Prime minister Boris Johnson hopes to agree on a set of ambitious objectives to help limit global warming - despite admitting it was “touch and go” whether key goals could be met.
The event is seen as the most important UN climate meeting since Paris in 2015, when nations agreed to the goal of keeping global temperatures at 1.5C above pre-industrial levels by the end of the century.
However, the latest analysis shows that countries are still far away from that goal. According to the UN, global emissions will increase by 16 per cent by 2030 unless countries across the world implement drastic environmental policies.
The event kicked off on Sunday October 31 and will last until November 12.
It was preceded by the G20 meeting of world leaders in Milan on Saturday 30 and Sunday 31, which featured climate discussions.
Prior to the formal beginning of the conference, a number of preparatory meetings were held among the negotiating groups - including the Least developed countries (LDC), African Group of Negotiators (AGN) and Small Island Developing States (SIDS).
Each day of COP26 will focus on a different theme, beginning with finance, energy and then youth and public empowerment, throughout the two-week event. We catalogue the day’s events below.
Sunday 31 October
The conference will begin with the procedural opening of negotiations.
Monday and Tuesday 1-2 November
The World Leaders’ Summit will begin, a two-day event which will include statements on the need to tackle climate change from various heads of state.
Government leaders will be invited to put forward their proposals on limiting carbon emissions and keeping the 1.5C warming target within reach.
Wednesday 3 November
Discussions will be held focusing on the financial and economic aspects of climate policy.
The day will be taken up by an event titled ‘Finance: Mobilising public and private finance flows at scale for mitigation and adaptation.’
Mark Carney, UN Special Envoy and the Prime Minister’s Finance Advisor for COP26, will lead one of the morning’s event.
Thursday 4 November
‘Energy: Accelerating the global transition to clean energy’ will be the main event.
Policy proposals on the agenda will examine the transition away from coal power, scaling up clean power and increasing energy efficiency, according to the COP26 website.
Friday 5 November
Talks will focus on youth engagement in climate issues, as part of the ‘Youth and public empowerment’ event.
Saturday 6 November
The day’s event will be ‘Nature: Ensuring the importance of nature and sustainable land use are part of global action on climate change and a clean, green recovery’.
Sunday 7 November
Monday 8 November
The day’s event will be ‘Adaptation, loss and damage: Delivering the practical solutions solutions needed to adapt to climate impact and address loss and damage’.
Tuesday 9 November
There will be two important events.
The first will be ‘Gender: Progressing gender equality and the full and meaningful participation of women and girls in climate action’.
The second will be ‘Science and innovation: Demonstrating that research and technology can deliver climate solutions to meet, and accelerate, increased ambition’.
Wednesday 10 November
The day’s event will be ‘Transport: Driving the global transition to zero emission transport’.
Thursday 11 November
The day’s main event will be ‘Cities, Regions and Built Environment: Advancing action in the places we live, from communities, through to cities and regions’.
Friday 12 November
The negotiations will close.