next decade.”

Barbadian PM launches veiled attack on absent world leaders

13:53 , Daniel Keane

Ms Mottley continued her speech by launching a veiled attack on leaders who have not attended the summit.

Russian president Vladimir Putin and Chinese president Xi Jinping both decided not to attend the talks.

Speaking during the opening ceremony, Ms Mottley said: “We can work with who is ready to go, because the train is ready to leave.

“Those who are not yet ready, we need to continue to encircle and remind them that their people, not our people, but their citizens need them to get on board as soon as possible.”

World is at a ‘fork in the road’ in climate change battle, says Barbados PM

13:45 , Daniel Keane

The world is at a “fork in the road” in the fight against climate change, Barbadian prime minister Mia Mottley has told world leaders.

In a blistering speech during the opening ceremony of Cop26, Ms Mottley called on “leaders to lead”, stressing the impact of adverse weather events on developing countries.

“Our world, my friends, stands at a fork in the road, one no less significant than when the United Nations was formed in 1945,” she said.

“But then, the majority of our countries here did not exist – we exist now – and the difference is we want to exist 100 years from now.

“If our existence is to mean anything, then we must act in the interest of all of our people that are dependent on us.

“If we don’t, we will allow the path of greed and selfishness to sow the seeds of our common destruction.”

Sir David Attenborough continues...

13:34 , Laura Sharman

Sir David Attenborough said we must use this opportunity to create a more equal world “and our motivation should not be fear but hope.”

The broadcaster, 95, told how the younger generation will reflect on Cop26 and consider whether global temperatures started to drop as a result of commitments made at the crucial world summit.

“There is every reason to believe that the answer can be yes,” he said.

“If working apart, we are force powerful enough to destabilise our planet, surely working together, we are powerful enough to save it.”

Sir David Attenborough speaks at Cop26 in Glasgow (AP)
Sir David Attenborough speaks at Cop26 in Glasgow (AP)

Sir David Attenborough’s urgent message on climate change

13:27 , Laura Sharman

Humanity is “already in trouble” from climate change, Sir David Attenborough has warned world leaders.

Speaking during the opening ceremony of Cop26 in Glasgow, the climate campaigner charted carbon emissions throughout human history which has peaked at 414 parts per million.

“Our burning of fossil fuels, our destruction of nature, our approach to industry, construction and learning, our releasing carbon into the atmosphere - we are already in trouble,” he said.

“The stability that we all depend on is breaking. This story is one of inequality as well as instability.”

He added: “Today those who have done the least to cause this problem are being the hardest hit. Ultimately all of us will feel the impacts, some of which are now unavoidable.”

Sir David Attenborough speaks during the opening ceremony of the UN Climate Change Conference Cop26 (Getty Images)
Sir David Attenborough speaks during the opening ceremony of the UN Climate Change Conference Cop26 (Getty Images)

Prince Charles’ speech continues at Cop26

13:24 , Laura Sharman

The Prince of Wales continued: “We know this will take trillions, not billions, of dollars. We also know that countries, many of whom are burdened by growing levels of debt, simply cannot afford to ‘go green’.

“Here, we need a vast military-style campaign to marshal the strength of the global private sector. With trillions at its disposal - far beyond global GDP and, with the greatest respect, beyond even the governments of the world’s leaders - it offers the only real prospect of achieving fundamental economic transition.”

Prince Charles said a clear strategy is needed to speed up innovative solutions getting to market, along with a reduction in risk to boost private investment and said this framework is offered in his Sustainable Markets Initiative.

The Prince of Wales delivers a speech during the opening ceremony (PA)
The Prince of Wales delivers a speech during the opening ceremony (PA)

Prince Charles gives speech at Cop26

13:22 , Laura Sharman

The Prince of Wales urged the world to put itself on a “war-like footing” amid the existential threat of climate change.

Prince Charles addressed delegates at the Cop26 global climate conference in Glasgow on Monday afternoon.

“The scale and scope of the threat we face call for a global, systems-level solution based on radically transforming our current fossil fuel-based economy to one that is genuinely renewable and sustainable.

“So ladies and gentleman my plea today is for countries to come together to create the environment that enables every sector of industry to take the action required,” he said.

Prince Charles, Prince of Wales, speaks during the opening ceremony of the Cop26 UN climate change conference (AFP via Getty Images)
Prince Charles, Prince of Wales, speaks during the opening ceremony of the Cop26 UN climate change conference (AFP via Getty Images)

Sturgeon: Cop26 summit should make leaders ‘bloody uncomfortable’

13:13 , Laura Sharman

World leaders gathering in Glasgow for the Cop26 climate summit should feel “bloody uncomfortable” for not doing enough to tackle global warming, Nicola Sturgeon has said.

The Scottish First Minister spoke out after meeting teenage activist Greta Thunberg and said voices such as hers are “so important” as they challenge political leaders from across the globe on “the hard realities of our own lack of delivery”.

Speaking as the crucial summit began, Ms Sturgeon insisted: “Every climate promise must be kept. Frankly none of them are being kept right now.”

Scotland First Minister Nicola Sturgeon attends the opening ceremony of Cop26 (Getty Images)
Scotland First Minister Nicola Sturgeon attends the opening ceremony of Cop26 (Getty Images)

Johnson closes climate change speech urging people to “defuse that bomb”

13:10 , Laura Sharman

Boris Johnson concluded his Cop26 speech by saying it must mark the moment when humanity began to “defuse that bomb” of climate change and began the fight back.

“Yes it’s going to be hard and yes we can do it,” the Prime Minister said.

“And so let’s get to work with all the creativity and imagination and goodwill that we possess.

“Thank you very much and good luck to all of us.”

Johnson: Cop26, the beginning of the end of climate change

13:07 , Laura Sharman

Cop26 must mark the beginning of the end of climate change, Boris Johnson has said.

Addressing the opening of the Cop26 summit in Glasgow, the Prime Minster said: “If summits alone solve climate change then we wouldn’t have needed 25 previous Cop summits to get where we are today.

“But while Cop26 will not be the end of climate change it can and it must mark the beginning of the end.”

He added: “In the years since Paris the world has slowly and with great effort and pain built a lifeboat for humanity and now is the time to give that lifeboat a mighty shove into the water like some great liner rolling down the slipways of the Clyde.

“Take a sexton sighting on 1.5 degrees and set off on a journey to a cleaner greener future.”

World leaders urged not to “fluff our lines” in battle against climate change

13:06 , Laura Sharman

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has urged world leaders not to “fluff our lines”, warning that younger generations will “not forgive us”.

“The children who will judge us are children not yet born, and their children,” he said.

“We are now coming centre stage before a vast and uncountable audience of posterity and we must not fluff our lines or miss our cue.

“Because if we fail, they will not forgive us - they will know that Glasgow was the historic turning point when history failed to turn.

“They will judge us with bitterness and with a resentment that eclipses any of the climate activists of today and they will be right.

“Cop26 will not and cannot be the end of the story on climate change.”

Johnson: There is a duty to find the funds pledged in Paris

13:04 , Laura Sharman

Prime Minister Boris Johnson said there is a duty to find the funds pledged at a previous climate summit Paris.

He told the Cop26 conference in Glasgow: “We cannot and will not succeed by government spending alone.

“We in this room could deploy hundreds of billions, no question. But the market has hundreds of trillions and the task now is to work together to help our friends to decarbonise.”

The Prime Minister said such a move would help de-risk key projects to allow private sector money to be brought in.

“In just the same way that it was the private sector that enabled the UK to end our on dependence on coal and become the Saudi Arabia of wind.”

Johnson: The longer we fail to act the worse it gets

12:59 , Laura Sharman

Prime Minister Boris Johnson warned of the dangers of rising temperatures as he opened the Cop26 global climate summit.

“Three degrees and you can add more wildfires and cyclones - twice as many - five times as many droughts and 36 times as many heatwaves,” he said.

“Four degrees and we say goodbye to whole cities, Miami, Alexandria Shanghai, all lost beneath the waves.

“The longer we fail to act and the worse it gets and the higher the price when we are forced by catastrophe to act.”

Boris Johnson speaks during the opening ceremony of the UN Climate Change Conference Cop26 (Getty Images)
Boris Johnson speaks during the opening ceremony of the UN Climate Change Conference Cop26 (Getty Images)

Johnson: We have learnt not to ignore the science

12:56 , Laura Sharman

“We know what the scientists tell us and we have learnt not to ignore them,” Mr Johnson said in his opening speech at Cop26.

We are “in roughly the same position” as James Bond, PM tells Cop26

12:52 , Laura Sharman

World leaders are “in roughly the same position” as James Bond, the Prime Minister added as he opened Cop26 in Glasgow.

Welcoming politicians to the city, Boris Johnson said the fictional spy was Scotland’s “most globally famous fictional son”.

Bond, he said, “generally comes to the climax of his highly lucrative films strapped to a doomsday device, desperately trying to work out which coloured wire to pull to turn it off, while a red digital clock ticks down remorselessly to a detonation that will end human life as we know it”.

He added: “We are in roughly the same position my fellow global leaders as James Bond today. Except that the tragedy is this is not a movie and the doomsday device is real.”

Prime Minister Boris Johnson opens Cop26 (AP)
Prime Minister Boris Johnson opens Cop26 (AP)

Johnson opens climate change talks: “This is not a movie”

12:47 , Laura Sharman

The Prime Minister told fellow global leaders “this is not a movie” as he opened the floor for climate change talks at Cop26 in Glasgow.

Boris Johnson began by referencing the Scottish heritage of James Bond who “generally comes to the climax of his highly lucrative film strapped to a doomsday device.”

He continued: “We are in roughly the same position my fellow global leaders as James Bond today.

“Except that the tragedy is this is not a movie and the doomsday device is real.

“The clock is ticking to the furious rhythm of hundreds of billions of pistons and turbines and furnaces and engines with which we are pumping carbon into the air faster and faster.

“Record outputs and quilting the earth in an invisible and suffocating blanket of CO2, raising the temperature of the planet with a speed and an abruptness which is entirely manmade.”

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson speaks during the opening ceremony of the UN Climate Change Conference Cop26 (Getty Images)
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson speaks during the opening ceremony of the UN Climate Change Conference Cop26 (Getty Images)

Downing Street refuses to apologise for queues at Cop26

12:36 , Laura Sharman

Downing Street refused to apologise for the lengthy queues faced by some delegates and visitors to the United Nations Cop26 summit in Glasgow.

Officials said the government was working with the UN and operational staff.

A No 10 spokesman said: “The security arrangements and accreditation for Cop are mandated by the UN and managed in partnership between the UN and Cop26 operational staff.

“You will be aware that there are thousands of delegates arriving on site each day and we are working closely with our partners like the UN FCC to minimise wait times as much as possible during busy times whilst we ensure we keep safe entry for those who wish to access the site.”

Asked if the UK would apologise, the spokesperson said: “We are working closely with the UN and Cop operational staff.”

 (AP)
(AP)

Johnson and Biden touch elbows at Cop26

12:33 , Laura Sharman

Boris Johnson and Joe Biden greeted one another ahead of the Cop26 welcome ceremony today.

The Prime Minister and US President touched elbows at the summit where Biden hopes to showcase legislation to fulfill a pledge to cut greenhouse gas emissions.

The pair previously bonded over trains and public transport when they met at the White House in September.

Boris Johnson greets Joe Biden at Cop26 (Getty Images)
Boris Johnson greets Joe Biden at Cop26 (Getty Images)

Angela Merkel among world leaders to take their seats for Cop26 opening ceremony

12:20 , Laura Sharman

Boris Johnson is set to welcome world leaders at the Cop26 opening ceremony.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon are among those to have taken their seats for the ceremony which will kickstart climate talks this afternoon.

Nicola Sturgeon waits for the start of the opening ceremony at Cop26 (AFP via Getty Images)
Nicola Sturgeon waits for the start of the opening ceremony at Cop26 (AFP via Getty Images)

Boris Johnson greets Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi

12:10 , Laura Sharman

Boris Johnson and UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres greet Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi as they arrive for day two of Cop26.

 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

Biden pictured traveling towards Glasgow in motorcade

12:08 , Laura Sharman

Joe Biden’s motorcade was pictured on the M8 from Edinburgh towards Glasgow for the start of Cop26 today.

The US President has been criticised for using a slow moving, 85-car motorcade in Rome ahead of the UN climate change summit.

It comes during his 10,000 mile return trip to Europe on Air Force One which includes another motorcade tour in Scotland.

 (Jeremy Selwyn)
(Jeremy Selwyn)

Jeff Bezos to join Prince Charles at Cop26 event

12:01 , Laura Sharman

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos will join the Prince of Wales at a Cop26 event promoting the greening of north Africa, Clarence House has confirmed.

Charles was pictured having an informal chat with the billionaire businessman and his girlfriend Lauren Sanchez on Sunday night following the G20 summit in Rome.

It is understood they met to discuss Mr Bezos’s charitable body’s commitment to nature ahead of a Cop26 event in Glasgow promoting the Great Green Wall.

Cop26 welcomes performance by Indonesian dancers

11:57 , Laura Sharman

Indonesian traditional dancers perform during the UN Climate Change Conference in Glasgow.

Indonesian traditional dancers perform during Cop26 in Glasgow (REUTERS)
Indonesian traditional dancers perform during Cop26 in Glasgow (REUTERS)

Johnson greets Macron at Cop26 following threats over fishing

11:49 , Laura Sharman

The Prime Minister welcomes French President Emmanuel Macron to Cop26 in Glasgow.

Britain’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson greets France’s President Emmanuel Macron during arrivals at Cop26 (REUTERS)
Britain’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson greets France’s President Emmanuel Macron during arrivals at Cop26 (REUTERS)

Joe Biden touches down in Scotland

11:42 , Laura Sharman

Joe Biden smiled as he arrived at Edinburgh Airport to attend Cop26 in Scotland.

The US President was greeted upon arrival as he makes his way to the summit in Glasgow.

 (AP)
(AP)
 (REUTERS)
(REUTERS)
 (REUTERS)
(REUTERS)
US President Joe Biden is greeted upon arrival to attend Cop26 (REUTERS)
US President Joe Biden is greeted upon arrival to attend Cop26 (REUTERS)

Boris Johnson on coal mines

11:33 , Laura Sharman

Boris Johnson said he is “not in favour of more coal” but insisted the potential new colliery in Cumbria was “not a decision for me”.

The Prime Minister said he was “absolutely clear” that he did not want more mines, as world leaders gathered in Glasgow for the Cop26 climate change summit.

“I’m not in favour of more coal, let’s be absolutely clear, but it’s not a decision for me,” My Johnson told the BBC.

“It’s a decision for local planning authorities.”

Coal firm West Cumbria Mining wants to open a deep coal mine on the former Marchon chemical works on the outskirts of Whitehaven, Cumbria, to mine metallurgical or coking coal for use in the steel industry.

The development, first proposed in 2017, has been approved three times by Cumbria County Council.

But in March, communities secretary Robert Jenrick decided to “call in” the application so that an inquiry could be held to explore the arguments put forward by both supporters and opponents of the proposal.

Two-hour queues as 25,000 descend outside Cop26

11:22 , Laura Sharman

Long queues have caused delays for delegates attempting to enter the main Cop26 venue in Glasgow.

Some on social media have said access to the SEC has taken up to two hours after more than 25,000 people descended on Scotland’s largest city for the international climate talks.

Pictures on social media have shown hundreds waiting outside the main gates to the venue.

Delegates have to go through airport style security once inside.

Covid-friendly greeting for Liz Truss and Justin Trudeau

11:19 , Laura Sharman

Foreign Secretary Elizabeth Truss gave a Covid-friendly greeting to Justin Trudeau this morning at Cop26.

The foreign secretary touched elbows with the Canadian Prime Minister as they arrived for day two of the summit.

British Foreign Secretary Elizabeth Truss greets Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (Getty Images)
British Foreign Secretary Elizabeth Truss greets Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (Getty Images)

Cancelled trains hold Cop26 travellers at Euston station

11:13 , Laura Sharman

Train chaos at Euston station continued to hold up Cop26 travellers for a second day on Monday.

Rail passengers are facing delays and cancellations after two trains collided in Salisbury on Sunday evening, but other lines hit by storm damage over the weekend are returning to normal.

Network Rail tweeted on Monday morning: “ Good morning - trains moving again in and out of Euston after our overnight engineers repaired overhead electric wires damaged by a fallen tree near Rugby yesterday.”

 (PA)
(PA)
 (PA)
(PA)
 (PA)
(PA)
 (PA)
(PA)

London Mayor boards train to Glasgow: We need to take action now

11:08 , Laura Sharman

Sadiq Khan urged for immediate action as he boarded the train to Glasgow for Cop26.

Mass queues and collapsing banner outside Cop26

10:54 , Laura Sharman

Hundreds of people were pictured queueing shoulder to shoulder while waiting to get into Cop26 today.

Attendees said they were asked by security guards not to take photographs while a promotional banner was videoed hanging off outside the entrance.

It comes after Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said the summit would inevitably raise the risk of Covid transmission.

Hundreds queue outside Cop26 stadium (AP)
Hundreds queue outside Cop26 stadium (AP)

Biden tests negative for Covid ahead of Cop26 summit

10:39 , Laura Sharman

It follows concerns after the US President’s press secretary Jen Psaki tested positive for the virus on Sunday.

A White House spokesperson said Mr Biden took the PCR test as part of entry requirements for attendance at the Cop26 conference in Glasgow.

Jill Biden arrives in Naples

10:32 , Laura Sharman

US first lady Jill Biden was pictured waving as she arrived for her flight to Naples after attending events on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Rome.

Jill Biden waves when arriving for her flight to Naples (AP)
Jill Biden waves when arriving for her flight to Naples (AP)

Johnson bumps elbows with Ursula von der Leyen at Cop26

10:19 , Laura Sharman

Prime Minister Boris Johnson bumped elbows with European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen as he welcomed her to the COP26 UN Climate Summit in Glasgow.

Boris Johnson greets European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen at Cop26 (AP)
Boris Johnson greets European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen at Cop26 (AP)

Turkey’s president cancels plans to attend Cop26 at last-minute

10:11 , Laura Sharman

Turkey‘s President has cancelled plans to attend the COP26 climate conference after Britain failed to meet Ankara’s demands on security arrangements.

Recep Tayyip Erdogan had been among world leaders expected to speak at the conference today, but Turkish officials told Reuters news agency he has pulled out at the last minute.

“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,” one senior official told the news agency.

The Turkish presidency gave no reason for his unscheduled return.

Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan attends a press conference at Rome G20 Summit on Sunday (Getty Images)
Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan attends a press conference at Rome G20 Summit on Sunday (Getty Images)

Sadiq Khan opts for train travel over flying to Cop26

09:59 , Laura Sharman

The Mayor of London was seen boarding a train at London Euston station on Monday as he made his way to the Cop26 summit.

Sadiq Khan opted for rail travel over flying into Glasgow along with mayors of some of the world’s biggest cities.

Sadiq Khan boards a train to Glasgow for the Cop 26 summit (PA)
Sadiq Khan boards a train to Glasgow for the Cop 26 summit (PA)
Sadiq Khan en route to Cop26 Glasgow (PA)
Sadiq Khan en route to Cop26 Glasgow (PA)
Sadiq Khan opted for rail over air travel (PA)
Sadiq Khan opted for rail over air travel (PA)

Watch world leaders arriving at COP26 in Glasgow

09:41 , Laura Sharman

Sturgeon shares Johnson’s pessimism over COP26 climate talks

09:40 , Laura Sharman

Scotland’s First Minister said she shares Boris Johnson’s pessimism over the Cop26 climate talks, but urged leaders to “put our shoulders to the wheel”.

The Prime Minister said ahead of the start of the summit in Glasgow that pledges made in the Paris Agreement designed to curb emissions will not have worked.

Nicola Sturgeon, speaking as world leaders from more than 100 countries arrived in Scotland’s largest city, said she shared the outlook of the Prime Minister.

But she urged those involved in talks to put aside the pessimism and work to secure action on climate change.

“The Prime Minister is right to be pessimistic at this stage. I share his pessimism,” she told Sky News.

“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.”

Liz Truss defends world leaders arriving at Cop26 by private plane

09:36 , Laura Sharman

Ireland will not lecture US on climate obligations, says minister

09:34 , Laura Sharman

Paschal Donohoe has said he will not pressure the US to do more to tackle climate change.

The Irish finance minister was speaking as US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen arrived in Dublin for a series of engagements.

“President Biden and Secretary Yellen are very much aware of the obligation that the United States has to reduce its carbon emissions, as I am as a member of the Irish Government for Ireland,” he said on Monday.

“And I think we’ll be focusing on what we can do together and acknowledging the great difficulty that there are at times in executing what we want to do.”

Oxfam activists protest during COP26 in Glasgow

09:27 , Laura Sharman

Oxfam activists with ‘Big Heads’ of Prime Minister Boris Johnson and US President Joe Biden perform in a traditional Scottish pipe band amid COP26 in Glasgow.

Oxfam 'Big Head' caricatures of world leaders Joe Biden and Boris Johnson (AP)
Oxfam 'Big Head' caricatures of world leaders Joe Biden and Boris Johnson (AP)
Royal Exchange Square (PA)
Royal Exchange Square (PA)
COP26 Glasgow (REUTERS)
COP26 Glasgow (REUTERS)

Archbishop of Canterbury on climate change

09:11 , Laura Sharman

The Archbishop of Canterbury said tackling climate change is a moral issue.

Explaining what he hopes to achieve by being in Glasgow, the Most Rev Justin Welby said he is there to listen, particularly to the countries that are most affected, and to encourage those who are making progress.

“It is absolutely a moral issue,” he told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme.

“This is our neighbours all around the world, those who are already suffering catastrophic impacts, this is life or death.”

The Archbishop of Canterbury (PA)
The Archbishop of Canterbury (PA)

Nicola Sturgeon: Failure is not an option

09:07 , Laura Sharman

Scotland’s First Minister has urged world leaders to step up their commitments on climate change at COP26, warning current pledges are not enough.

Nicola Sturgeon said the future of the planet depends on its success so “failure is really not an option.”

Palau President calls for radical action to stop islands from going under

09:00 , Laura Sharman

The president of Palau has called for radical action to avoid extinction in the western Pacific archipelago which is made up of more than 500 islands.

“We need to take immediate action,” Surangel Whipps Jr told BBC Radio 4’s Today Programme.

“That action needs to be radical. We need to set targets, targets that are really going to make a difference, and we’re pushing that we meet half the target that we want to meet in 2050 by 2030.

“We need to take action, we need to take it immediately, because, otherwise, it’s about our extinction.

“When those islands go under, you’ve lost the culture, you’ve lost the language, you’ve lost the people’s identity.

“Yes, you can move them to a building in Shanghai or move them to some fields in Arkansas or wherever, but our people, our islands throughout the Pacific, those people have lost their identity.

“They are no longer a nation, they are no longer a people. We should not become extinct because of the actions of the largest emitters.”

 (AP)
(AP)

Johnson: It’s a one minute to midnight moment

08:52 , Laura Sharman

Boris Johnson will open the ceremony of the world leaders’ summit and say: “Humanity has long since run down the clock on climate change.

“It’s one minute to midnight and we need to act now.

“If we don’t get serious about climate change today, it will be too late for our children to do so tomorrow.”

UK net-zero tech firms double in value in 12 months

08:50 , Laura Sharman

The value of the UK’s net-zero tech sector has nearly doubled in the past year despite a major slowdown in investment growth, according to data.

Net-zero tech firms, which develop technology to offset carbon emissions, saw valuations rise from £17.8 billion in 2020 to £34.8 billion in 2021, according to the Net Zero 2021 Report from start-up network Tech Nation.

The sector has been bolstered by the arrival of 10 new companies in the past year but the hike in value was driven by funding rounds and stock market listings at established companies.

US President boards plane headed for COP26 Glasgow

08:47 , Laura Sharman

Joe Biden has boarded Air Force One after attending the G20 summit in Rome on Monday.

The US President will now head to the UN climate summit in Glasgow, which gathers leaders from around the world to lay out their vision for addressing the common challenge of global warming.

Joe Biden waves as he boards Air Force One after attending the G20 summit in Rome (AP)
Joe Biden waves as he boards Air Force One after attending the G20 summit in Rome (AP)

Boris Johnson arriving at COP26 today

08:42 , Laura Sharman

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has arrived for the COP26 UN Climate Summit in Glasgow today.

Boris Johnson arrives for the COP26 UN Climate Summit in Glasgow on Monday (POOL/AFP via Getty Images)
Boris Johnson arrives for the COP26 UN Climate Summit in Glasgow on Monday (POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

Liz Truss: UK will ‘take action’ if French don’t back down within 48 hours

08:39 , Laura Sharman

Foreign Secretary Liz Truss has warned France it has 48 hours to back down on threats made in the fishing licences row or the UK will begin dispute talks set out in the Brexit deal.

Wombles join Sir Paul McCartney encouraging people to eat less meat

08:38 , Laura Sharman

The Wombles are collaborating with Sir Paul McCartney on a project to encourage people to eat less meat for the sake of the environment.

As part of the OneStepGreener campaign for Cop26, the classic children’s characters are joining forces with Sir Paul’s campaign Meat Free Monday.

The children’s show has championed positive environmental behaviour since it first aired in 1973 as it is about a family of litter-picking creatures who live on Wimbledon Common.

Sir Paul launched Meat Free Monday, which encourages people to go without meat once a week, with daughters Mary and Stella in 2009.

The furry creatures are supporting the campaign with the creation of two family-friendly plant-based recipes.

Each of the recipes will be presented in a short, animated film featuring one of the famous Wombles characters - Madame Cholet’s Chilli Non Carne and Tobermory’s Corn and Courgette Fritters.

The recipes will be published on November 1, World Vegan Day, and November 8 on the Meat Free Monday website.

The Beatles star, 79, also composed the song which features in the recipe films.

Speaking on behalf of The Wombles, Great Uncle Bulgaria said: “We love the Meat Free Monday campaign.

“Reducing the amount of meat we eat is good for the planet, good for animals and good for our health.”

Sir Paul McCartney (REUTERS)
Sir Paul McCartney (REUTERS)

Lily Cole on climate and travel

08:29 , Laura Sharman

Model and activist Lily Cole said stopping travelling has been the hardest change she has made to her life in her efforts to live more sustainably.

She told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “Actually the year before Covid I pretty much stopped travelling. I was just travelling by train, which reduced my travelling massively.

“Travelling is probably the one that I found the hardest because my job does require me to travel a lot, and also because if I’m really honest I do love travel.

“I think that there’s loads of really positive benefits in terms of cultures being exposed to each other, opening minds, eco-tourism etc,” she said.

Cole, who said her diet is at least 95% vegan, said that while individual action is “really important”, she said she thinks “the kind of obsession with individual perfection or imperfection can be a distraction from the bigger conversations that need to happen”.

She added: “How can we evolve our systems so that it becomes a lot cheaper and easier for people to make better choices day-to-day and so sustainability isn’t a luxury, so to speak?”

Lily Cole (Dave Benett)
Lily Cole (Dave Benett)

Boris Johnson: If Glasgow fails then the whole thing fails

08:22 , Laura Sharman

Boris Johnson warned if COP26 fails, then “the whole thing fails” amid calls for world leaders to take urgent action to tackle climate change.

Sturgeon pledges £1m for climate loss and damage

08:10 , Laura Sharman

Nicola Sturgeon has pledged a £1 million fund to help developing countries deal with “loss and damage” from climate change, such as floods and wildfires.

The First Minister will make the announcement at a meeting in Cop26‘s Green Zone on Monday.

The money will come from the Scottish Government’s £6 million-a-year Climate Justice Fund, helping communities repair from and build resilience against climate-related events.

Nicola Sturgeon (PA)
Nicola Sturgeon (PA)

Listen to workers at COP26

08:07 , Laura Sharman

Trade union leaders representing 2.3 million workers have written to the leaders of the Cop26 nations urging them them to listen to their voices on climate issues.

Bosses said that “too often workers’ voices have been ignored when it comes to decision-making about the climate and plotting a route out of the catastrophe we now face”.

They said that “whether it is the measures we use to address climate change or how we protect workers’ jobs and livelihoods as we transition to a more sustainable society, there are many issues where workers should have a central say”.

Officials from 14 leading unions including Unite, the Fire Brigades Union, the National Education Union, Communication Workers Union and Public and Commercial Services union argued that negotiations in the coming weeks are set to largely exclude workers.

Truss defends leaders flying in on private planes

07:55 , Sarah Harvey

Foreign Secretary Liz Truss defended world leaders flying on private planes to Glasgow for the Cop26 climate summit.

She told BBC Breakfast: "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."

Liz Truss: I wouldn’t support a meat tax

07:45 , Sarah Harvey

Foreign Secretary Liz Truss said she would not support a "meat tax" on foods with a high-carbon footprint after Environment Secretary George Eustice raised the prospect.

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."

Glasgow bin collectors walk out on strike

07:38 , Sarah Harvey

Bin collectors and street cleaners have walked out on strike as Glasgow hosts world leaders for the Cop26 summit, amid a row between a union and the city council.

GMB members walked out at one minute past midnight on Monday following the collapse of last-ditch talks between the union and Glasgow City Council on Sunday evening.

More than 100 world leaders are expected to arrive in Glasgow on Monday as the first day of the two-day world leaders' summit takes place at the Cop26 UN climate conference.

The planned strike action was previously called off on Friday after a new pay offer from council umbrella body Cosla, and the GMB said it would suspend the strike for two weeks to consult with members.

However, following talks on Sunday, the GMB said strike action would go ahead.

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