Loss and Damage Fund is Launched at COP28 to Help Developing Countries Battle Climate Change

© AP Photo / Peter DejongCOP28 President Sultan al-Jaber, center, attends the opening session at the COP28 U.N. Climate Summit, Thursday, Nov. 30, 2023, in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
COP28 President Sultan al-Jaber, center, attends the opening session at the COP28 U.N. Climate Summit, Thursday, Nov. 30, 2023, in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. - Sputnik Africa, 1920, 01.12.2023
COP28, a UN conference devoted to climate change, is taking place in the UAE from November 30 to December 12, 2023. It is anticipated to bring together more than 70,000 attendees. In compliance with the Paris Climate Agreement, COP28 is presenting the first ever Global Stocktake — an extensive assessment of advancements made toward climate goals.
A "historic" agreement to launch a fund that will help developing countries particularly vulnerable to the adverse effects of climate change was officially approved on Thursday by the president of the 28th Conference of the Parties of the UNFCCC (COP28), Sultan Al Jaber, as stated on the COP28 website.

"The hard work of many people over many years, has been delivered in Dubai," Al Jaber was quoted as saying in the statement. "The speed at which the world came together, to get this fund operationalized within one year since Parties agreed to it in Sharm El Sheikh is unprecedented."

The goal of this so-called Loss and Damage Fund is "to provide financial assistance to countries at extreme risk from climate change, to support climate change mitigation and recovery," according to the statement.
A person walks near signs for the COP28 U.N. Climate Summit, Tuesday, Nov. 28, 2023, in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.  - Sputnik Africa, 1920, 29.11.2023
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Discussing the figures, the UAE, hosting the conference this year, pledged $100 million to the fund. Other notable commitments came from Japan, contributing $10 million, the United States allocating $17.5 million, Germany, committing $100 million, and the United Kingdom, deciding to provide £40 million (approx. $50.5 million) to the fund and £20 million (around $25 million) for other arrangements. Italy, according to the country's prime minister Giorgia Meloni, will, in turn, make a €100 million contribution.
Furthermore, Avinash Persaud, Barbados' special climate envoy participating in the discussions to finalize the fund, applauded the decision but mentioned that a sizeable sum of money would need to be contributed, as reported by the media.

"This fund needs to be $100 billion-a-year fund, and we won't get there overnight. That's a lot of money. That's more than half of all of the aid budgets in the entire world," said Persaud, as per the reports.

The director of IDDRI's climate program, Lola Vallejo, called the fund's establishment on the opening day of COP28 "a great and very constructive start," but noted that it left open issues of eligibility and financial sustainability, according to the report.

The fund was first agreed upon during COP27, held in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt, but it was never finalized.

Another problem that was highlighted in the СOP28's statement was that even if global warming mitigation targets are met, actions on loss and damage will still be necessary since vulnerable communities are already negatively impacted by a "locked-in" level of warming that results in storms, floods, decreased agricultural production, and rising sea levels.
According to a recent UN analysis, developing nations will require up to $387 billion a year to adapt to changes brought on by climate change.
Despite these needs, public international and bilateral adaptation finance flows to developing nations fell by 15% to $21 billion in 2021, and the current adaptation finance gap is expected to be between $194 and $366 billion annually, the UN reported.
At the same time, planning and execution of adaptations seem to be plateauing. This inability to adapt "has massive implications for losses and damages, particularly for the most vulnerable," the analysis concluded.