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The United Nations World Climate Conference begins in Glasgow

Starting today in Glasgow, Scotland, about 200 countries are negotiating for two weeks at COP26 the global climate conference on further implementation of the Paris Climate Agreement. This provides a limit of global warming to less than 2 degrees, but if possible 1.5 degrees compared to the pre-industrial era. According to United Nations information, the Earth is currently heading towards a dangerously warm 2.7 degree Celsius.

Therefore, the meeting is also considered crucial in the fight against the climate crisis. Previous climate protection measures around the world criticize the United Nations and the scientific and environmental societies as insufficient. In the run-up to the conference, there were thus enormous doubts about the success of the conference. Today, among others, there are opening statements from individual groups of countries and individual states in the programme. More than 100 heads of state and government are scheduled to participate on Monday and Tuesday.

Fighting the climate crisis is also a topic in Rome today at the G20 Heads of State and Government Summit. Not two important heads of state, also missing in Glasgow earlier this week: Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin did not officially attend due to the coronavirus pandemic. China is the largest producer of climate-damaging greenhouse gases, while the Russian economy is dependent on gas and oil exports.

First protests in Glasgow

In Glasgow, there were the first protests by climate protection activists: members of the Ocean Rebellion placed half-naked under fishing nets near the River Clyde as “Dead Sea Men” to draw attention to the dangers of marine life such as dolphins, sharks and whales.

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The Earth’s temperature has already warmed by about 1.1 degrees compared to pre-industrial levels. In Paris six years ago, the international community agreed to limit global warming to a maximum of two degrees, preferably 1.5 degrees, if possible. So far, however, the plans presented by states are nowhere sufficient.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson also denounced the blatant inability to fight global warming – and urged the international community to catch up. “Humanity, as a whole, is behind 1:5 in the first half,” Johnson said yesterday during his trip to the G20 summit.