Australia announces bid to host COP31 in 2026

Close-up of Australian energy minister Chris Bowen (safeguard mechanism)
Energy Minister Chris Bowen

With the 2022 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP27) now underway in Egypt, Energy Minister Chris Bowen has announced Australia will bid to host the COP31 gathering in 2026.

The 2022 United Nations Climate Change Conference, more commonly referred to as Conference of the Parties of the UNFCCC, or COP27, is being held as the 27th United Nations Climate Change conference, and occurs from November 6-18, 2022 in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt.

Related article: Sink or swim: Post-COP26 realities for Australia

It will take place under the presidency of Egyptian Minister of Foreign Affairs Sameh Shoukry, with more than 90 heads of state and representatives of 190 countries expected to attend.

Despite being the developed world’s top polluter, Australia intends to show its commitment to a clean energy future by hosting COP31.

“This will be an opportunity, if we win the bid, to show Australia’s capacity to help the world as a renewable energy powerhouse,” Bowen said.

“It’s an opportunity to work closely with our Pacific family, and we will seek to co-host the bid with the Pacific to help elevate the case of the Pacific for more climate action.”

Related article: COP26 targets not enough, warn Paris Agreement creators

Meanwhile, Australian coal prices have skyrocketed and Bloomberg said futures contracts suggest they’ll remain at historic highs for years to come.

“Benchmark Newcastle coal futures Friday closed at $349 a ton—more than five times higher than two years ago. Forward contracts are mostly above $260 a ton through 2027. Not a single forward contract was above $75 just two years ago,” the report stated.

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