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Agreement On Loss And Damage Deal Reached On Day 1 Of COP28

Fund to help the world’s poorest and most vulnerable countries hit by climate disaster is the first decision agreed upon at the conference

In a significant move during the first day of COP28, participating countries took an important step by agreeing to operationalise the ‘Loss and Damage Fund’, addressing the critical issue of vulnerable countries hit by climate disasters. This decisive action sets a strong tone for COP28’s agenda, focusing on delivering meaningful results for the world’s particularly vulnerable populations. The Fund, a product of negotiations spanning five transitional committee meetings, with the most recent hosted in Abu Dhabi, was initially proposed at COP27 in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt and agreed upon during COP28, UAE.

Loss and Damage, a concern with the potential to impact billions of lives and livelihoods vulnerable to climate change effects, remains a key focus at COP28. The Fund aims to support developing countries most susceptible to the adverse impacts of climate change.

COP28 President, Sultan Al Jaber, put forth historic measures today, marking a turning point in the global response to Loss and Damage.

“As we go forward with this Fund at COP28, we recognise the urgency to address Loss and Damage, particularly for the most vulnerable. Our collective commitment today marks a historic step forward, reflecting the shared responsibility we bear for a sustainable and resilient future,” said Sultan Al Jaber at COP28.

Key countries made significant financial commitments, with the UAE leading the way with a USD 100 million pledge. Other significant commitments during the opening plenary came from Germany (USD100 million), the UK (40 million pounds for the Fund and 20 million pounds for other arrangements), Japan (USD 10 million), and the U.S. (USD 17.5 million).

“Germany and the United Arab Emirates are jointly leading the way. At the same time, we are jointly calling on all countries that are willing and able to make contributions of their own to the new fund to respond to loss and damage. In this way, we are building bridges between traditional donor countries and new, non-traditional donors. After all, many countries that were still developing countries 30 years ago can now afford to shoulder their share of responsibility for global climate-related loss and damage,” said Germany’s development minister, Svenja Schulze at the summit.

This financial commitment at the outset of COP28 reflects a clear picture of hope and the potential for collective achievements when aiming for the highest possible ambition. The COP28 Presidency, under the leadership of Sultan Al Jaber, is committed to sustaining this momentum by driving further commitments, fostering collaboration, and promoting solidarity. In the coming days, the Presidency will work closely with participating parties to finalise the operational details of the Fund, reinforcing the global community’s dedication to addressing Loss and Damage on a significant scale.

“This is the kind of leadership we expect from the host country, and we urge other countries to follow suit. Rich developed countries must step up with major contributions to the new fund, and polluting industries must also be made to pay. If the COP Presidency can build on this with a consensus on just phasing out of fossil fuels, COP28 will indeed be a historic event,” said Ghiwa Nakat, the Executive Director of Greenpeace MENA (Middle East and North Africa).

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