Boris Johnson says climate crisis could collapse civilisation – follow live


Watch live as climate protesters gather in Manhattan ahead of Cop26

PM Boris Johnson has issued an apocalyptic warning that civilisation could collapse “like the Roman Empire” unless runaway climate change is stopped.

En route to the G20 summit in Rome, he said the world could “go backwards” and “go wrong at extraordinary speed” unless a deal to halt the climate emergency is agreed at the Cop26 conference.

He added: “You saw that with the decline and fall of the Roman Empire.”

Global leaders are set to meet from Monday in a bid to agree a plan to collectively reduce carbon emissions.

Mr Johnson has previously voiced fears that the summit “might go wrong and we might not get the agreements we need”.

Activists, joined by Greta Thunberg, have been protesting today against fossil fuel investments in the City of London.

Campaigners in Glasgow, the Cop26 host city, and other locations around the world were also set to stage demonstrations.

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PM warns Cop26 is ‘last chance’ to meet 1.5C commitment

Cop26 is the “last opportunity” for humanity to prevent global temperature rises passing 1.5C, the Prime Minister has said.

Boris Johnson said the human race had entered the last chance saloon on the environment.

He said the focus needed to be on securing agreements for countries to cut their carbon output and stop global warming exceeding the target amount to prevent the worst impacts.

Speaking to the i newspaper, Mr Johnson said: “Cop is really the last opportunity for the planet, humanity, to come together and keep alive the hope of restricting growth in temperatures to 1.5 degrees.

“We are not going to stop climate change any time soon, and we are certainly not going to stop it at Cop26.

“The most we can hope to do, and it is going to be incredibly difficult, is to restrict the growth by the end of the century to 1.5 degrees.”

Lamiat Sabin29 October 2021 21:07

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Waste collection strikes planned for Cop26 called off

Strikes planned by waste collectors and street cleaners planned for Glasgow from Monday during the Cop26 climate summit have been called off by a trade union.

GMB union decided to suspend the action to launch a two-week consultation after local authority umbrella body Cosla made a new pay offer days before the start of the UN climate conference.

Cosla proposes a one-year 5.89 per cent increase for the lowest paid council staff, as part of a £1,062 rise for all staff earning below £25,000. The Scottish Government gave £30 million to support the offer.

GMB members had called for a £2,000 pay rise, and previously turned down an offer of an £850 a year increase for staff earning up to £25,000.

The union’s Drew Duffy said: “While we are pleased that more money for key workers has been found at the 11th hour, the fact it’s taken to the brink of the Cop to get this offer speaks volumes to our members.

“For months, Cosla said they couldn’t pay, and Ministers said they wouldn’t pay, while staff have been attacked by political leaders for standing up for their services and value.”

Gail Macgregor, Cosla’s resources spokeswoman, said: “We are pleased that as a result of this improved offer our trade union colleagues have notified us this afternoon that they will suspend strike action.”

Lamiat Sabin29 October 2021 20:21

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Harry and Meghan say poorest people still deprived of Covid jabs

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have written an open letter to G20 leaders claiming promises of vaccine donations from nations are not reaching the globe’s most vulnerable.

On the eve of the G20 summit, Harry and Meghan said access to the Covid-19 vaccine was a “fundamental human right” in the letter also written with WHO director-general, Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.

Leaders from the world’s richest nations are meeting in Rome this weekend.

Environmental issues expected to be high on the G20 agenda, with the UN climate change Cop26 summit opening on Sunday, but the recovery from the pandemic is also likely to be discussed.

In May, the duke and duchess wrote an open letter to the chief executives of pharmaceutical companies like Pfizer, Moderna and AstraZeneca urging them to redouble their support for the UN-sponsored Covax programme.

Lamiat Sabin29 October 2021 19:50

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World losing 5-1 to climate change – Prime Minister says

Boris Johnson said he thinks the world is losing 5-1 to the perils of climate change.

The PM warned that civilisation could collapse in the same way that the Roman Empire fell if world leaders do not take action to reduce carbon emissions to limit rises in global temperatures.

He urged G20 leaders to go faster on tackling climate change when they gather for the Cop26 summit.

Mr Johnson said: “If this was half-time I’d say we were about 5-1 down. We’ve got a long way to go – but we can do it.

“We have the ability to equalise, to save the position and to come back, but it’s going to take a huge amount of effort by the British Government and by all our friends and partners around the world.”

Lamiat Sabin29 October 2021 19:30

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Johnson says he told China’s president to act quicker on climate

The PM has said that he urged China’s President Xi Jinping to move faster on reducing his country’s carbon emissions.

Boris Johnson said he had a long telephone call with Mr Xi ahead of the Cop26 summit – which the Chinese leader is not attending.

Speaking to reporters on the flight to the G20 in Rome, Mr Johnson said he had raised the issue of when China’s emissions would peak.

“They said before 2030, obviously I pushed a bit on that – ’25 would be better than 2030. But I wouldn’t say he committed on that,” he said.

Mr Johnson also said that Mr Xi told him that China’s efforts to cut carbon emissions would be “gradual” even though Beijing remained committed to the goal.

Mr Xi, whose nation is the world’s biggest emitter of carbon, had already confirmed he would not attend Cop26 and that he will communicate by video link instead.

Lamiat Sabin29 October 2021 19:00

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‘It’s not certain Cop26 will limit global temperature rise’ – FM

The success of the Cop26 summit in limiting the rise in global temperatures cannot be taken for granted, Nicola Sturgeon has said.

The First Minister acknowledged there is still a “significant gap” between ambitions to keep the rise in global temperatures below 1.5 degrees and the current commitments from world leaders.

During a media briefing, Ms Sturgeon said current commitments were not sufficient to keep global warming below two degrees.

She continued: “If that gap can’t all be closed in Glasgow, then at the very least we need to come out of Glasgow with a clear process and timescale around the way in which it will be closed.”

Lamiat Sabin29 October 2021 18:30

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Ship used as Cop26 accommodation to run on fossil fuels

A cruise ship hosting 3,000 Cop26 climate conference attendees and workers in Glasgow will have to run on fossil fuels despite being equipped to use clean onshore energy.

The MS Silja Europa is one of two ships procured by the government to make up for the lack of accommodation in the city during the event that about 25,000 people are expected to attend.

Vessels can receive electricity while docked at ports, enabling them to switch off their auxiliary engines, but the port hosting the two ships does not have onshore power capabilities for medium or large vessels.

William Proud reports in his exclusive story:

Lamiat Sabin29 October 2021 18:00

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Editorial condemns global ‘dither and delay’ on climate

Today’s editorial points out that the ongoing coronavirus pandemic has shown what the world is capable of organising if there is the will.

The Independent argues that money and motivation would have been found for a range of environmental measures if world leaders were “as serious about greenhouse gas emissions as it was about coronavirus”.

This includes the resources to get rid of gas boilers and the internal combustion engine, to deliver technologies for environmentally friendlier steel and concrete at large scale, and measures to encourage reduction of air travel and consumption of meat and dairy.

Lamiat Sabin29 October 2021 17:44

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Sign our petition calling for ‘meaningful action’ on climate change

The Independent has launched a petition calling on world leaders to take meaningful action on the climate crisis immediately.

We want global leaders to make the decisions necessary at the Cop26 UN climate summit to agree on securing global net zero by mid-century and keeping the 1.5C target from Paris within reach.

The Independent has launched a petition calling on world leaders to take meaningful action on the climate crisis immediately.
Sign the petition by using the form below and we thank you for your support.

Lamiat Sabin29 October 2021 17:13

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Activists mop up spilled ‘oil’ in ‘greenwashing’ stunt

Boris Johnson says climate crisis could collapse civilisation – follow live

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