Various social media posts claim that ‘loss and damage’ is a scam from imaginary global warming. These posts were part of a Twitter message relating to the loss and damage fund approved at the recently concluded Conference of Parties (COP27).
In an earlier tweet on Oct 28, 2022, Tom Nelson claimed that “Again: Using imaginary CO2-induced “loss and damage” to justify wealth transfers is 100% scam and 0% science.”
What is Loss and Damage (Finance)?
The loss and damage finance or fund was adopted at the Conference of Parties 27, after numerous agitations by climate activists over the years, with the aim of compensating vulnerable countries hit hard by climate disasters.
History was made today at #COP27 in Sharm El-Sheikh as parties agreed to the establishment of a long-awaited loss and damage fund for assisting developing countries that are particularly vulnerable to the adverse effects of climate change. pic.twitter.com/spmWVUjTva
— COP27 (@COP27P) November 20, 2022
Loss and damage, according to Adelle Thomas, lead author of the IPCC’s 2022 report on Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability, is the negative impacts of climate change that occur despite, or in the absence of, mitigation and adaptation.
According to her “Loss and damage is often categorized as either economic or non-economic. Economic loss and damage are negative impacts that we can assign a monetary value to. These are things such as the costs of rebuilding infrastructure that has been damaged due to a flood, or the loss of revenue from agricultural crops that were destroyed due to drought.
“Non-economic loss and damage are negative impacts where it is difficult or infeasible to assign a monetary value to. These are things such as trauma from experiencing a tropical cyclone, loss of community due to displacement of people, or loss of biodiversity.”
Also, environmental and climate Activist, Martins Ogunlade in an interview with BONews Service said Loss and Damage are climate change catastrophes permitted by natural vulnerability and triggered by geological and social imbalance. You might add (government ineptitude). Its victims are usually frontline communities from developing countries.
“Thus, loss and damage finance is meant to address the impacts of climate change in these countries. They are funds allotted to manage the damages caused to nature and by extension the environment,” Ogunlade added.
Loss and damage finance according to Saleemul Huq in an article published on The Daily Star is the creation of a fund through which the rich polluting countries will pay compensation to poorer developing countries suffering from human-induced climate change.
Importance of Loss and Damage Finance
The UN Climate action noted that Africa is experiencing losses and damages which are being escalated with global warming.
The body went further to detail some of the projected losses and damages for the African region which include: “species extinction and reduction, irreversible loss of ecosystems and their services, including freshwater, land, and ocean ecosystems.
“There are risks to food security, risk of malnutrition, and loss of livelihoods due to reduced food production from crops, livestock and fisheries.”
It also added that “Losses and damages may include increased human mortality and morbidity due to increased heat and infectious diseases, inequality and poverty rates, the risk to water and energy security due to drought and heat, and reduced economic output and growth.”
However, with loss and damage finance, the victims of climate injustices would be compensated, especially in situations where adaptation and mitigation can no longer be applied.
Adelle Thomas also noted that “Prolonged delaying of improving financial, governance and institutional arrangements to address loss and damage will only result in those that are already most vulnerable and experiencing loss and damage facing ever-increasing levels of negative impacts of climate change.”
Lending her voice to the importance of Loss and Damage Finance during a post COP 27 session held in Lagos, Nigeria by the Corporate Accountability and Public Participation Africa, Zikorah Ibeh, shared that “Loss and Damage finance is quite important because there are situations that adaptation and mitigation cannot address the impacts of climate change. If someone has died as a result of flood or any other climate-induced incident, it is compensation that would help in such instance.”
Corroborating her, Martins Ogunlade said “over the years and mostly in UN conferences on Climate Change, loss and damage finance has been advanced as one of the solutions to climate injustice in the global south, particularly Africa.
“If calls for loss and damage finance are silenced, infractions will be normal and legitimate. And to say that global warming is not real is to disregard the obvious. Global warming is the reason for the continuous shrinking of lake Chad, the forced and aggressive invasion of nomadic herdsmen down south, and the motive for a sustained increase in the prices of foodstuff in Nigeria and by extension Africa.
“The impacts of global warming are undoubtedly global”, he added.
The claim that loss and damage is a scam from imaginary global warming is FALSE. The impacts of global warming are backed by scientific evidence and loss and damage is prominent in different countries of the world, especially in developing countries.