Tag Archives: COP26

COP26 – Pensions Secretary issues rallying cry

In a speech to mark Finance Day, Pensions Secretary of State Thérèse Coffey outlined the way that the UK is leading the world in mobilising billions of pounds of climate finance, particularly through pension funds, to help power the UK to net zero.

Pensions Secretary Thérèse Coffey

She urged world leaders to follow what she regards as the UK’s lead in the fight against climate change.

The Pensions Secretary also talked through the UK’s progress in the financial sector, during discussions with international counterparts, panel events and roundtables.

While in Glasgow, she took part in a Green Horizons panel discussion and met representatives of finance giants Blackrock, Legal and General, and Willis Towers Watson.

Ms Coffey said: “COP26 must be a defining moment for the world to get to grips with climate change.

“Our pensions can be a superpower that delivers prosperity for people and the planet in our race to net zero and by following our example, I sincerely hope others around the world can unlock a similar power and propel our world to net zero.”

COP26 – video projections at St Luke’s to bring message of hope

Together We Can  – video anthem Heal the World will be projected at St Luke’s Church in the east end on Tuesday evening at 7pm.

A video anthem created by Hollywood actor, Paul Hampton, will be projected on the walls of St Luke’s Church in the east end of Glasgow on Tuesday. Paul (84), the American singer and writer behind hits such as Sea of Heartbreak, has travelled to Glasgow to deliver his Message of Hope from America. 

Glasgow and Nashville, two of the world’s major music cities, will be united as the city’s Lord Provost Philip Braat is connected live with Nashville’s Vice Major Jim Shulman. Glasgow’s Youth Choir accompany this musical video reveal and the Guardian of the Forest (a group of over 80+ indigenous tribes in Central and South America attending COP26) close this very special event with a prayer for humanity.

This campaign is an initiative by HealRWorld, the American globally-driven company that connects socially conscious consumers and businesses. It encourages global citizens who are concerned about the unjust effects of climate change on the dispossessed, to purchase goods from small and medium sized businesses committed to environmental and social justice through the HealRWorld community and ecommerce platform. 

COP26 – Homestay hosts urged to sign up

Scottish households are being urged to open their doors to delegates attending COP26, helping to widen access to the summit by providing affordable accommodation.

Almost 700 households have already signed up to be part of the COP26 Homestay Network, which is operated independently of The Scottish Government by non-profit organisations.

By offering free or low-cost accommodation, hosts can help ensure those unable to cover the costs themselves, particularly those from the Global South, can attend the summit and make their voices heard.

Patrick Harvie, Zero Carbon Buildings, Active Travel and Tenants’ Rights Minister, said: “COP26 is our best and possibly last chance to work alongside people from around the globe to safeguard our planet from climate catastrophe. 

“We know that the impacts of climate change are not felt equally. In fact, those countries and people least responsible for the climate crisis are the ones most severely affected by it.

“It is vital that the voices of those most affected by the climate crisis are heard and acted upon. That’s why the Scottish Government has sponsored dialogues with colleagues from the Global South and is promoting the voices of children and young people throughout COP26. And that’s why we need people to be able to attend who might otherwise struggle.

“I’m pleased that the COP26 Homestay Network is continuing the tradition of solidarity, linking local households with attendees to provide affordable accommodation, helping ensure that those critical voices are heard.

“Accommodation at any COP climate conference is challenging and Glasgow is no exception. This scheme gives local hosts a chance to do their bit to ensure a successful summit, meeting remarkable people from around the world while supporting the global movement to tackle climate change.”

COP26 – Get Ready Glasgow launched to keep the city moving

Scotland’s Transport Minister, Graeme Dey, began a campaign – Get Ready Glasgow – on Wednesday to provide details of where to get the most up to date travel information and advice. 

The intention is that everyone can prepare and plan ahead for any journeys in the run up to and during the two-week UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCC) COP26 climate change conference in Glasgow. 

The Duke of Wellington is the voice of the campaign and the statue which is regularly photographed with a traffic cone on the top will feature in adverts on radio, TV and social media as well as billboards and newsletters.

Road closures in Glasgow will start from 23 October 2021. Get Ready Glasgow will be the go to website with all the up to date information on how to get around. 

The website provides details on alternative routes, local road closure dates and where local access will be maintained. It also includes maps highlighting where and when impacts are most likely to help give the public, businesses, delegates and visitors a clearer idea of what to expect on certain days.   

Today’s campaign launch follows many months of travel planning and preparations which are now entering an advanced and crucial phase. As well as providing information on how to plan ahead for COP26, details of a range of engagement sessions being held over the coming weeks will be advertised for businesses and communities to attend. 

Mr Dey said: “As a huge coup for Glasgow and, indeed, Scotland, COP26 is widely anticipated to be a once-in-a-lifetime global event and one like no other the city has hosted. The scale of the event is unprecedented on so many levels which is why it is vital that people are equipped with the latest information to help organise travel plans in advance and, where necessary, make alternative arrangements. 

“The most up-to-date information including a detailed travel plan, maps, road closures and dates for community and business engagement sessions is readily available. I would again urge commuters, businesses and the public to take some time to familiarise themselves with the plans so that we can all work together to help deliver a successful event while keeping Glasgow and the Central Belt moving. I am especially grateful to businesses and the public for engaging with this campaign and playing their part in such a momentous event.” 

Strathclyde Partnership for Transport (SPT) and First Bus are providing a fleet of electric buses for conference delegates. 

SPT Chair of Operations Committee Councillor, David Wilson, said: “SPT is, once again, proud to play its part assisting with the transport organisation across Glasgow while the city hosts yet another major international event. While some disruption to travel is inevitable with an event of this scale, planning ahead is essential.  

“We are working to ensure both local people and our international visitors can move around the city. Working with First Bus Scotland to deliver the official COP26 Zero Emission shuttle service on behalf of the UK and Scottish Governments ensures delegates will get to the event by sustainable public transport and we hope deliver a Glasgow climate agreement we can all be proud of.” 

Duncan Cameron, Interim Managing Director for First Bus Scotland: said: “First Bus Scotland is delighted to have been chosen to operate the official COP26 shuttle service and will be working closely with SPT, Transport Scotland and the Cabinet Office to ensure a smooth and efficient service can be delivered for all delegates attending the event. 

“It has been a long time in the planning, and it is exciting to now be in the build up to the event officially. It is vitally important that everyone takes the time to familiarise themselves with all diversions and transport plans in order to keep Glasgow moving and deliver an event that the whole world will be proud to be a part of.” 

Get Ready Glasgow is managed by Glasgow City Council and is working on the experiences from the Commonwealth Games in 2014 and the European Championships in 2018. 

Leader of Glasgow City Council, Councillor Susan Aitken, said: “Glasgow has an unrivalled record when it comes to hosting major international events. The expertise that we have developed with our partners, taken with the city’s extensive conference and hotel infrastructure, made Glasgow the logical choice for COP26. 

“This global summit is one of the biggest diplomatic events that the UK has seen. It is no exaggeration to say that it is also one of the most important in human history if we are to get runaway climate change under control. 

“With more than 140 world leaders expected to attend, security will be tight and the arrangements will affect local businesses and residents as well as those who do business in the city, travel for work or are visiting. The key to lessening that disruption is to inform people well in advance about where there are planned road closures and likely congestion and what the alternative routes are. We’re also encouraging people to leave the car at home and use public transport for their journeys or walk or cycle instead.”  

 (from left to right): David Wilson, of SPT, Transport Minister Graeme Dey, and Duncan Cameron, of First Bus, launch the COP26 public awareness campaign Photo – Chris Watt Web – www.chriswatt.com

COP26 – Pathway to Paris concert to open the conference

Pathway to Paris in collaboration with Regular Music announced a special concert on 31 October at the Theatre Royal in Glasgow. 

This concert will help to open the United Nations Climate Change Conference which takes place from 31 October to 12 November 2021. The evening will focus on the importance for nations to push for, achieve, and go beyond the climate targets highlighted in the Paris Agreement, and for cities to lead the way.

Bringing together leading musicians, artists, thinkers, and policymakers, the event will serve as a call to action, urging the international community to ramp up ambition towards a climate safe future for all.

The first Pathway to Paris concert took place in Paris in 2015, and coincided with the adoption of the Paris Agreement. In 2017 at the United Nations Secretariat, Pathway to Paris announced their 1000 Cities initiative for Carbon Freedom. The initiative invites all cities of the world to transition away from fossil fuels and move to 100% renewable energy as soon as possible in order to turn the Paris Agreement into reality.

Co-Founder of Pathway to Paris, Jesse Paris Smith, said: “In the world of music, the best way to improve is through collaboration. This is the same with the critical issue of climate change. We must join together to make this the most ambitious collaboration of our century. We will not be able to implement crucial and challenging solutions to climate change, and all urgent environmental problems as long as we stand divided. Inseparable from the issue of climate change is the need for world peace, global communication, and an international collaboration unmatched by any event in human history.”

Co-Founder of Pathway to Paris, Rebecca Foon said: “These meetings mark a critical moment in history, as we collectively need to come together to massively ramp up our targets and actions. Cities play a critical role in transforming our world out of the era of fossil fuels and into a renewable world. This is our time to make this shift and transform our nations and cities to become sustainable and resilient for us all and future generations. This is our chance as our window of time is drastically narrowing.” 

The concert will feature Patti Smith, Tenzin Choegyal, Soundwalk Collective in collaboration with Patti Smith and Jesse Paris Smith to perform CRISIS OF THE LOST, a sound piece composed of underwater recordings deriving from the TBA21–Academy sound archive. This resource documents the voice of ocean life in contrast with the destructive impact of manmade acoustic pollution over all species of marine life. 

The live performance is accompanied by visualisations by Territorial Agency to provide insights into the scale and mechanics of the ecological threat that is sound pollution in the ocean. The piece features additional recordings carried out by sound artist Jana Winderen during field trips in Belize, Panama, Dominican Republic, Norway and Iceland as well as recorded detonations of the seismic airgun blasting acquired from Simone Baumann Pickering’s lab at Scripps Institute for Oceanography, and cello written and performed by Lucy Railton.

CRISIS OF THE LOST is part of a collaborative body of work and series of album projects between Patti Smith and Soundwalk Collective, entitled CORRESPONDENCES, due for publication and release in Spring 2022.

Pathway to Paris Founders Jesse Paris Smith and Rebecca Foon will also be performing throughout the evening. Speakers include 350.org’s Bill McKibben and other special guests to be announced soon.

All proceeds from this evening will be donated to Pathway to Paris’ 1000 Cities Initiative for Carbon Freedom.

Tickets on sale here www.atgtickets.com

Pathway to Paris was founded in September 2014 by Jesse Paris Smith and Rebecca Foon, with an intimate evening of music and speakers at Le Poisson Rouge immediately following the People’s Climate March in New York City. A series of similar events unfolded in North America over the ensuing years. The events were initially intended to build awareness to help establish a global climate agreement, leading up to the UN Climate Change Conference (Cop21) that took place in December 2015, and culminated with two major concerts in Paris at Le Trianon, the first weekend of the conference. In November 2017, Pathway to Paris launched the 1000 Cities Initiative at Carnegie Hall in the lead up to COP 23.

COP26 – Welcome to Glasgow

Ahead of the 26th UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26) in Glasgow from 31 October to 12 November 2021, the leader of Glasgow City Council, Cllr Susan Aitken has released a video welcoming delegates to the conference. 

The UK is the host nation and Alok Sharma MP for Reading West has been appointed as full-time President of COP26, and today just one month from the start of the important conference in Glasgow, Pre-Cop began in Milan.

In addition the council has issued a Glasgow Broadcast Guide to help all visiting journalists and has set up a Destination Media Hub in the city to host members of the press which will open on 28 October just ahead of the conferencebeginning. 

The ‘Made in Glasgow’ showcase will highlight the city’s innovative approach to sustainability – particularly through circular economy principles – and also profile its creativity across art, architecture, design, film, fashion, food and drink.

Cllr Aitken said: “We are very much looking forward to welcoming the world’s press and broadcasters to Glasgow for COP26 and understand their need to access vital information on the city quickly and efficiently.  

“We hope that the creation of these bespoke resources will not only assist media in their reporting from Glasgow during COP26 but also contribute to the conference’s legacy by providing inspiration and story ideas for future coverage of the city’s climate change ambitions as we work towards achieving our goal of being carbon neutral by 2030.”

The council is working with groups and organisations including Bloomberg, C40 city network tackling climate change, Core Cities UK, Stop Climate Chaos Scotland, faith and third sector groups to work up a programme of policy meetings, receptions and events that will complement the main COP26 programme.

This activity will not only be an important legacy opportunity for Glasgow but it will also help reinforce the city’s position as a “world leader in the race to net zero and a place where green business can be done”.

Ashton Lane in Glasgow’s West End

COP26 – police divers making the river safe in preparation

Waterways are being searched by specialist officers from Police Scotland’s Dive and Marine Unit in the lead up to COP26.

Highly skilled police divers, who are able to search in confined spaces as well as capture underwater footage, will be patrolling the River Clyde and its banks ahead of the event in November. The river will be subject to movement and mooring restrictions for approximately three weeks. 

During COP26, the Ministry of Defence Police will monitor the body of water, which is approximately four miles, with assistance when required from Police Scotland divers. 

The dive and marine unit specialise in security searches, missing person searches and the recovery of evidence. Their high-speed patrol boats can respond quickly to incidents or threats on the waters in and around Scotland. 

Police divers are serving police officers who have come from a variety of policing backgrounds and bring a broad depth of knowledge and experience. 

All police divers complete an eight week basic air dive course along with a number of other specialist courses such as Licensed Search Officer, Swift Water Rescue Technician and Confined Space Search Officer, which is a crucial capability for Police Scotland in the lead up to COP26. 

Police Scotland’s Dive and Marine unit is just one of the specialist resources that will be deployed during the conference to ensure the safety of all involved including world leaders and heads of state, delegates, and members of the public.

Superintendent Stevie Irvine, Police Scotland Maritime Security lead for COP26, said: “Our specially trained divers will patrol and search the River Clyde, particularly restricted areas, in the run up to COP26. 

“This is a historic event, with one of the biggest mobilisation of police assets the UK has ever seen, and that means some restrictions are needed to help keep participants, visitors and members of the public safe. 

“Any protest activity in or around the waterways during COP26 will be met with a proportionate policing response which balances the needs and rights of those wishing to take part, against the safety and wellbeing of protesters. 

“This is all part of our work to support the delivery of a safe and secure event and we would ask that if you spot anything unusual in or around the waterways – report it to the police.

“Trust your instincts if you see something that doesn’t seem right.”

Superintendent Sandy Stewart, Ministry of Defence Police, said: “Our marine unit officers will be supporting the Police Scotland operation for COP26, providing a 24/7, armed policing presence on the River Clyde and ensuring compliance with the legal restrictions put in place, to deliver a safe and secure event for all involved.”

For more information on the policing of COP26 and how we are working to support delivery of a safe and secure event, please visit https://www.scotland.police.uk/what-s-happening/events/cop26-home/

COP26 – Jaguar Land Rover to provide electric vehicles

COP26 has announced that Jaguar Land Rover has become an official partner of the conference and will supply electric vehicles to transport world leaders and delegates.

Jaguar Land Rover will be providing a fleet of electrified vehicles to world leaders and delegates attending the summit, including the multi award-winning all-electric performance SUV Jaguar I-PACE, as leaders and their teams travel to and from the venue.

As part of its new global strategy Reimagine, Jaguar Land Rover aims to achieve zero tailpipe emissions by 2036, and net zero carbon emissions across its supply chain, products and operations by 2039.

The company has committed to a 1.5 degree aligned science-based target to reduce emissions in line with the Paris Agreement and supporting the UNFCCC Race to Zero.

Alok Sharma courtesy of UK Parliament

Jaguar Land Rover has a successful history in similar events including the recent G7 summit in the UK. The vehicles have all been sourced from existing fleets in the UK, helping ensure the carbon footprint remains low.

COP26 President-Designate Alok Sharma said: “Jaguar Land Rover is an iconic British brand with a proven track record.

“They are showing climate leadership in their field with award winning electric vehicles, and I am delighted these will be used by world leaders in Glasgow.

“I look forward to working with Jaguar Land Rover and all our Partners ahead of the summit as we ensure a successful and inclusive COP26.”

Thierry Bolloré, Jaguar Land Rover Chief Executive Officer, said: “We are delighted to partner with COP26 and provide a fleet of all-electric vehicles, including Jaguar I-PACE performance SUVs, to deliver zero-emission transport at the summit.

“Sustainability is at the core of our business strategy, Reimagine, which enables us to focus on becoming net carbon zero by 2039, as the creator of the world’s most desirable modern luxury vehicles.”

As part of its new global strategy Reimagine, Jaguar Land Rover aims to achieve zero tailpipe emissions by 2036, and net zero carbon emissions across its supply chain, products and operations by 2039.

The company has committed to a 1.5 degree aligned science-based target to reduce emissions in line with the Paris Agreement and supporting the UNFCCC Race to Zero.

Jaguar Land Rover has a successful history in similar events including the recent G7 summit in the UK. The vehicles have all been sourced from existing fleets in the UK, helping ensure the carbon footprint remains low.