A Short(-ish) History of the UN Climate Summits

A visual history of the UN Climate Summits, including the big asks of the Glasgow COP26 summit in 2021.

Profile picture of John Lang

By John Lang


From Margaret to Madrid, we take you back to the dawn of global climate action and guide you through its checkered 30-year history. We end by looking forward to next year's critical UN climate summit in Glasgow. The delayed 2021 summit, to be hosted by the UK for the very first time, is widely regarded across science and policy as the last opportunity for the international community to lift ambition in order to deliver the temperature goals of the Paris Agreement.

If you would like to use this infographic, or any of its contents, please send John an email — he can provide it in various formats.

For more information on the UN climate summits, please visit our briefings.