As a first move at COP28, Canada announces support for developing countries to address loss and damage due to climate change

News release

December 1, 2023 – Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Climate change is a global crisis that affects the entire world, but its devastating effects are not shared equally among countries. Developing countries, which contribute the least to the pollution that causes climate change, are the most vulnerable to some of its harshest consequences, like intense storms, catastrophic flooding, and rising sea levels. Canada is committed to helping developing countries address climate-related loss and damage.

That is why today, to kick off COP28, the Honourable Steven Guilbeault, Minister of Environment and Climate Change, announced a $16 million contribution to the start-up cost of a global fund to address loss and damage. This contribution, made in partnership between Minister Guilbeault and the Honourable Ahmed Hussen, Minister of International Development, makes Canada one of the first contributors to the fund. This seed contribution will support the fund as it starts to provide vulnerable countries and communities with the resources they need to respond to the worst impacts of climate change.

Canada was an early advocate for the need to make progress on the issue of loss and damage at COP27 in 2022. Over the last year, Canada has been a progressive voice in brokering the historic agreement working with both developed and developing countries in bringing forward recommendations on the operationalization of the fund that were adopted at COP28.

Canada remains committed to working with its international partners to deliver an outcome that prioritizes the most vulnerable, mobilizes finance from all sources and types, and facilitates their access to funds to respond to the worst impacts of climate change.


“We must unite behind this effort to launch this important fund early, as an opportunity to strengthen global solidarity toward those who are facing the worst impacts of climate change. We must not leave climate-vulnerable developing countries to face these consequences alone. The creation of this fund is historic, and Canada is honoured to be among the first donors to this fund at COP28.”
– The Honourable Steven Guilbeault, Minister of Environment and Climate Change

“Canada continues to stand by developing countries as they confront the effects of climate change. We know that our efforts will only be maximized when we work together with partners to make a real difference in the lives and livelihoods of communities most at risk. Let this new loss and damage fund be a catalyst for strengthened partnerships and swift action to help those who need it most.”
– The Honourable Ahmed Hussen, Minister of International Development

Quick facts

  • Loss and damage caused by climate disasters can threaten the very existence of the most vulnerable countries, as well as the social and economic development achieved through the past decades. All around the world, including in Canada, climate disasters are destroying properties, disrupting businesses, ruining crops, washing out roads, swallowing up coastlines, but more importantly, destroying human lives and forcing people away from their homes.

  • Funding is provided through Canada’s $5.3 billion climate finance commitment, which aims to help low- and middle-income countries transition to sustainable, low-carbon, climate-resilient, nature-positive and inclusive development.

  • In 2023, Canada has contributed to the rapid launch of two multilateral funds: the Global Biodiversity Framework Fund, which was adopted at COP15 in Montréal last year and launched this past year at the Seventh Assembly of the Global Environment Facility (GEF) in Vancouver, and this fund under the loss and damage decision at COP28.

  • In the lead up to COP28, as a member of the Transitional Committee on Loss and Damage, Canada worked with developed and developing countries to develop recommendations on the operationalization of the fund and means to improve the coherence and coordination between the new fund and other related assistance mechanisms.  

  • Canada has been an active advocate for loss and damage in international meetings, including convening around 30 governments at the Seventh Ministerial Meeting on Climate Action (MoCA) convened by Canada, the European Union, and China, and hosted by the European Union in Brussels, Belgium, and at the G20 Environment and Climate Sustainability Ministerial Meeting in India, both in July 2023. G20 members committed to working together to implement the move forward on loss and damage, including a fund. 

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Kaitlin Power
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Environment and Climate Change

Media Relations
Environment and Climate Change Canada
819-938-3338 or 1-844-836-7799 (toll-free)

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