Rail to the COP is an initiative by the organization Youth for Sustainable Travel- who in 2019 sailed across the Atlantic Ocean to join COP25.
For this year's summit in Glasgow, they have chartered an entire train in collaboration with ProRail, Eurostar and NS to travel from Amsterdam via Rotterdam and Brussels to Glasgow.
The organizations behind the climate train want to put rail transport on the international political agenda as an important part of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by avoiding aircraft pollution.
The annual UN climate summit, Cop26, starts on November 1 and will be held in Glasgow.
It comes as in recent years, the youth movement has been present at Cop in growing numbers. The younger generations are making their voices heard to secure their own future.
Besides approximately 150 young people, there will be about 110 NGO representatives, 30 climate scientists, 50 representatives of the rail industry and 50 policymakers on the train. Including the Dutch, Belgian and German national delegations.
Mara de Pater, Chair of Youth for Sustainable Travel: “It is a unique opportunity to have all these different groups together on the train. We organised a programme on the train to bring the different expertise and perspectives into discussion in dialogues and workshops.
“The core theme in these sessions is: fair and sustainable transition in the travel industry”.
“However, at the moment, air traffic is much more attractive than the train due to legislation and regulations. Airlines, for example, hardly pay any taxes, whereas train companies do."
During the conference in Glasgow, both the organizers behind Rail to the COP and the parties from the rail sector - ProRail, NS and Eurostar - will emphasize the importance of sustainability in the travel industry to international policymakers and national delegations.
The sold-out train will depart from Amsterdam Central on October 30 at 8.47am and will then stop in Rotterdam, Brussels and London.
The trip continues with a Avanti West Coast train to Glasgow. There are goodbye events at Rotterdam CS and Brussels Midi.