The Economics of Climate Change in Indigenous TerritoriesView Publication
Indigenous populations of Amazonia own 210 million hectares (or some 519 million acres) of land and have proven to be highly skilled in the field of forest conservation: the deforestation rate is 0.2%, i.e., even less than that of protected areas (1.4%) and obviously significantly lower than all the Amazon. There is no doubt therefore that they are the guarantors of the non-emission of 51 GT of CO2, which they achieve under particularly difficult conditions considering the continuous threats to their territories.
However, under the rules of the game as set forth by the governments under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, specifically when the REDD‑plus mechanism was being shaped, the governments of the Amazon region – to a large extent fostered by both bilateral and multilateral agencies called “donors” – have limited their focus only to those players in a position to reduce deforestation and then mitigate emissions and have not taken on board those which, having historically protected and taken care of their forests, have nothing to offer today in terms of reduction or mitigation (Funk et al, 2019). Hence, many of these Peoples, territories and communities have been de facto excluded.