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20 Nov 2022

Georgina Rannard, BBC

COP27: Loss and damage fund agreed but no fossil fuel progress

"COP27: Climate costs deal struck but no fossil fuel progress" 20 November 2022

A historic deal has been struck at the UN's COP27 summit that will see rich nations pay poorer countries for the damage and economic losses caused by climate change.

It ends almost 30 years of waiting by nations facing huge climate impacts.

But developed nations left dissatisfied over progress on cutting fossil fuels.


Luke-warm applause met the historic moment the "loss and damage fund" was agreed in the early hours of Sunday, as a confusing and often chaotic 48 hours left delegates exhausted.

It is, though, a huge symbolic and political statement from developed nations that long resisted a fund that covers climate impacts like flooding and drought.

The summit began two weeks ago with powerful statements from vulnerable nations. "We will not give up... the alternative consigns us to a watery grave," Bahamas Prime Minister Philip Davis said.

On Sunday, Pakistan's climate minister Sherry Rehman, who negotiated for the bloc of developing countries plus China, told journalists she was very happy with the agreement.


On Sunday, Antigua and Barbuda environment minister Molwyn Joseph, and chair of the Alliance of Small Island States, said the deal was a "win for the entire world" and "restored global faith in this critical process dedicated to ensuring no one is left behind".

But nations and groups including UK, EU, and New Zealand left Egypt unhappy with compromises on fossil fuels and curbing climate change.


"I'm incredibly disappointed that we weren't able to go further," UK lead negotiator Alok Sharma told journalists after talks concluded.

Countries that fought to weaken the ambition to rapidly cut greenhouse gas emissions - gases that warm the planet - need to look at-risk nations "in the eye," he said.


The final overarching deal did not include commitments to "phase down" or reduce use of fossil fuels.

It also included ambiguous new language about "low emissions energy" - which experts here say could open the door to some fossil fuels being considered part of a green energy future.

New Zealand's climate minister told BBC News that there were "strong attempts by the petrol states to roll back" on agreements, but that developed countries "held the line".

Nations, including the G20 group, are anxious for the world to urgently cut fossil fuel use.

But developing nations like India - or those reliant on oil and gas - push back, because they want to exploit their reserves, as western countries did historically.


[F]ossil fuel delegates remained out in force - up 25% on last year - while experts said women participants were too few.