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Indigenous Biocultural Protocols: Empowering Forest Dependent Indigenous Peoples and developing standards for REDD+
24 – 27 November, 2011, Durban, South Africa
IPCCA Secretariat Asociación ANDES, Cusco, Peru
INTRODUCTION WORKSHOP OBJECTIVES AGENDA PARTICIPANTS AND METHODOLOGY SYNTHESIS OF RESULTS
Introductions and Expectations Analysis of REDD+ Risks Sharing Local Experiences Through Rich Pictures Session on Developing Biocultural Protocols under the IPCCA Development of a Working Group within the IPCCA Conclusions and Planning
6 7 7 11 13 15
Annex 1 – Agenda Annex 2 – Participant List Annex 3 – Working Group Structure Annex 4 – Declaration Annex 5 – Press Release
19 22 23 28 31
This report, prepared by the IPCCA Secretariat, includes a description of the activities undertaken and synthesis of the themes discussed during the IPCCA organized workshop on Biocultural Protocols: Empowering Forest Dependent Indigenous Peoples and Developing Standards for REDD+, held in Durban, South Africa, November 24 – 27th. The dates and venue were chosen strategically prior to the COP17 of the UNFCCC, which also took place in Durban, South Africa November 28 – December 10, in order to ensure that the workshop results fed directly into the COP17 activities. For this reason the activities were divided into two days of workshop with the participants, and two days for feeding the results into the Caucus of the International Indigenous Forum on Climate Change which met for its preparatory session on the 26th and 27th of November. The workshop was organised as the culminating activity of the IPCCA REDD+ work stream undertaken with Ford Foundation funding, consolidating results of activities relating to the component of building a network of indigenous communities for biocultural analysis of REDD+ and reframing the REDD+ policy debate. While the workshop was aimed primarily at IPCCA partners located in the REDD belt, it enabled inclusion of new partners interested in collaborating on REDD+ safeguards through the IPCCA led proposal of developing biocultural protocols.
The strategic objectives of the workshop were to bring together IPCCA members located in the REDD belt, strengthen cooperation, and enhance partnerships for addressing common challenges and struggles to strengthen the resilience of their biocultural systems. Further, it aimed to provide a platform for indigenous peoples’ perspectives on issues of forest governance to enrich international discussions and reframe the REDD+ debate and to lobby for the recognition and respect of biocultural systems and indigenous peoples’ traditional resource rights. The specific objectives of the workshop were: 1. To distil and share lessons learned from experiences of forest dependent IPCCA members with regards to local assessments, forest governance, customary use and indigenous peoples rights, vis-à-vis REDD+. To facilitate shared understanding of key trends and issues on REDD+ and sharing of lessons about rights-based approaches, especially as they relate to developing Biocultural Protocols as safeguards for protecting indigenous peoples’ rights, developing local responses for poverty alleviation, strengthening biocultural systems, and ensuring sustainable forest management, including conservation. To explore the establishment of a Forest and Traditional Resource Rights Working Group under the IPCCA network, founded on a shared vision and as an approach for creating a strong, collective and distinctive voice for indigenous peoples, and to promote, among others, the strengthening of policies, institutions and practices that recognize indigenous peoples’ land tenure, the distinctive nature of traditional knowledge, the value and role of customary 3
management of forest resources and ecosystems, and Buen Vivir (endogenous development). The following expected outputs were defined for the workshop: • • • Proposal for a Biocultural Protocol Model focused on REDD & REDD+ Forest and Traditional Resource Rights Working Group of indigenous communities with a focus on the development of safeguards and strengthening of customary forest governance through the IPCCA local Assessments Policy recommendations on safeguards for REDD+ for the UNFCCC COP 17 meeting in Durban
A proposed agenda was developed by the IPCCA Secretariat in its role as organizers of the workshop and shared with all invited participants prior to the workshop (see Annex 1). Upon arrival in Durban and through reflection with the facilitation team the agenda was adjusted to better fit the needs of participants and the opportunities presented by the upcoming COP17. The final agenda and activities undertaken during the two days of the workshop are shown bellow. Workshop Agenda, November 24th
Time 8:00am 8:10am 9:10am 9:30am 9:45am 10:30am 10:45am 12:00pm 13:00pm 14:00pm 14:45pm 15:15pm 16:00pm 16.15 pm Opening Ceremony Participant Introductions and Expectations Workshop Overivew Introduction to Day 1: REDD, Safeguards and Biocultural Protocols Case Study Presentations Coffe Break Case Study Presentations cont. Discussion on Emergent Themes, Similarities and Differences Lunch Elements of a Biocultural Protocol for REDD Kuna Yala Case Study Discussion on BCP Coffe Break Developing Policy Recommendations Activity
Workshop Agenda, November 25th
9:00 am 9:30am 10:30am Summary & Parking Lot BCPs Case Studies Introduction to Session2: IPCCA’s Forest and Traditional Resource Rights Working Group Coffee Break Sápara and Sociobosque Case Study Exploring Vision and Mission for Working Group and Developing Recommendations for COP in two break-out groups Lunch Discussion of Break out Group Conclusions Coffe Break Review Policy Recommendations Plan agenda for the week Closing
10:45am 11:00am 11:15am
12:30pm 13:30pm 15:00pm 16:00pm 17:00pm 18:00pm
In total there were thirteen (13) participants. Annex 2 contains the list of participants, including representatives of Local Assessments currently being undertaken in Peru, Ecuador, Panama, and India. Further, delegates from new emerging areas of IPCCA local work such as the Sarayaku community in Ecuador and a representative from a Nicaraguan indigenous university with whom the IPCCA is developing a Central American program also attended. As the workshop represented the culmination of a yearlong process of implementation of the IPCCA REDD+ work stream, the facilitation team was made up of Secretariat staff and external consultants. The first consultant was contracted to undertake analysis of indigenous rights vis-à-vis REDD+ and biocultural protocols as a tool for protecting rights, which produced the main analytical input into the workshop. As part of this contract the consultant facilitated the activities related to biocultural protocols. A second consultant was contracted to support the development of 5
the REDD+ community network and build a communications strategy for the network, and facilitated the activities on developing the Working Group during the workshop. The combination of external and internal facilitators created a dynamic and interactive platform for facilitation. The main objective of the workshop on building strong networks and empowering communities required the use of participatory methodologies to enable horizontal learning. Further, the formation of a network requires building trust between its members, so the environment had to be conducive to open and honest communication. Where possible, participants were asked to use rich pictures to share their experiences with REDD+ and their concerns, while presentations and open dialogue format were used for constructing a collective vision.
This section presents a synthesis of the main points discussed under each theme and workshop session illustrating the process of the workshop, its content and agreements reached collectively.
The workshop opened with a session of introductions of all participants and sharing expectations for the workshop. The following list of expectations emerged: • • • • • • • Develop collective understanding of Biocultural Protocols Share local experiences with the IPCCA Take home learning from other experience Build alliances with like minded groups to further struggles at home Gain support for local actions against REDD+ Share local experiences of REDD+ implementation Build firm base for future work of IPCCA with REDD+
In reviewing the list of expectations that each participant expressed, it became obvious that the most important expectation for most participants was the opportunity to share their experiences and to learn from each other. The objectives of the workshop were reiterated by the Secretariat team illustrating that the expectations of the group map well onto the planned objectives. Alejandro Argumedo, coordinator of the IPCCA initiative, situated the objectives of the workshop within the larger context of the work the IPCCA is undertaking in ensuring rights of indigenous communities in order to maintain and build resilience through local assessments. Developing Biocultural Protocols is one avenue for securing the rights of forest dwelling communities in light of REDD+ policies and programmes. Alejandro explained that Biocultural Protocols must include intrinsic elements, which relate to the way the community governs its relationship to the forest and its territory. A discussion emerged regarding how indigenous communities have always managed their resources, Marlon Santi from the Sarayaku community in Ecuador, expressed how according to his elders customary laws all have a purpose, to protect life which is found in all beings. This illustrates clearly one of the main themes, which was discussed repeatedly throughout the workshop - for indigenous peoples forests are life, and life is sacred and must be protected. While Biocultural Protocols must also contain extrinsic 6
elements, which are a bundle of traditional resource rights which can help to protect the sacred, customary laws must be understood through their holistic frameworks, and not be boxed into external models.
In our aim to ensure a collective understanding of REDD+ and potential risks, Simone Lovera provided a short presentation on the potential risks of REDD+ for indigenous peoples. The presentation began with an overview of the history of REDD+ within the UNFCCC, from the original Convention language in 1992, through to the 2010 text urging developing countries to implement actions in reducing deforestation as a climate change mitigation mechanism. The basic premise of REDD as based on performance-based payments was explained. Next, analysis of the precarious financing situation faced with REDD was provided, with formal carbon markets in crisis and voluntary markets as unreliable, volatile and inequitable. After the initial analysis of REDD+ as it has been constructed being problematic, Simone described a series of potential risks that REDD+ presents for indigenous peoples. First, she explained how elite resource capture and unequal power relations are likely to lead to false and unfair deals. Next, she explained how REDD+ is a false solution to climate change as the underlying drivers of forest loss will not be addressed through it. The focus on carbon storage is problematic because it promotes monoculture tree plantations, ignoring social and cultural values, and means that most funds will go to administrators as counting carbon is an expensive process. She concluded that as REDD+ is a neo-liberal, market-driven approach, which leads to the commodification of life it undermines indigenous values. Further, it could undermine the climate regime as it allows polluters in the north to continue to emit green house gases. Next, the presentation discussed the consequence of indigenous peoples’ organizations raising awareness of policy-makers of the potential impacts leading to the Cancun text on safeguards. While they are not legally binding, they do provide a platform for demanding that the right to Free, Prior and Informed Consent, as enshrined in the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. However, thus far the promotion of REDD by donors and interested organizations has generally presented false information and has, in some cases, led to conflicts and violations of rights. Finally, the presentation led to a reflection upon Biocultural Protocols as a tool to make more effective use of the right to Free, Prior and Informed Consent. They can strengthen the resilience of indigenous peoples against top-down policies and projects such as REDD+ by enabling a space for collective reflection to build a joint vision of territory, traditional resource rights, livelihood aspirations and governance as alternative responses.
Kaylena Bray facilitated a session for participants to share their local experiences of territory, governance and the challenge of REDD+ using rich pictures. She initiated the session by illustrating the use of rich picture through drawing her reflections on the Potato Park model and how it relates to the risks of REDD+. Through drawing the three interconnected ayllu of the Quechua worldview as a holistic approach, she illustrated that REDD+ takes one aspect of the human realm out of proportion, distorting the holistic interpretation and leading to multiple negative impacts. 7
Adivasi, India The first local experience to be presented through using rich pictures was the Adivasi experience in India.
Photo 1. Adivasi Rich Picture As photo 1 shows, at the heart of the picture is the village, which is very important. The village is surrounded by the territory, with the hills a boundaries. Pandhu described how each village manages their land through customary law for their livelihoods needs, with ritual practice relating to the rotation of crops in the seasons. This system of forest and territorial management is based on a community governance system including elders, healers and priests. They explained how the State has not respected their customary use of territory declaring most of their land as reserve forest land. In spite of efforts at co-management, the power remains in the State’s hads. Since the Forest Rights Act of 2006 and with the help of Adivasi struggles, the land is now recognized as belonging to the communities. However, they continue to fight for respect. Pandhu then explained the process of REDD+ in India, through the Green India Mission, which is including 100 billion hectares of land, much within Adivasi territories, for conservation and reforestation, including biofuels and monoculture tree plantations. Further, the government will use the Right to Work act to entice Adivasi with jobs in the plantations, meanwhile selling carbon credits. The Adivasi are in the process of documenting their rights in order to oppose this REDD+ scheme, to protect their customary rights and their governance structures.
Miskito, Nicaragua The second local experience shared was that of Jadder Mendoza, a Miskito leader and academic of Nicaragua. Jadder shared his reflections on development and us of indigenous territorial governance models as part of his work with URACCAN university in Nicaragua.
Photo 2. Jadder Mendoza rich picture As the rich picture that Jadder drew illustrates, REDD and market based mechanisms use four angles, as shown in the green square in the centre; politics, economy, nature and knowledge. This is the mainstream model which is sometimes called sustainable development. An indigenous framing, however is more holistic, it can be visualized as a flower, and through drawing the red square on top of the green square Jadder added the key elements in an indigenous view; spirituality, territory, governance and culture. He went on to explain how there is a clash of paradigms, using the mainstream development approach territories and lands were divided based on different land use zones, but for indigenous peoples the values which are central to governance and territory include authority, harmony, peace, food, security, education and buen vivir, with happiness at the heart of it all. Next, Jadder reflected on a case in Nicaragua in which an indigenous group signed a 50 year REDD agreement to plant a non-native tree called Kiri on 100,000 hectares for 100 dollars per hectare per year, but in reality they have recievied nothing. The example illustrates the danger of singing away rights. In relation to Biocultural Protocols, Jadder discussed them as an opportunity to spell out what should be non-negotiable rights, for example FPIC and autonomy. Jadder warned, however, that we should avoid certain things in the protocols: We should not be simplistic (for indigenous peoples the more complex the better) In western cultures we need specialists, indigenous peoples need a wise person 9
Western cultures need standards but indigenous peoples use specificity In western cultures numbers count but for indigenous peoples the whole is important In western cultures tangible outcomes are important, but for indigenous peoples key outcomes are intangible.
Sápara Territory, Ecuador Gloria Ishigua presented the Sápara case from the Ecuadorian Amazon with translation by Marlon Santi from Kichwa to Spanish.
Photo 3: Sápara Rich Picture
Gloria described how when she was a little girl her parents were nomads and their territory spanned all the way into what today is Peru. Since the border between Ecuador and Peru has been formed, and with the presence of oil companies new villages with people from multiple nationalities have been established. As a result, their nomadic patterns were broken. The rich picture that Gloria drew shows the territory and rivers within it, which are the main veins of transportation and communication between the Ecuadorian and Peruvian side of the original Sápara territory. Gloria explained the difficult situation of encroachment of the Sápara territory by oil companies and missionaries. On top of this, the Sápara are now facing a REDD type forest conservation project promoted by the government within their territory. The project, known as Sociobosque, was agreed to be a few leaders without a process of consultation, much less free, prior and informed consent of the Sápara collective. Half of their territory is included in the project, 370,000 hectares in total, and according to the contract signed with the Ministry of the Environment the forest within this area cannot be touched. They have already had problems with people undertaking traditional slash and burn agriculture in the area being stopped as the area is monitored through satellite images. They are no longer allowed to hunt in the area, cannot gather fruits and use trees to make canoes, in other 10
words, their customary use is prohibited. The nationality is receiving 82,000 USD per year for conserving the designated area.
Foto Jose Proaño: Gloria and Marlon describing the Sápara Territory Gloria, president of the Sápara womens’ association explained how her organization is not in agreement with the contract, and how it has caused conflict between different leadership groups within the Sápara collectivity. The NAZAI, the national Sápara organization receives a monthly payment which is divided amongst the leaders so the benefits do not reach the communities. The original proposal was to use the funds for emergency health costs, but this is not happening in practice. She further mentioned how the NAZAI leadership is dominated by leaders who are not Sápara themselves. A final twist to the Sociobosque story in the Sápara territory that Gloria shared was that while the Sápara have been struggling for years to have their territory recognized in the east and west parts, once their rights over the east part was confirmed the government introduced a Sociobosque project and with it has allowed oil companies to enter. Sociobosque has therefore been used as an incentive to further oil exploitation in the Sáparar territory.
The session on discussion and analysis of the Biocultural Protocol proposal of the IPCCA was initiated through two case study presentations, the first on the experience of developing a BCP in Guna Yala, Panama, and the second on the experience of the Potato Park in Peru. Presentation on Experience in Guna Yala Jesus Smith, president of FPCI provided a presentation of the context within which the first Biocultural Protocol on REDD is being developed in the Comarca Guna Yala in Panama. He explained how the Comarca was the first legally recognized indigenous territory in Panama, a country with a 12% of the population being indigenous, occupying 23% of the territory and 65% of the countries forested areas. So these areas are obviously targeted for REDD projects. The Comarca Guna Yala has its own governance structure and was formed in 1870 when it was still part of Greater Colombia. There are 49 communities that make up the Guna General Congress 11
which is represented by the sailagan, spiritual guides. The Congress meets in its general assembly once every six months and between sessions its Executive Committee represents the Comarca. The structure of the governance includes an administrative secretariat, advisors and a technical body which is an NGO, further there are specialized commissions, some permanent and some ad-hoc. In 1953 the Panamanian State recognized the Guna General Congress as its highest decision making body. There is a Guna Constitution, known as the Ley Fundamental and its laws are known as the Estatuto. This legal structure sets out the main principles and process for FPIC. All projects to be implemented in the Comarca require consent of the Guna General Congress. IIDKY, its technical arm provides technical advice on the project and produces a report which is sent to all 49 communities at least one month prior to the general assembly. Each local congress must analyse and decide to approve or not to approve the project. A project must go through three cycles of the Guna General Congress before it may be approved, this is the Guna process for ensuring FPIC. Thus far there have only been informal consultations on REDD but an official process of consultation has not been initiated. There are, however, certain spiritual values which cannot be violated in the Comarca, and projects that are proposed along these lines are automatically rejected. IIDKY is currently working on a Biocultural Protocol, which is based on the existing legal framework of the Comarca, identifying a clear process of FPIC. While there is a strong legal framework, the Comarca has never engaged in carbon markets before so part of the analysis being undertaken is to see where the system may be strengthened or adapted. Presentation on the Potato Park Biocultural Protocol Alejandro Argumedo presented the experience of six Quechua communities in Cusco, Peru in forming the Potato Park. All together there are 4000 inhabitants in the Potato Park. As Quechua communities the concept of Pachamama, or Mother Earth, is the basis of customary law and practice, with emphasis on the inter-dependent nature of the relationship between people and land. Ayni, or reciprocity, guides practice. Each community had formal legal recognition through land titles in the national territorial system, but their common goal was to develop an indigenous territoriality based on conservation and economy, re-creating the traditional ayllu system of governance. The governance system of the Potato Park includes both formal and informal governance structures. Customary laws are incorporated into their management system, and are applied according to the needs and traditions of each. There are vertical and horizontal structures to govern through principles. The inter-community agreement between the six Quechua communities is an example of a Biocultural Protocol. Through a process of analysis with the communities, the objective and processes for identifying common interests of the communities were defined. The principles that guide the agreement were derived from customary norms: reciprocity, duality and equilibrium. These norms are then applied to sustainable use and conservation of the Park as a biocultural system. A biocultural system is understood as a system of knowledge, innovation and collective practices of indigenous communities. It incorporates territories, natural resources, genes, crops, ecosysetms and cultural and spiritual values and laws. The inter-community agreement is used for Access and Benefit Sharing, as it determines how the funds generated by the Potato Park economic collectives are distributed. To this end criteria were developed to ensure that benefits were distributed in a fair and equitable manner based on the 12
principle of reciprocity. Each member (community) receives benefits according to the amount of time and work they have contributed to collective activities. Discussion Following the two case study presentations a lively discussion emerged on the different elements of BCPs. The following summarises the key points discussed: • Importance of territory – as was seen clearly in the rich pictures of each of the local examples, territory is the central and unified feature for indigenous peoples. It is within territory that the reciprocal relationship, and the sacred relationship of people with forests can be maintained. REDD and other external projects, such as oil exploration and exploitation are imposing external models, and what we need is to protect our territory through a BCP. Strengthening the sacred – similarly to the previous point, the importance of seeing the relationship of communities to forests and territories as sacred was used to argue for a need to build a BCP that can also strengthen this internal process. Examples were missionaries and churches have ruptured the sacred balance illustrate the importance of the BCP as a tool to reflect upon the customary use, norms and principles in order to strengthen them. Gender – a discussion on how to build governance with gender balance emerged as important. There was consensus in the group that within indigenous systems, and in particular for resilience, women play a central role. However, in many governance processes women are not included. The BCP was therefore also seen as an opportunity to strengthen the indigenous gender views, and to support women led processes. Economy and Markets – through discussions it was clear that territory is invaluable, however indigenous peoples do have a form of economy, albeit not a market and monetary based market. Some participants felt it is necessary to also use the external economic system to strengthen territoriality, for example, through putting a price on governance and using this to negotiate. Others, on the other hand, some reflected that this is both problematic and dangerous, as it reduces an indigenous system of valuation into a price setting exercise, and it is much broader than this. The tension in how to use customary laws to engage with a market based economy were recognized by all, and no clear consensus on how to manage it emerged.
In line with the second objective of the workshop, during a break-out group session, the development of a Working Group to continue work on REDD+ and BCPs in the IPCCA local assessments was discussed. Kaylena Bray introduced the proposed idea through use of rich pictures as shown bellow.
Photo 4: Network rich picture
Photo 5: TRR framework rich picture
First, Kaylena explained the concept of network formation using the Seneca vision of “the three sisters” representing the relationship between the three main Seneca crops of corn, beans and squash. She explained how each has its role within the network, but only through interdependence can they provide the full nutrition for the people and the soil. Through this reflection, Kaylena explained the objective of the Working Group as the formation of a network of communities and organizations all working on analysis of REDD+ and developing BCPs for REDD+. As Photo 5 showns, Kaylena went on to provide an explanation of the proposed framing of the Working Group is on Traditional Resource Rights. Using the metaphor or an umbrella, she explained how the local sacred relationship of people in their territory can be protected by a bundle of international, national, regional and local legal instruments related to what Darrell Posey once called traditional resource rights. These include rights related to territory, knowledge, culture etc. With this initial framing, two break-out groups were formed; one to develop the vision and mission statement of the Working Group, and the other to work on a declaration of the group to feed into the COP 17. Synthesis of Working Group Session The group discussed first what makes this particular group different so as to give it its own identity and its own place within extensive work being undertaken now on indigenous peoples and REDD+. The group consensus was that the point of difference of this group is the Biocultural approach it uses, and discussions of a concept of Biocultural Rights rather than Traditional Resource Rights as more appropriate ensued. When discussing the vision of the WG, most agreed that the idea behind the group was to build a network of ‘keepers of knowledge’ or indigenous experts. Through the biocutlural approach the members of the group bring their own critical reflections, expertise and concepts instead of working within a Western approach. Under the vision the group discussed the need to strengthen and build 14
capacity for resilience and managing territories and to generate proposal that come from an I indigenous perspective that reflect territorial values. Discussions on the mission revolved around the need of bringing together indigenous perspectives for a unified voice to develop and define concepts and promoting critical and concrete reflections about indigenous issues related to REDD+. A list of goals were mentioned, including: • • • Using the concepts to develop alternative knowledge management approaches or systems Reflect on values and share teaching among communities Build capacity of indigenous peoples to build resilience and manage territories
The actions of the WG were discussed as occurring at several levels. Locally actions will focus on assisting local campaigns, gathering intelligence and helping with local struggles. At the national and international levels, the group discussed the need of facilitating political meetings and engagements with international level principles on: territories, rights, building a common voice. Working on continued development of BCP for REDD+ was a central part of the discussions. The break-out group also discussed some basic guiding principles which would be used to guide the work of the WG, including: 1. Never forget to ensure FPIC 2. Premise of work should be how useful and applicable it is to communities, to not undertake analysis for the sake of publishing, but rather by considering usefulness at the local level 3. The process should be balanced within the group, with equity and equilibrium in participation. This includes gender balance and adequate social representation. 4. Guarantee that intellectual property rights belong to indigenous peoples. Be aware that the process may expose traditional knowledge so we must make sure to ensure rights. Declaration Break-Out Group The second break-out group focused on developing a draft Declaration which was later reviewed with the whole group. The final Declaration which was sent to the media with a press release and was read during the caucus of the International Indigenous Forum on Climate Change may be found in annexes 4 and 5. The group felt very comfortable with a declaration that clearly placed in the centre of the matter the sacred nature that indigenous peoples have with their territory. Thinking about the sacred leads to an understanding of REDD+ as commodifying life and bringing many potential negative impacts.
At the end of the second day the group returned to concluding discussions on the WG that was in formation and the future work on BCPs. Through comments of several participants, the discussion around use of the term Biocultural and the natural tension that emerges between respecting local contexts and using frameworks to synthesize across them continued on the table. Alejandro explained that purpose of the BCPs as tools is precisely to strengthen rights that already exist. Considering the international scope of the IPCCA, it is also important to reflect across very diverses contexts and have tools that can help us work on these issues to overcome colonial concepts. The BCPs will not be called by this name, but rather will take on a local identity and name to make sure that they are owned by the community, as they emerge from their own process. 15
Due to the need to leave the workshop with a clearly defined WG and a plan of action, it was decided to meet the following day in, with the inputs of the break-out group, to consolidate and define the structure of the group. The conclusion to this final session can be found in Annex 6 and was prepared by Kaylena who facilitated this part of the workshop. To finalise the workshop, Simone provided an agenda of proposed side events during the upcoming COP 17 for participants to present their own work and the outcomes of the workshop. Further, a strategy for participation in the caucus of the of the International Indigenous Forum on Climate Change was discussed.
In the last session all expectations voiced at the beginning of the workshop were revisited by the group, and all agreed that they had been met. Further as every workshop that the IPCCA Secretariat organizes is a learning opportunity, and we value the input that IPCCA local partners can give us, at the end of the workshop written evaluation sheets were provided to each participant. The evaluation was anonymous and here we summarize their comments: All participants noted that their expectations and objective were met overall, and to quote one participant “It was broader than my expectations. The debate and contributions on the concept and design of a BCP helped to clarify a complex issue.” Topics that participants felt were well covered included REDD+ and its impacts on indigenous peoples, sacredness of territories, BCP and customary laws, experiences of biocultural evaluations, territories and rights. Topics that participants felt they would like more information on included: mechanisms of working with IPCCA in commuities, how the local assessments are addressing visioning and how to incorporate REDD+ analysis within them and the role of women in the IPCCA. On the methodology used all agreed that it was appropriate although one participant commented on the need for more group work. All participants commended the logistical organization. In terms of suggestions for future activities participants expressed a desire for more time to understand the concepts and to share their local experiences
The Declaration that emerged from the workshop was reported on in the following forums: 1. Climate Justice Now!, November 26th http://www.climate-justice-now.org/declaration-of-members-of-the-indigenous-peoples’biocultural-climate-change-assessment-ipcca-initiative/ 2. Newsodrome, November 26th http://newsodrome.com/native_american_news/declaration-of-members-of-the-indigenouspeoples-biocultural-climate-change-assessment-ipcca-initiative-28387032 3. Wise Earth, November 26th 16
http://www.wiserearth.org/article/d09f0ffd6fe0babfb4dbf2030992ca96 4. Climate Aib, November 26th http://www.climate.aib.org.uk/tag/ipcca 5. Climate Connections, November 28th “REDD+ threatens the survival of Indigenous Peoples”: New statement from Indigenous Peoples rejects REDD By Chris Lang, 28th November 2011 http://climate-connections.org/2011/11/26/strong-new-indigenous-statement-against-reddreducing-emissions-from-deforestation-scheme/ 6. REDD Monitor, November 28th Strong New Indigenous Statement Against REDD (Reducing Emissions from Deforestation scheme) http://www.redd-monitor.org/2011/11/28/redd-threatens-the-survival-of-indigenous-peoplesnew-statement-from-indigenous-peoples-rejects-redd/ 7. Pacific Scoop, November 29th Forest Campaigners Denounce Forest Carbon Offsets http://pacific.scoop.co.nz/2011/11/forest-campaigners-denounce-forest-carbon-offsets/ 8. TK Bulletin, 30 November http://tkbulletin.wordpress.com/2011/11/30/this-week-in-review-climate-talks-begin-in-durbanindigenous-leaders-warn-of-risks-of-redd/ 9. Global Forest Coalition, December 1st Indigenous Leaders Alert the UNFCCC and the World to the Imminent Threat that REDD Poses to their Territories and Livelihoods http://globalforestcoalition.org/?p=1871 10. Earth Island Journal, December 2nd What will Save our Forests? By Jeff Conant http://www.earthisland.org/journal/index.php/elist/eListRead/what_will_save_our_forests 11. International Indigenous Women’s Forum, December 8th 17
Declaration of Members of the Indigenous Peoples’ Biocultural Climate Change Assessment (IPCCA) initiative http://www.fimi-iiwf.org/en/noticia?idnoticia=415 12. National Tribal Environmental Council, December 9th Indigenous peoples came to COP 17 with a simple message: Your Kyoto Protocol isn't working for us. http://ntec.org/news/11-climate-change/102-battle-over-the-trees-indigenous-peoples-denounceredd-at-cop-17-talks.html 13. Genet, December 9th Battle over (GE) trees: indigenous peoples denounce REDD+ at COP 17 http://www.genet-info.org/information-services/genetically-engineered-trees/news/en/24883.html
Annex 1 – Agenda
Indigenous Biocultural Protocols: Empowering Forest Dependent Indigenous Peoples and developing standards for REDD+
24 & 25th November, 2011
Venue: Riverside Hotel, Durban, South Africa www.riversidehotel.co.za
Strategic objectives: To bring together IPCCA members located in the “REDD Belt”, strengthen cooperation, and enhance partnerships for addressing common challenges and struggles to strengthen the resilience of their biocultural systems. To provide a platform for indigenous peoples’ perspectives on issues of forest governance to enrich international discussions and reframe the REDD debate. To lobby for the recognition and respect of biocultural systems and indigenous peoples’ traditional resource rights Specific objectives of the workshop are: 4. 5. To distil and share lessons learned from experiences of forest dependent IPCCA members with regards to local assessments, forest governance, customary use and indigenous peoples rights vis-a-vis REDD To facilitate shared understanding of key trends and issues on REDD and sharing of lessons about rights-based approaches, especially as they relate to developing Biocultural Protocols as safeguards for protecting indigenous peoples’ rights, developing local responses for poverty alleviation, strengthening biocultural systems, ensuring sustainable forest management, including conservation; and advancing and creating awareness of traditional resource rights To explore the establishment of a Forest and Traditional Resource Rights Working Group under the IPCCA network, founded on a shared vision and as an approach for creating a strong, collective and distinctive voice for indigenous peoples, and promote, among others, the strengthening of policies, institutions and practices that recognize indigenous peoples’ land tenure, the distinctive nature of traditional knowledge, the value and role of customary management of forest resources and ecosystems, and Buen Vivir (endogenous development.)
Expected Outputs: • • • Proposal for a Biocultural Protocol Model focused on REDD & REDD+ Forest and Traditional Resource Rights Working Group of indigenous communities with a focus on the development of safeguards and strengthening of customary forest governance through the IPCCA local Assessments Policy recommendations on safeguards for REDD & REDD+ for the UNFCCC COP meeting in Durban.
Thursday, November 24th
Time 8:00 8:10 9:00 9:20 10:00 Theme Opening Delegate introductions and expectations Addressing the expected outcomes of the workshop Introduction to Session 1: REDD, Safeguards and Biocultural Protocols Understanding the role of Biocultural Protocols as Safeguards for REDD Elements of a Biocultural Protocol for REDD: • Vision • Principles • Intrinsic Elements (Customary Laws and Principles) • Extrinsic Elements (Traditional Resource Rights) • Objectives • Options for Identifying and Elaborating Elements of BCPs (linking customary laws and institutions with national and international legal systems) • Methods and Process for the Development of BCPs • Strategies for Promoting BCPs Case Study Presentation: Development of a BCP Lunch Discussion on Experiences, Perspectives and Expectations about Biocultural Protocols and REDD Open discussion on key points captured during discussions Coffee break Recommendations and action points (Development of a Biocultural Protocol for the IPCCA Network) Closing Dinner
12:00 13:00 14:00 15:00 16:30 17:00 18:00 19:30
Friday, November 25th
Time 9:00 Theme Addressing the expected outcomes of the Day
10:00 11:00 12:00 12:30 13:00 14:00
17:00 18:00 19:30
Introduction to Session 2: IPCCA’s Forest and Traditional Resource Rights Working Group Reaching a Common Understanding on REDD and the need for a for an IPCCA Working Group Sharing local experiences Discussion on Experiences and Perspectives on REDD Open discussion on key points captured during discussions Recommendations and action points (Development of policy recommendations on REDD+ for COP?) Lunch Presentation of Proposal for Establishing Forest and Traditional Resource Rights Working Group: • Vision • Mission • Objectives • Strategic direction and focus o Identity • Principles and protocols to govern ongoing collaboration • Operations and Structure o Monitoring Mechanisms o Roles and Responsibilities • Communication Strategy • Action Plan o Operational objectives o Timeline o Targets/Milestones o Expected activities • Next Steps Review the Policy recommendation to be presented at COP, coordination, etc. Closing Dinner
Annex 2 – Participant List
Annex 3 – Working Group Structure
Vision and Mission As keepers of the forest, we are united to defend the rights and sacredness of Mother Earth, and to maintain and protect our biologically and culturally diverse ecosystems using traditional knowledge and resilience. We are united to defend our biocultural and territory rights that are critical to respond to the profound social and ecological changes we are facing today. Expanded Vision Statement: We share a vision of the sacredness of Mother Earth and the spirit of all forms of life in the forest, including rivers, mountains, rocks, soil, and wind. We seek to maintain a biologically diverse and healthy forest where land, air, water, wild and domesticated plants and animals, and ecosystems continue to produce dynamic natural and spiritual forces that nurture our cultural and artistic expressions, and provide bountiful livelihoods. We are keepers of knowledge of the forests and experts in maintaining a respectful relationship with Mother Earth in her temporal and spatial scales. This knowledge is critical to respond to the profound social and ecological changes we are facing today, such as climate change. As keepers of the forest we are united to defend its rights and our biocultural rights, which reflects our deeper relationship with the forest, and fuels our spirit to continue defending our territories that are now facing increased external colonizing pressures. We will continue valuing our lands for their natural and cultural beauty, and maintaining our traditional knowledge and resilience not only for this generation, but for those yet to come. Mission: We, the most diverse peoples in the world, believe in the power of our voices and the power to speak as one unified voice. We will bring together our indigenous perspectives and experiences into a consolidated voice to develop concepts based on our unified belief and knowledge systems. We will promote critical and concrete reflections about indigenous issues related to REDD+ in order to offer solutions and support to our communities.
Expanded Mission Statement: We will pursue this mission through location-‐based work in forested areas that are able to withstand and recover from the global drive to privatize life. We will focus on supporting the efforts of the custodians of this forest heritage, and we will work towards developing alliances with scholars, NGOs, donors, artists, advocates and others. We will also make international efforts to educate the general public and build a global understanding about indigenous issues, forest and REDD+. Objectives • • • • Principles and Protocols to Govern Ongoing Collaboration Principle 1: Maintain trust and openness amongst partners Principle 2: Clear, open, and honest channels of communication must exist between members of the Working Group. Principle 3: Never forget to ensure FPIC in everything we do. Principle 4: As with any research or knowledge management initiative, premise of work should be focused on how useful and applicable information is for communities. This means not undertaking analysis for sake of publishing, but considering usefulness and applicability on a local level. Principle 5: Process should have balance within the group and emphasize equity and equilibrium in terms of who participates and who is engaged. This includes gender balance and adequate social representation. Develop biocultural protocols as tools for the protection of indigenous peoples rights. Undertake analysis from an indigenous perspective, share experiences and knowledge (on REDD), facilitate meetings, and engage working group members across levels at the local, national and international level. Inform communities, forest policy-‐making processes and relevant fora about critical knowledge related to REDD+, and promote a common voice on principles about territories and indigenous rights. Support communities and their struggles related to REDD+ by assisting local campaigns and intelligence gathering.
Principle 6: Guarantee that intellectual property rights belong to indigenous peoples. We must make sure to protect knowledge that has been shared Membership and Roles (i) Core members Name Gloria Hilda Ushigua Jose Proaño Nadhempalli Madhusudhan Kunjam Pandu Dora Alejandro Argumedo Kaylena Bray Jesus Kantule Responsibilities: Provide information and education locally, nationally, and internationally Continue building the knowledge base Maintain interaction among group members Organisation Ashiñwaka Land is Life Yakshi Anthra Adivasi Aykia Vedika ANDES Seneca International FPCI Country Ecuador Ecuador India India Peru USA Panama
(ii) Coordinator Elected: Gloria Hilda Ushigua Responsibilities: Acts as the working group coordinator bringing together all geographical focal points. The selected coordinating focal point initiates communication, outlines short-‐term action items, and determines the meeting schedule. (ii) Advisory Group Nominated members: Simone Lovera, Global Forest Coalition, Climate Justice Now Tom Goldtooth, Indigenous Environmental Network Responsibilities:
Acts in an oversight role to maintain aligned goals and strengthen the external communication methods on an international level. group: external media outlet international/worldwide Strategic Direction and Focus Internal Growth Strategy-‐ Build a foundation of solidarity, trust, and understanding among group members and create a unified voice. • • • Knowledge sharing/dissemination Videoconferencing Follow up meeting
External Growth Strategy-‐ Working group will serve as the starting point, or ‘nucleus’ and the addition of members will contribute to solidarity within the group and reflect similar goals and objectives. • • • Action Items Determine Coordinator/Focal Point-‐ not in Secretariat but receives initial Secretariat support • Develop and deliver a detailed programs of activities • Develop Meeting Schedule of the Working Group around campaigns • Develop and Maintain Listserv • Development of internal policy/code of ethics for WG Growth Strategy • Evaluate potential group members • identify different types of memberships Communications Strategy • Identify all the groups working in indigenous territories to include them in this dialogue • Develop newsletter Secretariat: • Provide webpage development support • Videoconferencing support? • Provide operational and financial support for follow up WG meeting • Support distributing messages and publications to alliances and partners Thematic areas: Build/grow Network beyond IPCCA and identify membership structure. Identify all the groups working in indigenous territories to include in the dialogue. Develop BCP focused on REDD and its applications.
• • • •
BCP development REDD monitoring Conversations with the Future Integrate youth into our decision making
Timeline 6. Secretariat ensures appropriate support for Items the Working Group: Promote and support the WG as key consultative network on REDD • Provide WG with key information 1.Establish the Working and learning Group materials • Financial support 2. Develop networking (1 for and deliver a detailed program of meeting organized) activities • Develop a workshop during next flagship case 3. Develop 3 CBD COP in studies India • • Monitoring and 4. Engage, as appropriate, Evaluation in national and international policy fora on Indigenous peoples and REDD 5. Implement communications strategy 6. Secretariat ensures appropriate support for the Working Group: • Promote and support the WG as key consultative network on REDD Provide WG with key information and learning materials Financial support for networking (1 meeting organized) Develop a workshop during next CBD COP in x Dec x Jan x Feb X x Mar X 2 x A p r X 0 x M X 1 X x J X 2 x J X x A X x S X x O X X x N X x Dec
X X x
X X x
DECLARATION OF MEMBERS OF THE INDIGENOUS PEOPLES’ BIOCULTURAL CLIMATE CHANGE ASSESSMENT (IPCCA) INITIATIVE
The participants of the workshop on REDD and Biocultural Protocols organized by the Indigenous Peoples Biocultural Climate Change Assessment (IPCCA), from Ecuador, Panama, India, Nicaragua, Peru and Samoa met on 24 and 25 November 2011 in Durban, South Africa to share emergent findings and analyse how REDD is affecting our territories in order to respond through our assessments. We discussed strategies for addressing climate justice. We, the Indigenous Peoples denounce the serious situation we are facing; the harmonious relationship between humans and Mother Earth has been broken. The life of people and Pachamama has become a business. Life, for Indigenous Peoples, is sacred, and we therefore consider REDD+ and the carbon market a hypocrisy which will not impact global warming. For us, everything is life, and life cannot be negotiated or sold on a stock market, this is a huge risk and will not resolve the environmental crisis. Through our discussions and dialogue we identified the following inherent risks and negative impacts of REDD+, which we alert the world to: 1. REDD+ is a neo-liberal, market-driven approach that leads to the commodification of life and undermines holistic community values and governance. It is a neo-liberal approach driven by economic processes such as trade liberalization and privatization and by actors like the World Bank whom have been responsible for the destruction of forests and livelihoods of Indigenous Peoples all over the world. The concept of “Green Economy” is a vehicle for promoting trends of commodification of nature. It is a vehicle to impose neo-liberal environmental strategies on developing countries, which undermines traditional communal land tenure systems. Indigenous Peoples have well-performing and self-sufficient economies, but these economies are ignored. Indigenous Peoples have used their wisdom for thousands of years to manage forests in a way that cannot be quantified and is priceless. Meanwhile, Northern countries and their economic policies have destroyed the climate and planet and, therefore, have a significant ecological debt to pay. 2. REDD+ policies and projects are directly targeting Indigenous Peoples and their territories, as this is where the remaining forests are found. Corporations, conservation organizations and powerful state agencies will capture the benefits by grabbing forest land and reaching unfair and manipulated agreements with forest-dwelling indigenous peoples. REDD+ is triggering conflicts, corruption, evictions and other human rights violations. Calculating how much carbon is stored in forests (monitoring, reporting and verification) is a very complicated and expensive process, and indigenous knowledge is being ignored within it. As a result, the overwhelming majority of REDD+ funding will end up in the hands of consultants, NGOs and carbon brokers like the World Bank. 3. Indigenous Peoples and local communities use their own governance systems, which include laws, rules, institutions and practices, to manage their forests and territories, many
of which are implicit and part of oral or otherwise unwritten traditions. REDD+ policies and projects are undermining and violating indigenous governance systems. Through developing REDD+ readiness programs national Governments are creating new institutions, which will further concentrate control over forests into the hands of State institutions, and violate the rights and autonomy of Indigenous Peoples. These new institutions, however, fail to address the drivers of forest loss. 4. REDD+ locks up forests, blocking access and customary use of Indigenous Peoples and local communities to their forests. This impacts negatively on traditional forest-related knowledge, food sovereignty and food security, and traditional health care systems, which are lost as communities are manipulated or forced to sell their rights to access and use of their forests. 5. The drivers of forest loss and forestland grabbing will not be addressed by REDD+. Governments that are elaborating REDD+ policies are also promoting economic sectors such as cattle ranching, bio-energy, mining, oil exploration and agro-industrial monocultures that, ironically, are the main drivers of forest loss. In countries like Ecuador, governments are promoting massive oil exploration schemes in forest-protected areas. 6. The focus on carbon in REDD+ policies promotes the establishment of monoculture tree plantations, including genetically modified trees, and ignores the social and cultural values of forests. Institutions like the Forest Stewardship Council legitimize this trend by certifying plantation establishment as ‘sustainable forest management’. Corporations take over lands that, within shifting cultivation systems, are fallow, and destroy them through tree plantation establishment. In a country like India, REDD+ is becoming a tree plantation expansion program that triggers land grabbing on a massive scale, undermining the Forest Rights Act. 7. National biodiversity and carbon-offset schemes, especially in large countries like India and Brazil are a vehicle for implementing REDD+. Large polluting corporations, such as mining and dam companies, are allowed to compensate the environmental damage they cause by planting trees. Indigenous Peoples and local communities suffer two-fold; they suffer from the environmental damage caused by their pollution, as well as from the negative impacts of projects that compensate them. Furthermore, conservation organizations profit from such compensation projects, and will thus be tempted to turn a blind eye on the negative impacts of such industries. 8. Due to problems with reference levels, leakage, permanence, monitoring, reporting and verification, problems which policy makers are not inclined and unable to solve, REDD+ is undermining the climate regime. REDD+ violates the principle of common but differentiated responsibility. It creates major inequities and grants the right to pollute to developed countries and their industries. Climate change is today one of the biggest threats to the lives and livelihoods of Indigenous Peoples, and for that reason, false solutions such as REDD+ form a direct threat to the survival of Indigenous Peoples. REDD+ threatens the survival of Indigenous Peoples. We emphasize that the inherent risks and negative impacts cannot be addressed through safeguards or other remedial measures. We insist that all actors involved in REDD+ fully respect the rights of Indigenous Peoples, in particular, the right to Free, Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC). We caution, however, that adherence to the principle of FPIC is not a means to solve these negative impacts and this principle should not be used to justify REDD+. The right of self-determination of Indigenous
Peoples should not be used to justify the destruction of our territories. Indigenous peoples should not commit themselves to a process that does not respect them. We denounce the hypocrisy of REDD+ and the many false financial promises that have been made. REDD+ is a market-based approach through which outside actors try to commodify what is sacred to Indigenous peoples: the heritage of our ancestors and the guarantee of life for future generations, not just Indigenous Peoples, but for all of humanity. Many Indigenous Peoples and communities are not aware of the threats and impacts of REDD+, which is a political trap, and will lead to enhancing climate change. We call upon these communities to maintain their integrity in this respect. We call upon all people committed to climate justice to support life, and we implore the global community to take responsibility for reducing emission of green house gases at the source and to reject REDD+ as a false solution that breads a new form of climate racism. Gloria Ishigua President Asociacion de Mujeres Sapara Ecuador Marlon Santi Sarayaku Runa Ecuador Jesus Smith President Fundacion para la Promocion del Conocimiento Indigena Panama Kaylena Bray Seneca Interational USA Jose Proaño Land is Life Ecuador Alejandro Argumedo Coordinator Indigenous Peoples’ Bioucltural Climate Change Assessment initiative Asociacion ANDES Peru Kunjam Pandu Dora Adivasi Aikya Vedika India Nadempalli Madhusudhan Anthra - Yakshi India
Jadder Mendoza Universidad de las Regiones Autonomas de la Costa Caribe de Nicaragua Nicaragua Fiu Mataese Elisara O’le Siosiomaga Society Inc. S’amoa
PRESS RELEASE Indigenous Leaders Aalert the UNFCCC and the World to the Imminent Threat that REDD Poses to their Territories and Livelihoods Durban, South Africa (IPCCA). As the UNFCCC COP 17 opens in Durban, South Africa, a gathering of indigenous leaders from around the world discussing biocultural protocols and REDD warns the UNFCCC and the international community of the grave danger that REDD and market based solutions to climate change mitigation pose to their cultures, territories and livelihoods. “For my people, the forest is sacred, it is life in all its essence, we can protect Pachamama only if this is respected. REDD and other market mechanisms have turned our relationship with forests into a business. As we are targeted, this is not only a new form of climate racism but also represents a false solution which undermines the climate regime” said Marlon Santi, a leader of the Sarayaku Quichua community of Ecuador. The IPCCA leaders discussed their experiences with using a biocultural approach to assessing climate change impacts as well as the impacts on their livelihoods and the ecosystems found in their territories in order to develop appropriate responses. In forest ecosystems, impacts of REDD and market based mechanisms were analysed from diverse local contexts such as the Indian Adivasi and the Sapara Nationality of Ecuador to build a common understanding: • They commodify life and undermine holistic community values and governance • They block community access to forests and customary use • They lead to establishment of monoculture tree plantations which promote land grabbing • They are portrayed as vehicles for strengthening land tenure rights but in fact are used to weaken them • They are used to justify continued emissions in the North and thus are hypocritical false solutions to the climate crisis “The IPCCA is an example of how indigenous communities are undertaking climate change assessments on their own terms, and are illustrating the danger of market based mitigation mechanisms. Our knowledge systems and our distinctive spiritual relationship to our territories can contribute to a deeper, localized and holistic understanding of what we and the world is facing” said Alejandro Argumedo, coordinator of the IPCCA. “Solutions that will indeed reduce emissions and ensure local livelihoods must come from including such local analysis.” The IPCCA network is building alliances with organizations such as the Global Forest Coallition to bring much needed indigenous and local voices to forums as the UNFCCC COP 17.
Through the analysis undertaken in the IPCCA workshop, the realization that many indigenous peoples have either been manipulated into accepting REDD like schemes, or are facing precarious national situations that REDD becomes an option for their survival, that it is necessary to ensure that all REDD actors fully respect the rights of indigenous peoples, in particular, to their right to Free, Prior and Informed Consent. However, they also caution that adherence to these principles does not solve the negative impacts, so they call upon all indigenous peoples to maintain their integrity and demand to be respected.
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