Empty chairs and empty nights

4 June 2015

Establishing the Warsaw International Mechanism on Loss and Damage (WIM) was a major achievement of vulnerable developing countries. Last year in Lima, COP20 approved the WIM’s work plan for 2015-2016, which is crucial to progress, in addressing loss and damage from climate impacts. Unfortunately, that progress has stalled.

The mechanism has not been allowed to start its work yet, because, 6 months after Lima, its executive committee is still not staffed. Until a few weeks ago, LDCs—a moment of praise for them—were the only Parties to have submitted their representatives and most non-Annex I seats are now filled.

But where are the Annex I countries? Is this a strategy to delay the start of the mechanism? Or are Annex I countries working hard on identifying those individuals who are most committed to getting the mechanism up and running?

It is disappointing that the urgent work of the WIM faces such delay, and ECO urges all developed  countries to make groups to finalise their nominations immediately. If speedily resolved, ExCom members can use the remainder of Bonn to kick off work well before Paris.  Doing so would demonstrate that serious efforts to address loss and damage are underway, and the WIM is on track for inclusion into the Paris agreement.

Empty chairs and empty nights

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