Meeting Migrants’ Needs through the Loss & Damage Fund

03 December 2023
Event location
Climate Mobility Pavilion, COP 28, Dubai, United Arab Emirates


Meeting Migrants’ Needs

Co-organized by the German Council on Foreign Relations and the Robert Bosch Foundation, this event on the Health Day of COP28 seeks to inspire meaningful dialogue, catalyze action, and encourage collective responsibility in addressing loss and damage while ensuring that the dignity and needs of communities affected by climate-related migration are at the forefront. Being forced to move is a process of loss, which can include leaving behind not only physical assets, such as land and property, but also livelihoods. The climate crisis is increasingly forcing people to migrate.

Even when migration is planned, such as through planned relocation, losses may be mitigated but rarely entirely prevented. Economic losses and damages are often connected with non-economic losses and damages, such as loss of culture and identity and an increase in the harm or suffering that individuals and communities experience. Impacts on mental health and well-being, in particular, are often overlooked. Yet, it is not only the triggers of displacement in the context of climate change, such as extreme weather events, that may cause stress or trauma but also the sustained disruption of social ties or an often-experienced deterioration in living conditions.

The event will focus on the non-economic losses and damages that people sustain when being forced to move due to climate change. A particular focus will be on discussing effects on physical health, mental health, and well-being. We will learn from the perspectives of younger people and engage with voices from the Horn and East Africa. We will also share and discuss first reflections on the approval of the funding arrangements of the Loss and Damage Fund on the first day of COP28.

Guiding Questions
• How can non-economic losses for those displaced in the context of climate change be assessed, including within the framework of loss and damage?
• What are the often-overlooked impacts on mental health and well-being of forcibly displaced people in the context of climate change? Which population groups may be particularly affected?
• What are solutions that can mitigate or prevent the harm and suffering that people may experience when being forced to move due to climate change? How can equitable access be ensured, especially for those most impacted?
• What innovative strategies and mechanisms can be developed to ensure that financing, especially loss and damage financing, is accessible, transparent, and responsive to the needs of impacted populations?
• How can partnerships and collaboration between governments, civil society, and international organizations be leveraged to mitigate or prevent the harm and suffering that people may experience when being forced to move due to climate change?

Opening remarks
• Atle Solberg, Head of Secretariat, Platform on Disaster Displacement

Panel discussion with experts on climate-related migration
• Rose Kobusinge, IOM-AU Migration Youth Ambassador and YOUNGO representative to the TFD
• Dr. Patricia Nayna Schwerdtle, University of Heidelberg, Researcher on Climate Migration and Health
• Alvin Munyasia, Regional Advocacy and Communications Specialist at Action Against Hunger for the Horn and East Africa

Closing remarks
• Prof. Dr. Rainer Sauerborn, University of Heidelberg, Expert on Climate Change and Global Health

Moderation: Dr. Kira Vinke, Head of the Center for Climate and Foreign Policy, German Council on Foreign Relations