Curious About the Upcoming UN Climate Change Conference (COP26)? Here’s Some Information To Know

By Maria DeKoning

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COP26 (Conference of Parties) is the United Nations Climate Change Conference that is scheduled to take place in Glasgow, Scotland from October 31st to November 12th. For 12 days, roughly 200 counties from all over the globe will meet to discuss the state of our planet. The conference will be hosted by the UK and is believed to be the world’s last best chance to get the runaway climate challenge under control.

The Goals of the Conference

The COP meetings have been taking place for roughly three decades, making this year the 26th annual conference. From the beginning of the meetings to now, the severity of the climate crisis has increased significantly, making it one of the most urgent issues of today. The conference plans on working with every nation to reach an overall agreement on how to move forward with climate policy.

The comprehensive list of items that COP26 would like to achieve is as follows:

  • Obtain net-zero emissions by 2050 to ensure the goal of 1.5°C stays within reach
  • Protect communities and natural habitats
  • Mobilize at least $100 billion in climate finance each year by developed countries
  • Work together to finalize the Paris rulebook and accelerate the action to tackle the climate crisis head-on.

The Goals of the U.S.

The Biden-Harris administration wants to make it completely clear that they will work to re-establish U.S. leadership by continuing to implement global commitments to join the fight against climate change. One of the largest difficulties for the U.S. will be rebuilding credibility after President Trump withdrew the U.S. from the 2015 Paris Accords, (enacted during COP 21). The U.S. recently joined the Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) and made a pledge to reduce 50-52% of the 2005 net greenhouse gas levels by the year 2030.

The U.S. will likely build on its commitments made during the April 2021 Leaders Summit on Climate where President Biden hosted some of the largest countries to discuss his promise to bring America back in the fight against the climate. Nevertheless, the U.S. is destined to face skepticism about its ability to remain dependable after Biden’s term of office has concluded.

U.S. Attendees

In order to show force in numbers, President Biden has chosen 13 cabinet members to attend COP26. Two of the attendees include Gina McCarthy and John Kerry who are the president’s top international and domestic climate advisors.

Republicans Attending

To ensure that the United States is serious about their dedication to their promise, the U.S. will send a handful of Republicans to the conference as well. The Republicans in Congress have organized a GOP-only delegation to ensure their attendance is noted. The team of Republicans going includes the top Republican on the select committee on the Climate Crisis- Representative Garret Graves from Louisiana, Rep. John Curtis of Utah, and Rep. Dan Crenshaw of Texas.

The point that the Republicans want to make clear is that the U.S. is united in its dedication to a clean energy future and a reduction in emissions. The travel to the conference is being organized by two conservative groups known as Citizens for Responsible Energy Solutions and ClearPath.

More Information:

For more information on the Conference: Official COP26 website.

For more information on the U.S. attendees: Exclusive: Biden sending 13 cabinet members, high-level officials to UN climate summit in show of force

For more information on the U.S. objectives: Leveraging the Biden-Harris Climate Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals

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Article by Maria DeKoning
Maria DeKoning is the Social Media Coordinator and a Junior Environmental Scientist at Galli Engineering. When she is not writing blog posts for the company, she assists with environmental work such as Environmental Assessments and maintenance of the Galli social media pages. She enjoys researching new environmental topics and technology and making them known to the public through her writing.