LOSS & DAMAGE IS NOT JUST A FUTURE RISK BUT SOMETHING WHICH IS ALREADY HAPPENING

Topic: Climate Change Loss and Damage; why adaptation is not enough
Host: UNDP India

UNDP India hosted a session on the topic “Climate Change Loss and Damage; Why adaptation is not enough”, wherein the following issues were deliberated upon:

  1. Understanding the limits of adaptation; Loss and Damage – Concept and Overview by Dr. Preeti Soni, Head and Assistant Country Director, Energy and Environment, UNDP India.
  2. Addressing loss and damage through comprehensive risk management; Commitments towards the Warsaw International Mechanism and Paris Agreement by Mr. Harjeet Singh, Global Lead on Climate Change, Action Aid.
  3. From avoiding and minimizing impacts of climate change to addressing loss and damage by Dr. Kees van der Geest United Nations University Institute for Environment and Human Security.
  4. Financing needs and links with the existing financial mechanisms by Dr. Saleemul Huq, Director, International Institute for Environment and Development.
  5. Climate Change related loss and damage in forest areas: Case Study by Mr. Vivek Kumar Singh, Principal Secretary, Government of Bihar.

Dr. Preeti Soni initiated the discussion by presenting a brief overview of the topic on Loss and Damage, its impact on development, concept on economic and non-economic impacts of the loss and damage and historical overview of this subject in the UNFCCC negotiations. This was followed by a presentation by Mr Harjeet Singh on ways to addressing loss and damage through comprehensive risk management; commitments towards the Warsaw Mechanism and Paris Agreement. He discussed at length on the issue of comprehensive climate risk management in the context of loss and damage and updated on the progresses made in the Warsaw International Mechanism. Dr. Kees van der Geest briefly described loss and damage as “Adverse effects of climate-related stressors that have not been or cannot be avoided through mitigation and adaptation efforts”. He was of the view that Loss & Damage is not just a future risk but something which is already happening. During the discussion Dr. Saleemul Huq, while presenting on the issue of financing needs and its linkage with exiting financial mechanisms suggested that it is high time to implement the principle of Polluters pay in the context of Loss and Damage. He was of the view that time has come for real action and companies that pollute should be made to pay and the revenue generated could be used to establish Loss & Damage Fund. Shri Vivek Kumar Singh and Shri D.K Shukla presented a case study on soil and moisture conservation treatment in natural forest tracts in the Indian state of Bihar with ramification for climate change challenges.

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