In terms of what it means for the planet, it’s not hyperbole to say that COP26 is far and away the largest and most important business event ever to come to the UK. 

But what does it mean to host city Glasgow to take on and deliver the ultimate global business event? Here, in their own words, are the people of Glasgow and of COP26… 

Aileen Crawford, head of tourism and conventions, Glasgow Life: “Prior to COP26 coming to Glasgow, low carbon and energy conferences were the third most popular after medical and engineering. So for many years Glasgow has been a world class host to energy related meetings. And the fact that we are the host city for COP26 means that we can grow and expand our reputation and profile to attract more prestigious conferences in the energy field to our city.” 

Cynthia Tjipuka, COP26 volunteer: “The legacy of COP26 will be that it will enable the city to build upon the efforts made to climate change. This can be done through education, training, volunteering, and I also think that we need to capitalise on hosting these events. The COP26 attendees will take away the fact that Glasgow is full of culture, diversity, history, as well as the friendly people that lives in the city at large. And we say People Make Glasgow, and with COP26, People Make Glasgow greener.” 

Dawn Lauder, head of international conferences, SEC: “The legacy for me is the younger generation and the fact that our school children are doing projects on climate change and on COP26. My little girl is in primary two and she’s coming here and talking to me about COP and I think encouraging our younger generation to engage with climate change is so very important to solving the problem. And for me, it’ll be lovely to tell her when she’s a bit older that mummy was a little bit involved.” 

Giovanna Eusebi, owner, Eusebi Deli: “Glasgow is a city that wears its heart on its sleeve, and I think that no matter where you go in Glasgow, you get the warmest welcome. It’s a gutsy city and it’s a gallus city. If you don’t know that word, you’ll feel it when you come here.” 

Kevin McEntee, taxi driver, Glasgow Taxis: “I think it’s a great honour for Glasgow to hold such a large event. As far as I’m concerned as a taxi driver, it’s a great opportunity for me to show off my city, and hopefully the delegates will enjoy what they see and go back with fond memories.” 

Michael Cross, SEC event lead – COP26: “For me, for COP26 coming to Glasgow and being hosted at the SEC, it’s an absolute privilege and a huge opportunity. It’s the largest international summit we’ve hosted in the UK and certainly the largest event that I have ever worked on. The scale and duration of the event being here is exceptional, and I think that that is really something that we aspire to in terms of delivering world class events.” 

Rachel Sandison, vice principal, University of Glasgow: “COP26 is not just two weeks in November. At the University of Glasgow, we’re really committed to the legacy of COP26 for our university community, for the city for the country and in fact for the world. It’s imperative that we partner to share ideas, research and action to help build awareness within our communities and to deliver future commitments. I really hope that delegates coming to the city for COP26 find Glasgow ambitious, innovative and diverse as a city, and also a city where climate change is at the forefront of minds. I also really hope that people find Glasgow the friendly and welcoming city that we know it is, and they leave really believing that People Make Glasgow.” 

Simon Dunnell, head of major events, Identity: “There’s such a wealth and breadth of experience within the people, within the companies, within Glasgow, that we can come here knowing that we can deliver a world class, technically complex event so easily. As the saying says, People Make Glasgow, and I think the attendees will find Glaswegians very friendly, very welcoming, very proud of their city, very proud of their history, and also very forward facing, very excited about the future, and very committed to the COP26 projects.” 

Emma, Glasgow schoolchild: “I think COP26 is important because I think it’s a chance for all countries to stop the damage that humans have done to the earth. I think the world leaders that are coming to Glasgow will think Glasgow is a beautiful city, and they are people who are trying to make the world better for us to live in.”

Source: M&IT Magazine