Negotiations in Sharm el-Sheikh (finally) ended Sunday morning local time, with COP27 delegates applauding the creation of a loss and damage fund, while also worrying the talks had not done enough to cut fossil fuel use and reduce the pollution causing already-devastating climate impacts around the world. In a culmination of a 30 year campaign, a united front of developing nations put loss and damage on the official agenda two weeks ago, and secured a first-ever commitment from industrialized nations to pay for the damage their climate pollution has caused.
“COP27 has done what no other COP has achieved and created a loss and damage fund to support the most impacted communities of climate change,” Mohammed Adow of Power Shift Africa, said in a statement. The final agreement kept a reference to limiting global temperature increase to 1.5°C (2.7°F), keeping the Paris goals alive, at least on paper. It did not call for a reduction of all fossil fuels, keeping language from COP26 instead, disappointing the unprecedented number of nations — including the U.S. — who had called for final language reflecting the need to phase out all unabated fossil fuels.
When asked if stronger emissions reductions had been set aside in order to reach the final agreement including loss and damage, Camila Zepeda, Mexico’s chief climate negotiator, told Reuters, “Probably. You take a win when you can.” (Reuters, AP, Washington Post $, Axios, Bloomberg $, Politico and E&E News, The Guardian, New York Times $, Bloomberg $, Wall Street Journal $, Wall Street Journal $, CNN, New York Times $, FT $)