Creating Loss and Damage Fund at COP27 Was a Step Forward but Must be Accompanied by Investments in Climate Adaptation and Mitigation

Statement by Dr. Farah Naureen, Mercy Corps’ Country Director for Pakistan

“The agreement to establish a Loss and Damage fund to assist communities that contribute the least to carbon emissions but bear the brunt of climate change is a huge achievement at COP27. Anything less than this would have jeopardized trust in the climate negotiations and would have left countries like mine, Pakistan, continuing to pay the highest price.

“While there is further work needed to agree on the details – including how to source additional public funding and innovative sources of finance - this new Loss and Damage fund is critical to address the dramatic impacts of the climate crisis on women, men, and children who have no resources to build resilience and adapt. Yet, the effectiveness of the fund remains to be seen, and the real work will only begin after COP27.

“While a Loss and Damage fund is highly needed, it will only be effective if it goes hand in hand with efforts to mitigate and adapt. Without rapid and effective mitigation and adaptation programs, the impacts of climate change will be too destructive to be covered by any fund. At COP27, there was a shocking lack of ambition and progress on mitigation and adaptation, including efforts to increase climate finance.

“The failure to agree to phase out all fossil fuels betrays previous commitments to limit warming to 1.5 degrees. Higher-income countries also did not provide a roadmap to show how they will fulfill their commitment to providing $100 billion of climate finance annually between 2020 and 2025. They even blocked language that would require them to make up shortfalls. No clear pathway to double adaptation finance has been agreed upon, nor is there clarity on ensuring that adaptation funding reaches those at the front line of the climate crisis.

“Ambition, commitment, action, and funding are needed across all three pillars of climate change - mitigation, adaptation, and loss and damage - to protect countries least responsible for the climate crisis and suffering the harshest impacts. ”