Key outcomes of the COP26 world climate conference in Glasgow

Key outcomes of the COP26 world climate conference in Glasgow

The COP26 world climate conference has come to an end in Glasgow. In its final document, the international community agreed on a wide range of measures and declarations of intent.

Reactions to the results of the conference differ widely. Some established politicians speak of a success, while environmental activists describe the results as insufficient. "The necessary great leap in climate protection has failed," said the Federation of German Industries (BDI), suggesting that at the end of the conference, a wide gap remained between countries on climate targets. (

During COP26, the head of the International Energy Agency (IEA), Fatih Birol, stated that "all climate commitments announced so far, if fully implemented in a timely manner, will be sufficient to limit the global temperature increase to 1.8°C by 2100." (

However, the 2030 voluntary commitments currently submitted by 151 countries would mean an estimated 2.4°C temperature rise by the end of the century. China, which is responsible for about 30 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions, does not plan to reduce its emissions until 2030. Should this be the case, the 1.5-degree target can no longer be achieved. (, 11/14/21) To still reach this target, calculations show that a halving of emissions by 2030 is necessary. (COP26)

It must also be acknowledged that developed countries failed to deliver on the climate finance commitments made in the 2015 Paris Agreement. Investments of $100 billion a year from 2020 were envisaged to help poorer countries reduce emissions and cope with the impacts of climate change. This level of investment will likely not be reached for years to come.

However, an important message is that at COP26, several dozen countries committed to phasing out coal-fired power generation. Shortened operating times of coal-fired power plants reduce their profitability immensely compared to renewable energy sources. The last G20 report already stated that several countries no longer want to invest in international coal projects. The final document of the climate conference now states that the phase-out of coal-fired power generation is to be accelerated and, in addition, inefficient subsidies for fossil fuels, such as gas, are to be reduced. This was not yet the case in the Paris Agreement. (, 11/14-21)

Many countries have also announced, or already committed to, achieving climate neutrality by around mid-century (including the EU, Brazil, Australia, the USA as well as Russia). (Wikipedia)

In addition, several initiatives were newly founded or expanded at this year's climate conference; for example, an initiative for the protection of forests was already formed at the beginning of the conference, and more than 100 countries have joined it. Surprisingly, the U.S. issued a joint statement with China. The two largest CO2 emitters announced that they would formulate new greenhouse gas reduction targets for their countries by 2025, and intensify cooperation with developing countries to expand RE.

Sources:, last access 11/16/2021 at 9:45 am.

Werner Eckert (SWR): „Was der Klimagipfel erreicht hat“ (11/14-21) at, last access 11/16/21 at 2:15 pm., last access 11/16/21 at 1:10 pm., last access 11/16/21 at 1:25 pm.

„China und die USA schließen Klima-vereinbarung“ (11/10-21) at, last access 11/16/21 at 1:50 pm., last access 11/16/21 at 2.20 pm.