Bolivia’s Indigenous social movements call for urgent action at UNFCCC talks in Bonn, Germany

Instead of trying to agree on a global deal that will actually stop climate change, governments are more worried about privatising Mother Earth.

Press Conference Webcast:


“Our Mother Earth is ill. The development model of unlimited economic growth and overconsumption has broken the balance between human beings and the environment” said indigenous leader Rafael Quispe.

“The countries negotiating in Bonn for the last two weeks are out of touch with reality. Climate change is affecting us now with more floods and draughts. As indigenous peoples we are one of the groups most vulnerable to the negative impacts of climate change”.

“Unless the peoples of the world unite the consequences of climate change will be much worse”, said indigenous leader Lauriano Pari.

“We call on Annex 1 parties to sign a second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol in Durban that is legally binding, coercive and with the capacity to penalise Parties. We reject the attempt by developed countries to prolong the life of the Protocol to then replace it in 2020 by a treaty that merges the Kyoto Protocol with the Long-Term Group on Cooperative Action.”, underlined Lauriano Pari.

The Developed countries and their allies are not serious about reducing their emissions. They want to use existing markets and create new ones to pay others so that they take no action to confront the climate crisis. And now they want to put a price on “blue carbon” in the oceans.

All outcomes of the Kyoto Protocol must recognize and respect the rights of native indigenous peoples, consistent with the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, and with the right to consultation and free, prior and informed consent.

“In order to achieve a net reduction of carbon emissions REDD plus cannot be financed by market-based mechanisms or used in carbon offsetting. Instead funds should come from developed countries and innovative funding sources should be explored. For example, by establishing a new mechanism for a tax on financial transactions that would generate funds without any conditionality”, added Lauriano Pari.

Forests are not providers of environmental services as some United Nations agencies and NGOs see them. Forests have multiple values, uses and functions and shall not be considered only as carbon sinks. There needs to be a study on the potential impact of issuing emission-reduction certificates on the rights of indigenous peoples, in particular the impact on land rights, collective rights, and traditional livelihoods.

“It is clear the current proposals on the table in the climate change negotiations are not enough to stop climate change. We propose the model of living well in harmony with Mother Earth as the way forward to re-establish the balance between humans and nature. We believe Mother Earth has rights. She owns us. We do not own her. This is why we have developed a proposal for a Law of Mother Earth that will be approved soon in Bolivia”, said  Rafael Quispe.

Notes to editors: A webcast of the full press conference at Bonn UN climate change talks is available here


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