Pakistan welcomes ‘loss and damage’ agreement signed at UN summit
Pakistani officials, who had branded the country a victim of climate change and demanded compensation from the biggest polluting countries, called the funding deal “a step in reaffirming the fundamental principles of climate justice”.
The compensation agreement reached on Sunday morning in the Egyptian resort of Sharm el-Sheikh establishes funding for “loss and damage” suffered by poor countries due to global warming.
It’s a big win for developing countries that have long been crying out for money – sometimes seen as reparations – as they often fall victim to floods, droughts, heat waves, famines and storms made worse by the climate, although they have contributed little to the warming pollution. the globe.
It has also long been called an equity issue for nations hit by extreme weather and small island states facing an existential threat from rising seas.
“Three long decades and we have finally delivered climate justice,” said Seve Paeniu, Tuvalu’s finance minister. “We have finally answered the call of hundreds of millions of people around the world to help them deal with loss and damage.”
Pakistani Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif praised the development on Twitter, calling it “a crucial first step towards the goal of climate justice”.
Sharif acknowledged the work done on the summit agreement by his Cabinet Minister for Climate Change, Sherry Rehman, and his team. He said it was now up to a transition committee to build on the historical development.
Rehman in a tweet said, “It has been a long journey of 30 years from applying to forming the Loss and Damage Fund for 134 countries. We welcome today’s announcement and the joint text crafted over many nights.
“We look forward to (the fund) being operational, to become a robust body able to respond with agility to the needs of those who are vulnerable, fragile and on the front lines of climate disasters,” she said.
Pakistan suffered huge losses in the floods which affected a third of its 33 million people, who had to face unprecedented suffering in terms of human and material losses. More than 1,700 people were killed and nearly 13,000 others injured. More than 13,000 kilometers (8,080 miles) of roads, 439 bridges and 2.28 million homes have been damaged or destroyed.
Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari said Pakistan emerged victorious from the compensation deal.
“Win for Climate Justice, Win for the Developing World in honor of the 33 million flood victims in Pakistan and the millions around the world who are suffering from a climate catastrophe they did not create and which is not don’t have the resources to deal with it,” Zardari said.
The world’s biggest polluters must now keep their promises and contribute to the fund. A 2009 agreement for a $100 billion fund created by rich countries to finance development in poor countries was never fully funded.