Confronting Hurricane Beryl

Hurricane Beryl underscores why low-income nations need immediate access to climate reparations.

Confronting Hurricane Beryl
Photograph by Tania CH Savarof / Instagram

LISTENING: to my heart race after foolishly drinking a dirty chai this morning
FEELING: dumb for having caffeine, lol
SEEING: these terrifying hurricane beryl updates

There has never been a hurricane in recorded history to become this strong this early into the season.

Meteorologists and climate experts will remember Hurricane Beryl long after it passes, but will everyone else? How many regular members of society comprehend the history unfolding in the Atlantic basin right now? Are people aware of what this signals for the rest of the hurricane season, which has only just begun?

The Category 5 storm has already killed at least six people in the southeastern Caribbean, and it's not done. By the time you read this Thursday, the hurricane will have already hit Jamaica and Haiti and be headed toward Mexico and potentially Texas. I'm not religious, but I can only pray that the universe protects the people of these countries from the devastating winds and rains they'll face.

Their hardship won't end with the passage of the storm — recovery is another fraught journey, especially for nations that lack adequate economic resources to assist families in rebuilding their homes or communities in improving their infrastructure for next time.

Welcome to Possibilities, a creative climate newsletter on the possibilities that lie where crisis meets community. I’m Yessenia Funes, and I'm here to highlight the urgent need for global policy to support vulnerable nations bearing the brunt of climate calamity.

This year, the annual climate negotiations known as COP will take place in Baku, Azerbaijan, and address the future of the Loss and Damage Fund, which provides low-income nations that face extreme impacts from climate change with financial resources provided by wealthier nations whose pollution created the crisis. Such a fund could provide critical assistance to Caribbean islands that are now suffering from Hurricane Beryl. Indeed, many leaders representing the people here have been outspoken about the need for climate reparations, another way of thinking about the Loss and Damage Fund.

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