Russian President Vladimir Putin will not attend the Cop26 climate change summit in Glasgow later this month, the Kremlin has confirmed.
Putin’s decision to not attend is a major blow to Boris Johnson and will spark further fears that the ambitions of the US and UK governments at the summit will go unfulfilled.
Putin’s no-show at the summit comes after it was confirmed this month that Chinese Premier Xi Jinping also will not attend.
Johnson’s government has called the summit “humanity’s last chance” to broker a global agreement to keep temperature rises from exceeding 1.5 degrees celsius.
Johnson said yesterday at London’s Global Investment Summit that the goal of Cop26 is to “keep 1.5 alive”.
This goal will be impossible if China, the world’s largest Co2 emitter, does not sign up to an agreement at the United Nations summit.
There have also been doubts about the willingness of some of the globe’s other high emitters – notably Russia, India and Brazil – to sign up to new climate goals.
US President Joe Biden has been deeply committed to the summit, with his climate change envoy John Kerry travelling the globe to drum up support.
“Cop was always going to be extremely tough,” Johnson told Bloomberg yesterday.
“We’re going to need to see some real action from the participants.”