COP27 finally ends with historic agreement on Loss and Damage finance but lack of progress on agreeing emission reductions leaves critical temperature threshold dangerously out of reach.
- Loss and Damage was on the agenda for the first time, and positively, agreement was reached to establish a dedicated new fund for this
- Lack of firm commitment to immediately phase out all fossil fuels sets us on course for extremely dangerous levels of heating and will result in escalating Loss and Damage debt owed
- The Scottish Government has continued to show welcome leadership on Loss and Damage on the international stage, but must commit to urgent new action to slash Scotland’s emissions and meet domestic climate targets by making polluters pay for the damage they are creating. Committing to a just phase out of oil and gas is essential to this.
Reacting to the outcomes of COP27 in Sharm el Sheikh today, Stop Climate Chaos Scotland (SCCS) welcomes the agreement to establish a fund for Loss and Damage, for the most climate impacted communities to recover from the devastating effects they are experiencing now.
Mike Robinson, chair of Stop Climate Chaos Scotland said:
“World leaders arrived in Sharm el Sheikh for the talks billed by the Egyptian presidency as the ‘implementation COP’. After over 30 years of calls from Global South countries for Loss and Damage finance, this long overdue agreement for Loss and Damage finance is very welcome and goes some way to address the grave injustice of poorer countries having to foot the bill for recovering from impacts they did not cause.
Of course, much work will now be needed to work out the details and ensure the funds are sufficient and deployed equitably, as well as – crucially – quickly, but this is a positive outcome, and it will send a clear message that polluters must pay for their climate damage. At the same time, rich countries cannot continue to shamelessly break their wider climate finance promises to support low income countries to adapt to rising temperatures.
However, with failure to make any progress on phasing out all fossil fuels since the talks in Glasgow last year, the debt owed for Loss and Damage will continue to increase, and the lack of commitment to doing everything possible to keep temperature increases below 1.5 degrees is incredibly worrying. It means the world remains on track for catastrophic warming of 2.8C.
We heard plenty of support for fossil fuel phase out from the UK, US and EU in the closing plenary of COP27, so we expect those countries to put their money where their mouth is and reverse oil and gas expansion plans immediately. For the UK that means cancelling the new oil and gas licensing round and saying no to new coal in Cumbria. The Scottish Government too must set out a clear position opposing new oil and gas development and to start work on a managed phase out as swiftly as possible.
Stop Climate Chaos Scotland members and supporters can be proud of the role we have played to champion Loss and Damage in recent years. Following many policy papers, lobbying meetings, public campaigns and the Glasgow Climate Dialogues series of events last year which called on the Scottish Government to give money for Loss and Damage, it broke the taboo on this at COP26, becoming the first nation to commit funds and showing much needed moral leadership.
The fight will go on, the Loss and Damage resolution is not perfect, and Scotland and all other rich countries must do much more to slash emissions to prevent more loss and damage. In Scotland, amid public finance pressure, that must now include making polluters pay for the damage they are causing so we can invest in cutting emissions in ways that also help address the cost of living crisis. But today we should feel hope that people power and campaigning can have a global impact.”