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As Cop27 drew to a close the UN Secretary general said the summit had been driven by two overriding themes: Justice and ambition.

Justice for those on the frontlines of the climate crisis who did little to contribute to its making, and ambition to limit global temperature rise to 1.5C compared to industrial times by the end of the century.

After two weeks of reflection, The Independent gathered an expert panel to unpack whether and to what extent the summit delivered progress towards those two goals, and to address what still needs to happen to limit global heating and better protect those on the frontlines.

The Independent’s climate correspondent in London, Saphora Smith and senior climate correspondent in New York, Louise Boyle, hosted the event and were joined by Tina Stege, the Climate Envoy for the Marshall Islands and the chair of the High Ambition Coalition, Nisha Krishnan, director of climate resilience in Africa for the World Resources Institute and Tom Evans, a policy advisor at the climate change think tank E3G.

Ms Stege, of the Marshall Islands, kicked off the discussion by saying the agreement clinched in the last 24 hours of the summit to establish a fund to compensate nations for the loss and damage caused by the climate crisis was “historic.”

“We’re experiencing loss and damage, it’s hurting individuals, it’s hurting families, it’s hurting communities, there’s pain and suffering across the developing world and no way to respond to it,” she said. “It became undeniable – I think that that is what happened in the last 24 hours.”

To watch the event in full view the recording below

The Cop27 deal is historic but is it enough?

With a loss and damage fund secured, Dr Krishnan said what would happen next was for a transitional committee representing different countries to come together to discuss and eventually submit recommendations as to how the fund could work to nations at Cop28 in the United Arab Emirates next year.

“How do you actually finance it, how do you actually have access to it … how does it meet the speed and urgency required … and how do those resources get to the people who need it,” she said. “Those are all questions we still need to pay attention to.”

Meanwhile, the expert panel agreed that there was less progress on the ambition to limit global heating to 1.5C, with one shortcoming a failure to include language calling for the phasedown or phaseout of all fossil fuels rather than just the phasedown of unabated coal power in the final agreement.

“It’s now clear that this cannot be avoided next year, and I think many progressive countries and countries who are fighting for ambition will be clear that this has to be an outcome at Cop28,” said Mr Evans, noting that the next summit will be held in the UAE “a fossil fuel major economy overseeing the talks.”

“But it’s clear it’s on the agenda, it’s clear it’s going to be something that can’t be ducked,” he added.

To watch the event back in full please view the recording in the video above.

To watch other recordings in our virtual event series click here.

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