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Loss And Damage: Pricey Climate Change Consequences

Loss And Damage: Pricey Climate Change Consequences

A screenshot of a tweet was shared with us via whatsapp saying there is no loss and damage caused by Climate Change. This was a comment on a tweet posted on 18th November 2022 by Edwin Namakanga, a Ugandan Climate change activist. 


Loss and damage means different things to different groups of people and there is no agreed upon definition of loss and damage within the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). However, loss and damage can generally be understood as the negative impacts of climate change that occur despite, or in the absence of, mitigation and adaptation according to the United Nations publication titled “loss and damage: a moral imperative to act.

The UN states that loss and damage is often categorized as either economic or non-economic. Economic loss and damage are negative impacts that we can assign a monetary value to. These are things such as the costs of rebuilding infrastructure that has been damaged due a flood, or the loss of revenue from agricultural crops that were destroyed due to drought. Non-economic loss and damage are negative impacts where it is difficult to assign a monetary value to. These are things such as trauma from experiencing a tropical cyclone, loss of community due to displacement of people, or loss of biodiversity. 

The Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment says that economic loss and damage may include crop damage, home damage, or infrastructure damage, and non-economic loss and damage may include harm to human health and mobility, the loss of territorial access, the loss of cultural heritage, indigenous knowledge, and biodiversity loss.


An article by NBC News clearly indicates loss and damage caused by drought in different parts of the world. In Pakistan and India, temperature raising caused the death of at least 90 people, causing flooding due to melting glaciers in Northern Pakistan which wiped out a bridge. On the other hand, drought led to food insecurity in the Horn of Africa which affects people’s health and mobility.

Droughts have led to  approximately 650,000 deaths from 1970-2019, global economic losses of roughly USD 124 billion from 1998 to 2017 and in 2022, more than 2.3 billion people face water stress,” according to a report by the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification.

The United Nations states that the percentage of plants affected by drought has more than doubled in the last 40 years with about 12 million hectares of land lost each year to drought and desertification. 

Wildfires and volcanic activities affected 6.2 million people between 1998-2017 with 2400 attributable deaths worldwide from suffocation, injuries, and burns.Another significant health effect of wildfires is on mental health and psychosocial well-being, according to the World Health Organisation.

In 2022, floods killed more than 600 people in Nigeria and millions internally displaced. Similar floods were witnessed across the country in 2012, killing more than 300 people and displacing millions after excess water was released from the Lagdo Dam in northern Cameroon. In Thailand, floods affected about 450,000 homes and more than 100,000 hectares of farmland according to an article by the Guardian.

In Uganda, landslides buried houses, markets, and a church in three villages in Bududa Killing an estimated 400 people and displaced 5000 people in 2010, according to the UN migration article.  

Global flooding in 2021 cost the global economy 82 billion USD, according to an article by Reuters. In this case, natural catastrophes affected the economic chain, causing damage.


The claim is False, there are a number of losses and damages caused by climate change world wide.

This fact-check was produced by Debunk Media Initiative with support from Code for Africa’s PesaCheck, International Fact-Checking Network and African Fact-Checking Alliance network.


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