World climate conference ends with agreement on climate damage compensation

The COP27 global climate change conference in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, ended on Sunday morning with an agreement to compensate developing countries for the damage they have suffered from climate change.

While developing countries have long called for a fund for suffering from climate change, wealthy countries, including the United States, have resisted the idea.

But that changed this year, and these developing countries got a fund establishing such climate reparations.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres called the deal “an important step towards justice”.

“I welcome the decision to create a fund for loss and damage and to make it operational in the coming period,” António Guterres said in a statement. “Obviously this will not be enough, but it is a much-needed political signal to rebuild broken trust.”

The decision establishes a fund to respond to “loss and damage” these countries have suffered, but some details are yet to be resolved.

To remedy this, a transition committee which will be composed of 24 countries in charge of finding sources of financing and establishing a structure and governance for the fund will be put in place.

The nations also adopted a broader agreement, called the Sharm el-Sheikh Implementation Plan.

This plan separately calls on developed countries to “urgently and significantly increase” financial and technological assistance to help developing countries adapt to the impacts of climate change.

The concept of adaptation finance – which helps countries prepare for potential climate damage – is distinct from the concept of loss and damage finance – which helps them respond when that damage occurs.

Climate change has been linked to a myriad of issues, including rising sea levels, intense storms, floods, droughts and food insecurity.

The global decision also calls on countries to accelerate their energy transitions by “rapidly scaling up the deployment of clean energy generation and energy efficiency measures” as well as “accelerating” efforts to phase out coal power. and eliminating inefficient fossil fuel subsidies.

Last year’s climate decision, at COP26 in Glasgow, also called for the phase-down of coal and the phasing out of inefficient subsidies.

–Updated at 10:50 a.m.


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