WWF COP26 cover text assessment and reactions on Friday 12 November

Posted on 12 November 2021

Glasgow, Scotland (Friday 12 November, 09:00 GMT) - In response to the latest draft COP26 cover text assessment, Vanessa Perez-Cirera, WWF Deputy Global Lead for Climate and Energy said: 

“The revised draft has gone backwards in key areas. In the face of the climate emergency, we had considered the previous text the absolute floor and expected it to be stronger and more concrete in the crucial areas. 

“The accelerated phase-out of unabated coal power and inefficient subsidies for fossil fuels is considerably weaker than the previous text, but nevertheless it’s an important signal. We must see the phase-out of all coal and all subsidies for fossil fuels, with deadlines for delivering on that, if we are to ensure that we keep 1.5℃ within reach.

“The short-term ratcheting-up of climate pledges by 2022 that continues to be in the text is welcomed, but still not aligned to 1.5℃. This must be matched with short-term action, for example, by agreeing to phase-out the trillions being spent on subsidizing fossil fuels annually which could well serve to meet the US$100 bn which Parties failed to meet at this COP. 

“It is very disappointing to see the reference to nature-based solutions and ecosystem-based approaches removed from the text. Nature-based solutions already have a broadly accepted definition together with a robust standard. Their importance lies not only in climate change mitigation but also in their crucial contribution to social development and increasing the resilience of the most vulnerable to the impacts of the climate crisis. We urge governments to reinstate this language in the final COP decision text. It would be a missed opportunity otherwise.

“It is, however, encouraging that the new text emphasizes nature’s critical role in achieving the Paris Agreement temperature goal. The science is clear, there is no viable route to limiting global warming to 1.5℃ without nature.  It is vital that parties ensure this language remains in the final text. We also welcome the recommendation to governments to incorporate nature in their national climate action plans.”

UNFCCC Flag flies at the UN climate talks
© Mike Eames / WWF