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PM to pack his bags for Glasgow climate meeting

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Prime Minister Scott Morrison will attend a major climate change conference in Glasgow after coming under intense international and domestic pressure to attend the crucial talks.

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On Friday, he committed to travelling to the United Kingdom for the COP26 conference which starts on October 31.

“It is an important event,” he told reporters at Kirribilli House on Friday.

“The government will be finalising its position for me to take to the summit prior to my departure over the next fortnight.”

Australia is being urged to boost its emissions reduction goal at the international summit by signing up to a net-zero-by-2050 target.

But the fate of that decision rests with the Nationals as the junior coalition partner prepares to discuss cabinet’s energy plan on Sunday.

Mr Morrison’s announcement came after the Queen – who will attend COP26 – appeared to suggest she was irritated by a lack of action in tackling the climate crisis.

Mobile phone footage emerged of her saying she still didn’t know which world leaders would attend the conference.

Earlier in the week, Prince Charles urged Morrison and other world leaders to attend, calling it the “last chance saloon” to save the planet.

Labor has also demanded the prime minister travel to Scotland for the meeting, while influential billionaire Andrew “Twiggy” Forrest this week dialled up pressure on climate change.

In the video, the Queen appeared to suggest she is irritated by a lack of action in tackling the climate crisis.

Her remarks emerged in clips of a conversation filmed on a phone camera during a trip to Cardiff for the opening of the Welsh Senedd.

Two video clips, parts of which are inaudible, show the Queen chatting with the Duchess of Cornwall and Elin Jones, the parliament’s presiding officer.

At one point she appears to be talking about the COP26 climate conference, and can be heard saying she does not know who is coming to the event which will begin in Glasgow at the end of this month.

In the clip, she said: “I’ve been hearing all about COP … I still don’t know who’s coming.”

In a separate clip, the Queen appears to say it is “irritating” when “they talk, but they don’t do”.

Ms Jones then appears to reference the Duke of Cambridge in her replying, saying she had been watching him “on television this morning saying there’s no point going into space, we need to save the earth”.

William had earlier warned the COP26 summit against “clever speak, clever words but not enough action”.

He said: “I think for COP to communicate very clearly and very honestly what the problems are and what the solutions are going to be, is critical.

“We can’t have more clever speak, clever words but not enough action.”

William has criticised the space race, saying the world’s greatest minds need to focus on trying to fix their own planet instead.

His comments, in an interview with BBC Newscast on BBC Sounds, were aired the day after Star Trek’s William Shatner made history by becoming the oldest person in space.

The 90-year-old actor, known for his role as Captain James T Kirk, lifted off from the Texas desert on Wednesday in a rocket built by Amazon founder Jeff Bezos’ space travel company Blue Origin.

 

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