UN climate change conference marks small step towards justice, says EU leader


The UN climate change conference COP27 “marks a small step towards climate justice,” said European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen on Sunday.

At the conference in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, nearly 200 countries made a historic deal to establish a “loss and damage” fund to help vulnerable countries hit hard by climate change.

“We have treated some of the symptoms but not cured the patient from its fever,” von der Leyen said. “We are rebuilding trust. This is crucial moving forward because there can be no lasting action against climate change without climate justice.”

She also said the goal of a temperature rise of no more than 1.5C was kept alive at COP27 yet added: “Unfortunately however, it has not delivered on a commitment by the world’s major emitters to phase down fossil fuels, nor new commitments on climate mitigation.”

The “loss and damage” fund is a big win for poor countries, which have long called for being compensated for climate-related disasters. Rich countries, however, have long opposed the idea.

Details on how the fund would operate, however, remain murky. The text leaves a lot of questions unanswered about when it will be finalized and become operational, and how exactly it would be funded.

Sunday’s agreement came after marathon talks between delegates from about 200 countries that exceeded the final date of the summit, which was originally scheduled to conclude on Friday.​​​​​​​__The Nation