Subnational Innovation and Partnerships the Focus of 2016 GCF Annual Meeting

Leaders from tropical forest regions around the world gathered in Jalisco, Mexico last week to attend the Governors’ Climate and Forests (GCF) Task Force Annual Meeting and the Climate Summit of the Americas. The four-day event focused on political and practical strategies that unite governments, civil society, and the private sector around common goals that address climate change.

Earth Innovation Institute, a technical advisor to the GCF, and our Indonesian sister organization, INOBU, a regional coordinator, together with partners from the Sustainable Tropics Alliance, helped kick off the meeting by hosting an opening evening side event titled “Indigenous and Traditional Communities and the GCF” focused on collaborative pathways to low-emission rural development.

The event featured a panel of speakers including Candido Mezua of the Mesoamerican Alliance of Peoples and Forests; Fredrick Hendrik Runaweri, the Head of the Provincial Forestry Office of West Papua, Indonesia; and Government representatives from three Brazilian states leading the way on sub-national innovation: Acre, Mato Grosso, and Rondônia and highlighted the needs and priorities of indigenous peoples and traditional communities, as well as the sub-national advances underway in addressing those needs.

An important new report, Increasing REDD+ Benefits To Indigenous Peoples and Traditional Communities Through a Jurisdictional Approach, released at the event, represents two years of research by five organizations (Earth Innovation Institute, Instituto Del Bien Comun, Inobu, Prisma, and ProNatura Sur) highlighting the successes and opportunities for improvement towards full inclusion of indigenous and traditional peoples in forest conservation programs in regions of Brazil, Mexico, Peru, Colombia, Mesoamerica and Indonesia.

EII and Inobu staff also helped facilitate working sessions on Indigenous and Traditional Community Partnerships and on Supply Chain and Private Sector Partnerships during the GCF Annual Meeting and moderated a panel on Subnational Innovation for Forests and Climate during the Annual Meeting.

On the final evening of the meeting, the Jalisco Climate and Forests Film Festival screened a new short film being produced by EII, Forest Trends and Nomoha Media focused on SISA, the climate mitigation program of GCF member Acre, Brazil, that is leading the way toward promoting full inclusion of indigenous and traditional peoples in forest conservation benefits sharing agendas.