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Broadcasters collaborate at COP26 to show the power of television to inspire climate action

26 October 2021

-         An inspiring programme of events is planned by BBC, C4, ITV, SKY and STV with BAFTA’s albert, alongside sustainability partner Natural Capital Partners.

-         Events will showcase the UK broadcasters’ radical collaboration in sustainability through albert both on and off screen, for the past decade.

-         Events will be live streamed for a wider audience.

Tuesday 26 October: The UK’s key broadcasters are hosting a series of events from COP26 in Glasgow this November. The events will showcase the collaborative work of the broadcasters over the past decade through BAFTA’s albert – the screen industry organisation for environmental sustainability which aims to reduce the environmental impacts of production and empower creatives to produce content that supports a vision for a sustainable future. The events are also being supported by Natural Capital Partners, experts in carbon neutrality and climate finance, and partners of albert’s creative offset scheme.

Carys Taylor, Director of albert said: “The screen industries are absolutely critical to enabling the transition to a sustainable future. Over the past decade, the TV industry has been collaborating to better understand the role it can play. Now, at the most critical summit on climate, we are supporting some of the biggest players in UK broadcasting to showcase their learnings and, importantly, how they intend to continue to rise to the challenge that lies ahead.”

The week-long series of events will cover topics from sport production to continuing drama, comedy to news reporting. Five of the events are taking place across BBC Scotland and STV, whilst two are part of the official COP26 programme in the Green Zone.  Each event will feature industry voices from the broadcasters as well as clips and case studies to highlight best practice. Alongside an invited audience, the events will be live streamed for free, via the BAFTA Guru YouTube page. Official COP events will be streamed via their YouTube channel.

Notable highlights from the event programme include, Telling Climate Stories Together: In conversation with the broadcaster CEOs which will bring together Stephen van Rooyen (SKY) Tim Davie, (BBC) Carolyn McCall, (ITV) Simon Pitts (STV) and Alex Mahon (C4) to discuss the crucial responsibility and unique opportunity broadcasters and streamers have to help audiences understand and navigate the climate challenges that will affect us all.

The ambition is that discussing the work happening in the UK will ignite the conversation with broadcasters globally and allow for further collaboration across the world, both on screen and behind the scenes to share best practice and inspire the industry to do even more. 

Carolyn McCall, CEO of ITV said, “The TV Industry needs to continue to leverage our unique ability to make climate action relevant and accessible for everyone. Like every sector, we need to make sure our own operations are in order, which is why ITV is committed and well on track to achieving our Net Zero targets. But more than that, we can bring this huge topic to life through the nation's best loved shows. From Soaps to Daytime, News to Entertainment and more, we can help viewers feel empowered to make a difference.”

Channel 4 CEO Alex Mahon said: “Young people have become the driving force demanding that we all change the way we live and do business so that we can save the planet for theirs and future generations. Broadcasters have a unique ability to reflect all sides of the debate, present the facts and engage with our audiences. At Channel 4, we are committed to doing our part – not only giving young people a platform but also behaving responsibly to reduce our own impact on the world we live in.”

Simon Pitts, Chief Executive of STV said: “With the world coming to STV’s home city of Glasgow next week, it’s never been more important for broadcasters to demonstrate the power of television to raise awareness and effect change. Through STV Zero we’re committed to becoming a net zero carbon business by 2030, and through the unique reach of our programming - from the soaps, to news and current affairs, to our local programming about Scotland – we want to inform and inspire our audiences to change how they live.”

Vaughan Lindsay, CEO of Natural Capital Partners, says: “We have a long history of working with broadcasters to deliver on their commitments to carbon neutrality and net zero. And we’re delighted to work with them at COP as they go one step further and use their unique strength as an industry to showcase the power of television to inform, entertain and engage on the need for climate action in this critical decade.”

Rhodri Talfan Davies, BBC Director of Nations said: “As the world comes together for the COP26 conference - right alongside our BBC Scotland HQ - we’re delighted to be offering a broad and bold range of programming to inform and inspire audiences in the UK and across the world. From our base at Pacific Quay, we’ll be hosting events discussing the role of comedy, weather and sport - all part of our commitment to engage audiences on climate issues through the content that matters most to them. Crucially, the BBC is committed to achieving Net Zero by 2030 and our approach is rigorous and underpinned by the science.”

The announcement follows on from the news that from 1 Nov for one week, Casualty, Coronation Street, Doctors, EastEnders, Emmerdale, Holby City and Hollyoaks have joined together to broadcast a ‘soap first’ by creating a series of storylines that will cover different aspects of the climate conversation and which will see some of the audience’s best loved characters pop up in another soap in a bid to raise awareness of climate change.




Notes to Editors:

Full Event programme, with links to reserve a live stream place can be found at:

To attend any events in person, please email: [email protected] – Communications Manager (please note, ticket availability for the Green zone is not within our control)

Events Programme is as follows:



Date: Monday 1st November

Time: 14:00 - 15:00 GMT

Location: STV

Brands and broadcasters have a key role to play in accelerating societal change around climate change - so how can they work together to promote sustainable consumption, making the biggest impact on audiences, with the smallest footprint?

In this session, Broadcasters will discuss their commercial initiatives for sustainability and how brands can benefit. We’ll also hear from the brands leading the charge towards a greener future and their learnings.

You are invited to join for this special event, live from COP26 in Glasgow with Danielle Kelly, (Director of Sales and Strategy at STV) and Ewan Douglas, Head of Sales and Business Development (N&R) plus other panellists to be announced



Date: Tuesday 2nd November

Time: 16:30 – 17:30 GMT

Location: COP Green zone

What is the role of factual, current affairs and news programming in telling the stories of climate change? With such a powerful platform to educate and inspire, how do broadcasters make global climate change stories relevant to audiences?

Can you report the challenges our planet faces without overwhelming or demoralising viewers? And how can broadcasters maintain impartiality and inspire positive change?

We’ll hear from a range of presenters and journalists who will share their insights and personal stories, giving testimony to the climate issues they’ve witnessed around the world.



Date: Wednesday 3rd November

Time: 11:00 - 12:00 GMT

Location: BBC Scotland

For the past decade, the UK’s key broadcasters have worked together, through albert, to tackle the carbon footprint of their productions. In recent years, the conversation has grown to include what audiences see on screen too.

Now, for the first time, Tim Davie (BBC) Carolyn McCall (ITV), Simon Pitts (STV), Alex Mahon (C4) and Stephen van Rooyen (SKY) are joining together on stage to discuss the crucial responsibility and unique opportunity broadcasters and streamers have, to help audiences understand and navigate the climate challenges that will affect us all. They'll also discuss how the industry is moving forward in its ambition to work together to achieve even more on and off screen.



Date: Wednesday 3rd November

Time: 14:00 – 15:00 GMT

Location: BBC Scotland

From extreme flooding to forest fires, the effects of climate change are seen most clearly through our weather systems – but does everyone make the link between what’s happening outside their front door and the global effect of climate change?

What’s the role of weather reporters in this space? Could weather reports be adapted to incorporate climate information? And could reporting play a role in supporting audiences with climate adaptation?



How sports broadcasting can help combat climate change

Date: Thursday 4th November

Time: 11:00 - 12:00 GMT

Location: BBC Scotland

From a World Cup final to an Olympic Opening Ceremony, sporting events have the potential to reach millions of people.

Could sport be a golden opportunity to bring people together and promote a wider understanding of climate change?

Can and should we weave authentic and impactful climate stories messaging into sports coverage? And how can sports broadcasters work with rights holders and sponsors to make sure that the climate communication message is aligned.



Can climate change ever be funny?

Date: Thursday 4th November

Time: 17:00 - 18:00 GMT

Location: BBC Scotland

What is the role of comedy in helping us to navigate climate change?

Can comedy and comedians get people talking about the issues and understanding the solutions? Does comedy help broadcasters (and scientists) reach audiences who wouldn't ordinarily choose to engage with the subject of environmental sustainability? What is the role of comedy in helping us navigate the enormous challenge of climate change?

Join our panel – including Mark Watson, Maeve Higgins and Dr Matt Winning -  for this engaging, fast paced and funny session where we will ask if laughter really is the best medicine when it comes to fixing the planet and our own climate anxiety.



Date: Saturday 6th November

Time: 16:00 - 17:00 GMT

Location: Green zone

Continuing Drama has a long and proud history of tackling social issues on screen, breaking down complicated, often divisive subjects for its audience and helping viewers to explore topics through the eyes of their favourite characters.

So can our soaps help save the planet?

What is their role in bringing the complex issues that surround sustainability to our audiences (the masses)? And how can they empower communities to understand and debate the role they can play to mitigate the effects of climate change, if they choose to?

This inspiring session will bring together producers from the UK’s most loved soaps to talk about the creative challenge they’re facing and how they’re tackling it.


BAFTA – the British Academy of Film and Television Arts - is a world-leading independent arts charity that brings the very best work in film, games and television to public attention and supports the growth of creative talent in the UK and internationally. Through its Awards ceremonies and year-round programme of learning events and initiatives – which includes workshops, masterclasses, scholarships, lectures and mentoring schemes in the UK, USA and Asia – BAFTA identifies and celebrates excellence, discovers, inspires and nurtures new talent, and enables learning and creative collaboration. For more, visit BAFTA is a registered charity (no. 216726).