Don’t lose nerve before Cop26, Archbishop of Canterbury tells world leaders

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
·2-min read
In this article:
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
The Archbishop of Canterbury (PA Archive)
The Archbishop of Canterbury (PA Archive)

The Archbishop of Canterbury on Friday warned world leaders not to lose their “nerve” amid fears that the Cop26 climate summit in Glasgow may fall flat.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has urged countries gathering for the talks, which start next week, to make “bigger commitments” to slash harmful emissions in a bid to limit global warming to 1.5C above pre-industrial levels.

The UK, which is hosting the conference, also wants developed nations to pledge more money to help developing countries tackle climate change.

But with doubts over the attendance of China’s president Xi Jinping and Russia’s Vladimir Putin not coming to Glasgow, there are concerns that some of the world’s most polluting countries will not sign up to tougher targets.

Dr Justin Welby, the Church of England’s most senior bishop, said a failure to tackle the crisis could lead to conflict around the world.

“It’s in all our interests and the world is behind you making it work,” he said. “Don’t lose your nerve. Be bolder.” He added that while there was never just one cause for conflict, climate change was an increasingly important factor.

“We’re increasingly finding that when you analyse the conflicts in which we are trying to help, you see lurking somewhere in there climate change as a growing factor.”

Dr Welby, who worked in the oil industry before he was ordained, also said the Church of England would “walk away” from oil and gas companies it has invested in if they don’t do more to tackle climate change.

The Church has already divested from coal companies and will pull investment by 2023 from oil and gas companies that are not on a pathway to zero emissions.

Asked in an interview if the Church was doing enough on fossil fuel investment, Dr Welby said: “It is much better to stay invested with skin in the game... than it is to walk away completely. But we will absolutely walk away from companies that are not moving.”

Earlier this week the Government set out its net zero strategy to cut carbon emissions by 2050.

But yesterday MPs criticised the UK’s decision to cut overseas aid from

0.7 per cent to 0.5 per cent, saying it had limited Britain’s ability to influence global environmental change.

Green Party MP Caroline Lucas said: “Any leverage the UK might have had in terms of persuading others to step up has been thrown away by becoming the only G7 country to cut overseas aid in the midst of the pandemic.”

But MP Rebecca Pow insisted climate finance for developing countries is “key” to the Government’s agenda and the UK will spend more on international development than the US, Japan and Canada.

Read More

Archbishop warns against relaxation of law on assisted dying

Be bolder, Archbishop of Canterbury urges world leaders heading for Cop26

Facts about the soon-to-be city of Southend

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting