This article was originally posted on SERVINDI’s website. Translation by Forest Trends.
AIDESEP, 30 May 2022 / Indigenous organizations expressed support for a new Territorial Governance Facility (Mecanismo de Gobernanza Territorial in Spanish, or MCT)being created to channel climate funds directly to the indigenous territories where they are most needed.
At a meeting of the Expanded Council of the Inter-Ethnic Association for the Development of the Peruvian Rainforest (AIDESEP) held on Saturday, May 28th, the Territorial Governance Facility initiative was unanimously approved.
The meeting brought together the full Board of Directors of AIDESEP and the representatives of the regional organizations in support the Facility. Participants cited the great need for such a mechanism.
The Lima meeting is the latest development in a roadmap developed at an April 8-9 workshop convened and organized in Panama by Forest Trends’ Communities and Territorial Governance Initiative.
Indigenous coalitions including the Mesoamerican Alliance of Peoples and Forests (AMPB) and the Coordinating Body of Indigenous Organizations of the Amazon Basin (COICA) participated in the Panama co-design workshop.
On the Amazonian side, AIDESEP (Peru), the Confederation of Indigenous Nationalities of the Ecuadorian Amazon (CONFENIAE) and the National Organization of Indigenous Peoples of the Colombian Amazon (OPIAC) participated.
The Panama workshop outlined a roadmap for the first year and focused on defining indigenous participation in the governance structure of the Facility. Member organizations will have direct representation in decision-making.
Agreements in Peru
In addition to validating and ratifying the Territorial Governance Mechanism, Miguel Guimaraes and Oswaldo Juep were designated as political and technical focal points, respectively, to continue the process on behalf of Peru’s AIDESEP.
It was also agreed to prioritize two pilot initiatives in territorial areas to be defined by two AIDESEP regions: the Regional Association of Indigenous Peoples of the Central Jungle (ARPI S.C.) and the Machiguenga Council of the Urubamba River (Comaru).
The meeting was attended by Marcio Halla, Director of the new Territorial Governance Facility, who addressed the participants’ doubts about the mechanism, which is being promoted by Forest Trends.
Halla was emphatic that the Facility is not a fund that will compete with other existing funds.
Essentially, it seeks to build a mechanism for technical and financial support so that climate funds reach the territories of indigenous peoples and local communities, rather than remaining with intermediary organizations.
Considering that only 1 percent of climate funds for mitigation currently reach communities directly, such a mechanism is crucial.
An innovative mechanism
The Territorial Governance Facility is an innovative initiative whose main purpose is to strengthen the political, economic, territorial and cultural governance of indigenous peoples and local communities.
In this sense, it is a unique mechanism that seeks to enhance and complement other efforts and adapt them to indigenous territories, emphasizing the development of technical and financial capacities, especially of indigenous leaders.