Tag: loss and damage

CAN-Bond Joint Submission on the Strategic Workstream on Loss and Damage Action and Support, February 2017

Climate Action Network International (CAN) and Bond Development and Environment Group welcome the call by COP 22 to propose possible activities for the five-year rolling work plan of the Executive Committee. This submission outlines proposed activities for the specific strategic workstream on enhancing action and support, including finance, technology and capacity-building, as mandated by decision 3/CP.22.

The founding document of the Warsaw International Mechanism for Loss and Damage (WIM), agreed at COP 19 in 2013, identified the facilitation and mobilisation of support as a priority. The first three years of the WIM focused on its other functions of: a) enhancing knowledge; and, b) strengthening dialogue and coordination. Thereby the WIM laid important groundwork, on which key conclusions for the way forward still need to be drawn. However, now it is time to address the more difficult areas which have lacked attention, including e.g. climate-related migration, but in particular action and support. In light of the growing loss and damage actually happening, we propose that the WIM should treat finance as a priority for the coming two years - dedicating as much time and resources to the finance (support) workstream as to the other work streams combined. The ExCom should identify the objectives and key activities to reach across 2017 and 2018 as outlined below. Though the 5-year work plan is expected to run into 2021, CAN regards it as crucial to make an ambitious start and deliver activities which make a difference on the ground as soon as possible, and not only by 2021.  

Whilst estimates of loss and damage finance needs vary, it is clear that needs are already high and likely to grow. Studies indicate that by mid-century economic global losses and damages costs may exceed $1 trillion per year, with developing countries shouldering the majority of the burden. These loss and damage costs are on top of the costs of adaptation.[1] In this context, and given the WIM mandate to facilitate and mobilise support, the overall objective of this workstream should be to urgently generate finance from predictable, adequate and sustainable sources at a scale of billions of dollars to address loss and damage in developing countries before 2020, and growing after 2020, at a scale sufficient to address the problem over and above the finance provided for adaptation. This will require enhancing the understanding of the nature, types and scales of finance developing countries require. It should also lead to enhanced support for addressing loss and damage immediately and in the near-term, in particular for the poorest and most vulnerable populations.

We propose the following activities for the finance-related work stream as part of the 5-year rolling work plan. Where necessary, this may involve the work of other bodies such as the Standing Committee on Finance, however in an effective manner which does not slow down urgently needed progress on raising funds. Many of these activities should be kick-started as early as possible, at the forthcoming ExCom5 meeting (March 2017).


CAN Submission: Input to SCF Forum on Financial Instruments for Loss and Damage, February 2016

~~Climate Action Network (CAN) International sees an important role for the SCF Forum to discuss financial instruments to address loss and damage and is grateful for the opportunity to provide inputs on the scope and purpose of the Forum and also to provide relevant information as well as case studies to inform the Forum.

CAN believes that finance for loss and damage should pay particular attention on how loss and damage associated with the adverse effects of climate change affects particularly vulnerable developing countries, vulnerable populations and the ecosystems that they depend on, and how approaches to address loss and damage associated with the adverse effects of climate change can be designed and implemented to benefit these populations.



CAN Submission: The Workplan of The Warsaw International Mechanism on Loss & Damage, June 2013


CAN International’s working group on adaptation and loss & damage welcomes the invitation by the ExCom of the Warsaw International Mechanism (WIM) on Loss and Damage to submit suggestions for the work plan of the WIM for 2015 and 2016, which the ExCom is tasked to prepare for approval by COP20.

CAN stressed the importance of meaningfully addressing loss and damage in previous inputs to the UNFCCC process, including recently on the ADP and in policy positions related to COP18 and COP19. Increasing mitigation ambition and rapidly scaling up adaptation action in order to reduce the avoidable loss and damage as soon as possible is crucial. But this will no longer be enough due to decades of inadequate mitigation action by developed countries. In addition to this, approaches must be developed to deal with the unavoidable loss and damage and residual impacts caused by sea level rise, ocean acidification, loss of biodiversity, glacial retreat and other climate change impacts.

CAN is of the view that the initial establishment of the WIM must now be followed-up with an ambitious while realistic work plan. This work plan must allow using 2015 and 2016 for building up the WIM into an operational mechanism aiming to make a real difference for vulnerable people and countries in their efforts to manage the increasing loss and damage associated with climate change impacts.

Members of CAN have also participated in the initial meeting of the ExCom and followed and contributed to the discussions in the March meeting. The below suggestions for key areas of work reflect our views of priorities the WIM should pursue in the next two years. It is important to note that the decisions on modalities which the WIM can employ, discussed by SBI/SBSTA, and also to be approved by the COP, may also have implications on the WIM’s work plan and may require dedicated work to operationalize the specific modalities. However, since the decisions on the modalities cannot yet be foreseen, we are not in a position to make detailed suggestions in this regard, and also assume that they will be rather crosscutting and not necessarily impact on the proposed work areas as such.


Clarity for loss and damage!

ECO has been sitting on the edge of its chair waiting to find out how the work of the Warsaw Loss and Damage Mechanism has progressed since the first meeting of its ExCom at the end of March.

Disappointingly, the much anticipated ExCom presentation left ECO puzzled: precious few insights were presented on the content of the work plan. The veil of secrecy has not been fully lifted, Yet, ECO is motivated by ExCom’s decision to open up the work plan for input from Parties and other stakeholders until July 1. What’s more, it will also webcast its next meeting live. Based on the comments received, the ExCom plans to advance the work plan by its second meeting, planned for the end of July. They will even accommodate observers who are not travelling to Bonn. ECO hopes that the work plan developed by the ExCom will leave some space for further inputs from those Parties who might not otherwise be able to meet the deadline.

Here are some ECO suggestions for those planning on making submissions:

- Prioritise the needs of those segments of the population and ecosystems which are particu-larly vulnerable;

- Consider key loss and damage areas such as slow-onset events, the functioning of social protection systems, migration and displacement, non-economic losses like that of ecosys-tems and their services, and financial instruments to provide for rehabilitation and redress needs;

- Design a long-term work plan, not just a two-year set of activities.

The discussion on modalities and composition is still ongoing. ECO is convinced that a mechanism has to be more than just the ExCom doing a bit of work here and there. The Warsaw International Mechanism must become a tool which can address the full range of needs related to loss and damage. Therefore, countries should seriously consider proposals that can contribute to this objective.

ECO would like to echo the call of very vulnerable countries for adequate representation in the future ExCom. Fully engaging those who are most in need of a functioning mechanism is a way to ensure that their substantial expertise is brought into the work of the ExCom.


Related Newsletter : 

CAN Intervention: Nairobi Work Programme in the SBSTA Contact Group, 5 June 2014

CAN intervention on NWP, 5 June 2014

SBSTA also needs to make progress on the future activities of the Nairobi Work Programme. COP19 highlighted ecosystems; human settlements; water resources; and health as priority areas. All these are of crucial importance to the needs of the people and countries particularly vulnerable to climate change.

On ecosystems and water resources, the reports from previous expert meetings under the NWP in 2013 and 2012 provide important starting points for what to do next.

CAN generally thinks that the activities should be designed in a way that they can serve different purposes where scientific and technological advice is required, with a strong view of facilitating implementation of concrete action. A key step toward this is to ensure the NWP engages leading experts and practitioners on each theme. SBSTA should engage the AC and NWP partners (including many CAN members) to assist in identifying and reaching out to these leaders. 

NWP activities should aim to increasingly include knowledge and  experience from very locally grounded activities, such as from community-led adaptation. Activities under all themes also could contribute to important cross-cutting discussions, including:

  • The implications of the IPCC AR5 and different levels of projected warming
  • Approaches for multi-level adaptation planning (inl. NAPs, but also for sub-national and local planning)
  • Climate change impacts on, and needs of, particularly vulnerable segments of societies
  • Ways to better assess financial costs of adaptation options
  • Needs and opportunities for regional cooperation
  • Vehicles for effective south-south adaptation learning

Furthermore we think that the SBSTA should also identify ways to lift up some of the key findings of the expert meeting on available tools for the use of indigenous and traditional knowledge and practices for adaptation, needs of local and indigenous communities and the application of gender-sensitive approaches and tools for adaptation. This work may result in a specific COP20 decision. Key recommendations we would like to highlight include

  • To fully appreciate indigenous and traditional knowledge in a manner commensurate with modern science at all levels relevant to adaptation, including through COP guidance for the performance of finance institutions such as the GCF.
  • The strong need to enable the recognition, participation and engagement of local communities and holders of local, indigenous and traditional knowledge and practices in the adaptation process, including in national adaptation planning processes from the outset
  • Building on previous COP decisions, strengthen the integration of gender-sensitive approaches in all aspects of adaptation planning and practice to promote gender equality
  • To organize follow-up activities to ensure that the workshop is not a “one-off” activity on this topic. Specifically, the SBSTA should explore opportunities to create stronger linkages between NWP activities and related implementation activities, ensuring a continuous feedback mechanism.

This workshop, notably, was an example of a positive collaboration between the Adaptation Committee and the NWP. The precedent set by this workshop paves the way for continued collaboration among Convention bodies to coordinate and synchronize efforts on adaptation. The NWP should continue to directly link to long-term work within the Convention through the AC, the LEG, adaptation funding mechanisms, and especially, the NAP process.

CAN is happy to work further with delegates on the appropriate recommendations.



CAN Submission: Adaptation and Loss & Damage Under the ADP, June 2014

The recently released installments of the Fifth Assessment Report of the IPCC, the increasingly occurring extreme weather events and their devastating humanitarian impacts, and multiple studies clearly underline: the world community will fail in eliminating poverty and delivering on major sustainable development objectives without taking adequate action on all fronts - adaptation, mitigation, and increasingly loss and damage where mitigation and adaptation is not sufficient. We would like to remind governments that they agreed that “adaptation to climate change represents an immediate and urgent global priority.”

A 2015 deal, which governments are expected to agree as a landmark agreement, will fail in the eyes of the world public if it does not contribute in scaling up adaptation action for developing countries and the protection of the most vulnerable, often those who have contributed least to the growing threat of climate change. This is even more so the case in light of the continued lack of mitigation ambition required by science, with a world still on track into dangerous climate change, despite many positive developments in areas such as renewable energies and growing resistance against fossil fuel exploration and use. Reaffirmation and strengthening of the global goal in order to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius should guide Parties’ Nationally Determined Contributions on mitigation, and the support provided by developed countries to developing countries.

Against this background, this submission outlines the current views of Climate Action Network on the role of adaptation and loss and damage in the 2015 agreement, and provides input into the discussions under Workstream 1 of the ADP. These negotiations should be underpinned by a clear determination to implement existing commitments and obligations. In this context we would also like to note that significantly scaling up international financial support by developed countries to vulnerable communities and countries will be central, and without this, architectural advancements under the UNFCCC will have a rather miniscule and insufficient effect.

For practical reasons, this submission follows the section structuring applied by the co-chairs of the ADP in their “Reflections” document. CAN is looking forward to engaging further in discussions with Parties during the June 2014 ADP session.


Special Extra Time Edition: ECO 12, COP19, English - Nov 23

Both inside and outside the National Stadium here in Warsaw, civil society makes this appeal:

► Don't demolish the Durban Platform

► Do your best to advance Climate Finance and Loss and Damage


“It always seems impossible until it's done.”

– Nelson Mandela

Plans to Axe Warsaw’s Only Fair Share Mention Gets Fossil for Five Countries, while Australia’s Schoolboy Antics Get a Fifth Gong

Fossil of the Day, COP19, Warsaw, 20 11 2013

Credit: David Tong, Adopt A Negotiator

The first place fossil goes to India, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Malaysia, and China for proposing to delete the only reference to equity in the ADP text!  (And for the wonks, we mean paragraph 9 in the ADP text).  Equity is key to the 2015 agreement and Parties must leave Warsaw with a clear understanding of how the ex ante review will be conducted. This includes – at a minimum - details on submissions, expert workshops, and the development of a technical paper on a basket of indicators covering: adequacy, historical responsibility, capability, and development and adaptation need).  Details that are really hard to achieve if you just delete the whole paragraph.  We were shocked that with all the discussions here and in Bonn, equity did not yield more than a passing reference in the first version of the ADP text.  The next iteration must expand and not ‘streamline’ references to equity.  To these members of the Like-Minded Group, we urge you to engage in the development of an ex ante review, rather than hovering over the delete button.

The second place in today’s fossil goes to Australia, who along with some other developed countries is impeding progress towards setting up an international mechanism on loss and damage here in Warsaw, as proposed by G77 and China. Trying to keep out key text elements proposed by more than 130 developing countries (such as on non-economic losses and permanent losses), delaying negotiation progress through procedural manoeuvres, and lacking a clear commitment to strong support provisions in the decision text is highly concerning.  Australia is the leader of those lacking constructive spirit.
We call on the other developed countries to work seriously for the needs of the most vulnerable countries and help in establishing an effective international mechanism on loss and damage here in Warsaw.



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