Don’t Forget Loss and Damage

12 December 2018

A lot is at stake at COP24 in the last days.

The IPCC special report on 1.5°C made clear how urgent climate action is, and that impacts already occurring today require immediate measures to, in particular, protect the poorest and most vulnerable.

It is abundantly clear that more finance is needed for loss and damage. We”ve seen developing countries face impacts to the tune of 200% of their GDP in one hurricane that has been amplified by climate change.

Listening to statements by ministers yesterday, ECO feels it is clear what needs to be done to give loss and damage an appropriate reflection in the overall outcomes of this conference. The Cook Islands, for example, highlighted that “Loss and damage must be given a far greater priority. It is fundamental in the context of the IPCC SR1.5.” The Minister of Vanuatu stated that it “pains me deeply to have watched the USA and others putting red lines through any mention of loss and damage.” Tuvalu outlined that “Loss and damage should therefore be fully integrated into the Rulebook, including on transparency, capacity building, and the global stocktake.” Vanuatu’s Minister also stressed that a climate damages tax would be “a win-win option for developed and developing countries alike. It is a new source of finance that makes the countries and companies responsible for climate change pay.”

ECO would like to remind delegates that loss and damage is an explicit and distinct part of the Paris Agreement, with its Article 8, in contrast to response measures which some Parties unjustifiably intend to couple with loss and damage.

Progressive developed countries and vulnerable countries now have the chance to stand together to reach an ambitious Paris Rulebook which delivers on high mitigation ambition as well as ensuring protection for the most vulnerable people from climate impacts.

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