What are the Main Goals of COP26?

COP26 is taking place in Glasgow from 31st October – 12th November 2021. The summit will bring parties together from across the globe, including presidents and prime ministers of over 120 countries to accelerate action towards the goals of the Paris Agreement and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change.

A poll has been taken ahead of the summit, and it found that 58% of people across 18 countries want their leadership to set more ambiguous targets as quickly as possible. This compares to 43% in 2015, showing the need for rapid global change.  

(Source: Globescan https://3ng5l43rkkzc34ep72kj9as1-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/2021BBC_GlobeScan_Climate_Polling_Oct21_Press-release.pdf

Here are the main goals of COP26 (source: UKCOP26 https://ukcop26.org/cop26-goals/): 

1. Secure global net zero by mid-century and keep 1.5 degrees within reach

Countries are being asked to come forward with ambitious 2030 emissions reductions targets that align with reaching net zero by the middle of the century.

To deliver on these stretching targets, countries will need to:

  • accelerate the phase-out of coal
  • curtail deforestation
  • speed up the switch to electric vehicles
  • encourage investment in renewables.

2. Adapt to protect communities and natural habitats

The climate is already changing and it will continue to change even as we reduce emissions, with devastating effects.

At COP26 we need to work together to enable and encourage countries affected by climate change to:

  • protect and restore ecosystems
  • build defences, warning systems and resilient infrastructure and agriculture to avoid loss of homes, livelihoods and even lives

3. Mobilise finance

To deliver on our first two goals, developed countries must make good on their promise to mobilise at least $100bn in climate finance per year by 2020. 

International financial institutions must play their part and we need work towards unleashing the trillions in private and public sector finance required to secure global net zero.

4. Work together to deliver

We can only rise to the challenges of the climate crisis by working together.

At COP26 we must:

  • finalise the Paris Rulebook (the detailed rules that make the Paris Agreement operational)
  • accelerate action to tackle the climate crisis through collaboration between governments, businesses and civil society.

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