The Cop26 climate conference finally came to a close on Saturday evening, as delegates agreed a package after days of tortuous negotiations. However, there was disappointment when a commitment for all 196 signatories to phase out coal was watered down after lobbying from China and India.
In total the pledges will limit global heating to 2.4C – well above the 1.5C required to avert catastrophic environmental consequences – with the biggest polluters required to return next year with improved emissions targets. Cop26 president Alok Sharma, who made an emotional apology for the failure to keep the coal commitment, said: ‘We have kept 1.5C within reach, but its pulse is weak.’
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