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COP26 will be held in Glasgow in just a few months and the event will be heralded as a pivotal moment in our global efforts to combat climate breakdown. In the first of a series of publications in the magazine, we present the truth about what happens at the conference and how it relates to Triodos Bank’s goal of financing change and changing finances. Article originally published by Triodos Bank UK branch.

What is COP26?

It begins on November 1 this and is the 26th edition of the United Nations annual conference on climate change. COP is the acronym for Conference of the Parties, the signatories of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), a treaty of 197 agents (196 countries and the EU) agreed in 1994.

The official discussion at a COP takes place within a specially designated area, where delegates meet for formal negotiations and more informal consultations. Representatives of civil society, organizations and the media may also be present, but assistance within this area is strictly controlled. Traditionally, a wide range of public events, such as workshops, presentations, demonstrations and installations, are also held around a COP.

Why is COP26 important?

It will be one of the most important summits the UK has hosted and is described as the biggest climate event since the 2015 Paris Agreement. The last COP, held in Madrid in 2019, ended many of the big issues still unresolved. Since then, we have faced a global pandemic that has shown us the devastating effects of a lack of preparedness and the interplay between our planet, people and prosperity.

And this summer we have witnessed natural disasters around the world that are a stark reminder of the reality of climate change. However, with decisive and collaborative action, rampant global warming could still be stopped. The results of COP26 are vital to get it on track and avoid Earth-altering changes. It is also expected to act as a catalyst to drive forward collective climate action and amplify the voices of those already working on it.

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