About the Inquiry
The ECCLR Committee agreed its approach to engaging with COP26 (the UN climate change conference taking place in Glasgow from 9-20 November 2020) on 25 February 2020. The Committee agreed an overarching focus, a list of key objectives, and a set of priorities for action and opportunities for partnership and engagement to ensure maximum impact. This will form part of a wider programme of Scottish Parliamentary engagement.
The key priorities for COP26 (UK Government) were announced recently: Adaptation & Resilience; Nature; Energy Transition; Clean Road Transport; and Finance. The Committee agreed that its principal focus is on examining how parliaments can contribute to solutions to the climate crisis and effectively hold governments to account.
The objectives for the Committees’ engagement in COP26 are to:
• Improve our scrutiny on climate change by learning from international best practice.
• Develop lasting partnerships with national and international organisations and legislatures to support climate change work over the coming decade.
• Support our operational work to scrutinise climate change work.
• Co-ordinate, plan and deliver further opportunities offered through COP26 engagements (the UK retains COP26 presidency after November, into 2021).
Programme of Engagement
The key priorities are:
Committee meeting / event with sister committees across the UK: One of the key challenges to tackling climate change in the UK is the need for better collaboration across parliaments, as the required action is cross border and covers reserved and devolved competence. The Committee is exploring opportunities in the run up to and during COP26 to bring together parliamentarians and staff from each climate change committee in the UK to establish more effective collaborative working and scrutiny.
Development of international partnerships: The Committee will seek to engage with a range of legislatures and international organisations in the run up to and during COP26. COP26 provides a unique opportunity to contribute to and support relationship building and collaboration to drive how we improve our own scrutiny and law-making on these issues, particularly in the context of the climate emergency. Specifically, the Committee will focus engagement with legislatures of the Arctic Circle, Nordic Council, and global South.
Education and Schools: Building on the Committee’s work with children and young people, the Committee will seek to work with the Parliamentary education service in supporting pupil learning (through arranged visits, workshops, or events at local schools during COP).
Parliamentary engagement: Members will also engage with Parliamentary events including:
• Chairing and participating in SPICe / Futures Forum Seminar Series on the Ecological and Climate Crisis;
• Engaging with parliamentary authorities and other committees in the emerging COP26 events programme.
The Committee sent letters to its sister committees across the UK about collaboration ahead of and during COP26. Read the letters and the responses:
Letters sent on 6 March 2020: