The £100million policing operation at Cop26 represents the biggest deployment of officers on record in the UK – larger than the London Olympics and the recent G7 summit in Cornwall.
An average of 10,000 officers from Police Scotland and forces around Britain will be on duty every day for three weeks, with the UK Government picking up the bill.
A ring of steel is being erected around the conference site on the north bank of the River Clyde as security forces brace for threats to the heads of state in attendance and potential disruption from climate change protesters.
And police will even deploy specially trained officers equipped with high-tech devices that can bring down rogue drones using electromagnetic pulses.
Police expect to make 300 arrests a day but sources warned if the number gets much higher, custody suites will be overwhelmed.
Meanwhile, a report revealed last week almost half of Scotland’s police officers have experienced high levels of fatigue in the previous fortnight, which does not bode well for a three-week conference during which many will have to work 12-hour shifts.
Scotland’s lawyers have also vowed to boycott weekend custody courts amid an ongoing row over legal aid cuts. This means the justice system could be plunged into chaos by the sheer number of people arrested at the event.
American President Joe Biden is among more than 100 world leaders expected to attend the event.
The summit will also feature a climate rally in Glasgow that could be attended by more than 150,000 people.
Tens of thousands of delegates from 193 member states and four observer states will attend the summit, with the SEC conference venue designated a ‘blue zone’ – meaning it will be policed by the UN, with Scottish police only allowed to enter if there is a threat to life.
A convoy of police motorbikes and vehicles was seen leaving the Scottish Event Campus – which will host the Cop26 summit in Glasgow – via a security gate
The summit will also feature a climate rally in Glasgow that could be attended by more than 150,000 people (Pictured: Previous climate rally in London in 2019)
Police officers in high-vis jackets and black face coverings were seen patrolling the streets around the venue
Security will be of the utmost concern as leaders from around the world – including US President Joe Biden and German president Angela Merkel – are set to descend on the city (Pictured: Police patrol streets around venue)
Security forces have a huge operation on their hands as more than 30,000 delegates and world leaders are set to attend the summit (Pictured: Convoy leaving venue)
Several police motorbikes exit the Cop26 summit venue in Glasgow amid typically rainy weather on Friday
Police are already on patrol ahead of the start of the summit on Sunday
Leaders’ schedules: G20 summit and COP26
11.30am: Family photo
11.45am: Roundtable discussions, Session 1: ‘Global Economy and Global Health’
3pm: Side-event on ‘Supporting small and medium enterprises, and women-owned businesses to build forward better’. Guest speaker: Queen Maxima of the Netherlands
7pm: Cultural event
10.30am: Side-event on the role of the private sector in the fight against climate change. Guest speaker: HRH Charles, Prince of Wales
11.05am: Roundtable Session 2: ‘Climate Change and Environment’
1.50pm: Roundtable Session 3: ‘Sustainable Development’
3.40pm: Closing session
4.15pm: Concluding press conferences
Opening ceremony: Boris Johnson to welcome world leaders with a ceremony featuring ‘creative and cultural moments’ and a speech by Prince Charles, after the Queen pulled out for health reasons
National statements: Throughout the two-day leaders’ summit, heads of state and government will set out their plans to tackle climate change and curb emissions
2.30pm-4.30pm: Event – Action and Solidarity, the Critical Decade, during which leaders will hear the latest scientific reporting, get an update on progress, and hear what action must now be taken
9.15am – 12.45pm: Event – Action on Forests and Land-Use, at which leaders will hear how policies to protect forests and use land better can fight climate change
2.15pm-4.30pm: Event – Accelerating Clearn Technology and Deployment, at which leaders will be shown a ‘positive vision’ for how technology can be used to combat climate change including creating new jobs and economic growth
Police were pictured ramping up security in Glasgow on Friday.
A convoy of police motorbikes and vehicles was seen leaving the Scottish Event Campus (SEC) – which will host the summit – via a security gate.
Elsewhere, police officers in high-vis jackets and black face coverings were pictured patrolling the streets around the venue.
Security will be of the utmost concern as leaders from around the world – including US President Joe Biden and German president Angela Merkel – are set to descend on the city.
They will also bring their entourages and delegates, with more than 30,000 people expected to pass through the SEC between October 31 and November 12.
Part of President Biden’s huge team arrived at Glasgow Airport today – only to be welcomed by brutally wet weather which has seen two road bridges ‘washed away’ by torrential rain.
A C17 military jet kicked up clouds of vapour as it touched down on the runway before disgorging the president’s Marine One helicopter and scores of security personnel, who were thankfully treated to a break in the downpours.
A third jet with ‘United States of America’ on its fuselage was seen landing at the airport before taking off again, alongside planes from other nations including France.
The main aim of the summit is to persuade countries to agree to take action to restrict global warming to nothing more than 1.5 degrees.
Boris Johnson – who is hosting the event – previously hailed COP26 as a major moment, saying in September that ‘this is the most important period I think now in the history of the planet – because COP simply must succeed’.
The UK has set out a plan to achieve net zero emissions by 2050 and is urging other countries to follow suit.
However, expectations appear to have now been dampened, with the Prime Minister saying earlier this week that it will be ‘touch and go’ on whether progress will be made.
Environment Secretary George Eustice told Sky News that it is always difficult to agree big changes at large-scale events attended by many nations.
He said: ‘These events, because they are big, multi-lateral events with many countries, it is often difficult to get progress.
‘We have been working incredibly hard though on our agenda which is getting more countries to commit to net zero by the middle of the century, getting commitments on decarbonising transport, particularly electrification of cars.
‘And in my case working quite hard on a package around forests, mobilising finance and getting agreement on reducing and halting the net loss of forests around the world.
‘So I am optimistic about these agendas. But always, obviously, when we are in the final days in the build up to it you do get nervous about whether you will get things over the line, certain agreements over the line.
‘There is more to be done at the actual summit itself. I am optimistic but it is, as the Prime Minister said, touch and go.
Mr Johnson said on Monday that he was ‘worried’ the COP26 summit could end in failure.
The Prime Minister said a deal between world leaders on reducing harmful emissions ‘can be done’ but it is going to be ‘very, very tough’.
It comes after it was revealed that China, the world’s biggest polluter, would not be attending.
The PM spoke to the Chinese President on the phone on Friday morning after Beijing confirmed he will not be attending the COP26 summit in person but will address his fellow world leaders via video link.
Police and security personnel outside the Scottish Event Campus in Glasgow today, where the Cop26 summit will be held
Pedestrians shelter under umbrellas in Glasgow today as they walk past a digital display near the SEC venue in the city
Grey skies over the SEC in Glasgow this morning ahead of the Cop26 climate change conference beginning this Sunday
A C17 military jet kicked up clouds of vapour as it touched down on the runway before disgorging the president’s Marine One helicopter
A Boeing C-17A Globemaster III based at Stewart Air National Guard Base in Orange County, New York, with number 60005 at Glasgow Airport this week. The aircraft was carrying a helicopter which will be called Marine One when used by the President
Scores of security personnel were also seen leaving the military plane. They were thankfully treated to a break in the downpours
China has dashed hopes of significant progress being made at the summit in Glasgow after it recommitted to its old climate goals and failed to set out any additional ones.
China is the biggest emitter of CO2 in the world and its formal submission ahead of COP26 restated its goal of achieving ‘carbon neutrality’ by 2060 despite other nations urging Beijing to go further.
A Downing Street summary of the phone call with President Xi said Mr Johnson had ‘acknowledged’ China’s plans to tackle climate change.
A Number 10 spokesman added: ‘He emphasised the importance of all countries stepping up their ambition on climate change at COP26 and taking concrete action to cut emissions and expedite the transition to renewable energy, including phasing out coal.’