COP26 Negotiators Turn to Plan B as Climate Pledges Fall Short

GLASGOW—After a week of climate talks here at the COP26 summit, negotiators are grappling with a fundamental math problem: The commitments governments have collectively made to slash greenhouse gas emissions don’t add up to what scientists think is needed to avoid the most destructive effects of global warming.

Addressing that shortcoming is one of the main tasks of the summit’s second week. Negotiators from key governments, including the U.S. and the European Union, are no longer banking on a few big developing countries to come up with deeper cuts during the summit itself, according to officials. Instead, they plan to spend the rest of the conference negotiating how to push governments to make new, more ambitious pledges in the near future.

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