FM calls for global climate action at TED

Smaller countries’ actions crucial to tackling climate emergency.

The First Minister has called for immediate, ambitious action from smaller countries as part of the international response to the climate emergency as the pivotal COP26 conference in Glasgow approaches.

Speaking at the TED international Countdown Summit in Edinburgh, the First Minister pointed to Scotland’s role as a powerhouse of the industrial revolution and more recent technological feats – including the world’s largest floating windfarm, off Aberdeen, and the world’s most powerful wave power turbine, being tested in the Pentland Firth - as a demonstration of how smaller countries can provide climate leadership.

During the speech, she also highlighted Scotland’s world-leading emissions reduction legislation and emphasised the need to ensure a just transition that helps prevent countries who may not have the means to respond or adapt being hit hardest by its effects.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said:

“Scotland, this small country, has decarbonised faster than any G20 country. We have just become the first nation in the world that is not an independent nation to publish an indicative nationally defined contribution – showing how we will meet the objectives of the Paris agreement, and we pledge to cut emissions by three quarters by 2030, and to be net zero by 2045.

“It is often states and regions and small nations that can step in when the bigger countries fail to act - and if we raise our ambition, and if we follow that through with action, then we can spur the bigger countries to go further - and faster, too.

“It’s not enough to cut our own emissions, although that is vital. We have to make sure that we are helping those who have done the least to cause climate change to do so too, and with the spirit of justice and fairness absolutely at the heart of that. Countries of all shapes and sizes must step up to this challenge.”



TED Countdown Summit: First Minister's speech – 13 October 2021

Scotland published its indicative Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) on 23 July 100 Days until COP26 - (


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