US seeks to remove ‘losses and damages’ from scientific report on climate impacts

(Climate Home News, 24 Feb 2022) The US is pushing back against the use of the term “losses and damages” in a leading scientific report on climate impacts, sources close to the negotiations have told Climate Home News.

The 18-chapter report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, due to be published on Monday, focuses on the impacts of global heating on human and natural systems and the options and limits to adapt to them.

It grapples with the “losses and damages” that might result when emissions cuts and adaptation measures are not enough to prevent the destruction of lives, livelihoods, infrastructure and biodiversity.

Over the past 10 days, government representatives have been discussing the findings of a “summary for policymakers” line by line to approve it.

A draft, obtained by Climate Home News, states that human-induced climate change has already “caused widespread losses and damages to nature and people, despite adaptation efforts”.

But, during a virtual meeting of national delegates this week, the US pushed for the term “losses and damages” to be replaced with the word “impacts”.

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Climate Home News, 24 Feb 2022: US seeks to remove ‘losses and damages’ from scientific report on climate impacts