International Indigenous Peoples Forum on Climate Change

Statement Of The International Indigenous Peoples’ Forum On Climate Change (IIPFCC)

High Level Segment


COP 16 UNFCCC Cancun

10 December 2010

Read by: Stanley Kimaren Riamit, Tebtebba Foundation representing IIPFCC Caucus

Representatives of Indigenous Peoples from all over the world attending the this climate change conference collectively express our dismay and severe disappointment over the lack of political will and good faith negotiations for a legally-binding agreement that will truly and effectively combat climate change.

We have submitted our specific proposals in the key elements under Long Term Cooperative Action and the Kyoto Protocol. However, these have not been seriously considered. We thereby reiterate our positions and demands to be included in any outcomes from Cancun and further negotiations:

  1. Full respect for our rights, including those contained in the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples;
  2. Respect for our right to Free, Prior, and Informed Consent in all climate change programs and activities;
  3. Recognition and protection of our traditional knowledge in all mitigation and adaptation measures;
  4. Full and effective participation of Indigenous Peoples in all processes, mechanisms and bodies relating to climate change at all levels:
    1. In particular, the participation of Indigenous Experts in the UN;
    2. Formation of an advisory body composed of members of the IIPFCCC to provide consistent input by Indigenous Peoples into the discussions, dialogue and drafting process at all negotiations;
    3. A dedicated fund established to support Indigenous Peoples’ participation;

Further, we believe that real solutions to climate change must be based on the Defense of Mother Earth, upholding environmental integrity, social equity and justice, and respecting human rights including the rights of Indigenous Peoples consistent with the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP).

In this context, the carbon market, including the Clean Development Mechanism(CDM), carbon offsets and REDD/REDD+, represents a threat to Indigenous Peoples of the world. We reject this measure which proposes to commercialize Nature to the detriment of the world’s Indigenous Peoples and biodiversity, already suffering the serious impacts of climate change. Indigenous Peoples remain the most vulnerable to climate change impacts as well as mitigation measures.

Likewise, developed countries must fulfill their legal obligations and commit to drastic emissions reduction at the source, and not pass the burden to Indigenous Peoples and developing countries. Further, support for adaptation, including finance, technology transfer, and capacity-building, shall include Indigenous Peoples’ direct access, and should be based on the vulnerabilities of peoples in different ecosystems, rather than the vulnerabilities of countries.

Indigenous Peoples around the world shall continue to assert our rights and take actions at all levels for our voices to be heard and our rights fully recognized to guarantee our survival and future generations.

Thank you.

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