No plane sailing


Spanish authorities expect sea lanes around the nation to be blocked for several weeks, and possibly months, as delegates who have been visiting Madrid for the United Nations’ climate change summit leave the country.

A summit spokesperson said the blockage was expected to delay the departure of several thousand delegates, media representatives, climate-change activists, and UN support staff who were due to fly out of Madrid at the end of the summit today.

“Unfortunately everyone who flew to Madrid from around the globe now wants to sail home,” the spokesperson said.

“It seems that Greta Thunberg’s presence at the Madrid conference and her insistence on using sail boats instead of jet aircraft to get around the world to these sorts of events has influenced delegates.

“Delegates are now worried about not appearing as committed as Greta to action on climate change if they are seen to be using jets to get home.

“So we have been forced to try to locate and book as many sail boats as possible to be ready to ferry delegates and others to their home nations around the world.

“Already we have several hundred appropriate vessels moored in the Bay of Biscay and in the Mediterranean Sea (main picture).

“Madrid is located in the middle of Spain so the boats we’ve managed to hire will be moored there while delegates leave Madrid and either take an electric train, an electric car, or just walk to ports on the northern and southern coasts of Spain.

“We hope to have all delegates on a boat and heading home within the next few weeks, and most should arrive home by Christmas. That’s Christmas 2020,” the spokesperson said.

The spokesperson said organisers of the UN’s next climate summit scheduled to be hosted by the Scottish city of Glasgow in November next year were considering not inviting Thunberg to speak at the event.