politics

COP26 Kicks Off Second Week in Glasgow After Landmark Deals on Coal, Deforestation and Methane

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The coverage on this live blog is now over.

International lawmakers, business leaders and activists were convening in Glasgow, U.K. on Monday for the second week of the COP26 climate summit.

Delegates were asked to accelerate action on climate change and commit to more ambitious cuts in greenhouse gas emissions, all in an effort to limit global temperature rises.

Our blog is closing for the day, see you tomorrow

As former U.S. President Barack Obama continues to address delegates at the COP26 summit, our live blog is closing for today.

See you tomorrow and thanks for following our updates.

Holly Ellyatt

9:15 a.m.: Former U.S. President Obama says 'time really is running out' to tackle climate change

Former U.S. president Barack Obama speaks during day 9 of COP26 on November 7, 2021 in Glasgow, Scotland.
Ian Forsyth | Getty Images News | Getty Images
Former U.S. president Barack Obama speaks during day 9 of COP26 on November 7, 2021 in Glasgow, Scotland.

Former U.S. President Barack Obama has told delegates at the COP26 summit that "when it comes to climate, time really is running out."

"We have not done nearly enough to address this crisis, we are going to have to do more," he said in a highly-anticipated speech. He said that both individually and collectively, we are falling short in tackling climate change.

Still, he said there had been "meaningful progress" since the 2015 Paris Agreement, though he referenced his predecessor Donald Trump's decision to withdraw from the agreement (in 2017), saying: "I wasn't real happy about that."

"Despite four years of active hostility toward climate science" he said, Americans and the rest of the world have stuck by the agreement. "As the world's second largest emitter of greenhouse gases, the U.S. has to lead, we have enormous responsibilities ... and we still have a lot of work to do," he added.

Holly Ellyatt

8:05 a.m.: Former U.S. President Obama urges action to help island nations

Former US President Barack Obama (R) waves as he walks with US Special Presidential Envoy for Climate, John Kerry, between sessions during the COP26 UN Climate Change Conference in Glasgow on November 8, 2021.
PAUL ELLIS | AFP | Getty Images
Former US President Barack Obama (R) waves as he walks with US Special Presidential Envoy for Climate, John Kerry, between sessions during the COP26 UN Climate Change Conference in Glasgow on November 8, 2021.

Former U.S. President Barack Obama has called on delegates at COP26 to address the risks that island nations face from rising sea levels.

"I have been shaped by my experience growing up in Hawaii," Obama said, according to Reuters, adding: "We have to act now to help with adaptation and resilience."

Calling island nations the "canary in the coal mine," Obama said wealthy nations "have an added burden to make sure we are working with and helping and assisting those who are less responsible and less able but more vulnerable to this oncoming crisis," the Guardian newspaper reported.

Obama will be addressing the summit at 2 p.m. local time (9 a.m. ET).

— Holly Ellyatt

7:40a.m.: More work to do at COP26, UK government spokesman says

There is a great deal of challenging negotiation still to be done this week at the United Nations climate summit in Glasgow, Prime Minister Boris Johnson's spokesman said on Monday.

"There has been significant progress made last week with some ambitious commitments ... which has helped us move forward," the spokesman said, Reuters reported.

He added that there will be "a great deal of challenging negotiations" taking place this week "so there is much, much more work to do."

Holly Ellyatt

6:25a.m.: Banking sector can play a 'huge' role in addressing climate change

The evening light on the skyline of buildings on the River Thames, on 4th April 2020 in London, United Kingdom.
Barry Lewis | In Pictures | Getty Images
The evening light on the skyline of buildings on the River Thames, on 4th April 2020 in London, United Kingdom.

The banking sector has an important role to play in addressing climate change, Marisa Buchanan, global head of sustainability at JPMorgan Chase, told CNBC at COP26.

"The banking sector is going to play a huge role, and this is really going to be around the need to mobilize capital to invest in the development and commercialization of a whole range of technologies that are going to play a key role in helping the world address growing energy demand while also meeting that energy demand with a lower carbon footprint," she said.

She said there was a need for greater government policy action "that's actually going to play such a critical role in sending long-term signals that the banking and finance sector need in order to mobilize that capital."

— Holly Ellyatt

4:53 a.m.: Is COP26 itself guilty of 'greenwashing'?

Climate activists unveil a two metre tall one tonne heart shaped ice sculpture on the banks of the Clyde and overlooking the COP26 location on November 07, 2021 in Glasgow, Scotland.
Ian Forsyth | Getty Images News | Getty Images
Climate activists unveil a two metre tall one tonne heart shaped ice sculpture on the banks of the Clyde and overlooking the COP26 location on November 07, 2021 in Glasgow, Scotland.

An increasing number of companies have been accused of "greenwashing" recently, that is, they've been accused of making false claims about the sustainability of their products or business practices.

Summits like COP26 are meant to draw attention to climate change and much of the discussion in Glasgow has been aimed at what businesses can do to change their own practices, but not everyone is impressed.

Nino Tronchetti Provera, the founder of Ambienta, an asset manager focused on investments driven by environmental sustainability, told CNBC he no longer attends COP climate summits "because they no longer achieve any results."

"Half of what is being discussed in Glasgow is against the environment, because it's very much affected by lobbying," he said. "A lot of the things politicians are discussing today are against the planet, they're not in favor of the planet."

Holly Ellyatt

4:33 a.m.: COP26 summit attendees include hundreds of fossil fuel lobbyists, human rights group says

Human rights group Global Witness has released a report stating that the COP26 summit has granted access to "at least 503 fossil fuel lobbyists, affiliated with some of the world's biggest polluting oil and gas giants."

Data analysis of the UN's provisional list of named attendees, carried out by Corporate Accountability, Corporate Europe Observatory, Glasgow Calls Out Polluters and Global Witness, showed that "corporate actors with a stake in the continued burning of fossil fuels have been enjoying access to these critical talks," Global Witness said Monday.

"Researchers counted the number of individuals either directly affiliated with fossil fuel corporations, including the likes of Shell, Gazprom and BP or attending as members of delegations that act on behalf of the fossil fuel industry."

If the fossil fuel lobby were a country delegation at COP it would be the largest, with 503 delegates – two dozen more than the largest country delegation, Global Witness said.


— Holly Ellyatt

3:40 a.m.: Corporate change won't be immediate but 'has to start now,' business leader says

As the COP26 summit continues in Glasgow, 95 leading U.K. business have pledged to reverse the negative environmental impacts caused by their operations by the end of the decade.

The move is part of the Council for Sustainable Business' Get Nature Positive campaign, and includes the likes of Barclays, GSK and Unilever among its signatories.

Liv Garfield, chief executive of water services company Severn Trent and the CEO of the Council of Sustainable Business, told CNBC that it was time for change.

"If you think, for example, about food retail and think of all the changes that somebody like a Sainsburys has got to make to be able to halve the environmental impact of the average shoppers' basket by 2030, there are a thousand gazillion different projects they're going to have to work on. So it can't be immediate because it is hard, but it does have to start now," Garfield told CNBC Monday.

She called on more businesses to join the council, saying "the very best companies are proud of their environmental commitments."

— Holly Ellyatt

2:06 a.m.: Second week of COP26 ‘where the rubber hits the road’

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and U.N. Secretary General Antonio Guterres greet U.S. President Joe Biden as they arrive for day two of COP26 on November 1, 2021.
Christopher Furlong | Getty Images News | Getty Images
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and U.N. Secretary General Antonio Guterres greet U.S. President Joe Biden as they arrive for day two of COP26 on November 1, 2021.

To prevent the worst of what the climate crisis has in store, delegates still need to iron out a plan to contain global temperature rises to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels — and there is not yet any clear indication that this is going to happen.

Ministers arriving in Glasgow this week will strive to resolve sticking points and conclude the talks with an agreement that is sufficient to avoid more frequent and progressively worse climate impacts. COP26 President Alok Sharma has described this as the moment "where the rubber hits the road."

The first week of the U.N.-brokered talks saw a blizzard of climate pledges, with countries promising to end and reverse deforestation, phase out coal and reduce methane emissions by 30% by 2030.

Business leaders and financial institutions have pledged to invest more in "net zero-aligned projects." This has since been criticized, however, for "missing the point" on fossil fuels.

— Sam Meredith

1:58 a.m.: What’s on Monday’s agenda?

Monday's main program is focused on the loss and damage caused by global warming and how countries can adapt to climate change.

Delegates gathering at COP26 on Monday will hear speakers from countries on the frontlines of the climate crisis, including indigenous communities.

Former U.S. President Barack Obama will speak at the climate summit during the afternoon session.

A meeting on the fashion industry's role in reducing global emissions will take place, as well as an assembly of the G-77 and China — a group of 134 developing countries plus China.

— Chloe Taylor

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