COP26: Live updates from final hours

COP26 in Glasgow is now in its last scheduled hours, with planned protests, more negotiations and a final attempt to reach agreement between nearly 200 countries.

The most recent political text was published at 7.13am (see details). We’re watching what’s happening throughout the day in the conference centre and outside. Keep checking back for the latest news.

8.55pm: No new text tonight

COP26 president, Alok Sharma confirms there will be no new text tonight. Talks will continue tomorrow once a new draft agreement has been circulated.

The president said in a message to delegates that he and his team were “engaged intensive consultations”. He said revised documents would be distributed overnight and would be available by 8am on Saturday. The parties are expected to meet for another plenary session sometime after 10am to discuss the latest versions and the state of negotiations.

Mr Sharma said the conference is expected to adopt decisions and close by Saturday.

7.43pm: Sturgeon “cautiously optimistic”

Scotland’s first minister, Nicola Sturgeon, says she is “cautiously optimistic” about the outcome of COP26. She says there are signs that a deal is “inching forward”.

6.50pm: Thoughts from the world’s leading award for grassroots activists

6.51pm: Australia named ‘colossal fossil’ of Cop26 for ‘appalling performance’

The Guardian reports on the unwanted award from the Climate Action Network to Australia for its “breathtaking ineptitude” at COP26

6pm: Official deadline passes

But the talking goes on…

5.09pm: Talks over potential extension to road closures

The Daily Record reports Glasgow City Council is in touch with COP26 chiefs over potential extensions to road closures

5pm: COP26 presidency press conference cancelled


4pm: PM warns we risk blowing it

The Independent reports comments by Boris Johnson that “We risk blowing it” on climate if countries do not agree a draft deal at COP26. He said he was urging world leaders to show courage to secure a deal which could put the world on track to limit global warming to 1.5C.

2.30pm: “the Glasgow great escape by big polluters” – FOE

Sarah Shaw, of Friends of the Earth International, said of the end of COP26:

“Make no mistake, we are witnessing the Glasgow great escape by big polluters.

“After making a series of flashing announcements full of caveats and loopholes, rich countries, driven by the UK COP presidency, are rushing to close the deal that heaps responsibility for making emissions cuts on developing countries without providing the money they need to move away from fossil fuels.”

She said it was the most exclusionary COP ever. Fossil fuel companies had been welcomed, she said, while people from the climate front line had been shut out.

With so little global south representation, it is no surprise that wealthy countries are pushing through false solutions that will allow them to continue climate trashing business as usual.”

Photo: Livestream

Mary Church, head of campaigns at Friends of the Earth Scotland, said the latest draft text made it global responsibility to reach net zero by 2050. Previous agreements from COPs in Paris and Kyoto recognised that the biggest emitting nations needed to go faster at cutting carbon than the developing world.

She said the UK and Scottish governments had been keen to claim the mantle of climate leadership. But they failed to practice what they preached, she said.

“In full knowledge that emissions from fossil fuels are the number one driver of climate change, they continue to extract and finance fossil fuels at home and overseas and artificially deflate fossil fuel prices with subsidies.”

She said there were 30 offshore oil and gas projects, seven onshore developments and three coal mines in the pipeline for approval before 2025 despite their incompatibility with global efforts to keep temperature rises to below 1.5C.

The Cambo oil field, off Shetland, was proposed to operate until at least 2050, she said, by when emissions should have been reduced to real zero. That would emit the equivalent of 10 years of Scotland’s annual emissions over the course of its lifetime.

2.19pm: Arrest

Police arrested a man who tried to climb over the perimeter fence at the /cOP26 compound.

Attempt to scale the fence at COP26 blue zone, 12 November 2021. Photo: Simone J Rudolphi
Arrest of man who attempted to scale fence at COP26, 12 November 2021. Photo:

1.15pm: The red line joins outside rally



1pm: Informal stocktake

Photos from UNFCCC livestream

Alok Sharma tells delegates:

“This is our collective moment in history. this is our chance to forge a cleaner, healthier, more prosperous world.

It is our time, he said, to deliver what we were asked to do. He urges delegates to continue to work on the text.

“We have made a lot of progress”, he says. The texts are not yet totally clean, he says, despite extensive discussions. Key issues require collective attention, he adds.

“We need the final injection of that can-do spirit to get this over the line”.

The Russian Federation representative is the first speaker. He welcomes the latest version of the draft text for the conference agreement. But he says Article 6 on market and non-market mechanisms needs more work. Everyone will have to make certain concessions, he says.

The Republic of Korea says countries are close to consensus. It says the text should be clarified that the youth forum should be held every year.

Canada supports a forceful text to keep alive the 1.5C temperature rise limit. Strong support for strong language for the human rights of indigenous peoples.

Norway says the language should be strong on mitigation and loss and damage. It wants strong text on nature-based solutions. The world is watching us and we cannot let them down, he says.

Papua New Guinea is concerned about pre-2020 arrangements. Small island states appear to be left without credit for work they have done on climate before 2020. It calls for public, rather than private, finance solutions.

Peru says 1.5C needs a full phase out of coal and fossil fuel subsidies. There needs to be regular updates with national plans in line with the latest science. The work programme should begin today, not delayed by further deliberations. There is no clarity on how regional consultations will take on finance. A lot of work still needs to be done on Article 6 on carbon markets. Peru is disappointed to see the removal of nature-based solutions removed from the text – this should be restored in the final version.

The European Union says the 1.5C limit is about creating a liveable world in 2050. We need to make sure major emitters reduce their emissions to keep 1.5 alive. We need to be able to say in Egypt [at the COP] next year we are on track. The COP must send a clear signal to halt fossil fuel subsidies. Without this and phase out of coal, the targets will be meaningless. He said discussions on the rule book must be resolved. The compromise on carbon markets on offer as better than that in Madrid. On finance, developed countries have not given enough.

Costa Rica says the key issue is keeping 1.5 alive. It is critical to have a call for improved national plans on emission cuts. Welcomed text on coal and fossil fuel subsidies and on doubling finance for adaptation. On loss and damage, strengthened text was needed. The elimination of nature-based solutions was not consistent with the COP26’s goals.

Saudi Arabia says nothing in the text should skew the balance struck in the Paris Agreement. How to keep 1.5 alive is the critical issue. Where is finance, equity, capacity building? There is still a chance for a solution but it has to remain faithful to the Paris Agreement.

Marshall Islands says the safety of children hangs in the balance. It is time to level up. This decade will determine the rest of human history. We must see national emission-reduction plans must align to 1.5. All coal, not just unabated, and all fossil fuel subsidies, not just inefficient ones, should be included in the text. To fall back from this text would betray future generations.

Kenya says adults have messed up the world for the future. Young people gave us the last chance in Glasgow to sort out your mess. I hope that exactly happens today, not tomorrow. That would be a failure. 1.5C temperature rise for Africa is actually 3+C. This is what our communities live through. That is why we bleed when it rains and we cry when it doesn’t rain. 1.5C is a matter of live and death. African countries have done what they can within the limited resources they have. The draft had to be adopted by the end of today. Finance must be new, additional and accessible.

It cannot be right that 20 countries that control 80% of GDP and cobtribute 80% of greenhouse emissions are the ones they are pushing us for more ambition. They must take their responsibility. The major emitters must resubmit their NDC by COP27 in line with 1.5C.

USA says “We believe that this is existential. For many of you it is existential today. People are dying today. We have to live up to the expectation of people who don’t want this place just to be aboutu words. We can’t say it is existential, we have to behave as if it is.” On adaption, USA supports the wording. On mitigation, this is fact-based and the best scientists tell us we have to reduce emissions by 45% in the next 10 years. We have to act now. On mitigation, the text cannot go weaker or go backwards. Unabated coal and inefficient subsidies have to go. Strongly supportive of adaptation finance. on loss and damage, USA supports technical assistance for the Santiago network. The language needs to be consistent with the Paris Agreement.

Alliance of Small Island States says the fossil fuel subsidy wording is weak and insufficient. We are asking for an end to subsidies for fossil fuels that cause 3/4 of emissions, it says. Political discussions on finance have to be reflected in the text. Alarmed at opposition to loss and damage financing. Article 6 proposals would allow loopholes through alternative markets. Don’t carry over junk credit – it won’t deliver our ambition.

More to follow

12 noon: New Article 6 text released

New text has been released on the Article 6 which deals with carbon markets. Greenpeace says this gives the go ahead to entrenching carbon offsetting, opening up major loopholes for double counting of emissions and a way out of real emissions reductions needed to limit temperature rise to 1.5C.

Louisa Casson, climate campaigner at Greenpeace UK, says:

“The new Article 6 text gives polluters the right to scam by allowing indefinite double counting of an emission reduction that has only happened once – or may not have happened at all. 

“The invitation to greenwash through carbon offsetting risks making a farce of the Paris Agreement. If this goes ahead, governments are giving big polluters a free pass to pollute under the guise of being ‘carbon neutral’, without actually having to reduce emissions. We’re calling on the negotiators to stand firm against greenwash scams. We cannot leave Glasgow with an Article 6 Agreement that will blow the 1.5C limit.

“The world is watching. These backroom deals made overnight in corridors filled with 500 fossil fuel lobbyists are a betrayal to the youth, Indigenous Peoples who will continue to fight to stop offsetting scams and keep 1.5C alive.”

One concern appears to be about two types of carbon credits. An unauthorised credit could be double-counted by a private company and a country in its nationally-determined contribution.

Lots of bracket text remains in the versions out this morning and the language could allow wiggle room on emissions reductions.

12 noon: Informal stocktake put back an hour

An informal review of the progress of negotiations that had been due at 12 noon has been delayed until 1pm.

12 noon: Hundreds march through COP26

Hundreds of observers from across the world followed a long red ribbon to march through the COP26 conference centre calling for climate justice and people power. The march took about 25 minutes to leave the area outside one of the main halls where delegates have made speeches over the past fortnight. The ribbon ran out about three quarters of the way down the line. All pictures by DrillOrDrop

11.45am: Climate crossroads

Warning from climate scientist, Ed Hawkins

11.40am: Eyes of the world on Glasgow


11.30am: Speeches start

Speeches are underway at a rally in Finnieston Street, outside the COP26 conference centre


11.20am: Queues build for a seat in the plenary session


11.12am: More Friends of the Earth reaction

Dipti Bhatnagar, climate justice and energy coordinator, Friends of the Earth International, commented from Mozambique:

“With so little global south representation, it is no surprise that wealthy countries are pushing through false solutions that will allow them to continue their climate-trashing, business-as-usual activities.

“Rich countries are forcing through an agreement full of escape hatches. Carbon markets, ‘nature based solutions’ and ‘net zero by the middle of the century’ are all ways for them to get out of making the real emissions cuts we need to prevent climate catastrophe.”

Mary Church, head of campaigns, Friends of the Earth Scotland, said:

“COP26 has failed to close the gap on 1.5oC, but outside in the streets we’ve seen the biggest climate justice demonstrations in the UK ever.

“We’ve come together as a powerful and diverse movement that recognises the root cause of the climate crisis is an economic system which is also driving multiple other injustices we are struggling against – poverty, racism, sexisim, nature destruction to name but a few.

“Everywhere around the world people are rising up against this system that prioritises profit over people. We will not give up until we have created the better world we know is possible.”

Jamie Peters, campaigns director, Friends of the Earth England, Wales and Northern Ireland, said:

“As the minutes tick down, responsibility and how to ramp up climate finance should be the theme of negotiations. But instead, it looks like rich countries are preparing their escape hatch.

“There is a worrying gap between existing commitments and the deeper cuts needed to get to the key COP goal of 1.5 degrees. Additionally, the hypocrisy of the UK as hosts remains clear because of ongoing support for damaging fossil fuels projects like the Cambo oil field, a new coal mine in Cumbria, and the gas mega-project in Mozambique.

“We need to leave oil and gas where it is, accelerate emissions reductions, and increase financial support from richer countries responsible for climate chaos. It’s that simple.”

11.10am: More photos from outside COP26


11.05am: “Governments fail to deliver meaningful and just outcomes”

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10.50am: Campaigners gather outside COP26


10.30am: Friends of the Earth reaction

Rachel Kennerley, international climate campaigner at Friends of the Earth, said:

“As the minutes tick down, accepting responsibility and how to ramp up climate finance should be the theme of negotiations. But instead, it looks like rich countries are preparing their escape hatch. This new draft released this morning speaks about removing inefficient fossil fuels subsidies, as if efficient ones are acceptable. 

“Back in 2009 the G8 were talking about this, and the UK clearly failed at delivering it. This summit has recycled announcements to much fanfare that weren’t done the first time so there is still a worrying gap between existing commitments and the deeper cuts needed to get to the key COP goal of 1.5 °C. 

“We need to leave oil and gas where it is, accelerate emissions reductions, and increase financial support from richer countries responsible for climate chaos. It’s that simple and leaders should now be incredibly focused on showing how they will do this, the time to talk has gone, we need to see plans now.”

10.19am: “Summit has no teeth”

Bahamas PM tells Sky TV the climate summit has ‘no teeth’ and Boris Johnson’s language doesn’t ‘convey seriousness’ of global warming crisis.

10.02am: Greenpeace reaction to latest COP26 text

Jennifer Morgan, executive director of Greenpeace International, said:

“It could be better, it should be better, and we have one day left to make it a lot, lot better. Right now the fingerprints of fossil fuel interests are still on the text and this is not the breakthrough deal that people hoped for in Glasgow.

“The key line on phasing out coal and fossil fuel subsidies has been critically weakened, but it’s still there and needs to be strengthened again before this summit closes. That’s going to be a big tussle and one we need to win. Meanwhile we’ve gone from ‘urging’ countries to strengthen their 2030 emissions targets in line with the 1.5C goal to merely ‘requesting’ they do so by 2022. It wasn’t good enough before, it’s even weaker now and that needs to change.   

“But there’s wording in here worth holding on to and the UK Presidency needs to fight tooth and nail to keep the most ambitious elements in the deal. We’ve moved from richer nations largely ignoring the pleas of developing countries for promised finance to tackle climate change, to the beginnings of a recognition that their calls should be met. Now we need developed countries to scale up their offer of support and finance.

“Negotiators in Glasgow simply have to seize the moment and agree something historic, but they need to isolate the governments who’ve come here to wreck progress and instead listen to the calls of youth and vulnerable nations.

“In parallel we’re witnessing a deliberate and cynical effort by a few nation states to turn Article 6 into a charter for cheating, greenwash and loopholes. Today is an absolutely critical day in the fight to defend the 1.5C goal from vested interests who’ll do anything to dodge their responsibility for the climate crisis. Anything less puts the essence of Paris in peril.”

10am: Demonstration on double-counting

Youth delegates from Youngo protest to increase pressure on negotiations against loopholes and double-counting emissions cuts


“Still time for a better deal” – Sturgeon

Scotland’s first minister, Nicola Sturgeon, called on Prime Minister Boris Johnson to return to the summit to push countries to go further before agreeing a final deal. She tweeted:

“There’s still time in the final hours of #COP26 to make the outcome better and give us a chance of limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees – which for many across the world is the difference between survival and extinction. Let’s see the political will and determination to deliver”

9.15am: “Hold rise to 1.5C”


8.56am: CCC chief on language in the latest text

7.30am: Leaked “Friends of COP” letter demands strong action

Forbes reports on a leaked letter from the Friends of COP to the UK presidency. The letter reportedly says:

“The political and societal momentum, energy and resolve that has been marshalled must not be allowed to dissipate.”

“We must leave COP26 with measurable acceleration of action on mitigation, as well as adaptation and financing.”

7.13am: new political text

The latest COP26 draft political text published. Here’s some of the changes to the text:

Coal: The reference to coal remains but weakened with the addition of “unabated” to: “accelerating the phase out of unabated coal power” (para 36) Abated is likely to be a problem for campaigners and some countries.9

Fossil fuel subsidies : This also remains but has been weakened with the addition of “inefficient” to “accelerating the phase out of “inefficient subsidies for fossil fuels”. (para 36)

Low emission: Addition of “low emission energy systems” to the section on coal and fossil fuel subsides without any definition of what this means (para 36)

Methane: Invites parties to consider further actions to reduce by 2030 non-carbon dioxide greenhouse gas emissions, including methane (para 37)

National plans: Urges countries that have not submitted nationally determined contributions to do so by the end of 2022 (para 28)

Climate targets: Requests (changed from urges) all countries to revisit and strengthen their 2030 emissions targets by the end of 2022 (para 29). This paragraph also adds “taking into account different national circumstances

Annual assessment: Requests the UN to do an annual review of climate plans from 2022 (para 30)6

Net zero plans: Urges countries to deliver plans by 2022 aimed at achieving net zero emissions by 2022 (para 32)

$100bn funding for developing nations: Notes with deep regret that the annual funding goal of $100bn by 2020 has been missed (para 44)

New finance deadline: Urges countries’ to ‘fully deliver on the $100 billion goal ‘urgently’ through 2025 (para 46)

Loss and damage: Welcomes further operation of the Santiago Network to avert, minimise and address loss and damage (para 66)

Technical assistance: Decides the Santiago Network will have a technical assistance facility to provide financial support for technical assistance on loss and damage  (para 67)

Categories: COP26, slider

6 replies »

  1. Wow, Ruth … well done on your massive, and valuable, efforts in reporting this huge event. Thank you so much for keeping on top of everything.

  2. Thank you, Ruth. What dedication!
    Isn’t it sad that ‘urge’ and ‘request’ are preferred to ‘demand’, no doubt on the ‘demand’ of the fossil fuel industry which now replaces democratic government? Who are the people to ‘demand’ anything? Why do we elect puppets without backbone?

    • Thank you Ruth and Paul, for this amazing coverage of COP26. A magnificent and most enlightening series of reports.

      If only all that dedication was reflected by this weak hypocritical governments efforts.

    • No, it is not sad, it is reality.

      How do demands get anywhere when demands can not be followed up and enforced? Send a gunboat?

      Very few countries would sign up to any “demands”. It would not be politically acceptable within their own countries to do so. If it was not politically acceptable they would be removed and anything they had signed would be in the trash can.

      There are too many political agendas based upon nonsense within this debate. Get real, or nothing will be got.

  3. 8am today – draft document still weak – ( – the weakness of the exhortations still allows space for backtracking, green-washing, inaction. This is an unacceptable outcome to so much concern, so much effort and so much good will on the part of so many. It looks as if the ff industry has successfully sabotaged this potentially momentous gathering in their efforts to secure their profits until the planet goes under. I hope I’m wrong.

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