Climate crash course – What is loss and damage?

20 Oct 2022

 

 

Breaking down climate change in 15 minutes

 

One of the key topics for this year’s UN Climate Change Conference, COP27, is loss and damage defined as the impacts of climate change that require adaptation or recovery to degrees often fall outside of people’s means.

Follow the third episode of the GLF Live mini-series of “climate crash courses”, 15-minute lessons on foundational climate change terms and topics we might have overlooked in our learnings.

 

Financing is key to addressing loss and damage

 

Preety Bhandari, a senior advisor at World Resources Institute and the former chief for Climate Change and Disaster Risk Management at the Asian Development Bank, explains everything we need to know about loss and damage:

  • The Paris Agreement addresses loss and damage using the phrase “averting, minimizing, and addressing loss and damage.”
  • Loss and damage can be averted by mitigating greenhouse gas emissions and minimized by taking preventive action to protect communities from the impacts of climate change (adaptation).
  • Addressing loss and damage covers a wide range of circumstances, from extreme weather events to slow onset events and economic to non-economic loss and damage. Each of these may require a different approach for which financing mechanisms must be flexible so they can provide tailored support.
  • Action on loss and damage must also be understood to go beyond relief, rehabilitation, and recovery from disasters to include safe migration and resettlement and long-term security to re-establish lives and livelihoods. This is especially true as non-economic losses and slow onset events make it harder to define what qualifies as loss and damage.

 

Learn more about financing in loss and damage