Early pledges to 'loss and damage' fund build shaky trust at COP28

(Context, 1 Dec 2023) U.N. climate talks launch long-awaited fund for vulnerable countries but far more finance will be needed.

The launch of a long-awaited global fund to deal with growing loss and damage from wilder weather and rising seas, at Thursday's opening of the COP28 climate summit in Dubai, gave the annual talks a "running start", U.N. climate chief Simon Stiell said.

But the initial euphoria greeting its birth - met with smiles and a standing ovation by negotiators - got a tempered response from vulnerable nations on the frontlines of global warming and activists who said the work is far from over.

"We cannot rest until this fund is adequately financed and starts to actually alleviate the burden of vulnerable communities," said 39 countries making up the Alliance of Small Island Nations (AOSIS) in a statement after the approval.

Those countries, which include Stiell's native Grenada, are bearing a heavier burden as encroaching oceans eat away low-lying land and fiercer storms wipe out large chunks of their economies.

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Context, 1 Dec 2023: Early pledges to 'loss and damage' fund build shaky trust at COP28