Catholic Agencies Laud COP27’s Creation of Loss and Damage Kitty for “poor” Countries

Credit: CIDSE

Members of the International Cooperation for Development Solidarity (CIDSE) have lauded the decision of the 27th Conference of Parties Climate Conference (COP27) to create the Loss and Damage Fund, a kitty intended to support developing countries that are facing the devastating impacts of climate change. 

In their report published November 20, the international alliance of Catholic development agencies in Europe and North America noted that the Loss and Damage Fund acknowledges the unfair share of “poor” countries in the effects of climate change.

They say that though not much has been done as a show of commitment to mitigate climate change effects, this year's COP was different.

“It has been 30 years since the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and almost a decade since the Paris agreement was adopted but parties have still not fulfilled their commitments required to avoid continued dangerous climate change effects. Some progress was however achieved at this COP: after 30 years in the making, this year’s decision to create the Loss and Damage Fund is a real breakthrough,” members of CIDSE say in their report.

They add, “This is a very important first step in recognising historically unfair differences between those who have caused the climate crisis and those who have been paying for it.”


Loss and Damage has been defined by scholars as the impacts of climate change that cannot, “or have not” been avoided through mitigation or adaptation and has been likened to an insurance pool based on the “polluters pay principle”.

In their report, members of CIDSE, however, note that establishing a Loss and Fund kitty without structures in place to implement it “is just not enough”.

They say that this year, despite the talks taking place in a loss and damage era, a time they say is marked with aggravated food, energy and health crises that are directly connected to the climate crisis, leaders seemed unable to close this critical gap. 

“Not only have parties failed to deliver on fossil fuel phase-out, but they have also failed in credibility by making very little progress on the implementation of the Paris Agreement, which we so urgently need if we are to care for all of creation and our common home,” CIDSE members say.

They add, “A Loss and Damage Fund without a commitment to mitigate and phasing out all fossil fuels is just not enough.”

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Governments at COP27 reportedly took what has been described as a ground-breaking decision to establish new funding arrangements, as well as a dedicated fund, to assist developing countries in responding to loss and damage. 

Governments also agreed to establish a “transitional committee” to make recommendations on how to operationalize both the new funding arrangements and the fund at COP28 next year. 

The first meeting of the transitional committee is expected to take place before the end of March 2023.

On adaptation, the governments agreed on the way to move forward on the Global Goal on Adaptation, which will conclude at COP28 and inform the first Global Stocktake, improving resilience amongst the most vulnerable. 

According to the international alliance of Catholic development agencies in Europe and North America, the COP27 decision outcomes “are still far from bold and transformative enough even when we recognize a good step in the right direction concerning loss and damage.”


“We also need to underline that loss and damage is not a charitable act, it is a plain and simple issue of justice,” they say, and add, “We, as CIDSE, along with our members, partners and allies from civil society and Church are part of the wider community who will continue to fight for climate justice inside and outside of the COP 27 and in every space where we can be heard.”

They emphasize, “So much more can and still needs to be done.”

Agnes Aineah is a Kenyan journalist with a background in digital and newspaper reporting. She holds a Master of Arts in Digital Journalism from the Aga Khan University, Graduate School of Media and Communications and a Bachelor's Degree in Linguistics, Media and Communications from Kenya's Moi University. Agnes currently serves as a journalist for ACI Africa.