RRS Sir David Attenborough docks in Greenwich ahead of Cop26

The United Nations Climate Change Conference will kick off in Glasgow on Sunday.

RRS Sir David Attenborough
RRS Sir David Attenborough

The UK’s most advanced polar research ship has docked in London to mark the start of the Cop26 climate conference.

The RRS Sir David Attenborough arrived in Greenwich, south-east London, on Thursday as part of a three-day public celebration hosted by UKRI-NERC British Antarctic Survey (BAS) and Royal Museums Greenwich (RMG).

It has been undergoing sea trials around the UK and is now ready for service. The ship will then embark on its first Antarctic mission later this year.

RRS Sir David Attenborough
The UK’s most advanced polar research ship is in London to mark the start of the Cop26 climate conference (Kirsty O’Connor/PA)

Over the next few days, 15 exhibition stands showcasing environmental science, engineering and technology will be on display at the River Thames and Royal Museums Greenwich.

There will also be a live-streamed tour of the state-of-the-art ship and the launch of a new virtual reality experience.

International Trade Secretary Anne-Marie Trevelyan said: “With Cop26 only days away, it’s incredible to see the new RRS Sir David Attenborough and hear about the world-leading and ground-breaking research it will complete in the Antarctic and Artic regions.

“Research, science and innovation are at the heart of the UK’s Cop26 goals and at the forefront of our own climate action, from the British Antarctic Survey’s ongoing work to the Adaptation Research Alliance being launched at Cop. It is vital other countries come forward with commitments on global collaboration for science and innovation at Cop26 next week.”

While a public vote to select a title for the ship returned the name Boaty McBoatface, officials intervened to name it after Britain’s famed broadcaster and natural historian.

A research submarine carried on the ship instead has taken the name elected by the public.

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