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Seminar on Carbon Credits: Challenges and Perspectives for Indigenous Territories

Brasilia, Brazil

The Communities and Markets Program at Forest Trends partnered with the Brazilian Foundation for Indigenous Affairs (FUNAI) to present and debate the challenges and opportunities around carbon markets in the context of indigenous territorial rights in Brazil. The specific objective of the seminar was to inform FUNAI and selected indigenous rights organizations about the state of the carbon markets in Brazil and internationally, to discuss a legal review of indigenous carbon ownership rights prepared by Baker & McKenzie, provide an update on the Surui Carbon project, and develop capacity by FUNAI and indigenous communities to properly respond to carbon related opportunities.

The seminar, attended by over 100 representatives, was headed by the President of FUNAI, Marcio Meira, and counted with most of FUNAI’s senior directors as well as their regional administrators for the Amazon region. Several indigenous rights organizations were present, plus representatives of GTZ, USAID, Conservation International, TNC, Instituto Socioambiental, among others. Michael Jenkins, Jacob Olander and Beto Borges attended on behalf of Forest Trends. A key outcome of the Seminar was that Marcio Meira stated publicly that FUNAI is very supportive of the Surui to develop the carbon project and wants it to be a successful model to be implemented in other indigenous territories throughout the country. He proposed to develop a working group at the National Committee for Indigenous Policy (Comissão Nacional de Polí­tica Indigenista) to discuss the development of carbon projects within indigenous lands.