In response to Assistant Minister for Climate Change and Energy, Senator Jennifer McAllister’s comments on the Australian government’s position on loss and damage at COP27, Shiva Gounden, Pacific advisor at Greenpeace Australia Pacific, said: “The Australian government is working overtime to bolster its reputation at COP27, but at the cost of any real, meaningful action.

“The country went to Egypt with clear goals – move from being a climate laggard to a leader, repair its relationship with the Pacific, and demonstrate its suitability to co-host COP31 with the region.

“Senator McAllister’s comments today clearly show they still have a long way to go. Simply repeating the same rhetoric over and over while avoiding commitments which will have real impact for our Pacific neighbours is not good enough. Having set the bar low, the Australian government is still nowhere near to clearing it.

“Rather than claim a victory for supporting discussions, or being an improvement on the previous government, Australia must heed decades-long calls from the Pacific to actually commit to supporting a loss and damage finance facility. 

“Senator McAllister said by supporting loss and damage talks, Australia is back at the table. You do not earn a seat at the table and you do not earn COP31 by simply talking the talk. 

“Only when the Australian government supports the Pacific’s call for a dedicated loss and damage finance facility will Australia show it is worthy of co-hosting COP31.”