MANAGUA, Nicaragua - June 8 - On May 24th and 25th, representatives from Indigenous organizations and networks from across the Americas met in Managua, Nicaragua for the 2nd Latin American Indigenous Forum on Climate Change. The objective of this forum, which closely followed the People's World Conference in Cochabamba in April, was to establish a unified position on the various issues that are currently being negotiated under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).
MADRE's partner organization in Nicaragua, CADPI, organized and played a major role in the conference. Among those who participated in the meeting were MADRE partners Mirna Cunningham of CADPI, Tarcila Rivera of CHIRAPAQ and Enlace Continental de Mujeres Indigenas, Rose Cunningham of Wankgi Tangni, Monica Aleman of FIMI and Florina Lopez of Daughters of the Stars and Red de Mujeres Indigenas y Biodiversidad.
Tarcila Rivera noted, "Often strategies are discussed by governments in high level forums. Indigenous Peoples are not participating in those talks, but the impact of climate change directly affects Indigenous communities and Peoples. We need to work together so that our proposals, negotiation strategies and presentations at government forums can be stronger."
Indigenous Peoples are disproportionately impacted by climate change. And though Indigenous organizations can agree on what the impacts have been, there has been disagreement about what the best long-term strategies and solutions are.
MADRE Program Coordinator Natalia Caruso was in Managua for the discussions. She reported that the meeting was crucial to building consensus around issues of climate change that affect Indigenous Peoples and their communities. "Hopefully this meeting will contribute to Indigenous Peoples having a stronger role and position during the upcoming negotiations at the UN Climate Change Conference in November in Cancun, Mexico."