On the opening day of COP22, Practical Action and Lund University organized the first side event on loss and damage (L&D), titled Loss and Damage Perspectives and Options. At the event, presenters focused on the typologies, risks, and community-level effects of L&D. A theme during the discussion was that L&D was a difficult concept to define, because it means many different things to many different communities. Some communities are facing new issues that have never come up before while other communities are facing the same issues repeatedly but with increasing severity. Despite the different effects that L&D can create, one constant remains: a lack of financial mechanisms to deal with the full range of L&D issues.
Following these discussions, Saleemul Huq, Director at the International Centre for Climate Change and Development, spoke about Bangladesh’s Climate Change Trust (BCCT). During his presentation, Huq spoke about how the trust functions, explaining that funds are allocated to the trust each year and that only two-thirds of those funds get distributed every year. The remaining one-third is saved in the trust for emergency purposes; however, the committee that administers the trust has yet to define what would constitute an emergency, so those funds accumulate in the fund each year. Recently, Bangladesh decided to use the remaining funds in the BCCT to create a national mechanism for L&D—making strides toward filling the aforementioned financial gap. Huq mentioned that Bangladesh is planning to announce the proposed action during the COP next week, in the hopes that others may learn from their initiative or want to contribute to their valiant effort.