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The laggards left their mark on the final COP text. Now it's time for climate leaders to show the way.

13 Nov 2021

The climate movement emerges stronger, ready to hold national governments to account

Reacting to the outcome of the COP26 climate negotiations, Oisín Coghlan, Director of Friends of the Earth Ireland said:

"Glasgow was a staging post not a finishing line. What’s clear now is that the formal negotiations at COP may never produce an outcome that reflects the urgency of the science and the imperative of justice. Not when the final text is effectively subject to a veto from any polluting country with a brass neck.

"What’s equally clear from from this COP is that collective agreement is no longer the limit on global action it once was. While some countries are still dragging their heels others are beginning to pick up the pace. Equally, while fossil fuel companies are lobbying for the path of delay and destruction others are grasping the business opportunities of the race to zero.

"Now the COP is over it's time for climate leaders to show the way, and let history judge the laggards.

"And all the time the global climate movement is growing in strength and diversity. We may not yet have succeeded in forging the international agreement we want but increasingly we can hold our national governments to the standards required by the 1.5C goal in the Paris Agreement.

"The two-steps forward, one-step back nature of the annual climate talks is deeply frustrating but we must pocket any modest gains from Glasgow - the first mention of phasing out of fossil fuels and the renewed commitment to adaptation finance for example - and ratchet up our demands for the next time.

"Collectively our governments have not met the moment but our international movement emerges from Glasgow stronger than ever. We return home to push our national governments harder than ever to act in line with science and equity."

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