The United Nations' Climate Change Conference, COP26, could be postponed or radically changed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Sky News reported on Wednesday, citing unnamed government sources.
The November summit was originally due to be held in 2020, but was postponed due to COVID-19.
Sky said two government sources suggested the Glasgow summit might have to be delayed for a second time amid signs the pandemic is worsening in parts of the world.
Sky also quoted Prime Minister Boris Johnson's office as saying that the British leader was determined to hold the summit in person. They quoted a further unnamed source as saying that there were always uncertainties, but that they had seen nothing to suggest the summit could not go ahead.
Frequently Asked Questions
A vaccine works by mimicking a natural infection. A vaccine not only induces immune response to protect people from any future COVID-19 infection, but also helps quickly build herd immunity to put an end to the pandemic. Herd immunity occurs when a sufficient percentage of a population becomes immune to a disease, making the spread of disease from person to person unlikely. The good news is that SARS-CoV-2 virus has been fairly stable, which increases the viability of a vaccine.
There are broadly four types of vaccine — one, a vaccine based on the whole virus (this could be either inactivated, or an attenuated [weakened] virus vaccine); two, a non-replicating viral vector vaccine that uses a benign virus as vector that carries the antigen of SARS-CoV; three, nucleic-acid vaccines that have genetic material like DNA and RNA of antigens like spike protein given to a person, helping human cells decode genetic material and produce the vaccine; and four, protein subunit vaccine wherein the recombinant proteins of SARS-COV-2 along with an adjuvant (booster) is given as a vaccine.
Vaccine development is a long, complex process. Unlike drugs that are given to people with a diseased, vaccines are given to healthy people and also vulnerable sections such as children, pregnant women and the elderly. So rigorous tests are compulsory. History says that the fastest time it took to develop a vaccine is five years, but it usually takes double or sometimes triple that time.
Britain is hoping to use the summit to revitalise commitment to global climate aims after a pandemic that has pushed the environment down the global list of priorities.
The summit had been seen as a way for post-Brexit Britain to forge closer relations with the United States, who under President Joe Biden have recommitted to global accord on climate change.The British government did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the Sky report.