Cop26 must not be a ‘greenwash’ summit, says Miliband

Cop26 must not become a “greenwash” summit and should deliver real action to limit global warming, Ed Miliband has said.

Labour’s shadow energy secretary also said Alok Sharma, the MP who is serving as the president of the climate change conference, is being undermined by his colleagues in the UK Government.

Mr Miliband spoke at the premiere of The Green Planet, a new television series by Sir David Attenborough.

The premiere was held in Glasgow on Sunday evening in the Cop26 summit’s Green Zone.

Mr Miliband told the PA news agency: “We know what the task is, this decade – to halve global emissions.

“Now Glasgow may not get all the way there but we have to get as far as we possibly can.

“And that’s going to require tough conversations with some leaders who are not doing enough.

“The experts tell us no G20 country is doing enough, so everybody’s got to step up.”

He continued: “We don’t want a greenwash summit, we don’t want a climate delay summit, we want a climate delivery summit.”

Cop26 – Glasgow
Mr Miliband said Alok Sharma was being undermined by his colleagues (Christopher Furlong/PA)

The former Labour leader said policies like the cut in air passenger duty, which was announced in the Chancellor’s latest Budget, could undermine the UK Government’s message on climate action.

“I think there has been a problem, which is that while Alok Sharma the Cop president-designate has been doing a good job, he’s been undermined by lots of his colleagues doing the opposite to climate action,” he said.

“Whether it’s cutting air passenger duty for domestic flights, or the Cambo oil field or other things.

“What we need from the British government this week is not hot air, we need consistent leadership.”