World leaders roll out accelerated climate action at COP26


World leaders attending COP26 underway in Glasgow, Scotland, are focussing their commitment towards real action to limit global rising temperatures.

They are also supporting the Small Island Developing States and Africa to adapt to climate change.

The countries committed to collaborate on green innovation, landmark deforestation commitments, and historic methane pledge on the agenda.

A wide range of announcements focused on signalling a clear shift from ambition to immediate action has been made with countries making unprecedented commitments to protect forests, reduce methane emissions and accelerate green technology.

A release issued by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) secretariat and copied to the Ghana News Agency in Glasgow, UK, explained that amid powerful pleas heard in Glasgow on Monday the world leaders, young people and campaigners all emphasised the urgency of taking tangible action to keep the prospect of holding back global temperature rises to 1.5C and building resilience to climate impacts.

It said also, 114 leaders took a landmark step forward at a convening of world leaders on forests by committing to halt and reverse forest loss and land degradation by 2030, pledging $12billion in public and $7.2billion in private funding.

It mentioned that countries including Canada, Russia and Brazil, who also increased their Nationally Determined Contributions on Monday, together with China, Colombia, Indonesia and the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Ghana have all endorsed the Glasgow Leaders’ Declaration on Forest and Land Use.

“Together, they support 85 per cent of the world’s forests, an area of over 13 million square miles, which absorbs around one third of global CO2 released from burning fossil fuels each year.

“This announcement was bolstered with a commitment by Chief Executive Officers from more than 30 financial institutions with over $8.7 trillion of global assets, including Aviva, Schroders and Axa, committing to eliminate investment in activities linked to deforestation.

It said there was also a major event on methane, held alongside the summit, with 105 countries, including 15 major emitters such as Brazil, Nigeria and Canada, signing up to the Global Methane Pledge.

“This historic commitment, led by the US and EU alongside the UK ;COP26 presidency, equates to up to 40 per cent of global methane emissions and 60 per cent of global Gross Domestic Product.

Meanwhile, more than 35 world leaders have also backed and signed up to the new Glasgow Breakthrough Agenda that would see countries and businesses work together to dramatically scale and speed up the development and deployment of clean technologies and drive down costs this decade.

Signatories included the US, India, EU, developing economies and some of those most vulnerable to climate change, collectively representing more than 50 per cent of the world’s economy and every region.

The release explained that the aim of the Breakthrough Agenda was to make clean technologies the most affordable, accessible and attractive choice for all globally in the most polluting sectors by 2030, particularly supporting the developing world to access the innovation and tools needed for a just transition to net zero.

Under the Agenda, work would focus on five key sectors, namely power, road transport, hydrogen, steel and agriculture, which together, represent more than half of total global emissions and further demonstrates how countries were moving from commitments to tangible action.

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