COP26 rescheduled for a year later; extra time must not be wasted

Posted on 27 May 2020

BERLIN (27 May 2020) - The UK COP26 Presidency yesterday advised the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change that it would ask the COP Bureau to approve its proposal to host COP26 from 1 – 12 November 2021, a year later than originally scheduled.

The global climate meeting was postponed in early April 2020 as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. A decision on the new date is expected tomorrow, 28 May, when the COP Bureau meets next.

Responding to this, Manuel Pulgar-Vidal, global leader of WWF’s climate and energy practice said: “The extra time afforded the world to prepare for COP26 must be used wisely. To avoid the worst impacts of the climate crisis, we need to see big emitters significantly scale up their 2030 emissions targets. We need all countries to revise and enhance their national climate plans. And we need to see financial commitments delivered.

“Like the current pandemic, the scale and potential impacts of the climate crisis are global and need to be tackled collectively, which is why we support calls from many quarters for a green recovery.

“COP26 must mark a turning point. So it is encouraging to see the UK COP presidency tackling the task of steering the world through this important milestone with vigour. They have proposed an ambitious agenda that, if pursued energetically, can create the momentum needed to have strong outcomes at COP.”

Katie White, Executive Director of Advocacy and Campaigns at WWF-UK, said: “It was right to postpone COP in the face of the global health crisis, but we cannot press snooze on climate change until 2021.  Now more than ever countries need to take urgent action to safeguard both human health and the health of our planet.  


"A new date will give us a clear timeframe in which we must raise our game in the fight for our world. For the UK to be world leaders at COP26 our response to this global health crisis must prioritise a recovery that delivers on our climate and nature commitments and put forward ambitious national action plans in 2020.”

For further information contact Mandy Jean Woods
COP26 will be held in Glasgow in November 2021 if a proposal by the UK government is accepted.
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