Guardians of the Forests wave ties in Yurok territory, in California.

Indigenous leaders and forest communities of Mesoamerica, the Amazon and Indonesia, join efforts and strategies in the fight against climate change.

Starting on September 3rd, delegations of the Guardians of the Forests global alliance traveled to California to attend a cultural exchange with the Yurok Ancestral People and learn about their successful model of territorial control and forest management.

Around the sacred fire, on the banks of the Klamath River, in the heart of its territory, 45 leaders from 20 nationalities and peoples from 13 countries of the world talk about this experience.   After this visit, leaders will participate in the Global Summit of Climate Action, scheduled in California from September 12 to 14, a global platform to launch deeper commitments and actions to fight against climate change. The presence of the Guardian of the Forest alliance is the opportunity to continue consolidating as key actors in the fight against climate change and to advance their demands.

According to COICA, the conservation of forests in indigenous territories represents 30% of the solution to climate change. However, the importance of indigenous peoples as part of the solution to the negative effects of climate change are not taken into account in the conferences on climate change (COP). Indigenous leaders are being threatened; nearly ¾ of the environmental defenders murdered in 2017 were indigenous leaders or leaders1.   The ALDEA Foundation, through the Tejiendo Lazos project, works to connect the indigenous peoples of the forests around the world, support their claims and strengthen the union in their advocacy platforms.

It is important to recognize their key role as guardians and owners of the forests, to ensure their territorial rights, sovereignty over their territories, recognizing that their ancestral and local knowledge is important in the struggle to face climate changes. In addition, it is necessary to establish local funds to mitigate climate change for indigenous and local communities; and that the right to consultation and the free and prior informed consent of indigenous and local communities are respected. Indigenous peoples and forest communities are part of the solution!

1 More information on criminalization of environmental leaders:

Web of the Weaving Ties / Weaving Ties project:

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Yurok Territory