Sign up for our daily briefing

Make your busy days simpler with the Axios AM and PM newsletters. Catch up on what's new and why it matters in just 5 minutes.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Catch up on the day's biggest business stories

Subscribe to the Axios Closer newsletter for insights into the day’s business news and trends and why they matter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Sign up for Axios Pro Rata

Dive into the world of dealmakers across VC, PE and M&A with Axios Pro Rata. Delivered daily to your inbox by Dan Primack and Kia Kokalitcheva.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Sports news worthy of your time

Binge on the stats and stories that drive the sports world with the Axios Sports newsletter. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Tech news worthy of your time

Get our smart take on technology from the Valley and D.C. with Axios Login. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Get the inside stories

Get an insider's guide to the new White House with Axios Sneak Peek. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Denver news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Denver

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Des Moines news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Des Moines newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Twin Cities news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Twin Cities

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Tampa Bay news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Tampa Bay newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Charlotte news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Charlotte

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Nashville news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Nashville newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Columbus news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Columbus newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Dallas news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Dallas newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Austin news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Austin newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Atlanta news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Atlanta newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Philadelphia news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Philadelphia newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Chicago news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Chicago newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Sign up for Axios NW Arkansas

Stay up-to-date on the most important and interesting stories affecting NW Arkansas, authored by local reporters

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top DC news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios DC newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Photo illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios. Photo: Florian Gaertner/Getty Images

GLASGOW, Scotland — International negotiators approved a climate agreement at the COP26 summit Saturday that calls for reductions in coal and fossil fuel use and transition to renewables — a first in the more than 25-year history of UN climate talks.

  • However, the talks fell short of meeting developing countries' demands for access to funding to compensate them for climate-related losses.
  • The fossil fuel language was weakened via the intervention from India just moments before the summit closed Saturday, moving from calling for a "phase out" to a "phase down" of coal.

Why it matters: COP26's aim has been to set the stage for cutting global greenhouse gas emissions steeply enough to limit warming to the Paris Agreement's target of 1.5°C above preindustrial levels. Emissions are currently increasing, and need to be cut by nearly half by 2030 to be consistent with the 1.5-degree goal.

Between the lines: The agreement, known as the Glasgow Climate Pact, is a mixed bag for those hoping for a far-reaching, ambitious outcome.

  • They did win some victories. The term "fossil fuels" had never appeared in a final COP text before this, despite being the main cause of human-induced climate change.
  • The provision that "calls upon" countries to move toward low emission sources of energy, "including escalating effort to phase down unabated coal power and phase out inefficient fossil fuel subsidies," is a win for the countries and activists that wanted a signal that the fossil fuel era is waning.
  • In addition, the agreement paves the way for more stringent emissions cuts in the 2020s. It calls for countries to bring their emissions targets in line with what would be needed to hold warming to 1.5°C by the end of 2022, rather than revisiting them in 2025.

Yes, but: The developing nations that are suffering the most severe climate-related damage are walking away without any guarantees that they'll be compensated by the industrialized nations causing most of the damage.

  • The agreement calls for wealthy countries to "at least double" their financing for adaptation efforts in the developing world from $100 billion per year (an amount not yet reached) beginning in 2025.
  • Yet developing countries ranging from small island nations to Africa met stiff resistance from the U.S. and EU to any specific promises of compensation for their losses.
  • A proposal to create a "facility" to oversee loss and damage did not appear in the final text despite having wide support from developing nations.
  • The agreement instead calls for a "dialogue" to discuss arrangements for funding, with the understanding that such a dialogue will lead to actual financing in the future.

What they're saying: Still, even negotiators who criticized the lack of firm promises backed the overall agreement. Tuvalu climate envoy Seve Paeniu gave a strong endorsement of the Glasgow text during a negotiating session Saturday afternoon local time.

  • “Glasgow has delivered a strong message of hope,” he said.
  • Holding his phone in the air to display a picture of his grandchildren, he said: “I will now be able to tell them that Glasgow has made a promise to secure them their future.”
  • "We have much work to do, but it does represent real progress," said Marshall Islands' climate envoy Tina Stege, who had advocated for stronger language on loss and damage.
  • Both Stege and Paeniu represent small island nations that are especially vulnerable to sea level rise.    

The big picture: Like most recent climate summits, COP26 stretched into overtime, with negotiators and journalists nodding off in hallways as talks stretched late into the night for much of this week.

  • COP26 brought more than 100 world leaders to Scotland during a year of devastating global climate disasters, and tens of thousands of young people marched in Glasgow and around the world during the summit to demand a strong agreement.

Go deeper

The most startling facts in 2021 climate report

An unsettling part of the human condition today is that the year you were born will most likely be the coolest year of your life, globally speaking.

By the numbers: Newly released climate data from NOAA, NASA and Berkeley Earth show that the planet has had an unbroken streak of 45 years of warmer than average temperatures.

Ben Geman, author of Generate
Jan 14, 2022 - Energy & Environment

Biden's latest Fed pick signals brewing climate battles

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

President Biden's plan to tap Sarah Bloom Raskin as top banking regulator at the Federal Reserve could intensify the central bank's already growing focus on climate change.

Catch up fast: The news broke Thursday night that Biden will nominate Raskin, a Duke University law professor, for the powerful role of vice chair for supervision.

In photos: 2021's devastating climate disasters

Firefighters work on a wildfire in the Sequoia National Forest near Johnsondale, Calif., in September 2021. Photo: Patrick T. Fallon/AFP via Getty Images

Climate disasters in 2021 affected millions of lives, caused billions of dollars in economic loss across the world and brought into stark reality the perils of higher temperatures and climate change in general.

The big picture: Early data has ranked 2021 as the sixth warmest year on record. Climatologists have warned that increased surface temperatures make floods, droughts, heat and cold waves, wildfires and tropical storms and hurricanes more common and intense.