The final day of COP26 for those not involved in negotiations, Thursday’s theme was Cities, Regions and Built Environment. The draft documents for the final texts were nearly complete and people were attentive to whether agreements and negotiations would lead towards 1.5oC global warming, especially after the report earlier stating current plans would lead to 2.4oC.
The UK Green Building Council has revealed its Whole Life Carbon Roadmap, a tool that will help businesses in the building sector measure and cut carbon from their projects, whether it be the materials, methods or demolition. This roadmap calls for policymakers to take action and aid them in achieving the goal of cutting annual emissions from 180mt of CO2 and equivalents in 2018 to below 20mt of CO2 by 2050.
The Urban Climate Action Programme has been launched by the UK government, which aims to provide £27.5 million to at least 15 cities in developing countries over the course of three years. Such cities that will get funding include Mexico City, Lima, Jakarta, Johannesburg and Bogota. Germany has shown support towards this initiative after its launch, which may lead to additional funding in the future. The funding given to these cities is to be used for decarbonisation of energy production and public transport, sustainable waste management and improved climate risk assessments.
Race to Zero, a campaign seeking to mobilise regions, cities, businesses and investors towards the goal of net-zero, Race to Resilience similarly mobilises these groups towards climate resilience. As of November 11th, it has been confirmed that 1,049 cities and local governments have signed into Race to Zero, representing upwards of 722 million people. 109 regions and cities have also joined Race to Resilience, including India’s largest state in terms of monetary value, Maharashtra.
An Alliance has been formed by Denmark and Costa Rica, demanding nations set end dates for the licensing of oil and gas and for plans to be put in place to phase out capacity that already exists. Countries involved in the Alliance include Sweden, Greenland, Wales, New Zealand, France and Quebec. However, many were critical of the fact the highest producers were not a part of this, such as the UK, US, Russia and Canada, whilst countries that didn’t produce much had signed up. Costa Rica’s environment minister, Andrea Meza stated, “This is just the starting point, with few countries – maybe not the big oil producers, but those who have the courage to do something.”