23 July, 2017

Towards indigenous- and gender-sensitive Emissions Reduction Programs

Written by Indigenous Women Programme

Nineteen indigenous women and representatives from indigenous peoples’ and non-government organizations working on climate change and related matters from 12 Asia-Pacific countries participated in the Asia-Pacific Regional Workshop  on Indigenous Peoples and Gender Responsive Emissions Reduction Programs. Held on 25-27 February 2017 in Hanoi, Vietnam, the activity brought together representatives from Bangladesh, Bhutan, Burma, Cambodia, Fiji,  India, Nepal, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Thailand, Vanuatu and Vietnam. 

 

 

The workshop was organized to 1) Provide an overview of the UNDRIP, the UNFCC and REDD+ initiatives and how these intersects with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development which is global in implementation and in the context of empowering women; 2) Define gaps and challenges in indigenous women’s engagements in national and local REDD+ /climate change and development initiatives; 3) Unite on a common engagement platform for indigenous women in REDD+ countries in the Asia-Pacific region to feed into the Capacity Building on REDD+ for Forest Dependent  Indigenous Peoples in  East Asia, Pacific and South Asia Regions Project and other advocacy spaces; and 4) Provide a venue for project partners’ inception meeting.

REDD+ or Reducing Emission from Deforestation and forest Degradation, enhancement of forest carbon stocks, conservation and sustainable management of forests is a mitigation measure adopted by the climate change convention (UNFCCC) to reduce climate change-causing greenhouse gases.

The United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples was reviewed as the overarching framework with an emphasis on indigenous women and peoples not just as stakeholders but as rights holders. Briefings on the REDD+ highlighting the Cancun Safeguards resulting from indigenous peoples’ proactive engagement at the global UNFCCC processes and the World Bank’s Forest Carbon Partnership Facility (FCPF) were provided.

 

 

Participants shared their experiences as part of the CSO National Platforms as well as the contexts of indigenous women and their communities amidst the climate change crisis. Indigenous peoples in the region have varying experiences in the REDD+ implementation at different levels. Key issues from the discussions and workshops on the full and effective participation of indigenous women in the REDD+ processes include the prevailing non-recognition of indigenous peoples, especially indigenous women; weak indigenous peoples’/women’s organizations; lack of full and appropriate information on REDD+; and the lack of resources and services to enable indigenous women and indigenous peoples’ participation and engagement in the processes.

A significant outcome document of the workshop was a position paper of indigenous women from Asia and the Pacific calling for an indigenous peoples- and gender-responsive emissions reduction programs.

The workshop was organized by Tebtebba and the Center for Upland Development (CERDA) based in Hanoi, Vietnam.