Loss, Damage Fund Be “accessible, comprehensive, restorative”: Faith Leaders to COP28

Credit: SCIAF

Faith leaders “from across the world” are calling on participants in the 28th Conference of Parties Climate Conference (COP28) scheduled for November 30 in Dubai to ensure that the recently created Loss and Damage Fund is “accessible, comprehensive, restorative and effective” to meet the needs of affected persons.

In a Tuesday, October 10 statement, the faith leaders from various religious agencies including, Caritas Internationalis (CI), the Scottish Catholic International Aid Fund (SCIAF), the International Cooperation for Development Solidarity (CIDSE) and Laudato Si’ Movement say they are “inherently concerned with the well-being of people, with the pursuit of justice, and the application of moral principles to everyday decision making.”

“There is a deep disharmony at the heart of the climate crisis which is hurting our poorest brothers and sisters the most. Many poor nations who contribute the least to this crisis and already struggle to secure basic needs for their people are now paying the price of other nations' actions,” the faith leaders say.

They add, “The Loss and Damage Fund established at COP27 was a signal that the world is ready to take these threats seriously, and to acknowledge the cries for justice across the world.”

The faith leaders underscore the need to do the right thing in what they describe as correcting “this injustice”. 


They say, “The Loss and Damage Fund must correct this injustice: A fit for purpose Loss and Damage Fund which gets money to the people who need it the most; is adequately resourced based on the polluter-pays principle; and fully addresses non-economic losses and damages.”

“We the undersigned, faith leaders from across the world, call on COP28 in Dubai to agree to establish a fit for purpose Loss and Damage Fund that truly meets the needs of people at the frontlines of the climate emergency,” they further say.

The faith leaders note that “such a fund could correct the deep injustice at the heart of the climate crisis, building peace, harmony and solidarity to respond to this challenge to our common home.”

“Vitally, this must be accompanied by urgent action to reduce emissions as quickly as possible to ensure the 1.5C temperature goal is not exceeded, and to invest in essential adaptation efforts to prevent future harms,” they further say.

The faith leaders explain that “the fund must be accessible, ensuring that communities in need across the Global South get the money they require to recover, and be masters of their own future.”

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“The fund must be comprehensive, supporting both responses to economic as well as non-economic losses and damages, for extreme weather events and slow-onset events such as sea-level rise and desertification,” they add.

The faith leaders further say that the Loss and Damage Fund “must be restorative, providing grants not loans on the basis of the polluter pays principle.”

“The fund must be representative, underpinned by human rights and the principle of subsidiarity, and governed by an equitable board acting in the common good,” they say.

On the need for the fund to be efficient and effective, they say that it needs to provide “rapid response when disasters strike, long-term support to protect from future damages, and acting as the flagship global fund to address losses and damages alongside other funding arrangements.”

Jude Atemanke is a Cameroonian journalist with a passion for Catholic Church communication. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism and Mass Communication from the University of Buea in Cameroon. Currently, Jude serves as a journalist for ACI Africa.