Labour leader Keir Starmer said that Boris Johnson’s “guileless boosterism” served to “embolden the big emitters” during a COP26 statement in the House of Commons.

He was speaking after the prime minister had lauded the agreements reached at the climate conference, saying: “The warming is still excessive, but it’s closer than we have ever been to the relative safety of 1.5 degrees.”

But Starmer, despite praising COP26 president Alok Sharma, hit out at Johnson, saying: “Only someone who thinks that promises are meaningless could now argue that an agreement to phase down coal is the same as an agreement to phase it out.”