29 November 2013

Loss and damage mechanism created at Climate Conference

At its 19th meeting, the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, established a new international mechanism to deal with the impacts of climate-related loss and damage. The mechanism, named the Warsaw international mechanism for loss and damage, is to ‘address loss and damage associated with impacts of climate change, including extreme events and slow onset events, in developing countries that are particularly vulnerable to the adverse effects of climate change.’ The decision by which the mechanism was established acknowledges ‘that loss and damage associated with the adverse effects of climate change includes, and in some cases involves more than, that which can be reduced by adaptation.’

Many richer governments, including the United States and the European Union, had opposed a new mechanism for loss and damage under the Convention, unwilling to open the door to potential claims for compensation based on their historical responsibility for global warming, but eventually agreed in return for weak language on financial assistance.

The organisation and governance of the executive committee of the Warsaw international mechanism is to be finalised at the 20th Conference of the Parties in December 2014.

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Source: Thomson Reuters Foundation | UN 'loss and damage mechanism' born amid rising climate costs
Source: The New York Times | Deals at Climate Meeting Advance Global Effort
Source: Decision -/CP.19 | Warsaw international mechanism for loss and damage associated with climate change impacts (advance unedited version)

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