Sep 7, 2021 - Energy & Environment

Green groups push for UN climate conference delay

Illustration of "Stop?" sign
Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

Green groups say a critical UN climate summit hosted by the U.K. in Scotland this fall should be delayed because COVID restrictions and costs will hinder poor and vulnerable nations' participation.

Driving the news: The Climate Action Network, an umbrella group of climate NGOs, cited lack of vaccine access, rising travel and hotel costs and other factors.

  • "An in-person [conference of parties] COP in early November would de facto exclude many government delegates, civil society campaigners and journalists, particularly from Global South countries, many of which are on the UK’s COVID-19 'red list,'" the group said.

The other side: Alok Sharma, the U.K.'s top summit official, said this morning the event must go ahead because "COP26 has already been postponed by one year, and we are all too aware climate change has not taken time off."

  • The U.K. government is offering to fund quarantine hotel stays for delegates from nations on the "red list" and will vaccinate delegates who otherwise cannot obtain the jab, he said.
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