‘There is no room for delay’: Fairtrade Foundation responds to speech by COP26 President Alok Sharma

Responding to today’s speech by COP26 President Alok Sharma, the Head of Policy at the Fairtrade Foundation, Tim Aldred, said:

‘Fairtrade farmers went to COP26 in hope. They returned to farms facing extreme heat, flooding and storms which threaten their lives and livelihoods. Governments have not yet agreed to emissions cuts that will restrict global heating to 1.5 degrees. Countries must go further and urgently make the deeper cuts which are needed to protect us all.

‘Fairtrade farmers – and their farming communities in low-income nations – urgently need access to climate finance to prepare for the changing climate. The promise of $100bn per annum is in reach but has not been met, and this has to be a priority for the COP26 President during 2022. It is vital that finance directly reaches smallholder farmers who grow much of the world’s food, including many products for the UK’s supermarket shelves.

‘As part of their commitments to put finance behind this just transition, promises were made in Glasgow: including a promise by the UK Government to spend £500 million to combat deforestation, and £64 million to support the Just Transition in agriculture. Again, farmers are keen to learn how and when these new promises will be delivered on the ground.

‘It is helpful that COP President Alok Sharma has set out his priorities today. The world is heating up and there is no room for delay. Fairtrade farmers need him to secure action not words from governments worldwide before the end of the UK Presidency.’