COP26: Cities, Regions and Built Environment Day

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Welcome to the ninth installment of our daily COP26 updates: a digest of what’s on the agenda each day and a review of yesterday’s events.

Along with the daily schedule of events, today and tomorrow the negotiating teams of the country parties will be busy discussing and revising the draft climate agreement, which was released by the UK Presidency early yesterday morning. The draft agreement includes all the draft negotiating texts submitted and approved over the past week and the aim is for the text to be approved before the formal work of COP26 is completed tomorrow.

A look back at yesterday’s events

Wednesday’s agenda at COP26 was on transport. Transport Day brought together leaders from across the sector with the ambition to accelerate the transition to 100% zero-emission vehicles. Transport Day also aimed to galvanize action to decarbonise the most difficult modes of transport to reduce: aviation and maritime transport. Highlights included:

  • 30 countries have agreed to work together to make zero emission vehicles the new standard by making them accessible, affordable and sustainable in all regions by 2030 or earlier.
  • A number of emerging markets agree to accelerate the transition to zero emission vehicles in their markets (notably India, Rwanda and Kenya).
  • A broad coalition of players from different countries – automakers (including General Motors, Ford, Mercedes, BYD, Volvo and Jaguar Land Rover), cities, states and regions, corporate fleet operators and investors – have jointly expressed their resolve for all new car and van sales will be zero emissions by 2040 globally and by 2035 in major markets.
  • A new World Bank trust fund has been launched that will mobilize $ 200 million over the next 10 years to decarbonize road transport in emerging markets and developing economies.
  • The Zero Emission Vehicle Transition Council (ZEVTC) has announced that it will launch its first annual action plan, which defines areas for sustained international cooperation to accelerate the transition to zero-emission vehicles in 2022. The United States joined the UK as co-chair. of the ZEVTC.
  • 18 States from around the world, accounting for over 40% of global aviation emissions, have committed to working together to achieve an ambitious new goal of decarbonising aviation through the International Civil Aviation Organization , as part of a new international coalition of aviation climate ambition. Members include France, United Kingdom, United States, Japan and Korea.
  • 19 governments have indicated their intention to support the establishment of “green maritime corridors”, which are zero-emission shipping routes between two ports. This will involve the deployment of zero emission vessel technologies and the establishment of alternative fuels and charging infrastructure in ports to enable zero emission navigation on key routes around the world.
  • The UK has made a commitment to move towards clean trucks by committing to end the sale of most new diesel trucks between 2035 and 2040. The sale of heavy goods vehicles will then be banned in the UK from here 2040.
  • Away from transport-related developments last night the United States and China, which are the world’s two biggest emitters of carbon dioxide, made an unexpected joint statement on strengthening climate action in the 2020s The announcement included measures agreed between the two countries on a range of issues, including methane emissions, forest protection and phasing out coal.

On the program today

Today’s COP26 events will focus on cities, regions and the built environment. The events will bring together national, regional and municipal leaders, alongside the private sector, to deliver deep collaboration that can accelerate climate action over the next decade. Key events will include:

  • Building a Better World Together: Accelerating Deep Collaboration for Built Environment Climate Action – In order to achieve the objectives of the Paris Agreement, there is a clear need for national and subnational governments, as well as the private sector, to work together. This event will bring together national governments, cities, regions and the private sector to establish the necessary collaboration.
  • Climate leadership from subnational governments in the UK and beyond – This event will highlight the importance for states and subnational regions to work together to set and achieve global climate goals. The event will feature the Under2 Coalition High Ambition to Keep Warming Below 1.5C, and feature key coalition members such as Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
  • Race to a better world – High-level United Nations climate champions, alongside Secretary General António Guterres, will set the plan for the next five years for non-state actors to move from ambition to implementation.
  • Ministers and mayors on buildings as a critical climate solution – Panelists will discuss action on the built environment at national and local levels, the need for collaboration and the need for government to provide an enabling environment along the value chain. The event will also feature local governments as ‘challengers’ who can bridge the political divide.


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