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Government vows ‘clean resilient recovery’ as delayed Cop26 climate summit gets a new date

Government vows ‘clean resilient recovery’ as delayed Cop26 climate summit gets a new date

Boris Johnson and David Attenborough launched the summit at an event earlier this year.

2 min read

A major international climate summit that was postponed because of the coronavirus pandemic has been rescheduled to next year, the Government has confirmed.

Britain had been due to host the United Nations’ Cop26 event this summer, with the summit billed as the biggest international conference ever hosted by the UK.

But it was postponed in April as countries around the world entered lockdown because of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Government has now confirmed that the event will take place between 1 and 21 November next year - and will stay in its original host city of Glasgow.

Business Secretary Alok Sharma, who is also serving as president of the Cop26 summit, said: “While we rightly focus on fighting the immediate crisis of the Coronavirus, we must not lose sight of the huge challenges of climate change.

“With the new dates for Cop26 now agreed we are working with our international partners on an ambitious roadmap for global climate action between now and November 2021.”

He added: “The steps we take to rebuild our economies will have a profound impact on our societies’ future sustainability, resilience and wellbeing and Cop26 can be a moment where the world unites behind a clean resilient recovery.”

Labour’s shadow climate change minister Matthew Pennycook said that, despite the Covid-19 pandemic, the importance of “averting climate and ecological breakdown“ remained unchanged.

“The announcement that Cop26 will now take place in November 2021 provides the certainty that governments, civil societies, businesses and investors need to ensure the conference is a success,” he said.

Mr Pennycook added: “With seventeen months to prepare, there can be no excuse now for nations not to significantly boost their climate ambitions in line with the Paris Agreement and for the UK Government to lead the way with an enhanced 2030 climate pledge that put us on the path to achieving net zero."

Greenpeace UK executive director John Sauven said: “The climate summit can be delayed, but dealing with the climate emergency cannot.”

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