In November this year the UK will host the United Nations Climate Change Conference – Conference of the Parties 26 (COP26). The Executive Board of Commonwealth Chemistry recognises the urgency for action on climate change and the role of chemistry in tackling related issues.  While we acknowledge that climate change affects the whole planet, Commonwealth nations are among those most affected.

  • 32 of the 54 Commonwealth states are defined as small states;
  • Many of us are from small island states, low-lying coastal states, and least-developed countries – those states that face the greatest threat from global climate change;
  • For some Commonwealth states climate change represents an existential threat.

We therefore call for governments of all nations to act urgently on four points:

  • Ensure scientific evidence sits at the heart of strategies to tackle climate change and achieve net zero greenhouse gas emissions. 
  • Support international science, from discovery to applications, to share knowledge and build capacity particularly in deep decarbonisation of energy and materials. 
  • Participate fully in the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) process and establish a fair path towards stabilising the climate at 1.5°C above pre-industrial temperatures, and well below 2°C, and securing finance for a global energy transition. 
  • Engage with Commonwealth Chemistry and its member societies in their programme of activity during the year of COP26. 

We also offer our support to help address the issues.

As representatives of Commonwealth Chemistry, we think this is important to speak as one on this issue. Therefore the Commonwealth Chemistry Executive Board endorsed this statement at its meeting on 5th May 2021.  We encourage Commonwealth Chemistry members to use this statement within their own nations and in international dialogue in ways they see fit.