Indigenous People’s Day Ends With a Win!

8 December 2018

After a successful decision at COP23 concerning the Local Communities and Indigenous Peoples Platform (LCIPP), negotiations on the LCIPP have been stalled on multiple fronts since the negotiations first started in May at Bonn session.

In Katowice, several key issues arose during this first week. Of particular concern was the largely undefined concept of “Local Communities”, who are not currently recognised by the UNFCCC as a constituency. Late last evening, Parties and Indigenous Peoples finally reached consensus on the LCIPP, following intense trilateral negotiations between key Parties and Indigenous Peoples.

The final decision includes maintaining a balance between Indigenous Peoples and states on the Facilitative Working Group which will be mandated to develop the work plan for the platform and its functions: strengthening and sharing of traditional knowledge; creating synergies with other bodies both within and outside of the UNFCCC; and supporting Parties and Indigenous Peoples engagement in the UNFCCC.

The International Indigenous Peoples” Forum on Climate Change and Parties celebrated this momentous decision with the final informal session this morning. It also happened, perhaps in a happy coincidence, on Indigenous Peoples Day – the day set aside to highlight Indigenous Peoples involvement in climate action.

The next activities of the Platform will take place in June 2019, including a thematic in-session workshop in Bonn focused on enhancing the participation of Local Communities and Indigenous Peoples; and the first meeting of the Facilitative Working group – the first Constitutive body that has equal representation between Parties and Indigenous Peoples.

While Indigenous Peoples can start today in this spirit of gratitude and celebration of this momentous decision, the work for the Platform begins as the Co-Facilitator urged Indigenous Peoples and Parties to nominate their representatives as fast as possible to maintain momentum.

There remains much work to be complete the Paris Rulebook at this COP. Indigenous Peoples will now turn their attention to push Parties to uphold their commitment to respecting, protecting, and advancing the rights of Indigenous Peoples in all negotiations under the Paris Rulebook.

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