The United Kingdom and Italy have today agreed to present a proposal for the UK to assume the Presidency of the 26th Conference of the Parties (COP) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in partnership with Italy. Building on previous proposals, the UK offers to host the COP and Italy the pre-COP event. The UK and Italy have a proven track-record of working together to champion the need for urgent climate action globally and have both played a key role in shaping ambitious European Union commitments to meet the Paris Agreement.
Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt said:
Today through great joint diplomacy we have agreed a bid for a UK COP26 Presidency in partnership with our friends in Italy. Together, through our continued commitment to work across Europe and internationally, we will build a better world for our children.
The Italian Minister for the Environment, Land and Sea Protection, Sergio Costa, said:
This partnership between Italy and the UK sends a strong signal of determined and informed cooperation on climate change, which is a theme that requires a change of paradigm and which will dominate our agenda and that of future generations.
The United Kingdom and Italy are at the forefront of driving ambitious climate action.
Both countries have played a key role in shaping ambitious European Union commitments and are active members of the High Ambition Coalition, most recently standing together in support for the Statement on Stepping Up for Climate Ambition at COP24.
In the spirit of this co-operation, and building on our existing relationship, the United Kingdom and Italy are presenting a proposal for the UK to assume the Presidency of the 26th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in partnership with Italy.
Within the Pre-COP, Italy will host preparatory events and a significant ‘youth event’, in recognition of the disproportionate impact that climate change will have on young people.
The partnership will be unwavering in its commitment to encouraging the highest possible ambition through COP26, as well as its focus on promoting tangible action that brings to life the transformational change required to unleash the full potential of the Paris Agreement.
This partnership will form the cornerstone of a wider strategic partnership on tackling climate change and delivering ambitious climate action via COP26 between Italy and the UK, running through the UN Climate Action Summit this September, COP25, and the concurrent UK G7 Presidency and Italian G20 Presidency in 2021.