- Sputnik International, 1920, 04.11.2021
COP26 Climate Summit
The UN Climate Change Conference in Glasgow, Scotland is being held from 31 October - 12 November, gathering world leaders from around 200 countries. Politicians are set to craft a strategy on reaching a net-zero emissions level by 2050 and to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius.

Rubbish Piles Up in Rat-Plagued Glasgow as Refuse Strike Hits During COP26

© Photo : Charlie Hamilton James / Wildlife Photographer of the YearСнимок The rat pack, Charlie Hamilton James, Urban Wildlife, 2019 Wildlife Photographer of the Year
Снимок The rat pack, Charlie Hamilton James, Urban Wildlife, 2019 Wildlife Photographer of the Year - Sputnik International, 1920, 02.11.2021
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Last week Glasgow City Council leader Susan Aitken, a member of the separatist Scottish National Party, was ridiculed after she blamed the late British PM Margaret Thatcher for city's infestation of over a million rats.
Rubbish has been piling up in the now-rat-infested Scottish city of Glasgow, amid a strike by refuse workers that began with the start of the COP26 UN global warming and climate change conference.
Members of the GMB trade union walked out at midnight on Sunday, after attempts to resolve its disputes with the Glasgow City Council had failed.
The union's grievances include a "discriminatory" pay system and ongoing equal pay "liabilities" as well as chronic problems it blames on years of cuts by the Scottish National Party (SNP)-led council.
GMB also slammed the council's willingness to use labour laws torestrict member rights to strike, after an unsuccessful last-minute court bid to rule the strike unlawful.
The union also claimed that the council shut down negotiations before the former had a chance to ballot its members on a pay offer tabled by the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities (COSLA).
Spirits are high among the strikers, with one picket line recorded dancing the conga. Green activists in town for the summit of world leaders also turned up to support the strikers.
A local community support group, No1Seems2Care, supported the strike on Monday evening by symbolically dumping items of rubbish on the City Chamber's doorstep.
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Meanwhile, Glasgow Council leader Susan Aitken attempted to walk back her public comments last week, in which she blamed the late Conservative UK Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher — who left office in 1990 well before her death in 2013 — for the plague of over a million rats, one for every man, woman, and child in Scotland's largest city.
In recent months, several cities refuse workers have had to be treated after being attacked by the vermin as they cleared up rubbish.
Aitken had also downplayed the infestation in the "filthy" city as normal, saying: "all cities have rats."

Climate Conference Chaos

The refuse strike is not the only fly in the ointment at the climate change conference.
A threatened strike by rail union RMT was averted on the eve of the conference after ScotRail — due to be taken over by the SNP-devolved government in March 2021 — agreed to an interim pay deal that kicked the can of the pay dispute down the road to next year.
Monday trains set to carry delegates and protesters from London to Glasgow were cancelled after gale-force winds blew trees onto the track.
On Tuesday morning it took many attendees an hour just to enter the conference centre.
Several important world leaders, including Russian President Vladimir Putin, Chinese President Xi Jinping, Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro and South African President Cyril Ramaphosa, did not attend. US President Joe Biden, after hailing his country's return to the Paris Accords of the 2015 COP21 summit, is claimed by some to have nodded off during the opening proceedings.
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