- Not everyone was happy with the final agreement at the COP26 climate conference in Glasgow.
- Environmental activist Greta Thunberg expressed her dissatisfaction with the results and said the real work continues “out of these halls”.
- UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres also acknowledged the shortcomings of the agreement and warned of an impending “climate catastrophe”.
Paris – UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres warned of an impending “climate catastrophe”, while environmental activist Greta Thunberg dismissed Saturday’s COP26 climate conference deal as “blah, blah, blah”.
And even those who welcomed the deal in Glasgow said there is still a huge amount of work to be done.
Guterres acknowledged the shortcomings of the agreement, in a statement following the agreement reached at the Glasgow conference on Saturday night.
The outcome of # COP26 is a compromise, reflecting interests, contradictions and the state of political will in today’s world.
“It is an important step, but it is not enough”.
“Our fragile planet hangs by a thread”, he warned, adding “we are still knocking on the door of climate catastrophe”.
In a follow-up tweet, the UN chief sent a message to “young people, indigenous communities, women leaders, everyone who leads #ClimateAction”.
“I know you may be disappointed. But we are in the struggle of our lives and this battle must be won.”
Thunberg, arguably the world’s best-known environmental activist, was more outspoken in her assessment.
“# COP26 is over,” he tweeted. “Here’s a quick rundown: blah, blah, blah.”
“But the real work continues outside these halls. And we will never, ever give up.”
During the conference, Thunberg and other activists denounced the way it was unfolding, arguing that world leaders had failed to match their words with real facts.
‘Hard work ahead’
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson remained relatively optimistic.
“There is still a lot to do in the next few years,” Johnson said.
“But today’s agreement is a big step forward and, crucially, we have the first ever international agreement to gradually reduce coal and a roadmap to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees.”
A European Commission statement said the deal kept the goals of the 2015 Paris climate agreement alive, “giving us the ability to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius.”
Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said conference delegates have made progress on commitments to reduce hazardous emissions and raise $ 100 billion annually to help developing and vulnerable countries.
“But there will be no time to relax; there is still hard work to be done,” he added.
Greta Thunberg at the pre-COP26 Youth4Climate event in Milan, Italy on September 28, 2021.
During the final negotiations, China and India insisted that the language on fossil fuels be weakened in the text of the summit’s final decision. In recent days, the Australian government has promised to sell coal for decades to come.
But Kevin Rudd, the former prime minister of Australia, now president of the Asia Society, remained confident.
While the official text may have stopped before agreeing to phase out coal, statements made by world leaders in Glasgow leave no doubt that coal is on its way to history.
For British COP26 president Alok Sharma, the long and drawn out negotiations had had an impact.
“I apologize for the way this process has unfolded, Sharma said, as the final deal has been concluded.” I am deeply sorry, “he added, before hitting the hammer.
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