COP28: Protestors call for additional financing for loss and damage fund

Protesters at the COP28 climate talks in Dubai Monday called for additional financing for the newly established loss and damage fund, as well as an end to subsidies for the fossil fuel industry.

Kenyan climate activist Eric Njuguna said he believed certain countries had not paid enough into the fund.

“The message of this action today is that after the creation of the loss and damage fund on day one, Global North countries haven’t paid enough into the loss and damage fund,” he said.

“We need the rich countries to pay into the loss and damage fund in the scale of hundreds of billions,” he added.

Meanwhile, Japanese activist Susanne Wong singled out her country for subsidizing modern fossil fuels across Asia.

“Japan is derailing the energy transition across Asia and globally,” she said.

“They’re organizing here at COP(28), and they’re organizing a summit of heads of state from across southeast Asia right after COP(28) ends to try to promote these false solutions, saying that more fossil fuels are needed for the energy transition,” she added.

Public protests are a rare sight in the United Arab Emirates, but the U.N. and the UAE agreed before COP28 that free expression would be allowed.

Activists described a process of having to seek approvals with organizers for their demonstrations.

Meanwhile, human rights researchers from organizations long banned by the country also have been let in, providing them some the opportunity for the first time in about a decade to offer criticism — though many acknowledge it may see them never allowed back in the country.