The University of Earth, Urgent Action Series: COP 21 Paris 2015: Isis Alvarez works for the Global Forest Coalition – a group of social movements, NGOs and Indigenous People’s Organisations, which protects indigenous people’s rights when international forestry policies destroy livelihoods.
The Global Forest Coalition is a collection of NGO’s, indigenous peoples organisations and social movements, working on defending the local people and indigenous people’s rights and forest policies.
The biggest problem is about how international forest policies are sometimes harming indigenous peoples and local communities rights and destroying livelihoods. So at the international level, they are negotiating different treaties and agreements and they disregard what are the real needs and concerns of people on the ground. What they do is try and bring the word that many of the NGO’s and member groups that we have on the ground, and bringing up to the international arena, so that they can see that some of the policies are not as good as they think they are.
Their organisation is very much involved in bringing community conservation into the international arena so that traditional knowledge and indigenous people’s and local communities ways of life are recognised and their rights are recognised. The rights to land and that most policy makers can realise that their solutions are many times false solutions, in the case of climate change, and they harm people and are not good for the environment. Community conservation has proven to be way more successful for many millions of years, communities have been actually managing their natural resources in a sustainable way, so we don’t need to come up now with these very complicated policies based on speculative markets that the trade away our forests and biodiversity and treat them as commodities.
Deforestation is one of the commitments that international and all governments made with regards to sustainable and development goals. There is a target to stop deforestation by 2020. It’s not starting yet and don’t think that they are going to make it if they still continue to use the strategies they are using at the moment.