“For indigenous peoples, the environment is inextricably linked to every aspect of their lives and survival. They are the pillars of sound environmental governance.” – with these words Tan Sri Razali Ismail, from the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (SUHAKUM), welcomed participants to the 6th Southeast Asian Conference on Human Rights and Agribusiness.
Sabah (Malaysia) - The High Court of Sabah just settled a landmark agreement between the indigenous Dusun and Sungai peoples of Tongod District and Genting Plantations. The case, which has dragged on since 1997 and been in the courts since 2002, concerns a large-scale palm oil development on community lands in central Sabah (North Borneo).
The right to Free, Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC) in the Round Table on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) Principles and Criteria establishes how equitable agreements between local communities and companies (and governments) can be developed in ways that ensure the legal and customary rights of indigenous peoples and other local rights-holders are respected.
The Green Climate Fund, the body tasked to deliver climate funds under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) has met for the first time. Indigenous Peoples challenged rules of participation and engagement and called for the recognition of indigenous peoples’ rights.
Forest Peoples Programme (alongside partner organisations) has published three new publications; ‘Indigenous Peoples and the Green Climate Fund – A technical briefing for Indigenous Peoples, policymakers and support groups’, the third edition of ‘What is REDD+? A guide for indigenous communities’ and the second edition of ‘A Guide to Indigenous Women’s Rights under the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women’.
• Low likelihood that Durban will deliver a binding and comprehensive agreement on GHG reductions • No agreement on long-term climate financing while Green Climate Fund talks proceed with difficulty • Limited progress on a Safeguards Information System in REDD+ • UNFCCC considers non-carbon values of REDD+ • Indigenous Peoples adopt “Oaxaca Action Plan” on climate
Governments gathering in Durban in late November for COP17 of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) face a daunting task. They will have to make progress on crafting an agreement on greenhouse gas emissions reductions within an effective, monitorable and binding legal framework, while securing the necessary financial resources needed to support developing countries on their path towards low carbon development. The survival of the Kyoto protocol is at stake. Some countries will not support the second commitment period: the United States is advocating for a “pledge and review” system, while other countries propose a broader instrument that would engage both developed and developing countries.