British Prime Minister Boris Johnson told schoolchildren at an event in Downing Street on Monday that he was “very worried” the COP26 summit would not be a success.
The UN Climate Change Conference kicks off in Glasgow from Sunday.
Johnson said: “We need as many people as possible to go to net zero so that they are not producing too much carbon dioxide by the middle of the century.
“Now, I think it can be done. It’s going to be very, very tough, this summit. And I’m very worried, because it might go wrong and we might not get the agreements that we need. It’s touch and go.”
“If you look at what the UK has done, we’ve cut our own C02 emissions massively, we’ve cut coal emissions massively,” he said.
Johnson also singled out Coca-Cola for criticism, saying it was one of 12 corporations “producing the overwhelming bulk of the world’s plastics.”
He said: “There are about 12 companies at the moment, 12 big corporations, that are producing the overwhelming bulk of the world’s plastics.
“Big famous drinks companies that you may know but I won’t name. I don’t know why not, but I won’t name them.
“Coca-Cola, for instance, and others, which are responsible for producing huge quantities of plastic, and we’ve got to move away from that and we’ve got to find other ways of packaging and selling our stuff.”
Johnson also praised Australia for pledging to hit net zero by 2050, saying: “That was actually very difficult for Australia because Australia’s very heavily dependent on coal, on lots of carbon-producing industries and they’ve done a heroic thing, the Australians, in getting to that commitment.”
He added that there would be a lot of “peer pressure at the summit,” but nevertheless it was “very, very far from clear that we will get the progress that we need.”
COP26 suffered a double-blow last week when Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin announced that they would not be attending the summit in person.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel announced on Monday that she would attend the conference in Glasgow.