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COP26 President speech at UN Climate Change Conference

It is a pleasure to be here to mark the end of the June period of the 2021 Subsidiary Bodies Session.

These have been an important few weeks.

It is undeniably challenging to undertake such complicated discussions virtually with such a large group of people.

So I would like to thank each and every person who took part, for taking on the challenge and engaging so fully with the process. I know colleagues have worked all hours of the day and night.

And I particularly thank the Subsidiary Bodies Chairs and their co-facilitators for their leadership; and colleagues across the UNFCCC Secretariat who made this all possible.

I was pleased to hear that negotiators have had meaningful discussions on each of the matters addressed.

They have reached a common understanding on some issues, consolidated options on others and developed possible solutions, which they will continue to work on.

However, we all realise there is more work to be done. And there are some areas where we have much further to go.

So it is vital that negotiators continue their work, so that when we arrive in Glasgow having done our homework it is across the full-spectrum of issues.

Our best chance of securing resolution at Glasgow is to have had frank, focused discussion amongst ministers before we get there.

So, in July, the UK COP26 Presidency is convening a Ministerial meeting.

Bringing a representative group of ministers together to sketch the desired and balanced outcome from Glasgow that will keep 1.5 alive.

This includes discussing some of the topics that many countries have said require more attention, such as adaptation, finance and loss and damage.

And to make further progress on some of the critical issues that need political guidance, including Article 6.

Outside the Subsidiary Bodies Session, we have seen broader progress on climate and our COP26 goals, over the past few weeks.

This year’s G7 has committed to halving emissions by 2030, end support for international coal power, and to transition away from dirty coal domestically.

And it has made some progress towards closing the gap on the $100billion a year in climate finance that developed countries have promised to mobilise, which I have always said is a matter of trust.

Each and every G7 country has committed to increase finance, including increasing funds for adaptation.

And Canada, Japan and Germany have put new money on the table, committing to increase their climate finance to 2025 to 5.3 billion Canadian Dollars, 6.5 trillion Japanese Yen, and 6 billion Euros per year by 2025, respectively.

This is very welcome.

However, we know there is much further to go, both in terms of raising commitments, and articulating a collective vision on how the goal will be met in the coming years, providing developing countries with clarity and certainty.

And I am committed to continuing to work with all countries and stakeholders to make this a reality.

We must also make further progress on reducing emissions and protecting people and nature from the effects of climate change.

And we need to move faster.

Because we are now in the home stretch to COP26, with just over four months to go.

So we really need to get going over the next few months.

At the G20 Climate and Energy Ministerial in July, we must build on the leadership we have seen from the G7 and some of the most climate vulnerable countries who now have net zero aligned 2030 national climate plans.

And use the full weight of some of the world’s major economies to push down global emissions.

So that we keep 1.5 degrees alive.

As we approach COP26, we must also be ready to respond to the latest science, including of course the IPCC report, which will be published later this year and will inform our discussions at COP26.

So it’s going to be a busy few months for us all.

But if we are to achieve success we must maintain the momentum, stay alive to the urgency, and build on the great progress we have seen.

So that when we meet in Glasgow, we’re ready to put the world on a path to building a greener, brighter future for our planet.

Image: “Alok Sharma Covid-19 Presser 01/04” by UK Prime Minister is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

See original release here.

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