King Charles is to attend the opening ceremony of the Cop28 climate summit in the United Arab Emirates, one year after he was advised by Liz Truss’s government not to attend the Cop27 summit in Egypt.
Charles will deliver the opening address at the world climate action summit, a gathering of global leaders at the start of Cop28, in his first major speech on the climate crisis since becoming monarch.
Under Liz Truss’s premiership, the king agreed to a request not to attend last year’s summit after Downing Street said it was not the right occasion so soon after his accession, though reports at the time suggested he had been disappointed not to go.
Instead, he hosted a pre-summit reception at Buckingham Palace for leading experts.
This year, Charles has been given the green light by Downing Street after being invited by the UAE’s president, Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, and will attend at the request of the UK government from 30 November to 1 December.
Buckingham Palace said: “The king will deliver an opening address at the summit, hosted by the president of the UAE, in Dubai. While in the UAE, the king will take the opportunity to have meetings with regional leaders, ahead of Cop28.”
While there, he will attend a reception to launch the inaugural Cop28 business and philanthropy climate forum, a two-day event running in parallel with the world climate action summit, being hosted by the Cop28 presidency in strategic partnership with the Sustainable Markets Initiative (SMI), which the king founded while Prince of Wales.
The king, as Prince of Wales, previously delivered the opening address at the opening ceremony of Cop26 in Glasgow in 2021, where he called on world leaders to adopt a “warlike footing” to tackle the climate crisis. At Cop21 in Paris in 2015, he called for a “vast military-style campaign” to fight climate breakdown, urging world leaders to commit “trillions, not billions, of dollars”. In a video address to the 2021 conference, the late queen hailed Charles’s work on the environment.