Report back on faith-based Talanoa dialogue: Important for Faith based organisations to support operationalisation of the Local Communities and Indigenous Peoples Platform

January 2, 2019

Report back on faith-based Talanoa dialogue,  Sw. Szczepana,  2 December 2018

The group noted three major themes of reflection and importance regarding indigenous peoples and the climate:

  1. Indigenous peoples as custodians of biodiversity and natural mitigation from conservation of forests and other ecosystems;
  2. Indigenous peoples as knowledge holders,  able to monitor climate changes,  biodiversity, ecosystems, atmospheric and social changes;
  3. Indigenous peoples as rights holders, recognised by UN and Paris Agreement but subject to frequent human rights violations.

In more detail.

  1. Custodians

Indigenous forest management and conservation of other ecosystems such as grasslands,  rivers and coastal regions helps slow climate change,  helps with nature based solutions and adaptation.

Major concerns regarding deforestation in Amazon and elsewhere. Concerns about indigenous management being prevented and leading to massive wild fires and species loss.

  1. Knowledge holders

Example of African indigenous pastoralists who are working with scientists on weather and climate forecasting.  They contribute to National Adaptation Plans. UNESCO support in Sahel and East Africa.

Other example includes indigenous to indigenous capacity building on savanna grasslands fire management. Australian Aborigines are offering to work with San and other communities in Botswana. Many countries experience forest fires.

  1. Rights holders

UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples is the global rights instruments.  Paris Agreement includes human rights and rights of Indigenous peoples.

Concern regarding indigenous peoples being targeted for defending the environment.  Conflict with extractive industries.

Recommendation includes educating religious leaders about the importance of supporting indigenous peoples.  Important for Faith based organisations to support operationalisation of the Local Communities and Indigenous Peoples Platform.

Important for FBOs to defend rights based language in Paris Rule Book.