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by Louise Wilson
03 November 2021
Prime Minister ‘cautiously optimistic’ about COP26

PA Images / Alamy Stock Photo

Prime Minister ‘cautiously optimistic’ about COP26

Boris Johnson has said he is “cautiously optimistic” about efforts to tackle climate change being agreed at COP26 in Glasgow.

Speaking on Tuesday evening at the end of the world leaders’ conference, the Prime Minister said “progress had been made”.

He warned the “clock on the doomsday device” was still ticking, but there was now a “bomb disposal team on site”.

Two major announcements yesterday related to deforestation and methane emissions.

Over 35 leaders signed up to the Glasgow Breakthrough Agreement to speed up development of clean technologies.

Johnson said: “After two days of talk with around 120 world leaders, is that we’ve pulled back a goal or perhaps even two and I think we’re going to be able to take this thing to extra time, because there’s no doubt that some progress has been made.”

President Joe Biden, who left Scotland in Tuesday evening, also hailed progress made at the conference.

He said: “I can’t think of any two days where more has been accomplished dealing with climate than these two days.”

However, he also criticised Russian president Vladamir Putin and Chinese president Xi Jinping for not turning up to the climate summit.

He added: “We showed up and by showing up we’ve had a profound impact on how the rest of the world is looking at the US and its leadership role.”

The focus of COP26 on Wedneday will be finance.

The UK government has announced plans to become the world’s first net zero aligned financial centre.

Speaking ahead of a Green Investment Showcase event, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said: "By grasping the opportunities provided by green industries and supply chains, we can create the good green jobs of the future and secure a just transition away from fossil fuels.

“The role of private capital is fundamental to achieving this and governments must do what they can to channel investment into areas supporting transformational change."

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