Comment: Graham Stuart leaves COP28 climate summit

Climate minister who was leading the UK’s negotiating team has left the COP28 climate summit early.

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By George Smeeton

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Commenting on the news that UK climate minister Graham Stuart, who was leading the UK’s negotiating team, has left the COP28 climate summit, Gareth Redmond-King, Head of International Programme at the Energy and Climate Intelligence Unit (ECIU) said: “This COP could be the last real chance to bridge the gap to keep 1.5°C alive, and yesterday’s text demonstrably was not on track to do that, adding nothing to the pledges made in week one, which the IEA say get barely a third of the way there.

“The UK has its own gap to bridge - between some domestic backward steps and its ambitious negotiating position in COP. And the weight of ministerial interventions, particularly at a crucial stage of proceedings like this, is much needed if higher levels of commitment to tackling climate change are to be secured from this COP. Other countries have already raised serious questions over the UK’s climate leadership, concerned by its actions and words since the high point of COP26.”


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George Smeeton, Head of Communications, ECIU, Tel: +44 (0)7894 571 153, email: