Reports & Analysis
Expert Report on REDD+ and Rights of Indigenous Peoples
An upcoming editorial in the journal Global Environmental Change suggests three broad principles for operationalizing forest people’s rights and the need for nested forest and climate governance in support of effective and equitable REDD+ actions.
The international editorial, due out in July, discusses three broad principles for protecting the rights of Indigenous Peoples and members of local communities under REDD+ actions. Thomas Sikor (University of East Anglia), Johannes Stahl (University of California, Berkeley), Thomas Enters (The Center for People and Forests), Jesse C. Ribot (University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign), Neera Singh (Michigan State University), William D. Sunderlin (Center for International Forestry Research), and Lini Wollenberg (University of Vermont) show how climate change negotiators can operationalize the “rights of Indigenous Peoples and members of local communities” acknowledged by the Ad Hoc Working Group on Long-term Cooperative Action at the last UNFCCC Conference in Copenhagen.
Pointing to recent experience with the recognition of forest people’s rights, they suggest the need for forest people’s participation in political decision-making, equitable distribution of forest benefits, and recognition of their particular identities, histories and experiences. Only if the future climate agreement recognizes all three principles will forestry overcome forest people’s historical dispossession, political exclusion and cultural marginalization. In addition, they emphasize that global-scale institutions will be important but not sufficient in themselves for the recognition of forest people’s rights. Effective and equitable REDD+ strategies require nested forest and climate governance, including decision-making processes at multiple scales and related across scales.
The full editorial is available here.