Part 2: When Your Negotiator Says ‘Why do We Need Loss & Damage Finance’? Who You Gonna Call? ‘ECO!’’

Yesterday ECO answered some developed countries’ questions on why a new finance facility on loss & damage (L&D) was needed, how L&D should be defined, and why new and additional finance is needed to address L&D. Countries loved it so much that they asked ECO a few more questions. So, by popular demand, ECO is back for another round!

Why should there be additional finance?

Vulnerable and frontline communities in developing countries have been inundated with extreme heat waves, rampant forest fires, devastating droughts, catastrophic floods, increasingly destructive hurricanes, typhoons and cyclones, and sea level rise. These climate-drive loss and damage impacts are stealing people’s lives and livelihood, and they go beyond what people and ecosystems can adapt to. Impacted communities cannot be expected to address climate change on their own, especially not without resources, support, and implementation structures in place.

Developed country rebuttal: Why should we split L&D finance from adaptation finance?

ECO says: For many countries, it is necessary that there be both financing to adapt to climate impacts and to address losses and damages resulting from climate impacts that cannot be adapted to. Most financing for adaptation is not able to support the needs of developing countries to address loss and damage. Finance is needed to address slow onset climate impacts (sea-level rise, glacial melt, forest degradation) as well as fast onset impacts (typhoons, landslides, wildfires) and adaptation finance does not adequately cover all of these needs. 

Developed country rebuttal: Why can’t we just commit to providing more finance for adaptation?

ECO says: Loss and damage is the consequence of moving beyond the ability of people and ecosystems to adapt to the scale and pace of changing climates. Although adaptation financing is a priority and needs to be rapidly scaled up, for many people, the reality is that it is too late to adapt.

Developed country rebuttal: Why does the WIM need to take a human rights and gender-responsive approach?

ECO says: Women, children, Indigenous communities, and members of the transgender community are often more impacted by loss and damage than men, especially when it comes to access to health care, food, and water. For example, after a drought, members of these communities are more likely to face water insecurity longer than men. Such discrimination makes these communities more vulnerable to being taken advantage of and, additionally, increases the likelihood of further exposure to climate risks after a shock.  

Developed country rebuttal: Why does the WIM only prioritise vulnerable communities in developing countries? 

ECO says: The mandate of the Warsaw International Mechanism on Loss & Damage (WIM) is to support developing countries. Many of whom are the least responsible for climate change. ECO finds it absurd that some countries would ask for the divide between countries to be re-examined. ECO recognises that there are marginalised peoples and communities around the world. However, developed country Parties are often in a better position to address climate change and have more resources and options, compared to developing countries. 

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