Zoha believes that COP26 could be an opportunity to reestablish trust and legitimacy, but stresses that many developed countries refuse to acknowledge that loss and damage are separate from adaptation. She believes that the lack of clarity on what loss and damage actually is and why additional finance is needed is both intentional and political.

“What we found is that immediate progress is possible on loss and damage on the basis of historical responsibility and solidarity. Countries that are historically most responsible for climate emissions taking a step to bilaterally, as Scotland has done, provide finance on the basis of solidarity rather than waiting for a formal mechanism on loss and damage within the UNFCCC. That requires a consensus between developed and developing countries, and that is not something that is politically feasible at the moment.”

Zoha is one of the researchers behind the SEI report Designing a fair and feasible loss and damage finance mechanism published in October 2021.