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Scientific Experts And Indigenous Leaders To Present New Analysis Quantifying At-Risk Forests & Carbon On Native Lands

Scientific Experts and Indigenous Leaders Representing Communities from the World’s Largest Tropical Forest Countries Launch New Analysis Revealing the Undeniable Need to Recognize Community Land Rights to Save the Climate

  • Research presented at COP26 quantifies the landscapes held by Indigenous and local communities in the world’s largest expanse of rainforests, and the carbon they sequester and protect.
  • Leaders call for direct funding to ensure communities’ land rights and governance of these landscapes to stop deforestation that fuels climate change.

On 6 November 2021, Indigenous leaders and experts with the Rights and Resources Initiative will launch a new analysis that sheds light on why strong rights for Indigenous Peoples and local communities are essential for the survival of the planet’s forests, climate, biodiversity, and a host of vital ecosystem services.

The new global analysis produced by the Rights and Resources Initiative (RRI), Woodwell Climate Research Center and the Rainforest Foundation US, focused on the Global Alliance of Territorial Communities (GATC) – an alliance of traditional communities in 24 countries which by their common interests and sheer terrestrial footprint, embody the importance of Indigenous Peoples (IPs), Afro-descendant Peoples (ADPs), and local communities (LCs) across the world.

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The analysis maps out the full extent of forests and carbon stock contained in the forests that are managed by Indigenous Peoples and local communities in these 24 countries, which contain 60% of the planet’s tropical forest area—sequestering carbon sinks and biodiversity that are crucial in the fight against climate change.

Research is unequivocal on the critical role Indigenous Peoples and local communities play in protecting tropical forests, major storehouses of carbon. However, despite managing and protecting over half of the Earth’s land and forests, these communities legally own only 10% of their lands. Research also shows that less than 1 percent of official development assistance for climate change mitigation and adaptation has gone toward recognition of community forest tenure rights and management projects. Citing this evidence, the Indigenous and scientific experts will present recommendations for global leaders, including international climate instruments, climate funds, and government agencies responsible for advancing just climate solutions.

WHAT: New research mapping the landscapes held and managed by Indigenous Peoples and local communities across 24 countries spanning 60% of the world’s tropical forests; their importance for global climate solutions; and recommendations for the climate community for advancing just and sustainable climate solutions.

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