Humza Yousaf, First Minister, Government of Scotland, during a panel discussion noted the COP 28 agreement to operationalize the loss and damage fund, saying that though many in the Global South have expressed concern about it, “let’s not allow perfection be the enemy of the good,” noting that progress is important.
He emphasized the responsibility of the Global North to “repair the damage” caused by climate change, calling tackling the climate crisis “fundamentally an issue of justice.”
In a keynote speech, former US Vice President Al Gore underscored that “political will is itself a renewable resource.”
Gore compared the climate movement to the “great moral-based” movements of the past, such as the US Civil Rights and Women’s Suffrage movements, noting that the clarity of what’s right and wrong bolsters these types of movements even when those involved feel despair.
He underscored the need to end fossil fuel subsidies and to fight back against the power of fossil fuel interests to stop climate change. “Don’t ever doubt that we can do this.All those movements had one thing in common: When distractions and underbrush were cleared away and the central issue was revealed as a choice between right and wrong, the outcome became foreordained.”
Addressing participants, Gore called for enhanced collaboration across all governing bodies at all levels. “I am deeply inspired by the collective efforts of local communities, by mayors and elected leaders, and by the residents that support you in your leadership,” he concluded.
Frank Cownie, of the Local governments for Sustainability(ICLEI), the organizers of the Multilevel Action & Urbanization Pavilion at COP28, noted how Al Gore’s 2006 film introduced so many people to the “inconvenient truth” that climate change is, in fact, occurring and poses risks today and for future generations.
Delegates at the COP28 climate talks in Dubai formally adopted a loss and damage fund Thursday to transfer finances to countries hit hardest by the climate crisis. The details had already been agreed earlier this month at a pre-COP session, when it was decided that the World Bank would host the fund.
Earth Negotiations Bulletin