That includes the release of greenhouse gases from the production of steel, cement, glass and plastics; from a climate change perspective these emissions are just as damaging as those from the power and transport sectors. Chemistry is vital to this transition and our programme of events in the run up to COP26 showed how waste rubber and hydrogen can be used to produce steel and how carbon dioxide can be captured in building materials and plastics.
We also welcome the progress made by the UK COP Presidency in parallel to main negotiations, with international agreements on zero emissions vehicles and green shipping routes. The transport sector needs alternatives to fossil fuels and chemical scientists working on batteries, hydrogen and alternative fuels will be essential to phasing out internal combustion engines and the toxic pollutants they emit.
Participating in COP26 also reminds civil society organisations and businesses of the important contribution they can make. The leadership positions that we adopt will encourage the national delegations to be more ambitious as they revise their pledges during 2022, but also meaningfully contribute to reducing emissions. We will continue to deliver our manifesto of actions, reducing our own carbon footprint as part of the UN Race To Zero, and maximising our influence within the chemical science community and through the Pledge to Net Zero and Professional Bodies Climate Action Charter.
As with the conclusion of any COP, the pledges and plans made are only as good as the changes they deliver in practice. The Glasgow Climate Pact has evidently increased ambition and co-ordination – but we must all keep the pressure on our political and business leaders and work to realise a just transition to a zero emissions society.