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20 November 2022, Sharm-el Sheikh: Today in a long overdue decision, three decades in the making, all governments at COP27 agreed to set up a Loss and Damage Fund. This is a first step in a process to rectify the systemic injustice to billions of people, particularly in the Global South, who are the least responsible but are on the frontlines of the climate crisis. Those who are suffering devastating climate impacts; floods, droughts, hurricanes and sea level rise, will have some hope that their right to access support will be respected.
For two weeks, the G77 plus China, the largest developing country negotiation group representing over 134 countries and five billion of the world’s population, have stood united and resolutely behind the demand for the creation of a fund at COP27 for addressing Loss and Damage. This despite intense pressure from countries like the USA who attempted to block the creation of a fund from the onset, and some EU nations who attempted to derail the talks with watered down options that would divide developing countries.
The creation of the Loss and Damage Fund today is also a clear victory for civil society groups across the world, who made this issue a priority and used their power to put sustained pressure on rich nations to take responsibility for the crisis they have historically caused.
As climate impacts get more intense and frequent, there is an urgent need to scale up adaptation around the world, while strengthening and ensuring the delivery of needs-based finance in developing countries.
While COP27 delivered on addressing the consequences of the climate crisis – it failed to address the root cause of the crisis: Fossil Fuels. With no agreement to have a fair and equitable phase out of all fossil fuels – coal, oil and gas, it has laid bare the capture of this process by fossil fuel lobbyists and vested interests. The agreement to scale up investment in renewable energy for the first time in this process is welcomed but without a strong outcome on phasing out all fossil fuels, governments risk breaching 1.5°C.
Civil Society will continue its resistance against fossil fuel expansion outside these halls and will continue to fight against all injustices and human rights abuses and shrinking of civic space across the world. (Climate Network)