The overarching objective of the UNFCCC – to stabilise emissions at levels and within a timeframe that will allow ecosystems to adapt naturally to climate change, to ensure that food production is not threatened and to enable economic development to proceed in a sustainable manner – is, in fact, to avoid loss and damage. ~Monitoring loss and damage therefore provides a measure of the overall effectiveness of global (mitigation and adaptation) efforts. Mitigation efforts are the primary way of avoiding and minimising loss and damage – the lower the mitigation ambition, the greater the risk of loss and damage. Where mitigation ambition is not high enough, adaptation efforts can help avert or minimise loss and damage. ~This thematic guide was developed to provide negotiators and other stakeholders with a brief history of the negotiations on loss and damage; a ready reference to the key decisions that have already been adopted; and a brief analysis of the outstanding issues from a developing country perspective.