Climate Change

At COP23, consensus emerges on recognising rights of indigenous communities

A new platform will be made operational to strengthen efforts of indigenous communities towards addressing climate change

By DTE Staff
Published: Saturday 18 November 2017
The decision comes after a multi-party dialogue was held to inform the subsidiary body on the matter earlier this year. Credit: UNClimatechange / Flickr__

Moving forward from the decision to incorporate the role of indigenous communities and recognise the rights, a decision on the operationalisation of a platform to facilitate such an inclusion was taken in Bonn, Germany during the COP23, which ended on November 17.

Discussions on the matter, conducted under the aegis of the Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technical Advice (SBSTA), ended with a consensus that the platform  shall be used “to strengthen the knowledge, technologies, practices and efforts of local communities and indigenous peoples related to addressing and responding to climate change, to facilitate the exchange of experience and the sharing of best practices and lessons learned on mitigation and adaptation in a holistic and integrated manner and to enhance the engagement of local communities and indigenous peoples in the UNFCCC process.”

To this end, the platform has been charged with carrying out activities to improve knowledge systems and knowledge sharing, build capacity of local and native populations, and to integrate traditional and indigenous viewpoints, practices, ambitions and knowledge systems in climate policies and national and international action plans on climate.

The decision comes after a multi-party dialogue was held to inform the subsidiary body on the matter earlier this year. Another such dialogue has been planned on the implementation of the above functions.

The decision comes as a welcome step for the 370 million strong indigenous community of the world, which has borne the brunt of developmental activities and climate change in recent decades. India is home to nearly one-third of the world’s indigenous peoples. Adivasi communities in India have been reported to be the worst-hit when it comes to land rights, displacement and exploitative industries such as mining.

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