02 March 2022

Cop26 president Alok Sharma tests positive for coronavirus

02 March 2022

Cop26 President Alok Sharma has tested positive for Covid, he has announced, hours after he sat on the frontbench next to Boris Johnson.

Mr Sharma, who was due to travel abroad and therefore took a Covid test, discovered he had the virus on Wednesday afternoon.

He had earlier been in the Commons answering questions from MPs and had sat next to Mr Johnson during Prime Minister’s Questions.

He tweeted: “I was due fly abroad this evening and as a precaution tested myself ahead of travel.

“Unfortunately I have tested positive for covid

“I feel absolutely fine but will now isolate, and work from home, for the required period of time.”

After the rules changed last week, Mr Sharma does not need to isolate by law but the guidance is that those who test positive should stay at home, if they can, and avoid contact with others.

The Prime Minister will also not need to self-isolate under the rules.

Earlier, in the Commons, Mr Sharma had told MPs the UK needed to help its neighbours to transition to renewable fuels and end reliance on fossil fuels from “tyrannical regimes” like Russia.

Shadow climate change secretary Ed Miliband told MPs: “This House stands in solidarity with the Ukrainian people, and his Cop presidency now faces an utterly changed context with the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

“The crisis shows how the global dependence on fossil fuels supports the most tyrannical regimes.

“This is a war underwritten by Russia’s oil and gas.

“Does he agree with me therefore that the best route to protect our energy and national security and undermine the power of Putin is not by increasing our dependence on fossil fuel with prices at the international market, but by supercharging the drive to renewable, nuclear and energy efficiency so all countries including our own have clean, cheap home-grown power?”

Mr Sharma replied: “He makes an important point in terms of the clean energy transition.

“I have said in the past that what we want to see is a managed clean energy transition.

“That is why we put forward the North Sea transition deal and, of course, this Government is focussed on renewables, on nuclear, on hydrogen.”

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