AN SNP minister has called on other nations across the world to follow Scotland in taking responsibility for climate loss and damage after being praised by a leading charity for bring forward £1 million of “pioneering” funding for the global south.

The Scottish Government has become the first nation to pledge funding to the global south for loss and damage, an admission that the actions being caused in developed countries is having destructive consequences in poorer states.

Research by Oxfam found that from 1990 to 2015, the richest 10 per cent of the world's population was responsible for more than half of the global emissions.

At a COP26 event organised by the Scottish Government and Stop Climate Chaos Scotland, SNP Environment Minister, Mairi McAllan, formally called for other countries to follow Scotland’s lead in taking responsibility for loss and damage.

Ms McAllan said: “We believe that the responsibility of tackling the climate crisis must fall on the countries with the greatest responsibilities for the position that we are in and the greatest respective capacity to make a contribution.

“Scotland is rising to that challenge, we are trying to rise to that challenge, and we call on others to do the same.”

She added: “We have a moral responsibility to acknowledge the urgency and the urgent need for action on loss and damage. In Scotland, we’re already trying to play our part.

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“We are absolutely dedicated to embedding fairness in what we do in our climate action domestically and around the world. Scotland takes its role as a cooperative and helpful neighbour very seriously.”

Asked how she will ensure the funding reaches those in the global south that need it most, Ms McAllan said the Scottish Government “will try and embed democracy at the heart of what we do”.

She added: “We will speak directly to the grassroots, to the people that the funding is there to support.

“We will ask them what suits them best and we will empower them collectively and with partners to have those solutions designed and implemented where they are needed.”

The groundbreaking move by the Scottish Government has been praised by charities, with optimism that climate justice is now being placed as a key strand of global efforts, without which has been labelled “morally and technically bankrupt”.

Danny Sriskandarajah, CEO of Oxfam GB, thanked Ms McAllan for “the leadership you and your government have shown on international development”, pointing in particular to climate finance.

He added: “The £1 million announced on loss and damage may seem small compared to the billions that we are talking about in this conference, but for many of us who are deeply concerned about loss and a damage, it’s the sort of pioneering leadership that you’re showing that we appreciate.”

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Mr Sriskandarajah added that even if global efforts to pay up the $100bn of promised funding are not accelerated, COP26 is placing loss and damage and climate finance “right at the heart of the COP agenda”.

He added: “Even if we don’t get substantial progress at this COP, what’s really important is that loss and damage is secured as a regular and central agenda item for subsequent COPs. That justice dimension is intrinsically linked to climate action.

“Climate action without climate justice, I think, is morally and technically bankrupt.”

Jamie Livingstone, head of Oxfam Scotland, has called on other countries to follow Scotland's lead for the “groundbreaking recognition” of the impact being suffered by the global south.

He added: "This announcement is welcome acknowledgement that for some communities around the world, talk of limiting the damage of climate change has already come far, far too late.

“In many places, climate change has already caused irreversible damage to people's homes, lives and livelihoods. Despite this grim truth; world leaders have continued to duck calls to establish a new funding mechanism for loss and damage.

“Other countries must now follow Scotland's lead and offer dedicated financial support to countries where lives have already been lost and ruined because of climate change."

Alistair Dutton, director of Scottish Catholic International Aid Fund (SCIAF), who hosted the COP26 event, added: “I do want to mark and welcome the announcement that the Scottish Government was the first government to put up money for loss and damage which I think is hugely significant.

“I hope that the signatories to the conference will take inspiration from this and will follow the precedent and commit money to loss and damage.”