COP26, the world’s largest climate conference, is underway in Glasgow. The event is meant to provide a space for leaders, policy makers, NGOs, activists, and corporations to debate the intricacies involved in keeping the world from catastrophic global warming. Whether or not that is achieved depends a lot on who is and isn’t at the table.
With that in mind, Quartz analyzed the roster of attendees released by conference organizers on Nov. 1. The provisional list (pdf) of about 28,000 attendees is quirky, to say the least.
Firstly, it seems to be incomplete. High profile participants seen in the conference center in Glasgow, but not on the official list, include activist Greta Thunberg, Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, and actor Leonardo DiCaprio. Quartz’s two reporters, who are very much at the venue, are also not on the list. The summary statistics on the cover page of the document don’t match the number of people listed in the document.
This is a roster of those registered, not those actually attending. Despite having participants on the list, some small island nations, like Vanuatu and Samoa, say they haven’t been able to send delegates. And there are asterisks on some organizations that are unexplained.
The organizers say the list will be updated after the conference ends on Nov. 12 to reflect who actually attended.
Insights into who is registered for the COP26 climate conference
Given those caveats, the list does at least provide us with some insights into who is wandering the halls of the convention center in Glasgow:
🌐 There are at least 126 world leaders expected to be in attendance.
🇧🇷 You’re likely to run into someone from Brazil. They registered the largest delegation, at 479 people.
🇨🇳 China, the world’s largest emitter of greenhouse gases, registered only 60.
👩💼 Seven first ladies are listed, more than the total number of attendees from Nicaragua.
🍔 McDonald’s has a presence. The fast-food chain has four people on the official list.
🪑 IKEA, which has provided the furniture at the conference venue, also sent four delegates.
🛢 Big Oil registered; Shell and BP have multiple participants each.
💾 The CEO of Microsoft Denmark is on the list.
🤝 The World Economic Forum—which puts on its own internationally attractive event with a much smaller guest list—shows 22 people registered.
🛒 Three people are representing Walmart.
The nature of the conference also leads to some quirks in attendees’ listed associations.
🐟 Chris Lee, a state senator in Hawaii, is registered to attend as part of the New England Aquarium’s delegation. The Aquarium is about as far as you can get from Hawaii while still being in the US.
🧼 The only representative from Unilever is listed in the official delegation of Brazil.
🥤 Corporate delegations are often listed as attending as part of the cohort of “non-governmental organizations.” Pepsi’s, for example, has four listed attendees under three different organizations: US sustainability nonprofit Ceres, the International Chamber of Commerce, and the World Business Council for Sustainable Development.
All listed COP26 climate conference participants
Explore the whole 28,000-person list yourself in our searchable database. Attendees are listed as they were by the organizers.