Activism

COP26 representatives walk out of summit over lack of climate action

Representatives of indigenous people, young people, and other groups walked out of the conference and demanded more representation.

cop26 walkout

Activists walk out of the COP26 summit. Image: Caroline Lucas and COP26 Coalition via Twitter

Hundreds of representatives have walked out of the final day of the COP26 summit in protest at a lack of climate action.

Groups representing Indiginous people, farmers, women, and disabled people exited the venue en masse, demanding “just and urgent solutions to climate crisis,” and greater inclusions in negotiations.

People from the world’s most climate-vulnerable countries, and from marginalised communities, have been shut out of discussions during the conference, with concerns raised throughout.

A 3,000 word draft agreement published this morning mentioned fossil fuels just once.

Green Party MP Caroline Lucas said she was with hundreds of protesters, saying they had taken the action “really out of anger that they’ve not been included in many of the discussions.”

The new version of the draft COP26 agreement, published this morning, watered down language around fossil fuels, requiring countries to only phase out “inefficient” fossil fuel subsidies, rather than phase out fossil fuel subsidies altogether.

“Women, young people, vulnerable people who are most affected by climate impacts are not represented at platforms like COP26,” delegate Diaka Koroma told The Big Issue last week.

After the walkout, the climate justice groups met outside the gates of COP26 to “address the failures inside COP26.”

COP26 Coalition, a climate justice group, said: “While governments have spent the last two weeks yet again failing to deliver just and urgent action, the climate justice movement has grown in power and numbers.”

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