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).