Over the past weeks, the UK hosted the 26th UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26) in Glasgow. The event was initially scheduled as the 2020 UN Climate Change Conference for November 2020 in Glasgow, Scotland. Still, COP 26 was postponed to the 31 October-12 November 2021 window in April 2020 due to the COVID 19 pandemic.
The COP26 stands for "Conference of Parties". It is the main event for the 197 nations to meet to discuss the actions that need to be taken to achieve global climate neutrality.
One of the communicated resolutions was calling the countries to review their National Climate Change (NDC) targets more often than previously envisaged in the Paris Agreement.
"The Paris Agreement is a legally binding international treaty on climate change. It was adopted by 196 Parties at COP 21 in Paris on 12 December 2015 and entered into force on 4 November 2016. Its goal is to limit global warming to well below 2, preferably to 1.5 degrees Celsius, compared to pre-industrial levels. "
At COP26, The members discussed goals to fight climate change and ensure improvement. One of the said goals is to secure global net-zero by mid-century by:
- accelerating the phase-out of coal
- curtailing deforestation
- speeding up the switch to electric vehicles
- encouraging investment in renewables.
What did the countries agree on?
More than 100 countries agreed to reduce methane emissions. They also signed a pact to end deforestation.
140 countries agreed to increase their 2030 targets.
190 countries agreed to phase out coal-fired power generation.
For the first time, the attendees directly mentioned fossil fuels in the COP agreement.
The "Paris rulebook" was finalised, paving the way for global emissions reductions through emissions trading.
Although the members could discuss many important topics, some goals are still open and could not be met. Moreover, the text of the resolution was "not in line with the 1.5 degrees regulation".