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Cambridge Centre for Environment, Energy and Natural Resource Governance

In a recent blog post for Cambridge Zero, C-EENRG Fellow Dr Joanna Depledge reflected on wider climate politics beyond the main headlines of COP26. Among the key takeways of the summit in Glagow, Dr Depledge noted the following:

  • COP26 was neither the fiasco some had feared, nor the decisive turning point others hoped for
  • Overall, Glasgow marked a positive reset of the UNFCCC process
  • It was good to have the U.S. back, but current positive engagement cannot undo past damage, and there is no guarantee it will continue
  • China & India were unfairly scapegoated
  • Joint China/U.S. declaration is very positive in confirming climate as a uniting topic for these superpowers. Opposite would be catastrophic
  • A new highly political negotiation phase for the UNFCCC was launched by decisions on finance goal, and loss and damage finance arrangements
  • There were conflicting realities between diplomatic progress, yet totally inconsistent policy on the ground, such as continued fossil fuel exploration
  • COP26 Clubs (methane, fossil fuel financing, coal, cars) must be followed up to ensure implementation and recruit new members, with rigorous reckoning at COP27.

Read the full blog post at Cambridge Zero: Dr Joanna Depledge: reflections on Glasgow COP 26 beyond the headlines