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Published on 30 November 2023

Christian Aid Ireland welcomes new Loss & Damage Fund but warns huge work to be done

Speaking from Dubai in reaction to the agreement for a Loss and Damage Fund on the opening day of COP28, Ross Fitzpatrick, Christian Aid Ireland’s Policy and Advocacy officer, said:

"This hard-fought for agreement on a Loss and Damage Fund is an important and welcome step, but there is still huge work to be done to ensure it’s adequately resourced and effective.

"The final text agreed at COP28 leaves a lot open. The fund is voluntary with no clear obligation to pay, no specific targets on the amount of finance required, and no clear deadlines. It does not make explicit reference to the historical responsibility of the wealthiest, high-polluting countries to take the lead on providing finance, which has long been a key principle of climate justice.  

"The fact that the World Bank is to be the interim host is also a concern for many developing countries, and will need to be closely scrutinised to ensure that the most vulnerable communities can actually access funds, which should be paid as grants, not debt-building loans.

"This fund could be a historic step towards addressing the inequality underpinning the climate crisis, but it does not deliver climate justice yet. The crucial test will be whether wealthy, high-polluting countries, including Ireland, take the lead with significant financial pledges to fill it, instead of just repackaging existing commitments, and whether key promises around access and oversight are met.”

Earlier this month, Christian Aid published new joint research, which estimated that in order to meet global need Ireland's fair share contribution to the new Loss & Damage fund will be at least €1.5bn by 2030. The research also outlines proposals for new international measures to raise the badly-needed finance, including more progressive, coordinated taxation of excessive corporate profits, extreme wealth and fossil fuel production, progress on debt relief, and new levies on aviation and shipping.

You can read the report, The Cost of Inactionhere