There is now no serious scientific dispute about the cause and consequences of anthropogenic climate change. Mitigation and adaptation approaches have been agreed on under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) process to deal with climate change. However, due to delayed and inadequate efforts on both fronts, the adverse impacts of climate change are causing harm to the lives and livelihoods of millions of people all over the world and inflicting significant economic losses. As such, Parties of the Convention (as the UNFCCC is known) decided at the eighteenth Conference of the Parties (COP) to establish institutional arrangements, such as an international mechanism, to address loss and damage associated with the impacts of climate change at COP 19 in November of 2013 at COP 19. However, there is a long way to go before it will be possible to establish a required institutional framework for addressing loss and damage within the UNFCCC process.
While negotiations on loss and damage are taking place at the global level, loss and damage resulting from (inter alia) climate change impacts is
happening at the local level. Therefore, vulnerable countries like Bangladesh need to develop national policies and legal frameworks to deal with loss and damage without waiting for agreed outcomes on loss and damage from the UNFCCC process. Against this backdrop, this study examines the scope and limitations of existing regulatory frameworks and explores options to develop national legal and institutional frameworks in Bangladesh to deal with loss and damage stemming from climate change impacts.
Dr. Abdullah Al Faruque* and M. Hafijul Islam Khan*
*Centre for Climate Justice-Bangladesh (CCJ-B)