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Cop26 Glasgow – news: Greenpeace chief warns of climate summit ‘greenwashing’ amid fears over foreign aid cuts



Related video: Five graphs that show the reality of climate change

The head of Greenpeace has warned against efforts by countries and corporations at the upcoming Cop26 climate talks in Glasgow to “greenwash” their pollution of the planet. 

“This Glasgow meeting really is a vital moment where governments need to be courageous,” said Jennifer Morgan, the executive director of Greenpeace International. 

“There’ll be a big greenwashing effort in Glasgow that needs to be called out and recognised. If you look at what they’re doing to try and hold back the world from moving forward, it’s stunning,” she said. “It’s immoral, it’s unacceptable.”

Elsewhere, a group of climate change advisers known collectively as Friends of Cop have warned the UK government against cutting foreign aid.

In a letter seen by the BBC, they say slashing overseas funding demonstrates the UK is “neither committed to nor serious about” supporting nations tackle climate change.

The world is currently far off track to meet globally-agreed targets to limit temperature rises and curb dangerous warming, and the Cop26 summit is the effective deadline for countries to bring forward more ambitious national climate plans.

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South Korean president will attend Cop26

South Korean President Moon Jae-in will travel to Europe next week to attend the G20 summit in Rome followed by the UN climate conference in Glasgow, his office said.

South Korea is one of the world’s most fossil-fuel reliant economies, with coal making up over 41 per cent of the country’s electricity mix and renewable power just over 6 per cent.

Last year, Mr Moon pledged to go carbon neutral by 2050 and unveiled a Green New Deal to create jobs and boost economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic.

This month he vowed to raise its emissions-reduction goal to 40 per cent of 2018 levels by 2030 from the previous 26.3 per cent.

Tom Batchelor22 October 2021 10:39

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Truss will encourage India to take more climate action during two-day visit

In the run-up to the Cop26 climate summit, the foreign secretary will also urge India’s environment minister Bhupender Yadav to commit to more ambitious goals on emission reduction.

Yesterday, the country’s prime minister, Narendra Modi, was confirmed as an attendee at the event.

But with India’s reliance on coal and other polluting industries, pressure will be on Delhi to commit to bold action.

Tom Batchelor22 October 2021 10:23

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Cycling a ‘planet-saving alternative yet receives a fraction of the investment of major roads projects’

Campaigners are urging governments to properly invest in cycling as a simple, cheap and effective means of tackling the climate, pollution and health crises the world is facing.

Encouraging people to travel by bicycle will be crucial to making cities greener, more pleasant places to live, they say.

But currently cycle infrastructure attracts a “fraction” of the money spent on other, polluting forms of transport.

Cycling UK is among the groups hoping Cop26 will lead to an uptick in spending on infrastructure for bicycles.

Tom Batchelor22 October 2021 10:05

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Cop26 host Queen Elizabeth in good spirits after hospital stay

Queen Elizabeth has spent a night in hospital for the first time in years for what Buckingham Palace termed “preliminary investigations”, but was said to be in good spirits and back at work at Windsor Castle on Thursday.

The world’s oldest and longest-reigning monarch cancelled an official trip to Northern Ireland on Wednesday.

But there was no suggestion future engagements would also be shelved.

Her next major engagement is at the end of the month when she is due to welcome world leaders at the opening of Cop26.

Tom Batchelor22 October 2021 09:43

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Don’t cut foreign aid, climate experts warn UK

A group of respected climate change experts have written to Boris Johnson urging him not to cut overseas aid spending ahead of the Cop26 summit.

The letter, seen by the BBC, states: “As ‘Friends of COP’ we are writing to you to express our deep concern at the prospect of further UK aid cuts in the final few days before COP26.

“The ability of the UK to act as a genuine, trusted partner for developing countries is of crucial importance to COP26’s success.

“Further implied cuts to overseas aid at the Comprehensive Spending Review (CSR) would send a signal that the UK is neither committed to, nor serious about, enabling a green global recovery from the pandemic, nor improving the resilience of the most vulnerable to climate change.”

Tom Batchelor22 October 2021 09:23

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Archbishop of Canterbury urges world leaders to ‘be bolder’ at Cop26

The Archbishop of Canterbury has urged world leaders meeting for crucial Cop26 talks in Glasgow to “be bolder” as they seek to tackle the climate crisis.

Ahead of the UN climate summit being hosted by the UK, Justin Welby warned that a failure to curb dangerous climate change risked driving severe conflict around the world.

Dr Welby, who worked in the oil industry before being ordained, said the fossil fuel era was, and must be, coming to an end.

But he warned the transition away from coal, oil and gas had to be fair to poorer people in the UK and to those in developing countries.

Asked what his message to world leaders meeting for the summit would be, Dr Welby told the PA news agency: “Be bolder, be more generous, be just to the poorest.

“Make it work, it’s in all our interests and the world is behind you making it work.

“Don’t lose your nerve.”

Tom Batchelor22 October 2021 09:03

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Greenpeace chief warns of ‘greenwashing’ at UN climate talks

The head of environmental group Greenpeace on Thursday warned against efforts by countries and corporations at the forthcoming UN climate talks in Glasgow to “greenwash” their ongoing pollution of the planet.

But climate campaigners say behind-the-scenes lobbying before the summit could hamper efforts to achieve an ambitious deal that would ensure the world stands a chance of capping global warming at 1.5C as agreed in Paris in 2015.

“This Glasgow meeting really is a vital moment where governments need to be courageous,” said Jennifer Morgan, the executive director of Greenpeace International.

“They need to show they’ve understood the science, listen to their people and go much further than they’ve been stating thus far, and give that kind of hope and confidence to their people that they got this and that they’re willing to do things that their corporate interests don’t want them to do,” she told The Associated Press in an interview.

Tom Batchelor21 October 2021 16:12

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Cop26 summit poised to be ‘transformational’

US environmentalist Tom Steyer has likened the upcoming United Nations Cop26 summit as the moment “when every country’s term paper is due” on more ambitious commitments to cut planet-heating emissions driving the climate crisis.

Speaking at an event hosted by The Independent on Tuesday, the former Democratic presidential candidate and co-executive chair of financial fund, Galvanize Climate Solutions, recalled his experiences as a veteran attendee of Cops, the UN’s annual conference of parties to tackle global climate change.

Tom Batchelor21 October 2021 15:45

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Has Joe Biden lost his climate credibility?

In less than two weeks, Air Force One will take off for Scotland, ferrying Joe Biden and his entourage to the Cop26 summit in Glasgow.

It is a major test for the US president, who won last November’s election partly on the back of his bold vision to chart a greener future for America amid ever worsening climate extremes.

In stark contrast to the inaction and outright denial of Donald Trump, the message has been that America is “back” on climate.

But how progressive has Mr Biden been when it comes to the climate? Our senior climate correspondent, Louise Boyle, reports:

Has Joe Biden lost his climate credibility?

The president planned to arrive at the Cop26 summit with strong action to tackle global heating already in place at home. Instead his green image teeters on a knife-edge. Louise Boyle looks at what’s gone wrong

Tom Batchelor21 October 2021 15:10

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Green MP warns of ‘dearth of actual actions’ to meet climate targets

Green MP Caroline Lucas has accused the government of doing very little to meet its climate targets as she opened a debate on Cop26 and limiting global temperature rises to 1.5C.

She told MPs: “I have no problem in praising the Government’s targets, what I have problems with is looking at the fact that there is a dearth of actual actions to meet those targets. That’s what we see, again, and again.

“The Committee on climate change has itself said that there are no real plans to deliver the targets that are set and, frankly, the climate cares very little for targets, what it wants to see are the concrete policies there to meet them.”

The MP for Brighton Pavilion said the difference between her side of the House and the Conservatives is that they are imagining the country can continue with business as usual, but with “some technology just changing the technologies that we’re using to deliver business as usual”.

She added: “What we recognise is that we don’t just need behavioural change, we need systems change we need to change the kind of economic system that we have, which is a far bigger change that we’ve been talking about so far.”

Tom Batchelor21 October 2021 14:40



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