The Climate Strikes Back: Fallen Tree Cancels Train Services to COP26 Summit

BRAINTREE, ENGLAND - JULY 13: Conservative leadership contender Boris Johnson looks at a tree during a photo opportunity at King and Co. Tree Nursery on July 13, 2019 in Braintree, England. The race between Boris Johnson and Jeremy Hunt to find the next leader of the Conservative Party and Prime …
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If a tree falls on the tracks, does it cancel a climate conference?

Thousands of travellers were left asking themselves this question, as a fallen tree derailed train services from London to Glasgow, the site of the United Nations COP26 climate change summit.

Ironically, those who opted to travel to Glasgow by the more environmentally-friendly method — rather than flying — have been left stranded with a tree falling on the overhead electric cables between Rugby and Milton Keynes on the West Coast Main Line, according to The Telegraph.

The train company which operates the line, and thus most services between the British capital and Glasgow, Avanti West Coast, said that disruptions are to be expected throughout the day.

“Please DO NOT travel,” the train company said per The Telegraph, explaining: “Due to an object being caught on the overhead electric wires between Rugby and Milton Keynes Central all lines are blocked.

“Train services running through these stations may be cancelled or delayed. Customers are advised not to attempt to travel for the remainder of the day.”

The disruption came just hours after the left-wing Labour Party’s Shadow Energy Secretary, Ed Miliband, called for the elimination of most domestic flights within Britain to reduce carbon emissions.

Speaking on the BBC’s Andrew Marr programme, Milliband said that domestic flights should be limited “as much as possibly can”, adding: “We’ve got to give people alternatives… Fairness and giving people alternatives is an absolutely key part of making this transition happen.”

Amid heavy winds and rainfall on Sunday, disruptions to train services were seen throughout the country, with South Western Railway saying that services would be “severely disrupted” until 5 pm due to trees collapsing on lines in eight different locations.

The train disruptions are the latest in a long line of embarrassing incidents for Prime Minster Boris Johnson, who is attempting to marshal a grand Build Back Better bargain on the climate this week.

Any chances of the meeting actually achieving such a goal may have been derailed from the outset, however, with Communist China’s Xi Jinping and Russia’s Vladimir Putin declining to travel to Glasgow.

Follow Kurt Zindulka on Twitter here @KurtZindulka

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