Laos counts the cost of climate change: record floods, drought and landslides

Extreme weather risks the food security of thousands of Lao villages. At the COP 21 talks, will rich countries honour their pledge of $100bn a year by 2020 to help?

The Paris talks are likely to hinge not on the figure, which is broadly agreed by rich countries, but on whether rich countries pay a fair share of the money needed by developing countries to adapt. This, say many developing countries, should be calculated on the historical emissions of rich countries and their ability to assist poorer nations financially.

When these factors are taken into acount, the burden falls mainly on the US and Europe, whose emissions since the Industrial Revolution have been the greatest. According to ActionAid, the US should increase grants to $67.5bn a year and the EU to $36.9bn.

“Up to now, rich nations have been sitting around plucking numbers out of thin air to pretend to deal with the climate crisis,” said ActionAid senior policy analyst Brandon Wu. “Meanwhile, people in poor countries are already battling its vicious storms.”

Source: The Guardian. Date: 25 November, 2015