The pact creates a timetable to bring nations back to the table with higher commitments to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, refers to cutting fossil fuels, and allocates more funds from developed to developing countries.

But, while these are valid targets, the pact lacks an ambitious plan to reduce emissions from developed countries, fails to phasing out coal, and stubs on payment of funds owed.

With the focus on coal and natural gas, there are concerns that oil is not getting enough attention.

Although COP26 was promised as the most inclusive climate negotiation of all time, it ended up being the most exclusive. A third Pacific island countries did not have any delegates present due to travel restrictions, and many African countries did not have full representation due to visa issues. Overall, vaccine apartheid, visa problems and prohibitive costs prevented many delegates, journalists and members of civil society from attending, which had a disproportionate impact on the representation of countries in the South. .

Delegates who were able to attend faced constant pressure from activists on the streets of Glasgow. Two steps, Fridays of the future and the Global day of action, had a much higher attendance than expected. During the COP26 meetings, delegates from southern countries and allied organizations also kept up the pressure.

The UN’s goal is to limit global warming to 1.5 ° C, a decision made in accordance with the science of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Now, as part of the Glasgow Climate Pact, nations must commit to reducing their emissions by 45% based on 2010 levels by 2030. But according to the Climate action monitoring, current commitments put the world on the right track for global warming of 2.4 ° C.

While the announcements of the first week on methane and coal were welcome, the other fossil fuel, petroleum, must also be addressed. Regarding coal, while twenty-three countries have pledged to shut down coal, out of the five largest coal producers – China, India, the United States, Australia and Indonesia – only the Indonesia signed. Some have assumed that the United States did not sign due to the machinations of U.S. Senator Joe Manchin regarding the Rebuild Better Act currently making its way through Congress.

The Glasgow Climate Pact specifically calls for “a gradual reduction in coal and a phasing out of inefficient fossil fuel subsidies”. In a dramatic moment in the closing hours of COP26, India called for the term “phase-out” of coal to be replaced with “phase-out”.


Many countries around the world are already suffering from the impacts of climate change and have been dealing with them for at least a decade. These impacts include drought in Kenya, with 2.1 million facing famine right now the crops are failing and the animals are dying, as Elizabeth Wathuti shared on her opening day address. They also include sea level rise, which threatens the low lying islands as delegates from the Maldives, Marshall Islands and Tuvalu on several occasions. underline.

Through the UNFCCC, developing countries receive funds from developed countries for mitigation and adaptation, and the funds are supposed to be split equally between the two. Mitigation refers to actions that reduce greenhouse gas emissions, for example by switching to renewable energy. Currently, Mitigation receives about 75 percent of the funds. Adaptation, which receives the remaining 25 percent of funds, refers to actions that respond to the effects of climate change, such as sea level rise and the displacement of infrastructure or people within land.

Developing countries that produce negligible amounts of emissions but have already been disproportionately affected by climate change are more in need of adaptation funds to protect and save themselves. Thus, developing countries, in particular the G77 + China negotiating blocks and the Alliance of Small Island States, have made great efforts to increase the contribution to adaptation. A positive outcome of COP26 is that adaptation funds will be doubled from 2025.

Finally, developing countries have pushed for “loss and damage”, or unpredictable impacts of climate change, to be included in the Glasgow Climate Pact. In a first project, a loss and damage facility was to be established. The foundations have offered to contribute $ 3 billion to launch it. This facility, however, was later replaced by a “Glasgow Dialogue” to “discuss funding modalities”. Delegates from the South, especially the G77 + China and AOSIS, were fuming. They don’t want to dialogue or discuss; they need to see the developed countries take action.

While the removal of the facility for loss and damage has upset the most affected developing countries, they plan to keep the pressure on. The historical responsibility for emissions rests with developed countries. While some countries are calling these climate repairs, the United States has explicitly expressed concern that it could expose the U.S. government and businesses to liability.

With the focus on coal and natural gas (via the methane pledge), there are concerns that oil is not getting enough attention. The largest producers of oil and gas are the United States, Saudi Arabia, Russia and Canada. It is therefore also essential to monitor their progress towards reducing the use of oil.

In short, the COP26 brought movement but not enough. Activists and allied organizations are sure to continue to push for substantial change. This decade is the key. “We have exactly ninety-eight months to halve global emissions,” Aminath Shauna, Minister of the Environment of the Maldives, noted. “The difference between 1.5 and 2 degrees is a death sentence for us. “