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November 28, 2023

ActionAid’s expert spokespeople and youth activists from the Global South are available for interviews, briefings, and commentary throughout COP28.   

ActionAid will be participating at COP28 and, ahead of the climate negotiations, is setting out five climate justice benchmarks to deliver the action needed to address the Loss and Damage and Climate Justice.   

While laying out the key expectations for COP28, Teresa Anderson, ActionAid International’s Global Lead on Climate Justice, said:   

“The eyes of the world, especially Global South communities, will be firmly on COP28 to deliver on the long-overdue Loss and Damage Fund so that frontline communities can recover from the floods, droughts, and cyclones that are wrecking lives around the world. Wealthy and polluting countries have a clear moral obligation to fill the fund and finally provide real support to the countries and communities being pushed deeper into poverty by climate change.

“COP28 also presents a key opportunity to put the spotlight on the trillions of dollars of public and private financing that currently goes to fossil fuels and industrial agriculture, and to fix the harmful finance flows that are fuelling the climate crisis.”

 Susan Otieno, ActionAid Kenya’s Country Director, added:  

“The issue of the Loss and Damage Fund is once again central in the discussions at COP28. Developed countries need to step forward and take responsibility for their role in causing climate change and provide the hundreds of billions of dollars needed to help communities on the frontlines to recover and rebuild in the aftermath of climate disasters. In the Horn of Africa, following years of successive droughts, the region is now dealing with recent heavy rains that have caused devastating flooding. This latest disaster is affecting millions of people who have lost their homes and livelihoods, placing more urgency on the finalization of the Loss and Damage Fund.”

Flora Vano, ActionAid Vanuatu Country Representative, said:

“In our part of the world, we constantly live with the harsh realities of the climate crisis. Just as we are recovering from one cyclone, a new one strikes. We’re exhausted. Our ability to deal with these endless challenges is held back by a lack of real funding. At COP28, our communities are relying on the wealthy countries to take responsibility for the loss and damage caused by their fossil fuels, and to provide adequate funding in the form of grants to ensure that we can adapt and mitigate the impacts of climate change.”

ActionAid’s five climate justice benchmarks for a successful COP28: 

  • Leaders must agree on and put money in the new Loss and Damage Fund so that communities on the frontlines of the climate crisis can rebuild and recover in the aftermath of climate disasters. It is sad that women, girls, marginalized communities, and people living in poverty are particularly and disproportionately affected by climate-induced loss and damage. Without appropriate international financial support, countries devastated by climate change impacts run the risk of falling deeper into debt from economic losses and massive recovery costs. That is why the Loss and Damage Fund must deliver support to such countries. 
  • Fossil fuels are the major cause of the climate crisis the world is now grappling with. Yet a UN report shows the world’s petrostates are on course to increase production. COP28 must agree to phase out fossil fuels in a way that is fair, fully financed, and enables just transitions. To avert a catastrophe, we need to limit temperatures to the agreed 1.5 degree-Celsius mark by ending fossil fuel dependence and agreeing on a phasing out.   
  • The world’s finances are flowing in the wrong direction, and a shift is necessary to stop doing harm and build a more sustainable future. ActionAid’s report “How the Finance Flows” (Sept 2023) found that in the seven years since the Paris Agreement was signed, banks in the Global North have been financing the fossil fuel industry in the Global South to the tune of US $3.2 trillion.  Negotiations on Article 2.1c must make real progress in reshaping the financial flows that continue to fuel the climate crisis.  
  • The Global Stocktake (GST) must result in a frank analysis and a real ramping up of climate action where it is needed most, putting the biggest polluters in the hot seat.  Disappointingly, the world is off-track when it comes to efforts to maintain the 1.5 degrees Celsius global warming limit or provide the climate finance needed to cope with climate impacts and transition to greener pathways. 
  • The new work program on Agriculture and Food Security to be agreed upon at COP28 must talk about real solutions, such as agroecology, to make farmers and food systems fit for purpose in an era of climate change.  It is imperative that countries divest from industrial agriculture and invest in agroecology. Sadly, in the seven years since the Paris Agreement was signed, Global North banks have been financing harmful industrial agriculture in the Global South to the tune of $370 billion, according to ActionAid’s research. 


  1. Teresa Anderson is ActionAid International’s Global Lead on Climate Justice (Head of Delegation).
  2. Brandon Wu is the Director of Policy and Campaigns ActionAid USA. 
  3. Susan Otieno is the Executive Director of ActionAid International-Kenya.
  4. Farah Kabir is the Country Director of ActionAid Bangladesh.
  5. Flora Vano is the Country Program Manager for ActionAid Vanuatu.
  6. Agnes Schim van der Loeff is the Policy Advisor for Climate Justice at ActionAid Netherlands.  
  7. Swaleh Kitasi is the Program Manager of Resilient Livelihoods and Emergencies at ActionAid International Kenya. 
  8. Zahra Hdidou is the Senior Resilience and Climate Adviser at ActionAid UK.
  9. Mercy Munduru is ActionAid Uganda’s Head of Programmes and Fundraising. 
  10. Hamdi Benslama is the ActionAid EU Advocacy Advisor on Climate Justice. 
  11. Rand Al Khushman is a young Jordanian activist collaborating with ActionAid and the leader of the “Youth4Climate” Campaign.

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About ActionAid   

ActionAid is a global federation working with more than 15 million people living in more than 40 of the world’s poorest countries. We want to see a just, fair, and sustainable world in which everybody enjoys the right to a life of dignity and freedom from poverty and oppression. We work to achieve social justice and gender equality and to eradicate poverty.