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Countdown To COP26

Globe with Climate Change Conference 2021 text

The Council is launching ‘Countdown to COP26’ as part of its climate conversation, ‘Let’s Talk Climate Change RCT,’ aimed at getting people talking, thinking and taking action.

The UK is hosting COP26, the UN Conference of the Parties, in Glasgow in November. Leaders from 196 countries, under the UK COP Presidency, will be meeting to update their plans for reducing emissions and discuss actions to limit climate change and its effects, such as extreme weather and rising sea levels.

In recent years, Rhondda Cynon Taf has been severely affected due to adverse weather conditions, the largest being Storm Dennis which brought devastation across the County Borough in 2020.

A new report from UN scientists warns that global temperatures have risen faster since 1970 than at any point in the past 2,000 years.

The Council’s 50-day ‘Countdown to COP26’ aims to raise public awareness to the Climate crisis.

The COP26 Climate Conference is widely seen as crucial if climate change is to be brought under control. Earlier this year, as part of its Climate Change Strategy, the Council launched its new and exciting Climate Conversation ‘Let’s Talk Climate Change RCT’, asking residents and businesses for their views and thoughts about how we can shape our plans for the future, right here on our own doorstep.

Councillor Rhys Lewis, Cabinet Member for Stronger Communities, Well-being and Cultural Services, with responsibility for Climate Change, said: “The recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report on Climate Change was a code red for humanity, highlighting that human activity is changing our climate in unprecedented and sometimes irreversible ways – the time to act is now.

“The study warns of increasingly extreme heatwaves, droughts and flooding, as being experienced across Europe this year. If a global catastrophe is to be avoided, we all need to do something about it.

“Rhondda Cynon Taf is an area of vast natural beauty. It is home to many parks, country parks, and fine array of wildlife, including some rare plants and animals. It is also an area which proudly reflects its past, one which we all have a part to play in preserving.

“There are over 240,000 people living in Rhondda Cynon Taf, by taking action together, we can make a difference.”

The aim is for Rhondda Cynon Taf to become a Carbon Neutral Council by 2030 and that the County Borough will also be as near as possible to Carbon Neutral by then.

The Council’s ‘Let’s Talk Climate Change RCT’ roadshows have proved popular in local communities, with residents engaging with officers with their views and ideas.

Join our Climate Conversation

At COP26 in Glasgow, world leaders are expected to discuss future goals for tackling climate change, in an attempt to commit all the countries of the world to limit global warming to 1.5%.

Countries will be asked for their targets to reduce the amount of greenhouse gases - which add to global warming - going into the atmosphere by 2030.They will also be asked how they will achieve "net zero" - no more going into the atmosphere than is removed - by 2050.

Burning fossil fuels is a major cause of emissions so steps needed could include ending the use of coal, stopping deforestation, switching to electric vehicles and investing in renewable energy.

The 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference, also known as COP26, is the 26th United Nations Climate Change conference. It takes place in Glasgow, Scotland, on 31 October – 12 November.

Posted on 12/09/2021