The natural resources on which indigenous peoples depend are closely linked to their identity, culture and livelihoods. Even relatively small changes in temperature or rainfall can leave their lands vulnerable to rising sea levels, drought and wildfires. As the climate crisis escalates, activists fighting to protect what’s left of the world’s forests are at risk. persecuted by their government – and even at risk of death.
For decades, Indigenous activists have sounded the alarm. But their warnings are often ignored. So they organized.
Indigenous peoples and communities, working in the Americas, Indonesia and Africa joined forces and together became Global Alliance of Territorial Communities. They work to protect their rights and territories, nearly 3.5 million square miles land all over the planet.
Working across multiple languages and political and legal systems, the coalition addressed on five priorities: land rights, free prior and informed consent of any interference in its territory. them, direct access to climate funding, protect people from violence and prosecution, and recognize traditional knowledge in the fight to save the planet.
In September, members of the coalition and their allies visited New York to meet with policymakers and donors during Climate Week, which brought together international leaders to promote global climate action.
They harness the power of speaking as a unified voice, describing promises made by governments and international organizations that have not come true. They explain that although money to fight climate change often doesn’t reach them, they have been trying to develop programs to help communities mitigate and adapt to a changing climate. Imagine what could happen with more funding and support.
Camila Falquez is a photographer and visual artist living in New York. Isvett Verde is the editorial staff in Opinion.