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Tebtebba/FPP Side Event at SB42, 8 June 2015
Deforestation, Climate Finance and the Rights of Indigenous Peoples; 1:15pm at Bonn2, World Conference Center

Video: Tebtebba Press Conference, 15 Nov. 2013
TYPHOON HAIYAN AND EXTREME WEATHER CONDITIONS: How Indigenous Peoples are Coping with Disasters

Tebtebba/Partnership Side Event
Side event of Tebtebba and Indigenous Peoples' Partnership on Climate Change & Forests at COP 19, 13 Nov 2013 at Warsaw, Poland.

Video: Tebtebba Press Conference, 4 Dec. 2012
Analysis of the Current State of COP18 Negotiations and Indigenous Peoples' Demands on the Green Climate Fund

Interview! Climate Change Studio
Recognizing and incorporating indigenous peoples' demands in the climate change negotiations, Victoria Tauli-Corpuz

IIPFCC Policy Paper
International Indigenous Peoples Forum on Climate Change (IIPFCC) Policy Paper on Climate Change
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COP21 Statement of the UN Special Rapporteur PDF Print

 

Removing Rights for Indigenous Peoples places Forests, Climate Plan at Risk

By Victoria Tauli-Corpuz, UN Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples

 

The outcome of a fierce debate in play during negotiations in Paris today will determine whether the world succeeds in slowing the climate change that places all humanity at risk.

I appreciate the inclusion of Preambular Paragraph 10 which  emphasizes “… the importance of promoting, protecting and respecting all human rights, the right to development, the right to health, and the rights of indigenous peoples…when taking action to address climate change” of Annex 1 of the Draft Paris Agreement. I also note the reference to human right in Article 2.2. in the same document. This says that the Agreement shall be implemented on the basis of equity and science, and in accordance with the principle of equity and common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities…  and on the basis of respect for human rights…”

However, I regret that the earlier text which says “including rights of indigenous peoples…” was removed.  I strongly believe that having a reference to indigenous peoples’ rights in this section is very important because it lays down the basic principles which should guide the achievement of the purposes of the Agreement. It is very unfortunate that countries known for promoting human rights and advancing democratic ideals globally—are reportedly leading a block of nations that would remove from the negotiating text language that commits countries to respect human rights, including those of indigenous peoples in the implementation of plans for addressing climate change. I appeal to these countries to heed the cry of indigenous peoples and other civil society organizations to return the references to Indigenous peoples rights.

I also note that Article 4, paragraph 5 refers to indigenous peoples’ knowledge in adaptation. and there is a reference to human rights, although this is in brackets. The Draft COP Decision, Article 30 in the section “Decisions to Give Effect to the Agreement” states that the CMA shall consider development of principles and guidelines which ” (b) Respect customary and sustainable land-use systems and the security of indigenous peoples’ and local communities’ land tenure.”  Article 39 under the same section says the Agreement should  (c) Involve and facilitate the participation of relevant stakeholders, in particular women[, local communities] and indigenous peoples, in planning, decision-making and monitoring and evaluation…”

I am strongly appealing to the State Parties to unbracket the references mentioned above and put back the phrase “rights of indigenous peoples” in Article 2.2.

Failure to protect indigenous peoples’ rights in a final agreement will fuel destruction of the forests and other ecosystems managed since time immemorial by indigenous peoples. This will weaken the contributions of indigenous peoples to the solutions to climate change. A new study released this week at the COP21 by a collaboration of indigenous peoples’ groups from Africa, Latin America and Asia, and the Woods Hole Research Center reports that forests on indigenous territories store at least 20 percent of the carbon in tropical forests worldwide. The authors acknowledge that this estimate is conservative. Other studies over the last year have shown that indigenous peoples outperform every other owner, public or private entities on forest conservation.

Should human rights for indigenous peoples be struck from the final agreement, negotiators will have destroyed any pretense of their intention to mitigate climate change. If our rights are violated, we will be unable to protect the forests. This is the direct link between human rights and climate change.

 

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COP21 Side Event Invitation PDF Print

Tebtebba and CHIRAPAQ invite you to a side event, in coordination with the Indigenous Peoples' Gobal Partnership on Climate Change, Forests and Sustainable Development:

Strengthening Indigenous Peoples' Adaptation and Mitigation Strategies & Food Security through Direct Access to the Green Climate Fund

TUESDAY, 01 December
15:00 - 16:30 hrs
Observer Room 02

Panel Speakers:

  • Ms. Victoria Tauli-Corpuz, UN Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples
  • Ms. Tarcila Rivera Zea, Center for Indigenous Cultures of Peru (CHIRAPAQ), Peru
  • Mr. Kimaren Ole Riamit, Indigenous Livelihood Enhancement Partners (ILEPA), Kenya
  • Ms. Vu Thi Hien, Center of Research and Development in Upland Areas (CERDA), Vietnam
  • Ms. Jo Ann Guillao, Tebtebba
 
Sign on to the Letter to GCF! PDF Print
Thursday, 29 October 2015 14:50


Sign on to the letter of indigenous peoples' organizations and support groups to the Green Climate Fund

Spearheaded by Tebtebba and the Forest Peoples Programme, the letter requests, among others, clarification on what is meant by "country ownership" where "simple reference to 'multistakeholder' engagement cannot satisfy or guarantee the effective participation of indigenous peoples." Another key point is direct access by indigenous peoples to finance where "We believe that in order to be able to offer our contribution and solutions based on our traditional livelihoods and knowledge, direct access to financing for indigenous peoples should be ensured."

Sign on to the letter by sending an email to raymond[AHT]tebtebba.org.

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October 22, 2015

The Green Climate Fund Secretariat and Board
175, Art Center-Daero, Yeonsu-gu
Incheon 406-840,
Republic of Korea

 

Dear Green Climate Fund Secretariat and Board members,

Your upcoming meeting in Zambia will be a crucial one for the history and future of the Green Climate Fund. You will be discussing key policy issues such as the information disclosure policy and the monitoring and accountability framework for accredited entities, two important tools to ensure transparency, participation and accountability. You will also decide the first projects to be funded by the Fund, therefore providing the first opportunity to verify the effectiveness and efficiency of the GCF procedures and interim policies.

One of the key prerequisites for successful implementation of adaptation and mitigation projects by the Fund is the full effective engagement and consultation with all stakeholders, including indigenous peoples. Effective consultation, and engagement of stakeholders are fundamental to ensure “country ownership”. However, in this context, we, indigenous peoples, would like to bring to your attention our concerns regarding the use of the terms “country ownership” and “multi-stakeholder engagement”.

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IIPFCC Statement - Dialogue with States, 17 Oct 2015 PDF Print

 

Download the Statement in English and Spanish.

During the Indigenous Peoples Dialogue with States on the UNFCCC held in Bonn, Germany on 17 October 2015, the International Indigenous Peoples' Forum on Climate Change (IIPFCC) set out several key demands for COP21 in Paris and beyond. The main demands are the following:

RESPECT FOR HUMAN RIGHTS, INCLUDING THE RIGHTS OF INDIGENOUS PEOPLES IN CLIMATE CHANGE POLICIES AND ACTIONS

Parties should ensure an overarching human rights approach to all climate change interventions, procedures, mitigation strategies and adaption. The operational provisions of the Paris Agreement as well as the COP decisions that will provide guidance for the implementations of the deliberations adopted in COP21 should specifically require Parties to respect, protect, promote, and fulfill the rights of Indigenous Peoples as provided in the UNDRIP, ILO Convention No. 169, the International Convention on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, and General Recommendation 23 of CERD. There are some proposed solutions to climate change such as those under the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) that have serious implications to the rights of indigenous peoples. Therefore, it is imperative that Parties recognize and respect the rights of indigenous peoples to their lands, territories and resources, including their cosmo-visions, subject to their free, prior and informed consent, with the right to say “No”. Indigenous peoples living in voluntary isolations must to be protected in their territories from extractive industries and other projects.

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Resilience in a time of uncertainty: Indigenous peoples and climate change PDF Print

Resilience in a time of uncertainty: Indigenous peoples and climate change, 26 - 27 November 2015, Paris

Visit the website for more information.

Background note

Climate change poses risks to all societies across the globe – however these risks are disproportionally distributed. Those who do least to accelerate climate change are those who are particularly threatened by its impacts. These include the over 400 million indigenous peoples in the world.

Indigenous peoples are a wide and diverse group of peoples who share a distinct set of characteristics including self-identification as indigenous peoples; historical continuity with pre-colonial or pre-settler societies; strong links to territories and surrounding natural resources; distinct social, economic and political systems; distinct language, culture and beliefs; and resolve to maintain and reproduce ancestral environments and systems as distinctive peoples and communities (UNDP HDR, 2014). International recognition of indigenous peoples and their collective rights to self-determined development and management of their resources can be found in declarations such as the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (2007).

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