Nicola Sturgeon says lack of contact from Liz Truss ‘absurd’

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-63175102

Scotland’s first minister has said she has still not had a phone call with Liz Truss more than a month after she became prime minister.

Nicola Sturgeon told the BBC it was “absurd” and “unprecedented” that she had yet to hear from the new PM.

She added: “I don’t know whether that is arrogance, lack of respect or insecurity or whatever it is. It’s not the right way to do government in a grown up way.

“So I hope we will see a change. I’ll do my best to work with Liz Truss as constructively as possible or whoever comes after because we can’t take anything for granted in UK politics these days.”

Continue ReadingNicola Sturgeon says lack of contact from Liz Truss ‘absurd’

COP26 News review day 4

COP26: Nicola Sturgeon urged to intervene in policing of protests

FIRST Minister Nicola Sturgeon has been urged to intervene to stop “over the top” policing of climate protests at COP26.

Environmental campaigners have claimed that there have been “numerous incidents” of abuse of power tactics by officers from forces all over the UK.

Around 10,000 officers a day have been deployed on the streets of Glasgow for the duration of the summit.

Activists have sent an open letter to the First Minister asking her to intervene to ensure the right to protest is upheld ahead of a mass climate march on Saturday, expected to draw in thousands and spark other protests across the country.

Cop26 protest demands end to the hostile environment and the arms trade

A MARCH for peace travelled through Glasgow during Cop26 today, demanding an end to the hostile environment and the arms trade.

The demonstration, led by activists from Extinction Rebellion (XR) and XR Peace, travelled from the Home Office to BAE Systems to highlight the links between the climate crisis, Britain’s racist immigration policies and the arms trade — and in solidarity with climate and war refugees.

The event featured speakers from the Faslane Peace Camp, CND, and participants from the Greenham Common Women’s Peace Camp.

XR said that Britain’s military-industrial sector annually emits more greenhouse gases than 60 individual countries — such as Uganda, which has a population of 45 million people — while poorer countries suffer a huge injustice in climate and conflict.

If Fighting Climate Crisis Is the Goal, Critics Say COP26 Coal Reduction Deal ‘Falls Spectacularly Short’

COP26 officials on Thursday are heralding developments they say signal that “the end of coal is in sight”—but advocates for strong climate action suggest holding the applause.

“Agreed at COP26 is an inadequate agreement that allows coal to continue for nearly 20 more years,” tweeted Extinction Rebellion. “But that’s excluding major nations who refuse to sign at all.”

Among the key developments at the ongoing climate summit in Glasgow, Scotland is the new Global Coal to Clean Power Transition Statement signed by nearly four dozen countries, though notably not the U.S., China, or Australia——among the world’s top coal producers.

COP26: UK has failed to lead on energy

The UK Government has failed to lead COP26 talks on energy because it does not practice what it preaches, the Scottish Greens have said.

Today’s announcements on energy include a coal commitment that excludes the biggest polluters like the US, Australia, China and India and overseas finance plans that won’t cover projects already in the pipeline, like the UK’s planned investment in a gasfield in Mozambique.

Commenting, Scottish Greens climate spokesperson Mark Ruskell said: “Today marks a colossal failure of leadership by the UK Government, just days after the Prime Minister flew from Glasgow to London on a private jet.

Ed Miliband Says Ministers’ “Flirting” With New Coal Mine Project Is Undermining COP26 Progress

Ed Miliband, the shadow energy secretary, has accused the government of “double speak and double standards” after they announced a series of commitments at COP26 to reduce the use of coal despite “flirting” with a new UK-based colliery.

Speaking to PoliticsHome, Miliband said the refusal to scrap the project was “undermining” their ability to press other countries to take tougher acion on phasing out the use of coal.

Continue ReadingCOP26 News review day 4

COP26 News Summary day 1

COP26: Nicola Sturgeon catches up with activist Greta Thunberg

NICOLA Sturgeon has said the “voices of young people” must be heard loudly after meeting with climate campaigners Greta Thunberg and Vanessa Nakate this morning at Cop26.

Scotland’s First Minister said the “next few days should not be comfortable for leaders, the responsibility to act must be felt”.

Sturgeon was photographed with the two young activists bumping elbows inside the blue zone at COP26, before she was due to speak on a panel about the role of states and regions in fighting climate change.

What happened at Cop26 today – day one at a glance

A summary of the main developments on the first day of the UN climate summit in Glasgow

Greenpeace ship Rainbow Warrior sails under Erskine Bridge

The ship had hoped to dock opposite the summit venue, but stopped at the King George V dock at Shieldhall.

Sinn Fein launches ‘green energy’ document at Cop26 to help tackle climate emergency

“The COP26 summit is an important opportunity to send a clear message on the actions that will need to be taken by governments to tackle the climate emergency,” she said.

“Today at the summit, attended by world leaders, Sinn Féin have launched a document on green energy and tackling the climate emergency.

“Just like the Covid19 pandemic, climate change doesn’t recognise borders and we need an all-Ireland approach,” Ms O’Neill added.

“We must secure a fair transition to a low carbon economy and increase support for rural communities and family farms.

Boris even manages to turn up late to the last-chance saloon John Crace

Johnson is something of a late convert to the reality of climate change. We know that and he knows that. He’s even admitted it was only when he got to Downing Street and academics walked him through the science that the penny really dropped. So you might have thought the prime minister would have chosen to play it fairly straight in welcoming everyone to Glasgow. Just thank them all for coming and make them aware of the responsibility they carry for saving the planet.

Only Boris just can’t do serious. He needs the attention. He needs the laughs. So he started what should have been a plea to world leaders to put aside their self-interest and work constructively together with a reference to James Bond. If he’d stopped at that, he might have got away with it. But Bertie Booster is compulsively needy. So the rest of his short speech was peppered with bad gags. Cows farting. Boris possibly still being prime minister in 2060 when he’s 94. Further references to not everyone being able to look like James Bond.

Boris Johnson will travel home from Cop26 by private plane

Boris Johnson is flying back from the Cop26 climate conference on a private plane rather than the train after spending two days warning world leaders to reduce their emissions.

Queen tells Cop26 in video address it’s ‘time for action’ on climate

In her message, recorded after she announced she would be unable to attend the conference due to medical advice to rest, she added: “Of course, the benefits of such actions will not be there to enjoy for all of us here today: we none of us will live forever. But we are doing this not for ourselves but for our children and our children’s children, and those who will follow in their footsteps.”

Continue ReadingCOP26 News Summary day 1

COP26 News Summary day 0

Sir David Attenborough’s call to arms for ambitious nature recovery at COP26

Sir David Attenborough has today appeared in a new video calling for “bold action” at COP26 to help nature recover.

In the short film, released by The Wildlife Trusts to coincide with the start of the global climate summit, Sir David highlights the role of wildlife in addressing the climate emergency.

He says: “Nature has extraordinary powers to lock up carbon dioxide; to provide clean air and water; to help protect us from flooding and extreme weather; and to provide the food which sustains us.”

But Sir David comments on the decline of wildlife, saying that nature has reached “breaking point”.

COP26: Rainbow Warrior plots a course for Glasgow in defiance of river ban

Greenpeace said it had been warned by port authorities not to sail up the River Clyde to the global climate conference, but added the vessel would still attempt the journey.

If the voyage is successful, the four youth activists on the Rainbow Warrior plan to meet fellow members of the Fridays for Future climate strike movement on Monday afternoon outside the summit to deliver their message.

Nicola Sturgeon on Cop26: There are turning points in human history. This must be one of them

The stakes could hardly be higher. The consequences of the world failing to agree on the action needed are potentially catastrophic. Already we are seeing the devastating effects of the climate crisis.

Those impacts are no longer distant or theoretical. They are being experienced now. Just this year we have witnessed wildfires in Greece, massive flooding in Nigeria and Uganda, a food crisis in Madagascar – as well as devastating flooding in western Europe.

The recent report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change could not have been clearer about the necessity of action. Compared to pre-industrial times, global temperatures have already risen by more than one degree on average.

And, as the UN Secretary General made clear last month, the definite promises made by member states at that stage – assuming they were all delivered – were sufficient only to keep temperature increases to 2.7°C. He said that would create a “hellscape” on earth.

Humanity faces ‘stark choice’, UN chief warns at COP26 opening

At the formal opening of the conference, Patricia Espinosa, UN climate chief, told delegates that humankind was at a “pivotal point in history”.

The message was wholeheartedly endorsed by Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, who said she “couldn’t agree more”.

The summit kicks off this weekend before world leaders attend the summit for an official opening ceremony on Monday.

Speaking to delegates earlier, Epinosa warned: “Humanity faces stark but clear choices. We either choose to achieve rapid and large-scale reductions of limiting emissions to keep the goal of limiting global warming to 1.5C or we accept that humanity faces a bleak future on this planet.”

Last seven years hottest on record, UN experts say as Cop26 kicks off

The last seven years have been the hottest on record – with sea levels rising to new highs and climate-related destructive weather extremes in 2021, UN experts have said.

In its annual state of the global climate report launched as the UN Cop26 summit gets under way, the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) said that 2021 is likely to have been the fifth to seventh hottest year on record.

While it is not quite as hot as some recent years, due to a “La Nina” weather phenomenon in the Pacific – which has a cooling affect on global temperatures, it still averaged 1.09C above pre-industrial levels, the WMO said.

The last seven years since 2015, when countries secured the Paris Agreement to curb temperature rises to 1.5C or well below 2C to avoid the worst impacts of climate change, have been the hottest in records dating back to 1850.

And the UK’s Met Office warned the world’s temperature has reached an average exceeding 1C above pre-industrial levels for the past two decades, the first time a 20-year period has been at that level since the records began.

Extinction Rebellion march through Edinburgh in COP26 protest

Extinction Rebellion activists marched through Edinburgh in solidarity with protests taking place across the world during the COP26 climate summit.

The demonstrators walked from George IV Bridge, Bank Street, North Bank Street, Market Street, Jeffrey Street and Canongate to reach the Scottish Parliament at Holyrood at about 1pm.

A rally was then held, with short speeches by representatives from charities and action groups addressing issues contributing to the climate crisis.

Participant Mike Grant, 61, from Rosewell, Midlothian, said: “I am marching today to make clear to those gathering for Cop26 that the people demand far bolder and far faster action now.

Children’s hospital staff arrive at Cop26 after 800km cycle journey

A group of cyclists who work in children’s hospitals and as medical bosses arrived at Cop26 after cycling 800km (500 miles).

The 39 activists, members of Ride For Their Lives, cycled from London to Glasgow to raise awareness of the health damages air pollution can cause, particularly in children.

The group have carried with them the Healthy Climate Prescription letter, a document signed by organisations representing 45 million health professionals around the world.

The letter says “the climate crisis is the single biggest health threat facing humanity”, with air pollution at the top of the list of deadly impacts.

It calls for a rapid and just transition away from fossil fuels, the cause of both problems.

Scapegoating China over climate change is craven – and inaccurate

FORMER business secretary Alok Sharma, Boris Johnson’s appointee to chair Cop26, sought to put China in the dock today with his widely publicised comments “we expected more” — hardly the best way to win consensus ahead of a critically important conference.

There are two issues here. One is truth. The other is the contrast of approach between two different social systems.

In terms of carbon emissions per head, China today stands at 7.3 tonnes and the US at more than double that at 15.2.

More striking, however, is the speed of China’s development of zero-carbon technologies. In 2016 the EU generated 101 gigawatt of solar power and China 78.

Today the figures are reversed: China 204 and EU 134. Equally with wind power. In 2014 the EU generated 128 gigawatt and China 114. Today China produces 281 and the EU 201.

And in terms of relevant technologies China is well ahead. It produces 80 per cent of the world’s solar panels. It has over two-thirds of the world’s high-speed electric trains. It has as almost as many electric cars as the US and the EU combined — and 57 percent of its Belt and Road energy investments are for renewables as against 28 per cent two years ago.

Continue ReadingCOP26 News Summary day 0