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Regional Roadmap for Implementing the the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in Asia and the Pacific | Progress Report 2019

Summary

REGIONAL ROAD MAP FOR IMPLEMENTING THE 2030 AGENDA FOR SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT IN ASIA AND THE PACIFIC

The Regional Road Map for Implementing the 2030 Agenda in Asia and the Pacific was developed by countries in Asia and the Pacific to facilitate cooperation at theregional level, supported by the ESCAP Secretariat and other United Nations entities.Agreed upon at the 4th Asia and Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development andendorsed via Resolution 73/9 adopted during ESCAP’s 73th Commission Session,the road map identifies eleven priority areas for regional cooperation to implementthe 2030 Agenda.

The road map calls for reviews of its progress to take place annually at the Asia-Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development. The present report uses a progressassessment methodology developed by ESCAP to assess the eleven priority areas of regional cooperation with reference to the sixty-two global means of implementationSDG targets in the global SDG indicator framework.

The report shows Asia and the Pacific is not on track to achieve the ambitions of the2030 Agenda in any of the eleven priority areas of regional cooperation. Within priority areas, the region is showing positive signs in the leaving no one behind, connectivity and technology priority areas of cooperation. However, the region is also showing signs of regressing and the pace needs to be picked up if the region is to meet most targets in all priority areas of cooperation where progress can be assessed.

Importantly, the report shows much more work is needed to collect and definedata and indicators to assess progress with the road map and the SustainableDevelopment Goals more generally, especially disaggregated data and indicatorsif we are to monitor progress properly. Working at the regional level can help on both fronts - improving data and agreeing on methodologies as well as supporting accelerated implementation of the regional dimensions of the 2030 Agenda.

Comment on implementation progress in the priority areas of regional cooperation and recommendations for regional action to strengthen progress are welcome.

 

 

 

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Report of the Fifth Asia-Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development
 
United Nations

Economic and Social Council

Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific

Fifth Asia-Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development Bangkok, 28–30 March 2018

ESCAP/RFSD/2018/4

Distr.: General 10 April 2018

Original: English

Report of the Fifth Asia-Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development

1. The Fifth Asia-Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development, organized by the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), was held in Bangkok from 28 to 30 March 2018.

2. It was attended by more than 750 participants, including representatives of Governments, intergovernmental organizations, United Nations bodies, international organizations, civil society organizations and other entities.

3. The Forum was attended by representatives of the following members and associate members of ESCAP: Afghanistan; Armenia; Australia; Azerbaijan; Bangladesh; Bhutan; Cambodia; China; Democratic People’s Republic of Korea; Fiji; France; Georgia; Hong Kong, China; India; Indonesia; Iran (Islamic Republic of); Japan; Kazakhstan; Kiribati; Kyrgyzstan; Lao People’s Democratic Republic; Malaysia; Maldives; Marshall Islands; Mongolia; Myanmar; Nauru; Nepal; Pakistan; Palau; Papua New Guinea; Philippines; Republic of Korea; Russian Federation; Samoa; Singapore; Sri Lanka; Tajikistan; Thailand; Timor-Leste; Tonga; Turkmenistan; Tuvalu; United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland; Uzbekistan; Vanuatu; and Viet Nam. Representatives of Germany, Israel, Nigeria, Sweden and Switzerland attended as observers.

4. Under agenda item 1 (a), the Chair of the Fourth Asia-Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development, Mr. Ahsan Iqbal Chaudhary, Minister for Planning, Development and Reforms, Pakistan, made a statement on behalf of the Bureau on the outcome of the Fourth Forum. A video message was delivered by the Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations. The Executive Secretary of ESCAP delivered a keynote address and provided an overview of the Fifth Forum. Statements were also delivered by Mr. Don Pramudwinai, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Thailand, and Ms. Joan Carling on behalf of civil society.

5. Under agenda item 1 (b), the Forum elected the following Bureau members:

  1. (a)  Co-Chairs:

    Mr. Levan Davitashvili (Georgia) Mr. Rajiv Kumar (India)

  2. (b)  Vice-Chairs:

    Mr. Thinley Namgyel (Bhutan)
    Mr. George Sharvashidze (Georgia)
    Mr. David Ranibok Adeang (Nauru)
    Mr. Ahsan Iqbal Chaudhary (Pakistan)
    Mr. Alexander Bedritsky (Russian Federation) Ms. Faimalotoa Kika Iemaima Stowers (Samoa) Mr. Tojiddin Jurazoda (Tajikistan)

Mr. Ezizgeldi Annamuhammedov (Turkmenistan)

  1. (a)  Opening statements;

  2. (b)  Election of officers;

  3. (c)  Adoption of the agenda.

  1. Regional perspectives on the follow-up to and review of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

  2. Strengthening the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in the Asia-Pacific region.

  3. Other matters.

  4. Review and adoption of the draft report of the Forum.

  5. Closing of the Forum.

7. Under agenda item 2, a high-level panel discussed regional perspectives and trends related to the theme of the Forum, and good practices and effective interventions to build and strengthen resilience in the region.

8. A plenary discussion on progress in the implementation of Sustainable Development Goal 17 was held. The Forum was informed of key recommendations from five round tables, held during the Forum, which had conducted an in-depth review of Sustainable Development Goals 6, 7, 11, 12 and 15, to be addressed at the forthcoming high-level political forum on sustainable development of the Economic and Social Council.1

9. Under agenda item 3, the Asia-Pacific countries participating in voluntary national reviews for the high-level political forums on sustainable development in 2016, 2017 and 2018 shared national perspectives on challenges, progress and achievements relating to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, as well as lessons learned from the review.

10. The Forum was informed of the progress with respect to the regional road map for implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in Asia and the Pacific.

11. Members States, major groups and other stakeholders, and United Nations agencies shared perspectives on the role and achievements of partnerships in the region in accelerating the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals.

  1. Under agenda item 4, no other matters were discussed.

  2. Under agenda item 5, the Forum adopted the present report and the

Chair’s summary of the Forum, contained in annex I to the present document, on 30 March 2018.

14. The following publications were launched: Transformation Towards Sustainable and Resilient Societies in Asia and the Pacific, jointly published by ESCAP, the Asian Development Bank and the United Nations Development Programme; and Partnering for Sustainable Development: Guidelines for Multi-stakeholder Partnerships to Implement the 2030 Agenda in Asia and the Pacific, developed by the United Nations University Institute for the Advanced Study of Sustainability and ESCAP. The Asia-Pacific launch of The United Nations World Water Development Report 2018: Nature-based Solutions for Water, coordinated by the World Water Assessment Programme of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization under UN-Water, was held as part of the marking of World Water Day 2018.

  1. Side events were held from 28 to 30 March 2018.2

  2. The following preparatory events were held: the Preparatory Youth

Forum for the Asia-Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development; the Asia- Pacific Peoples’ Forum for Sustainable Development 2018: Defending the Environment and Redefining Resilience – Our Collective Actions for Development Justice; the ESCAP/United Nations Human Settlements Programme Asia-Pacific Regional Training Workshop on Human Settlement Indicators; the Embassy of Sweden in Thailand/ESCAP regional workshop on building resilience through participation; the ESCAP/Overseas Development Institute workshop on leaving no one behind in the Asia-Pacific region; and the ESCAP/Department of Economic and Social Affairs of the Secretariat regional preparatory workshop for voluntary national review countries from the Asia-Pacific region.

17. The Forum concluded that the present report, including its annex, should be brought to the attention of the Commission, at its seventy-fourth session, and to the global dialogues on sustainable development, including in particular the upcoming high-level political forum on sustainable development, which would be held in New York from 9 to 18 July 2018.

Annex

4

B18-00474

I. Chair’s summary of discussions at the Fifth Asia-Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development

1. The theme of the Fifth Asia-Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development was “Transformation towards sustainable and resilient societies”. During the Forum, members of the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), intergovernmental bodies, United Nations bodies and specialized agencies, and major groups and other stakeholders engaged in a dialogue on regional perspectives on the follow-up to and review of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in the Asia- Pacific region. The Forum also discussed means to strengthen implementation of the 2030 Agenda in the region.

Regional perspectives on the theme of the Fifth Asia-Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development

2. During the session, panellists reflected on the social, environmental and economic challenges to achieving sustainable development and on institutional responses that were being mainstreamed in the region to strengthen resilience to natural disasters and economic shocks, improve the livelihoods of vulnerable populations and ensure that no one was left behind. Social risk factors, such as gender inequality, lack of social protection, rural-urban inequality and lack of financial inclusion and diversification of economic activities, were also discussed.

3. The Forum stressed the importance of inclusive, multi-stakeholder participation, including by disadvantaged and risk-exposed populations, and engagement by all levels of government, including subnational and local authorities. The Forum noted efforts in the region to identify and empower poor and vulnerable populations, including women and children, and to strengthen resilience through social inclusion, health, education, housing, nutrition and food security, water and sanitation strategies and awareness programmes. Capacity-building and regional cooperation were also discussed as opportunities to develop mechanisms for mutual support, with a view to defining common approaches, strengthening climate change response and building resilient communities, including in coastal areas and low-lying islands.

4. The Forum noted the need to build resilient infrastructure and develop early warning systems, including with respect to education and preparedness for natural disasters and economic shocks, and to make transport connections climate-proof. The Forum noted progress in the region in mainstreaming climate change policies, including through the adoption of policies on energy efficiency and renewable energy, and the development of action at the local level. One representative stressed the need to assess the sectoral impacts of climate change across the economy.

5. The efforts of Governments to align policies with the 2030 Agenda and other relevant frameworks, such as the SIDS Accelerated Modalities of Action (SAMOA) Pathway, and to cooperate with other regional organizations such as the Eurasian Economic Commission and joint efforts in the Eurasian Economic Union to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals were underlined. Several representatives noted the need to establish monitoring systems and improve interministerial coordination in order to effectively integrate policy responses to increase resilience, including by identifying the 

most relevant indicators of the Sustainable Development Goals framework to national circumstances. The adoption of innovative approaches and use of new technologies were highlighted as key tools to support the success of efforts to build resilience. One permanent observer highlighted the need for Governments to facilitate broad participation in resilience building, taking into account stakeholders’ risk analysis and perspectives, and to expand quantitative evidence on the benefits of participation, define dimensions of effective engagement and develop innovative communication methods to engage stakeholders.

6. Representatives from international organizations stressed that a focus on resilience was necessary to achieve multiple Sustainable Development Goals. Associated risks of megatrends such as climate change, industrial development and rising inequalities could endanger regional progress towards the Goals. The need for attention to gender equality and for the empowerment of multiple stakeholders, including women and poor populations, were noted. Pre-disaster planning, wider disaster risk reduction programmes and innovative, integrated and coordinated responses were discussed as regional needs.

7. Representatives from major groups and other stakeholders emphasized the need to strengthen social infrastructure, including the roles of social entrepreneurship and social enterprises to serve as innovative and transformational platforms to address poverty and build resilience. They also emphasized the need for attention to grass-roots and marginalized constituencies and for focus on human rights and the priorities of poor communities, including populations living in urban slums and unliveable areas.

II. Progress in the implementation of Sustainable Development Goal 17 and promotion of the means of implementation

8. The Forum reviewed progress in the region towards the implementation of Sustainable Development Goal 17, particularly with respect to global and multi-stakeholder partnerships, technology and innovation, and data and statistics. Panellists and representatives highlighted perspectives on indicators, data gaps and means of implementation in terms of alignment with national contexts. Presenters and panellists discussed priority areas for implementing the Goals and building resilience – such as technology and innovation, finance and trade, renewable energy, connectivity and communication technology, food security, productive employment, social protection, climate change, sanitation and water resource management, and data and statistics – and reported on progress made in their countries.

9. Representatives reported on international development efforts, noting their alignment with the principles of the 2030 Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals, while also calling for enhanced mechanisms to monitor the effectiveness of aid and for strengthened accountability and transparency of development cooperation. One representative called for more political will to collaborate to achieve the Goals and leave no one behind, while another called for the Forum to continuously support member States by examining pathways towards resilience. Several representatives noted the importance of multi-stakeholder and multilevel partnerships, including with civil society, academia and business, and provided concrete examples of such partnerships. Some representatives highlighted gender equality as a tool for achieving the Goals and called for participation by marginalized groups to be enhanced to ensure that their voice was heard. Representatives reported on increased domestic financial mobilization and called for increased foreign direct investment and voluntary contributions.

III. Assessment of progress in the implementation of Sustainable Development Goals 6, 7, 11, 12, and 15 at the regional level

10. Progress was reported by several representatives on data and statistics linked to the Goals, including the development of country-specific and local indicators. The Forum noted the need to address data and statistical challenges, in particular further methodological development and enhanced data generation and disaggregation. Several representatives called on international and regional statistical institutions to take specific action and provide clear guidance to countries on methodology and standards for the collection, processing and dissemination of statistics and data and encouraged technical and financial support to reduce data gaps and increasing data quality.

11. The Forum pointed to the usefulness of administrative data, particularly for civil registration and vital statistics. One representative noted the development of an effective system for civil registration and vital statistics, which enabled more accurate diagnosis of social issues for more adequate policies and coordinated measures. The development and strengthening of the statistical capacities of countries in the region were important for evidence- based decision-making and accountability. Countries were producing high- quality and timely statistics by using new data sources and technologies.

12. Major groups and stakeholders cautioned that partnerships with business should benefit workers and called for social dialogue to ensure decent work.

Assessment of progress in the implementation of Sustainable Development Goals 6, 7, 11, 12, and 15 at the regional level

13. The Forum conducted an in-depth review of five of the six Sustainable Development Goals that would be the focus of the high-level political forum on sustainable development in 2018, in line with General Assembly resolution 70/299 on the follow-up to and review of the 2030 Agenda at the global level.

14. Under agenda item 2, five parallel round tables were held on the follow- up to and review of Goals 6, 7, 11, 12 and 15. Rapporteurs from the round tables informed the Forum about their recommendations, as described below.

15. The round table on Goal 6 (Clean water and sanitation) made several recommendations on the Goal in Asia and the Pacific.3

16. Asia and the Pacific had made some progress towards achieving Goal 6. However, the region needed to accelerate its efforts across all sectors to ensure the availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all by 2030. Acceleration could be supported by encouraging policy coherence and intersectoral coordination within and between countries by enhancing synergies and minimizing trade-offs between sectors and Goals. Water- resource management, within and across countries, needed further attention and required the implementation of existing policies and laws in the water sector, supported by monitoring and accountability schemes. More efforts should be made to ensure just and equitable access to water and sanitation for all, with a particular focus on women and children and poor people.

17. Given that the region faced serious scarcity issues, with the lowest availability of water per capita in the world, the region needed to improve and stimulate the management of recycled water and other sources of water, such as rainwater, as valuable resources. Governments needed to design better incentives and systems to ensure compliance with respect to water 

management and sanitation and stronger policies to fully eliminate water pollution. Good practices like raising awareness and promoting clean water and sanitation in relation to human rights and human health, and in the world of work, should be actively promoted. Stronger attention should be paid to water-related innovations and the promotion of green jobs across countries, but it was also important to promote existing technologies that could be applied in new sectors or in new settings. All of those objectives could be achieved only by promoting partnerships and ensuring wide participation by local stakeholders, including women and indigenous communities and other vulnerable groups.

18. The round table on Goal 7 (Affordable and clean energy) made several recommendations on the Goal in Asia and the Pacific.4

19. Achievement of universal access to energy would require additional efforts and collaboration by all stakeholders, including Governments, the private sector and civil society. Platforms for raising awareness needed to be created and the roles of the stakeholders must be efficiently coordinated to achieve coherent action, enable multi-stakeholder dialogue with a view to improving progress towards Goal 7 and engage international development partners where needed. Issues of quality and reliability of energy access and availability of reliable data for monitoring needed to be promptly tackled by policymakers. National targets for clean cooking fuels and technologies should be established, and the issues of clean cooking and the development of renewable energy sources must be better integrated into energy policy frameworks, taking into consideration specific cultural differences among member States. Efforts to promote affordable and accessible renewable sources were urgently needed in order to address environmental sustainability and air pollution. Energy efficiency measures were required as a matter of urgency in social and public services, such as in the transport, industry and building sectors, and would need full support through subsidies from national Governments. To facilitate renewable energy and energy efficiency expansion, member States needed to address existing policy barriers such as monopolistic utility positions and the lack of regulation of energy prices.

20. With the support of ESCAP and relevant regional institutions, member States needed to develop an intergovernmental mechanism to promote equitable cross-border electricity power trade and connectivity as one of the building blocks towards attaining sustainable development. International energy cooperation efforts to deploy publicly available innovative technologies, along with safeguards, needed to be enhanced among member States. Energy sector reform was needed to move from vertically integrated energy systems to more comprehensively integrated approaches that encouraged local production and State regulation in distribution and transmission, and therefore improved affordability and increased resilience to blackouts. Policymaking processes and governance should be made more transparent through appropriate control and monitoring mechanisms, as well as through enhanced public participation. Energy policies needed to respond to the needs of the local communities and stimulate sustainable energy projects. Small renewable energy projects were resource-efficient, environmentally sustainable and capable of stimulating economic growth and providing jobs and needed to be promoted across the region. The close linkages between water, food and energy required a suitably integrated approach to ensuring water and food security, sustainable agriculture and energy production.

21. The round table on Sustainable Development Goal 11 (Sustainable cities and communities) highlighted several recommendations to make further progress on the Goal in Asia and the Pacific.5

22. Asia-Pacific countries needed to accelerate progress against Sustainable Development Goal 11 by empowering local governments and community groups to deliver against that Goal in an integrated fashion across all the Goals and global sustainability agendas. While it had been estimated that 65 per cent of the total Goal targets needed to be delivered by local authorities and actors, that was not matched with the requisite decision-making authority required to drive local implementation of Goal 11 and all urban related targets.

23. Recommendations on efforts to build an enabling environment and policy coherence across different spheres of government for stronger progress against Sustainable Development Goal 11 included (a) national Government partnerships with local and regional governments and communities to operationalize Goal 11 should be enhanced and greater decentralization of functions to local authorities to support their efforts to deliver on Goal 11 on the ground should specifically focus on deepening fiscal devolution processes to address the issue of unfunded mandates which was hindering progress against the Goal; (b) inclusive implementation of Goal 11, specifically its social dimensions, should be strengthened through more targeted commitments to empower local communities, especially associations of the urban poor, who were vital to upgrade informal settlements and to leave no one behind in cities; (c) innovative local examples of effective implementation of Goal 11 by local governments and a diverse range of urban communities should be documented and scaled up to accelerate progress in countries leveraging South-South platforms for learning and further replication; and (d) many of the indicators under Goal 11 required spatial data collection from subnational actors to effectively measure and report on progress and therefore, harmonization, cooperation and capacity development aimed at subnational data collectors in partnership with national statistical authorities should be a priority moving forward.

24. The round table on Sustainable Development Goal 12 (Responsible consumption and production) highlighted several recommendations to make further progress on the Goal in Asia and the Pacific.6

25. Responsible consumption and production policies should be integrated into core economic agendas and sectoral plans with centralized and coordinated mechanisms for policies and initiatives, clearly identifying roles and responsibilities for all stakeholders. Multi-stakeholder networks should be strengthened by engaging scientific organizations, the private sector and civil society. Circular economy initiatives should be promoted, prioritizing sustainable public procurement. Responsible consumption and production should be seen as an enabler of the other Sustainable Development Goals.

26. Governments were encouraged to shift towards an integrated and inclusive circular economy approach by (a) identifying interlinkages across the Sustainable Development Goals at the target level and applying a cost-benefit analysis to identify synergies and trade-offs; (b) strengthening statistical capacity by investing in frameworks and databases that incorporated economic, 

environmental and social accounts for evidence-based policymaking; and (c) establishing interministerial dialogues and consultative multi-stakeholder processes and partnerships to inform inclusive and impactful policies as well as to coordinate joint implementation of a circular economy.

27. The round table on Sustainable Development Goal 15 (Life on land) highlighted several recommendations to make further progress on the Goal in Asia and the Pacific.7

28. Integrated data systems that supported ecosystem-based management, integrating information from diverse sources, including community, indigenous and traditional knowledge, should be used; engagement across sectors and stakeholders, in particular with local communities and indigenous peoples should be encouraged; strengthened governance approaches and effective laws to promote participation to clarify land-tenure arrangement, to enforce the rights of indigenous peoples and environmental defenders, to support ecosystem-based management approaches and social impact assessments and to recognize the intrinsic rights of nature should be encouraged; diversification of financing and linking that with improvements in governance and management approaches should be encouraged; land degradation neutrality should be achieved; and regional cooperation should be strengthened, including by implementing the outcomes of the Asia-Pacific Ministerial Summit on the Environment held in 2017.

29. Given the vital importance of biodiversity and ecosystem services for human survival and well-being, it was essential to urgently mainstream biodiversity conservation into decision-making processes, including by ministries of finance, agriculture, infrastructure, planning, tourism and education, among others. That could be done by working in partnerships and adopting an integrated and evidence-based approach to sustainable development, planning and implementation, taking into account the links, synergies and trade-offs between Sustainable Development Goal 15 and other Goals, such as Goal 1 (No poverty), Goal 2 (Zero hunger), Goal 3 (Good health and well-being), Goal 5 (Gender equality), Goal 6 (Clean water and sanitation), Goal 8 (Decent work and economic growth), Goal 12 (Responsible consumption and production), and Goal 13 (Climate action).

IV. Assessment of the interlinkages among the Sustainable Development Goals

30. The panellists emphasized the importance of preserving natural ecosystems and their services as a basis to achieve transformation towards sustainable and resilient societies. Inequalities, damage to ecosystems and waste production were unprecedented. Actions on sustainable forest management were a means of reaching zero hunger, no poverty and gender equality and promoting good health, well-being and affordable and clean energy, among others, with young people playing a catalytic role. Three actions were recommended, focusing on initiating informed action at the individual level with involvement and engagement. Interlinkages were also discussed from the angle of water-sensitive cities and from the perspective of the private sector. The interlinkages were context-specific, and social and infrastructure resilience needed attention. Sustainable urban design provided a powerful integrating platform for addressing multiple issues, including through nature- based solutions.

31. The interlinkages, synergies and trade-offs between the Sustainable Development Goals were pointed out. Some member States outlined their initiatives in support of mainstreamed and integrated approaches to implementation, including the formulation of a Sustainable Development Goal road map, aligning the United Nations Development Assistance Frameworks with the Goals, constitutional amendments to enhance inclusiveness and mainstreaming the Goals into budget processes. Strategic and policy actions on the cluster of Goals were also described, including those that presented integrated approaches to deal with access to basic services, rapid urbanization and the development of future growth centres, including beautification, disaster response, traffic management and waste reduction. Other priorities included promoting sustainable food management and consumption patterns, sustainable forest management, and climate change mitigation and adaptation. Currently more than 60 per cent of energy generated in one country was from renewable sources, while a green growth framework continued to orient the Government’s investments.

32. In one country, institutional arrangements had been put in place to promote integrated approaches, including Sustainable Development Goal coordination and implementation committees and thematic committees. Efforts to promote integrated approaches were further strengthened through the involvement of stakeholders in implementation. However, horizontal and vertical coordination, lack of access to robust and disaggregated data, localization of the Goals and mainstreaming were still challenges.

33. One international organization emphasized support for integrated, nature-based solutions, with a focus on water. Several transboundary initiatives were in place, and the legal basis for management of transboundary water bodies was being strengthened. The organization offered its continued support to countries. One organization underlined the need to fully integrate air transport across the Sustainable Development Goals and the actions taken to mitigate the climate impact of the aviation sector. A joint statement was delivered by international agricultural organizations, with a group of indigenous people, emphasizing the need to foster productive synergies between rural and urban development to ensure that no one was left behind. Small-scale farmers were essential to all food systems and played important roles in the energy and water sectors. The interests and rights of indigenous peoples, smallholder farmers and women must underpin transformations towards sustainability in an integrated and socially inclusive manner.

34. Major groups and other stakeholders highlighted the need for an integrated approach to Sustainable Development Goal implementation given the close links between poverty, food security, energy, health, sustainable cities and climate change, among others. The indivisibility of human rights and the active participation of people were stressed as foundations for cooperation across sectors, stakeholders and levels of government. Mapping and planning for institutional coherence and the involvement of grass-roots and underrepresented communities, as well as groups at risk, in planning and implementation was urged. The structural drivers of inequality were described, together with the resulting inequality of access to quality public health care, the risks of trafficking and unequal access to justice. They called for strategies to strengthen control over natural resources, particularly by women as keepers of natural resources, in addition to greater investment in delivery of public goods as basic human rights.

V. National perspectives and progress through the lens of the voluntary national reviews

35. The participants in the session discussed key learning outcomes and challenges resulting from countries participating in the voluntary national reviews at the high-level political forum on sustainable development. Member States highlighted the importance of (a) government ownership/political leadership; (b) stakeholder engagement and consultation; (c) coordination, within government and with stakeholders and development partners; (d) integration with national planning; and (e) ensuring the availability of quality, disaggregated data for monitoring the Sustainable Development Goals and their follow-up.

36. Political leadership and good intragovernmental coordination was important for ensuring government ownership. To ensure government ownership and coordination, one country had created a presidential decree that served as a guideline for coordination, and others had established committees or coordinating councils at top levels, some directly under the Head of Government. Citizen engagement, ownership and localization were considered key in formulating policies and action plans on the Sustainable Development Goals. Transparency and accountability were also important to building peaceful and inclusive societies.

37. The Forum emphasized the importance of full and comprehensive consultations that included a wide range of stakeholders, including civil society organizations, non-governmental organizations, think tanks, businesses, local governments, philanthropies and the media. The Forum also emphasized the importance of integrating the Sustainable Development Goals with national planning tools and processes, including for monitoring and follow-up. Several countries had already integrated the Goals into existing national planning instruments.

38. The importance of accurate, timely and disaggregated data was highlighted by the Forum, which noted that data was a challenge even for developed countries. One representative reported having established an electronic monitoring tool for the Sustainable Development Goals. The system would help to distribute information on progress and would also help to ensure accountability and transparency of government agencies. Finally, the Forum highlighted funding as a challenge, in particular for least developed countries.

39. Major groups and other stakeholders emphasized the importance of inclusiveness and the meaningful participation of civil society, in particular those representing marginalized groups, including in establishing indicators that reflect the aspiration of the Sustainable Development Goals. Voluntary national reviews could serve as an accountability mechanism to hold Governments accountable and responsible to the people.

VI. Progress on the regional road map for implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in Asia and the Pacific

40. The Forum reviewed progress on the regional road map for implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in Asia and the Pacific, adopted by the Fourth Asia-Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development in 2017 and endorsed by ESCAP member States at the seventy- third session of the Commission. The session included a video prepared by the secretariat to illustrate cooperation with member States and partners in implementing the road map’s priority areas of action, followed by a summary of actions taken to implement it in the past year. Country and stakeholder statements highlighted ongoing action across all sectors, expressed appreciation for support by regional partners such as ESCAP, and drew attention to remaining gaps, such as statistical capacity.

41. Member States highlighted their follow-up and contributions to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda in Asia and the Pacific. The active participation of civil society, youth, women, vulnerable groups, businesses and others was noted as a need, to be enhanced through capacity-building programmes which actively partnered with a diverse range of stakeholders. The collection of adequate and reliable disaggregated data was also seen as vital in the effort to leave no one behind in the regional implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals.

42. Representatives of one country noted that equal importance was given to both adaptation and mitigation through their national adaptation plan and nationally appropriate mitigation actions and emphasized that the impact of frequent cyclones had made it essential for a well-coordinated multisectoral programmatic approach to flood mitigation to ensure the resilience of the communities most affected. Significant investments in capacity-building for data collection and analysis, especially in developing countries, were essential to meet the commitment on disaggregation of data and to make necessary policy adjustments in ensuring that no one was left behind.

43. Major groups and other stakeholders emphasized the need to increase domestic resource mobilization for the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals, especially in least developed countries. They urged member States to revitalize the discussions of a regional tax body to tackle the issues of harmful use of tax incentives and illicit financial flows and to pursue regional cooperation mechanisms for the recovery of assets and potential lost revenues. Major groups and other stakeholders suggested that the road map was a living document and could be adjusted, especially with regard to the means of implementation, which fell short on the inclusion of various community issues, such as the removal of structural barriers and the promotion of human rights. There was also a need to ensure adequate availability of investments to support youth to engage in the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals. Non-governmental organizations also called for the scaling up of efforts for community-based data collection for the Goals and for compatibility impact assessments of trade and investment agreements, the targeting of illicit financial flows and a convention to address corporate consolidation.

VII. Partnerships for implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals

44. The participants in the session discussed how to harness partnerships for the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals, as part of agenda item 3 on strengthening the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in the Asia-Pacific region. The session facilitated discussion between a multi-stakeholder panel and member States, United Nations bodies and other stakeholders to highlight the diverse partnership methods, success stories, challenges and key criteria that underpinned successful partnerships in pursuit of sustainable development.

45. The panellists noted that long term multi-stakeholder and multisectoral partnerships, founded on participatory and inclusive processes were critical to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. There was a need to generate data to monitor the performance of partnerships, and adequate monitoring and accountability mechanisms should be integrated into partnerships to improve 

their transparency. Realizing the specific resources and capacities that each stakeholder could bring was critical for transformative partnerships. Developing local capacity in all contexts needed to be a guiding principle of all partnerships. The panellists urged stakeholders to harness the power of volunteers, youth groups and the scientific community in strengthening partnerships. Some panellists cautioned that care was needed in ensuring that the partnership agenda was not captured by individual groups with vested interests and emphasized the need to ensure the protection of human rights and development justice in all partnerships.

46. The Forum stated the importance of building strong partnerships within and among member States and with other stakeholders for the successful implementation of the 2030 Agenda. In that context, the Forum expressed its appreciation for the Commission’s efforts to build partnerships in the region. The need to strengthen partnerships, with industry to unleash entrepreneurship and with civil society to spread awareness of Sustainable Development Goals, was also highlighted. The Forum recounted the success of the region in establishing regional and subregional partnerships in the fields of trade, investment and connectivity and called for the safeguarding of the multilateral trading system. The Forum called for expanding partnerships at the regional level in areas such as climate change, food security, Goal indicator frameworks, energy, infrastructure, labour mobility, technology, knowledge- sharing and financial integration and macroeconomic cooperation, including through mutually reinforcing partnerships with communities across the region.

47. Several organizations emphasized the importance of multi-stakeholder partnerships in addressing the many economic, environmental and social challenges as well as in assessing the Sustainable Development Goal targets and indicators and ensuring inclusion of vulnerable populations and local groups.

48. Major groups and other stakeholders emphasized the importance of integrating the commitments to human rights in partnerships to ensure the full participation of rights’ holders, integrating issues like accessibility from the start. Partnerships should respect workers and trade union rights, foster decent work and support traditional knowledge systems for the Sustainable Development Goals. Public-private partnerships should be built on human rights standards with high levels of transparency, accountability, whistle- blower protection and respect for indigenous cultures. Investor-State dispute settlement, provided for by international investment agreements, risked limiting the space for ensuring such rights.

 

Progress on the regional road map for implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in Asia and the Pacific

40. The Forum reviewed progress on the regional road map for implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in Asia and the Pacific, adopted by the Fourth Asia-Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development in 2017 and endorsed by ESCAP m

statements highlighted ongoing action across all sectors, expressed appreciation for support by regional partners such as ESCAP, and drew attention to remaining gaps, such as statistical capacity.

41. Member States highlighted their follow-up and contributions to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda in Asia and the Pacific. The active participation of civil society, youth, women, vulnerable groups, businesses and others was noted as a need, to be enhanced through capacity-building programmes which actively partnered with a diverse range of stakeholders. The collection of adequate and reliable disaggregated data was also seen as vital in the effort to leave no one behind in the regional implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals.

42. Representatives of one country noted that equal importance was given to both adaptation and mitigation through their national adaptation plan and nationally appropriate mitigation actions and emphasized that the impact of frequent cyclones had made it essential for a well-coordinated multisectoral programmatic approach to flood mitigation to ensure the resilience of the communities most affected. Significant investments in capacity-building for data collection and analysis, especially in developing countries, were essential to meet the commitment on disaggregation of data and to make necessary policy adjustments in ensuring that no one was left behind.

43. Major groups and other stakeholders emphasized the need to increase domestic resource mobilization for the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals, especially in least developed countries. They urged member States to revitalize the discussions of a regional tax body to tackle the issues of harmful use of tax incentives and illicit financial flows and to pursue regional cooperation mechanisms for the recovery of assets and potential lost revenues. Major groups and other stakeholders suggested that the road map was a living document and could be adjusted, especially with regard to the means of implementation, which fell short on the inclusion of various community issues, such as the removal of structural barriers and the promotion of human rights. There was also a need to ensure adequate availability of investments to support youth to engage in the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals. Non-governmental organizations also called for the scaling up of efforts for community-based data collection for the Goals and for compatibility impact assessments of trade and investment agreements, the targeting of illicit financial flows and a convention to address corporate consolidation.

Partnerships for implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals

44. The participants in the session discussed how to harness partnerships for the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals, as part of agenda item 3 on strengthening the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in the Asia-Pacific region. The session facilitated discussion between a multi-stakeholder panel and member States, United Nations bodies and other stakeholders to highlight the diverse partnership methods, success stories, challenges and key criteria that underpinned successful partnerships in pursuit of sustainable development.

45. The panellists noted that long term multi-stakeholder and multisectoral partnerships, founded on participatory and inclusive processes were critical to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. There was a need to generate data to monitor the performance of partnerships, and adequate monitoring and accountability mechanisms should be integrated into partnerships to improve

ember States at the seventy- third session of the Commission. The session included a video prepared by the secretariat to illustrate cooperation with member States and partners in implementing the road map’s priority areas of action, followed by a summary of actions taken to implement it in the past year. Country and stakeholder 

 

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United Nations

Economic and Social Council

Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific

Fifth Asia-Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development Bangkok, 28–30 March 2018

ESCAP/RFSD/2018/4

Distr.: General 10 April 2018

 

Report of the Fifth Asia-Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development

1. The Fifth Asia-Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development, organized by the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), was held in Bangkok from 28 to 30 March 2018.

2. It was attended by more than 750 participants, including representatives of Governments, intergovernmental organizations, United Nations bodies, international organizations, civil society organizations and other entities.

3. The Forum was attended by representatives of the following members and associate members of ESCAP: Afghanistan; Armenia; Australia; Azerbaijan; Bangladesh; Bhutan; Cambodia; China; Democratic People’s Republic of Korea; Fiji; France; Georgia; Hong Kong, China; India; Indonesia; Iran (Islamic Republic of); Japan; Kazakhstan; Kiribati; Kyrgyzstan; Lao People’s Democratic Republic; Malaysia; Maldives; Marshall Islands; Mongolia; Myanmar; Nauru; Nepal; Pakistan; Palau; Papua New Guinea; Philippines; Republic of Korea; Russian Federation; Samoa; Singapore; Sri Lanka; Tajikistan; Thailand; Timor-Leste; Tonga; Turkmenistan; Tuvalu; United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland; Uzbekistan; Vanuatu; and Viet Nam. Representatives of Germany, Israel, Nigeria, Sweden and Switzerland attended as observers.

4. Under agenda item 1 (a), the Chair of the Fourth Asia-Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development, Mr. Ahsan Iqbal Chaudhary, Minister for Planning, Development and Reforms, Pakistan, made a statement on behalf of the Bureau on the outcome of the Fourth Forum. A video message was delivered by the Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations. The Executive Secretary of ESCAP delivered a keynote address and provided an overview of the Fifth Forum. Statements were also delivered by Mr. Don Pramudwinai, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Thailand, and Ms. Joan Carling on behalf of civil society.

 
 

5. Under agenda item 1 (b), the Forum elected the following Bureau members:

  1. (a)  Co-Chairs:

    Mr. Levan Davitashvili (Georgia) Mr. Rajiv Kumar (India)

  2. (b)  Vice-Chairs:

    Mr. Thinley Namgyel (Bhutan)
    Mr. George Sharvashidze (Georgia)
    Mr. David Ranibok Adeang (Nauru)
    Mr. Ahsan Iqbal Chaudhary (Pakistan)
    Mr. Alexander Bedritsky (Russian Federation) Ms. Faimalotoa Kika Iemaima Stowers (Samoa) Mr. Tojiddin Jurazoda (Tajikistan)

Mr. Ezizgeldi Annamuhammedov (Turkmenistan)

  1. (a)  Opening statements;

  2. (b)  Election of officers;

  3. (c)  Adoption of the agenda.

  1. Regional perspectives on the follow-up to and review of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

  2. Strengthening the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in the Asia-Pacific region.

  3. Other matters.

  4. Review and adoption of the draft report of the Forum.

  5. Closing of the Forum.

7. Under agenda item 2, a high-level panel discussed regional perspectives and trends related to the theme of the Forum, and good practices and effective interventions to build and strengthen resilience in the region.

8. A plenary discussion on progress in the implementation of Sustainable Development Goal 17 was held. The Forum was informed of key recommendations from five round tables, held during the Forum, which had conducted an in-depth review of Sustainable Development Goals 6, 7, 11, 12 and 15, to be addressed at the forthcoming high-level political forum on sustainable development of the Economic and Social Council.1

9. Under agenda item 3, the Asia-Pacific countries participating in voluntary national reviews for the high-level political forums on sustainable development in 2016, 2017 and 2018 shared national perspectives on challenges, progress and achievements relating to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, as well as lessons learned from the review.

 

 
 
 

10. The Forum was informed of the progress with respect to the regional road map for implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in Asia and the Pacific.

11. Members States, major groups and other stakeholders, and United Nations agencies shared perspectives on the role and achievements of partnerships in the region in accelerating the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals.

  1.  

    Under agenda item 4, no other matters were discussed.

     

  2. Under agenda item 5, the Forum adopted the present report and the

Chair’s summary of the Forum, contained in annex I to the present document, on 30 March 2018.

14. The following publications were launched: Transformation Towards Sustainable and Resilient Societies in Asia and the Pacific, jointly published by ESCAP, the Asian Development Bank and the United Nations Development Programme; and Partnering for Sustainable Development: Guidelines for Multi-stakeholder Partnerships to Implement the 2030 Agenda in Asia and the Pacific, developed by the United Nations University Institute for the Advanced Study of Sustainability and ESCAP. The Asia-Pacific launch of The United Nations World Water Development Report 2018: Nature-based Solutions for Water, coordinated by the World Water Assessment Programme of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization under UN-Water, was held as part of the marking of World Water Day 2018.

  1. Side events were held from 28 to 30 March 2018.2

  2. The following preparatory events were held: the Preparatory Youth

Forum for the Asia-Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development; the Asia- Pacific Peoples’ Forum for Sustainable Development 2018: Defending the Environment and Redefining Resilience – Our Collective Actions for Development Justice; the ESCAP/United Nations Human Settlements Programme Asia-Pacific Regional Training Workshop on Human Settlement Indicators; the Embassy of Sweden in Thailand/ESCAP regional workshop on building resilience through participation; the ESCAP/Overseas Development Institute workshop on leaving no one behind in the Asia-Pacific region; and the ESCAP/Department of Economic and Social Affairs of the Secretariat regional preparatory workshop for voluntary national review countries from the Asia-Pacific region.

17. The Forum concluded that the present report, including its annex, should be brought to the attention of the Commission, at its seventy-fourth session, and to the global dialogues on sustainable development, including in particular the upcoming high-level political forum on sustainable development, which would be held in New York from 9 to 18 July 2018.

 
 

Annex

I. Chair’s summary of discussions at the Fifth Asia-Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development

1. The theme of the Fifth Asia-Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development was “Transformation towards sustainable and resilient societies”. During the Forum, members of the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), intergovernmental bodies, United Nations bodies and specialized agencies, and major groups and other stakeholders engaged in a dialogue on regional perspectives on the follow-up to and review of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in the Asia- Pacific region. The Forum also discussed means to strengthen implementation of the 2030 Agenda in the region.

Regional perspectives on the theme of the Fifth Asia-Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development

2. During the session, panellists reflected on the social, environmental and economic challenges to achieving sustainable development and on institutional responses that were being mainstreamed in the region to strengthen resilience to natural disasters and economic shocks, improve the livelihoods of vulnerable populations and ensure that no one was left behind. Social risk factors, such as gender inequality, lack of social protection, rural-urban inequality and lack of financial inclusion and diversification of economic activities, were also discussed.

3. The Forum stressed the importance of inclusive, multi-stakeholder participation, including by disadvantaged and risk-exposed populations, and engagement by all levels of government, including subnational and local authorities. The Forum noted efforts in the region to identify and empower poor and vulnerable populations, including women and children, and to strengthen resilience through social inclusion, health, education, housing, nutrition and food security, water and sanitation strategies and awareness programmes. Capacity-building and regional cooperation were also discussed as opportunities to develop mechanisms for mutual support, with a view to defining common approaches, strengthening climate change response and building resilient communities, including in coastal areas and low-lying islands.

4. The Forum noted the need to build resilient infrastructure and develop early warning systems, including with respect to education and preparedness for natural disasters and economic shocks, and to make transport connections climate-proof. The Forum noted progress in the region in mainstreaming climate change policies, including through the adoption of policies on energy efficiency and renewable energy, and the development of action at the local level. One representative stressed the need to assess the sectoral impacts of climate change across the economy.

5. The efforts of Governments to align policies with the 2030 Agenda and other relevant frameworks, such as the SIDS Accelerated Modalities of Action (SAMOA) Pathway, and to cooperate with other regional organizations such as the Eurasian Economic Commission and joint efforts in the Eurasian Economic Union to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals were underlined. Several representatives noted the need to establish monitoring systems and improve interministerial coordination in order to effectively integrate policy responses to increase resilience, including by identifying the most relevant indicators of the Sustainable Development Goals framework to national circumstances. The adoption of innovative approaches and use of new technologies were highlighted as key tools to support the success of efforts to build resilience. One permanent observer highlighted the need for Governments to facilitate broad participation in resilience building, taking into account stakeholders’ risk analysis and perspectives, and to expand quantitative evidence on the benefits of participation, define dimensions of effective engagement and develop innovative communication methods to engage stakeholders.

6. Representatives from international organizations stressed that a focus on resilience was necessary to achieve multiple Sustainable Development Goals. Associated risks of megatrends such as climate change, industrial development and rising inequalities could endanger regional progress towards the Goals. The need for attention to gender equality and for the empowerment of multiple stakeholders, including women and poor populations, were noted. Pre-disaster planning, wider disaster risk reduction programmes and innovative, integrated and coordinated responses were discussed as regional needs.

7. Representatives from major groups and other stakeholders emphasized the need to strengthen social infrastructure, including the roles of social entrepreneurship and social enterprises to serve as innovative and transformational platforms to address poverty and build resilience. They also emphasized the need for attention to grass-roots and marginalized constituencies and for focus on human rights and the priorities of poor communities, including populations living in urban slums and unliveable areas.

II. Progress in the implementation of Sustainable Development Goal 17 and promotion of the means of implementation

8. The Forum reviewed progress in the region towards the implementation of Sustainable Development Goal 17, particularly with respect to global and multi-stakeholder partnerships, technology and innovation, and data and statistics. Panellists and representatives highlighted perspectives on indicators, data gaps and means of implementation in terms of alignment with national contexts. Presenters and panellists discussed priority areas for implementing the Goals and building resilience – such as technology and innovation, finance and trade, renewable energy, connectivity and communication technology, food security, productive employment, social protection, climate change, sanitation and water resource management, and data and statistics – and reported on progress made in their countries.

9. Representatives reported on international development efforts, noting their alignment with the principles of the 2030 Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals, while also calling for enhanced mechanisms to monitor the effectiveness of aid and for strengthened accountability and transparency of development cooperation. One representative called for more political will to collaborate to achieve the Goals and leave no one behind, while another called for the Forum to continuously support member States by examining pathways towards resilience. Several representatives noted the importance of multi-stakeholder and multilevel partnerships, including with civil society, academia and business, and provided concrete examples of such partnerships. Some representatives highlighted gender equality as a tool for achieving the Goals and called for participation by marginalized groups to be enhanced to ensure that their voice was heard. Representatives reported on increased domestic financial mobilization and called for increased foreign direct investment and voluntary contributions.

10. Progress was reported by several representatives on data and statistics linked to the Goals, including the development of country-specific and local indicators. The Forum noted the need to address data and statistical challenges, in particular further methodological development and enhanced data generation and disaggregation. Several representatives called on international and regional statistical institutions to take specific action and provide clear guidance to countries on methodology and standards for the collection, processing and dissemination of statistics and data and encouraged technical and financial support to reduce data gaps and increasing data quality.

11. The Forum pointed to the usefulness of administrative data, particularly for civil registration and vital statistics. One representative noted the development of an effective system for civil registration and vital statistics, which enabled more accurate diagnosis of social issues for more adequate policies and coordinated measures. The development and strengthening of the statistical capacities of countries in the region were important for evidence- based decision-making and accountability. Countries were producing high- quality and timely statistics by using new data sources and technologies.

12. Major groups and stakeholders cautioned that partnerships with business should benefit workers and called for social dialogue to ensure decent work.

III. Assessment of progress in the implementation of Sustainable Development Goals 6, 7, 11, 12, and 15 at the regional level

13. The Forum conducted an in-depth review of five of the six Sustainable Development Goals that would be the focus of the high-level political forum on sustainable development in 2018, in line with General Assembly resolution 70/299 on the follow-up to and review of the 2030 Agenda at the global level.

14. Under agenda item 2, five parallel round tables were held on the follow- up to and review of Goals 6, 7, 11, 12 and 15. Rapporteurs from the round tables informed the Forum about their recommendations, as described below.

15. The round table on Goal 6 (Clean water and sanitation) made several recommendations on the Goal in Asia and the Pacific.3

16. Asia and the Pacific had made some progress towards achieving Goal 6. However, the region needed to accelerate its efforts across all sectors to ensure the availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all by 2030. Acceleration could be supported by encouraging policy coherence and intersectoral coordination within and between countries by enhancing synergies and minimizing trade-offs between sectors and Goals. Water- resource management, within and across countries, needed further attention and required the implementation of existing policies and laws in the water sector, supported by monitoring and accountability schemes. More efforts should be made to ensure just and equitable access to water and sanitation for all, with a particular focus on women and children and poor people.

17. Given that the region faced serious scarcity issues, with the lowest availability of water per capita in the world, the region needed to improve and stimulate the management of recycled water and other sources of water, such as rainwater, as valuable resources. Governments needed to design better incentives and systems to ensure compliance with respect to water management and sanitation and stronger policies to fully eliminate water pollution. Good practices like raising awareness and promoting clean water and sanitation in relation to human rights and human health, and in the world of work, should be actively promoted. Stronger attention should be paid to water-related innovations and the promotion of green jobs across countries, but it was also important to promote existing technologies that could be applied in new sectors or in new settings. All of those objectives could be achieved only by promoting partnerships and ensuring wide participation by local stakeholders, including women and indigenous communities and other vulnerable groups.

18. The round table on Goal 7 (Affordable and clean energy) made several recommendations on the Goal in Asia and the Pacific.4

19. Achievement of universal access to energy would require additional efforts and collaboration by all stakeholders, including Governments, the private sector and civil society. Platforms for raising awareness needed to be created and the roles of the stakeholders must be efficiently coordinated to achieve coherent action, enable multi-stakeholder dialogue with a view to improving progress towards Goal 7 and engage international development partners where needed. Issues of quality and reliability of energy access and availability of reliable data for monitoring needed to be promptly tackled by policymakers. National targets for clean cooking fuels and technologies should be established, and the issues of clean cooking and the development of renewable energy sources must be better integrated into energy policy frameworks, taking into consideration specific cultural differences among member States. Efforts to promote affordable and accessible renewable sources were urgently needed in order to address environmental sustainability and air pollution. Energy efficiency measures were required as a matter of urgency in social and public services, such as in the transport, industry and building sectors, and would need full support through subsidies from national Governments. To facilitate renewable energy and energy efficiency expansion, member States needed to address existing policy barriers such as monopolistic utility positions and the lack of regulation of energy prices.

20. With the support of ESCAP and relevant regional institutions, member States needed to develop an intergovernmental mechanism to promote equitable cross-border electricity power trade and connectivity as one of the building blocks towards attaining sustainable development. International energy cooperation efforts to deploy publicly available innovative technologies, along with safeguards, needed to be enhanced among member States. Energy sector reform was needed to move from vertically integrated energy systems to more comprehensively integrated approaches that encouraged local production and State regulation in distribution and transmission, and therefore improved affordability and increased resilience to blackouts. Policymaking processes and governance should be made more transparent through appropriate control and monitoring mechanisms, as well as through enhanced public participation. Energy policies needed to respond to the needs of the local communities and stimulate sustainable energy projects. Small renewable energy projects were resource-efficient, environmentally sustainable and capable of stimulating economic growth and providing jobs and needed to be promoted across the region. The close linkages between water, food and energy required a suitably integrated approach to ensuring water and food security, sustainable agriculture and energy production.

 
 

21. The round table on Sustainable Development Goal 11 (Sustainable cities and communities) highlighted several recommendations to make further progress on the Goal in Asia and the Pacific.5

22. Asia-Pacific countries needed to accelerate progress against Sustainable Development Goal 11 by empowering local governments and community groups to deliver against that Goal in an integrated fashion across all the Goals and global sustainability agendas. While it had been estimated that 65 per cent of the total Goal targets needed to be delivered by local authorities and actors, that was not matched with the requisite decision-making authority required to drive local implementation of Goal 11 and all urban related targets.

23. Recommendations on efforts to build an enabling environment and policy coherence across different spheres of government for stronger progress against Sustainable Development Goal 11 included (a) national Government partnerships with local and regional governments and communities to operationalize Goal 11 should be enhanced and greater decentralization of functions to local authorities to support their efforts to deliver on Goal 11 on the ground should specifically focus on deepening fiscal devolution processes to address the issue of unfunded mandates which was hindering progress against the Goal; (b) inclusive implementation of Goal 11, specifically its social dimensions, should be strengthened through more targeted commitments to empower local communities, especially associations of the urban poor, who were vital to upgrade informal settlements and to leave no one behind in cities; (c) innovative local examples of effective implementation of Goal 11 by local governments and a diverse range of urban communities should be documented and scaled up to accelerate progress in countries leveraging South-South platforms for learning and further replication; and (d) many of the indicators under Goal 11 required spatial data collection from subnational actors to effectively measure and report on progress and therefore, harmonization, cooperation and capacity development aimed at subnational data collectors in partnership with national statistical authorities should be a priority moving forward.

24. The round table on Sustainable Development Goal 12 (Responsible consumption and production) highlighted several recommendations to make further progress on the Goal in Asia and the Pacific.6

25. Responsible consumption and production policies should be integrated into core economic agendas and sectoral plans with centralized and coordinated mechanisms for policies and initiatives, clearly identifying roles and responsibilities for all stakeholders. Multi-stakeholder networks should be strengthened by engaging scientific organizations, the private sector and civil society. Circular economy initiatives should be promoted, prioritizing sustainable public procurement. Responsible consumption and production should be seen as an enabler of the other Sustainable Development Goals.

26. Governments were encouraged to shift towards an integrated and inclusive circular economy approach by (a) identifying interlinkages across the Sustainable Development Goals at the target level and applying a cost-benefit analysis to identify synergies and trade-offs; (b) strengthening statistical capacity by investing in frameworks and databases that incorporated economic, environmental and social accounts for evidence-based policymaking; and (c) establishing interministerial dialogues and consultative multi-stakeholder processes and partnerships to inform inclusive and impactful policies as well as to coordinate joint implementation of a circular economy.

27. The round table on Sustainable Development Goal 15 (Life on land) highlighted several recommendations to make further progress on the Goal in Asia and the Pacific.7

28. Integrated data systems that supported ecosystem-based management, integrating information from diverse sources, including community, indigenous and traditional knowledge, should be used; engagement across sectors and stakeholders, in particular with local communities and indigenous peoples should be encouraged; strengthened governance approaches and effective laws to promote participation to clarify land-tenure arrangement, to enforce the rights of indigenous peoples and environmental defenders, to support ecosystem-based management approaches and social impact assessments and to recognize the intrinsic rights of nature should be encouraged; diversification of financing and linking that with improvements in governance and management approaches should be encouraged; land degradation neutrality should be achieved; and regional cooperation should be strengthened, including by implementing the outcomes of the Asia-Pacific Ministerial Summit on the Environment held in 2017.

29. Given the vital importance of biodiversity and ecosystem services for human survival and well-being, it was essential to urgently mainstream biodiversity conservation into decision-making processes, including by ministries of finance, agriculture, infrastructure, planning, tourism and education, among others. That could be done by working in partnerships and adopting an integrated and evidence-based approach to sustainable development, planning and implementation, taking into account the links, synergies and trade-offs between Sustainable Development Goal 15 and other Goals, such as Goal 1 (No poverty), Goal 2 (Zero hunger), Goal 3 (Good health and well-being), Goal 5 (Gender equality), Goal 6 (Clean water and sanitation), Goal 8 (Decent work and economic growth), Goal 12 (Responsible consumption and production), and Goal 13 (Climate action).

IV. Assessment of the interlinkages among the Sustainable Development Goals

30. The panellists emphasized the importance of preserving natural ecosystems and their services as a basis to achieve transformation towards sustainable and resilient societies. Inequalities, damage to ecosystems and waste production were unprecedented. Actions on sustainable forest management were a means of reaching zero hunger, no poverty and gender equality and promoting good health, well-being and affordable and clean energy, among others, with young people playing a catalytic role. Three actions were recommended, focusing on initiating informed action at the individual level with involvement and engagement. Interlinkages were also discussed from the angle of water-sensitive cities and from the perspective of the private sector. The interlinkages were context-specific, and social and infrastructure resilience needed attention. Sustainable urban design provided a powerful integrating platform for addressing multiple issues, including through nature- based solutions.

 

31. The interlinkages, synergies and trade-offs between the Sustainable Development Goals were pointed out. Some member States outlined their initiatives in support of mainstreamed and integrated approaches to implementation, including the formulation of a Sustainable Development Goal road map, aligning the United Nations Development Assistance Frameworks with the Goals, constitutional amendments to enhance inclusiveness and mainstreaming the Goals into budget processes. Strategic and policy actions on the cluster of Goals were also described, including those that presented integrated approaches to deal with access to basic services, rapid urbanization and the development of future growth centres, including beautification, disaster response, traffic management and waste reduction. Other priorities included promoting sustainable food management and consumption patterns, sustainable forest management, and climate change mitigation and adaptation. Currently more than 60 per cent of energy generated in one country was from renewable sources, while a green growth framework continued to orient the Government’s investments.

32. In one country, institutional arrangements had been put in place to promote integrated approaches, including Sustainable Development Goal coordination and implementation committees and thematic committees. Efforts to promote integrated approaches were further strengthened through the involvement of stakeholders in implementation. However, horizontal and vertical coordination, lack of access to robust and disaggregated data, localization of the Goals and mainstreaming were still challenges.

33. One international organization emphasized support for integrated, nature-based solutions, with a focus on water. Several transboundary initiatives were in place, and the legal basis for management of transboundary water bodies was being strengthened. The organization offered its continued support to countries. One organization underlined the need to fully integrate air transport across the Sustainable Development Goals and the actions taken to mitigate the climate impact of the aviation sector. A joint statement was delivered by international agricultural organizations, with a group of indigenous people, emphasizing the need to foster productive synergies between rural and urban development to ensure that no one was left behind. Small-scale farmers were essential to all food systems and played important roles in the energy and water sectors. The interests and rights of indigenous peoples, smallholder farmers and women must underpin transformations towards sustainability in an integrated and socially inclusive manner.

34. Major groups and other stakeholders highlighted the need for an integrated approach to Sustainable Development Goal implementation given the close links between poverty, food security, energy, health, sustainable cities and climate change, among others. The indivisibility of human rights and the active participation of people were stressed as foundations for cooperation across sectors, stakeholders and levels of government. Mapping and planning for institutional coherence and the involvement of grass-roots and underrepresented communities, as well as groups at risk, in planning and implementation was urged. The structural drivers of inequality were described, together with the resulting inequality of access to quality public health care, the risks of trafficking and unequal access to justice. They called for strategies to strengthen control over natural resources, particularly by women as keepers of natural resources, in addition to greater investment in delivery of public goods as basic human rights.

 

V. National perspectives and progress through the lens of the voluntary national reviews

35. The participants in the session discussed key learning outcomes and challenges resulting from countries participating in the voluntary national reviews at the high-level political forum on sustainable development. Member States highlighted the importance of (a) government ownership/political leadership; (b) stakeholder engagement and consultation; (c) coordination, within government and with stakeholders and development partners; (d) integration with national planning; and (e) ensuring the availability of quality, disaggregated data for monitoring the Sustainable Development Goals and their follow-up.

36. Political leadership and good intragovernmental coordination was important for ensuring government ownership. To ensure government ownership and coordination, one country had created a presidential decree that served as a guideline for coordination, and others had established committees or coordinating councils at top levels, some directly under the Head of Government. Citizen engagement, ownership and localization were considered key in formulating policies and action plans on the Sustainable Development Goals. Transparency and accountability were also important to building peaceful and inclusive societies.

37. The Forum emphasized the importance of full and comprehensive consultations that included a wide range of stakeholders, including civil society organizations, non-governmental organizations, think tanks, businesses, local governments, philanthropies and the media. The Forum also emphasized the importance of integrating the Sustainable Development Goals with national planning tools and processes, including for monitoring and follow-up. Several countries had already integrated the Goals into existing national planning instruments.

38. The importance of accurate, timely and disaggregated data was highlighted by the Forum, which noted that data was a challenge even for developed countries. One representative reported having established an electronic monitoring tool for the Sustainable Development Goals. The system would help to distribute information on progress and would also help to ensure accountability and transparency of government agencies. Finally, the Forum highlighted funding as a challenge, in particular for least developed countries.

39. Major groups and other stakeholders emphasized the importance of inclusiveness and the meaningful participation of civil society, in particular those representing marginalized groups, including in establishing indicators that reflect the aspiration of the Sustainable Development Goals. Voluntary national reviews could serve as an accountability mechanism to hold Governments accountable and responsible to the people.

VI. Progress on the regional road map for implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in Asia and the Pacific

40. The Forum reviewed progress on the regional road map for implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in Asia and the Pacific, adopted by the Fourth Asia-Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development in 2017 and endorsed by ESCAP member States at the seventy- third session of the Commission. The session included a video prepared by the secretariat to illustrate cooperation with member States and partners in implementing the road map’s priority areas of action, followed by a summary of actions taken to implement it in the past year. Country and stakeholder

 
 

statements highlighted ongoing action across all sectors, expressed appreciation for support by regional partners such as ESCAP, and drew attention to remaining gaps, such as statistical capacity.

41. Member States highlighted their follow-up and contributions to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda in Asia and the Pacific. The active participation of civil society, youth, women, vulnerable groups, businesses and others was noted as a need, to be enhanced through capacity-building programmes which actively partnered with a diverse range of stakeholders. The collection of adequate and reliable disaggregated data was also seen as vital in the effort to leave no one behind in the regional implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals.

42. Representatives of one country noted that equal importance was given to both adaptation and mitigation through their national adaptation plan and nationally appropriate mitigation actions and emphasized that the impact of frequent cyclones had made it essential for a well-coordinated multisectoral programmatic approach to flood mitigation to ensure the resilience of the communities most affected. Significant investments in capacity-building for data collection and analysis, especially in developing countries, were essential to meet the commitment on disaggregation of data and to make necessary policy adjustments in ensuring that no one was left behind.

43. Major groups and other stakeholders emphasized the need to increase domestic resource mobilization for the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals, especially in least developed countries. They urged member States to revitalize the discussions of a regional tax body to tackle the issues of harmful use of tax incentives and illicit financial flows and to pursue regional cooperation mechanisms for the recovery of assets and potential lost revenues. Major groups and other stakeholders suggested that the road map was a living document and could be adjusted, especially with regard to the means of implementation, which fell short on the inclusion of various community issues, such as the removal of structural barriers and the promotion of human rights. There was also a need to ensure adequate availability of investments to support youth to engage in the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals. Non-governmental organizations also called for the scaling up of efforts for community-based data collection for the Goals and for compatibility impact assessments of trade and investment agreements, the targeting of illicit financial flows and a convention to address corporate consolidation.

VII. Partnerships for implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals

44. The participants in the session discussed how to harness partnerships for the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals, as part of agenda item 3 on strengthening the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in the Asia-Pacific region. The session facilitated discussion between a multi-stakeholder panel and member States, United Nations bodies and other stakeholders to highlight the diverse partnership methods, success stories, challenges and key criteria that underpinned successful partnerships in pursuit of sustainable development.

45. The panellists noted that long term multi-stakeholder and multisectoral partnerships, founded on participatory and inclusive processes were critical to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. There was a need to generate data to monitor the performance of partnerships, and adequate monitoring and accountability mechanisms should be integrated into partnerships to improve their transparency. Realizing the specific resources and capacities that each stakeholder could bring was critical for transformative partnerships. Developing local capacity in all contexts needed to be a guiding principle of all partnerships. The panellists urged stakeholders to harness the power of volunteers, youth groups and the scientific community in strengthening partnerships. Some panellists cautioned that care was needed in ensuring that the partnership agenda was not captured by individual groups with vested interests and emphasized the need to ensure the protection of human rights and development justice in all partnerships.

46. The Forum stated the importance of building strong partnerships within and among member States and with other stakeholders for the successful implementation of the 2030 Agenda. In that context, the Forum expressed its appreciation for the Commission’s efforts to build partnerships in the region. The need to strengthen partnerships, with industry to unleash entrepreneurship and with civil society to spread awareness of Sustainable Development Goals, was also highlighted. The Forum recounted the success of the region in establishing regional and subregional partnerships in the fields of trade, investment and connectivity and called for the safeguarding of the multilateral trading system. The Forum called for expanding partnerships at the regional level in areas such as climate change, food security, Goal indicator frameworks, energy, infrastructure, labour mobility, technology, knowledge- sharing and financial integration and macroeconomic cooperation, including through mutually reinforcing partnerships with communities across the region.

47. Several organizations emphasized the importance of multi-stakeholder partnerships in addressing the many economic, environmental and social challenges as well as in assessing the Sustainable Development Goal targets and indicators and ensuring inclusion of vulnerable populations and local groups.

48. Major groups and other stakeholders emphasized the importance of integrating the commitments to human rights in partnerships to ensure the full participation of rights’ holders, integrating issues like accessibility from the start. Partnerships should respect workers and trade union rights, foster decent work and support traditional knowledge systems for the Sustainable Development Goals. Public-private partnerships should be built on human rights standards with high levels of transparency, accountability, whistle- blower protection and respect for indigenous cultures. Investor-State dispute settlement, provided for by international investment agreements, risked limiting the space for ensuring such rights.

                       _________________

ESCAP/RFSD/2018/4

pdf State of the World's Indigenous Peoples_Health II Popular

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About this publication

The publication includes seven chapters that examine indigenous peoples’ access to and utilization of quality health care services within the seven sociocultural regions of the Permanent Forum: Africa; Asia; Central and South America and the Caribbean; the Arctic; Central and Eastern Europe, Russian Federation, Central Asia and Transcaucasia; North America; and the Pacific.

Each of the authors provides an overview of health issues in their sociocultural regions as well the challenges that indigenous peoples face in trying to access and utilize health services.

The first chapter by Dr. Priscilla S. Migiro emphasizes the difficulties that indigenous peoples in Africa face in being recognized, firstly, as indigenous peoples and, secondly, accessing health services within the region’s population of about 960 million people who already face health challenges with a high burden of communicable and emerging non-communicable diseases. Access to health care is not uniform across the continent, with variations from one country to the next and also within countries. National figures of morbidity and mortality often mask inequities within countries. Dr. Priscilla S. Migiro also focuses on the barriers to the enjoyment of the right to health, the lack of data on indigenous peoples’ health status and the loss of land in which indigenous peoples depend for their livelihoods and traditional medicines.

In the second chapter, Dr. Mukta S. Lama provides an overview and analysis of the situation of indigenous peoples in the Asian region. The Asian subregions include a multitude of indigenous groups who comprise 70 per cent of the estimated 350 million indigenous peoples worldwide. Indigenous peoples in Asia die younger, have higher rates of malnutrition and child mortality, and carry high burden of “diseases of the poor”, namely undernutrition and infectious diseases. Dr. Lama points out that the health of indigenous peoples is often not considered a priority by national governments and as a result, health care needs remain unheard in health care planning with weak representation of indigenous peoples in the government system. Dr. Lama concludes that the exercise of right to self-determination is important in enabling indigenous peoples to revive and reclaim their cultural traditions and indigenous identity and self-esteem based on positive images that are crucial for their overall health and well-being. Such autonomy would also involve empowering indigenous peoples to preserve and develop their own solutions and plans to improve their health rather than imposing solutions upon them.

The third chapter by Dr. Ketil Lenert Hansen analyses the major health issues confronting Sami peoples in Norway, Finland, Sweden and Russia and the Inuit in Greenland. The chapter includes an analysis of the unique challenges faced by the indigenous peoples living in the far north due to their specific socioenvironmental location with an increased risk of health problems compared with the average national statistics. Dr. Ketil Lenert Hansen specifies the major constraints to delivering good quality health care in the North and at the same time outlines how traditional healing is being integrated within health services for indigenous peoples.

In the fourth chapter, Dr. Myriam Conejo Maldonado provides an overview and analysis of the situation of indigenous peoples in the Central and South America and the Caribbean region and illustrates the stark contrast in access to health services between the indigenous and non-indigenous populations. Indigenous peoples live in poverty and comprise 60 per cent of the poor in the region. Several countries in the region have included an intercultural approach to health in their development plans. However, sociocultural and linguistic barriers still exist, as well as barriers in terms of geographical location and lack of access to health care. Dr. Myriam Conejo Maldonado concludes that there must be a new approach to health services for indigenous peoples based on interculturality, human rights, and collective rights.

The fifth chapter on North America emphasizes the complex arrangements that the United States and Canada has with indigenous peoples in terms of health policies. To a large degree, jurisdictional conflict between state/provincial and federal governments impact on the accessibility and comprehensiveness of health services for indigenous peoples. The challenges for indigenous peoples in both Canada and the United States are to 1) take control of their own personal health to achieve balance in life; 2) assume authority and control over health and social services which impact their lives; and 3) design and implement a sustainable health system which meets their unique needs. The role of the federal and provincial governments is to work in partnership with indigenous peoples to design and implement health systems.

In chapter six, Dr. Collin Tukuitonga provides a background of the historical, political and cultural factors that have shaped events in Pacific countries that have influenced the health status of indigenous peoples. Dr. Collin Tukuitonga describes the current health situation; the social determinants of health, health service funding and delivery; and the initiatives that have been shown to be effective in improving indigenous peoples’ access to all levels of health care. While there are number of initiatives under way in developed countries that are designed to improve access to health care services, there is limited information on the impact of these programmes. There are however, encouraging signs that health initiatives provided “by indigenous peoples for indigenous people” is improving access to services.

The seventh chapter by Ms. Oksana Buranbaeva outlines indigenous peoples’ access to health in the Russian Federation. Russian federal legislation protects the “numerically small indigenous peoples” or “small-numbered indigenous peoples of Russia”, defined as those who live in territories traditionally inhabited by their ancestors; maintain a traditional way of life and economic activity; number fewer than 50,000; and identify themselves as separate ethnic communities. Ms. Oksana Buranbaeva describes the situation and policies that the Soviet Union adopted vis-à-vis indigenous peoples which had both negative and positive consequences on indigenous peoples’ current access to health services. Ms. Oksana Buranbaeva concludes that a comprehensive strategy is required in order to develop in partnerships and consultation with indigenous peoples that draw on the experiences of other Arctic countries to enhance access to indigenous peoples health services.

Source: UN DESA

Related to SDG 3: Good health and well-being

 

pdf State of the World's Indigenous Peoples_Education III Popular

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About this publication

This publication, which comprises seven chapters, focuses on the issue of access to and quality of education for indigenous peoples within the seven socio-cultural regions determined to give broad representation to the world’s indigenous peoples: Africa; Asia; Central and South America and the Caribbean; the Arctic; the Russian Federation, Central Asia and Transcaucasia, and Central and Eastern Europe; Northern America; and the Pacific.

The authors provide an overview of educational issues in each sociocultural region and analysis of the challenges faced by indigenous peoples in their efforts to access and utilize all educational services in that region.

Chapter I, written by Monica Aleman Cunningham, provides an overview of the various challenges faced by the indigenous peoples in Africa in gaining access to a quality education while also maintaining their own education systems. Today, there are many factors that negatively affect indigenous peoples’ access to formal education in the African region, including the lack of or deficiencies in school infrastructure in the areas where they live, and the lack of mobile schools and culturally adequate boarding facilities for nomadic and semi-nomadic indigenous children. Many indigenous families also face the financial burden imposed by tuition fees and the indirect costs of education (for materials, uniforms, school meals and transport). There is also a lack of qualified bilingual teachers and learning materials in the mother tongue. Many indigenous children in Africa experience poor learning conditions (e.g., a shortage of desks and chairs, and poorly lit and poorly ventilated classrooms) and unsafe school environments (characterized by discrimination, physical abuse and gender-related violence). Militarization in indigenous territories, including the use of community schools as military detachments, affects children’s education by disrupting the daily learning cycle and instilling fear.

Chapter II, written by Dr. Karla Jessen Williamson and Yvonne Vizina, provides an overview of the educational issues and challenges faced by the indigenous peoples of the Arctic region, and the successes that have been achieved. The first challenge is associated with the attempt to create culturally relevant education for the indigenous peoples of the Arctic which privileges and integrates traditional values and practices. The authors also focus on the subjects of institutional and structural support for indigenous education, including intercultural bilingual education, as well as challenges, such as discrimination and a lack of recognition of indigenous peoples and their traditional knowledge systems and practices.

In Chapter III, Prashanta K. Tripura provides an overview and analysis of the situation of indigenous peoples in Asia. The Asian region accounts for approximately 70 per cent of the estimated 370 million indigenous people worldwide, many of whom experience non-recognition of their identities, exclusion and marginalization. While available data is limited, the general trends observed globally for indigenous peoples also applies to Asian countries. Indigenous students tend to have lower enrolment rates, higher dropout rates and poorer educational outcomes than non-indigenous peoples across Asia, as in other parts of the world. The author affirms that it is important for indigenous peoples to exercise the right to self-determination as a means of enabling them to develop and preserve their own education material and revive and reclaim their cultural traditions and indigenous identities.

Chapter IV, written by Juan de Dios Simón Sotz, addresses the issue of access to and quality of education for indigenous peoples in Central and South America and the Caribbean. The estimated 45 million indigenous peoples in the Latin American region constitute 60 per cent of the region’s poor. There has been some progress through both the enactment of national legislation which recognizes the rights of indigenous peoples and the partial incorporation of the perspective of indigenous peoples in the educational system. At the same time, progress made over the last two decades has not been able to reverse the impact of centuries of exclusion and discrimination. Hence, human development indicators (education, health and income) of indigenous peoples are still low, compared with other groups. The author therefore concludes that while advances have been made in Latin America in respect of access to and quality of education, much remains to be done. Several factors, including the geographical remoteness of some indigenous groups, widespread discrimination, economic vulnerability and lack of teachers with both intercultural and linguistic competency, hinder the educational advancement of indigenous peoples.

The author of Chapter V, Dr. Octaviana Valenzuela Trujillo, examines the key barriers to education faced by the indigenous peoples of North America. In Canada and the United States of America, the most daunting challenges faced by indigenous peoples are the prevalence of culturally and linguistically unresponsive curricula and systems, poverty, high dropout rates, and lack of access to educational opportunities. While in both countries indigenous peoples exhibit diversity and dynamism, this critical factor is ignored by the majority of education initiatives. From the author’s perspective, the most important means of improving indigenous education are, among others, a curriculum that includes cultural and linguistic competency, training educators, increasing the number of indigenous peoples in positions that enable them to influence education initiatives, embracing alternative methods of education, and incorporating community-based values and goals.

Chapter VI, authored by Linda Tuhiwai Smith, begins with a general discussion of the issues in education facing indigenous peoples of the Pacific region. Both an analysis of the issues in education faced by the indigenous peoples of Australia, New Zealand, French Polynesia and Hawaii and an overview of the higher education, research and training context are then provided. Indigenous knowledge, science and research are the focus of the three case studies that follow. In the author’s view, higher or further education is critical to the realization of the aspirations of indigenous peoples. It is institutions of higher learning that train the teachers and other professionals who will then go on to deliver services to indigenous peoples, set policy agendas and govern those very institutions.

The challenges confronting indigenous peoples in their efforts to access quality education in the Russian Federation is the subject of Chapter VII, authored by Konstantin Zamyatin. The barriers faced by indigenous students at each education level — primary, secondary, tertiary and vocational — are examined. One of the main issues considered is the lack of accommodation of indigenous peoples’ languages inasmuch as higher education is provided only in the Russian language. Another issue is the absence of federal legislation on alternative forms of teaching and the lack of separate curricula for indigenous peoples. The author stresses the need for a shift away from the use of boarding schools in order to afford children the opportunity to attend nomadic schools. He also highlights the importance of including the input of indigenous peoples in the development and implementation of educational programmes and curricula.

Source: UN DESA

Related to SDG 4: Quality education

 

 

pdf Indigenous Peoples’ Engagement at UNFCCC COP23 Popular

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INTRODUCTION:

Indigenous peoples are among the most impacted by the effects of climate change around the world. Their livelihoods, cultures, and very survival depend on intact ecosystems — from low lying coastal areas to Sahel and deserts to tropical forests and high mountain plateaus — that are often the hardest hit by increasing variability in climate. Nevertheless, recent analytical work shows that indigenous peoples play a critically important role in climate change mitigation and adaptation through their historic and effective role as stewards of much of the world’s remaining natural resources.

Indigenous peoples’ initiatives at the 21st Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC COP21), resulted in five specific references in the Paris Agreement on Climate Change to the contributions through the traditional knowledge of indigenous peoples in climate change adaptations and mitigation as well as the need to respect the rights of indigenous peoples in implementing climate solutions. After those incredible results, indigenous peoples’ engagement in the COP22 negotiations achieved three notable outcomes: i) strengthened relationships with key governments, ii) strengthened relationships with the COP Presidencies, and iii) a COP Decision in favor of advancing work on the “Indigenous Peoples’ and Local Communities Platform.” This platform is a significant step forward in indigenous peoples’ ability to position themselves as innovators, partners and essential to the UNFCCC process at the COP23. Building on the achievements at COP22, the Germany’s Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety committed to support for the engagement and advocacy of indigenous peoples at UNFCCC COP23 to be held in Bonn, Germany, in November 2017. To this end, the European Climate Foundation (ECF) and the International Indigenous Peoples’ Forum on Climate Change (IIPFCC), the organizing body of indigenous peoples engaging in the global climate negotiations, partnered to develop and manage a program of work to ensure indigenous peoples from the 7 regions (Africa, Asia, Arctic, Pacific, Latin American & Caribbean, North America and Russian) to remain strongly positioned in the UNFCCC process and advance their influence on the climate change agenda. The activities carried out included preparatory meetings of the IIPFCC, an Indigenous Peoples-Government Dialogue, an Indigenous Peoples’ Pavilion, and Indigenous Peoples Day, and global communications engagement.

This report highlights the outcomes of this initiative at COP23 and extracts lessons to inform ongoing activities of indigenous peoples in their engagement in the climate context

You can also download the report here > INTERNATIONAL INDIGENOUS PEOPLES’ FORUM ON CLIMATE CHANGE

pdf Working conditions of indigenous women and men in Central Africa: an analysis based on available evidence Popular

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Preface

The vision of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development is to “leave no one behind”. This suggests an approach to development that goes beyond targeting the general population, an approach that looks deeper into the challenges that different parts of the national populations face because of certain characteristics, such as gender, socioeconomic status or ethnic background.

Drawing on previous ILO research as well as a number of other available sources, this paper provides an analytical overview of key issues faced by indigenous peoples in the world of work in the Central African region. Highlighting ILO and United Nations instruments that seek to promote and protect the rights of indigenous women and men, the paper points to several measures to make these rights more effective for them, including improving data availability, protecting indigenous peoples’ rights to land and natural resources, and adopting special measures to overcome discrimination against them.

Though more efforts will indeed be needed to collect and analyse data and information on working conditions of indigenous women and men and related matters in Africa, this paper is a step towards addressing the current knowledge gaps regarding their situation in the labour market, which tends to be characterized by informality.

Download report > ILO

Related to SDG 5: Gender equality, SDG 8: Decent work and economic growth and SDG 10: Reduced inqualities

 

pdf The impact of international investment and free trade on the human rights of indigenous peoples. Report to the General Assembly, 2015 Popular

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UNSR A:70:301.pdf

Summary

The present report is submitted to the General Assembly by the Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples pursuant to her mandate under Human Rights Council resolution 27/13. In the report, the Special Rapporteur provides a summary of her activities since her last report to the General Assembly. She dedicates the thematic section of the present report to an analysis of international investment agreements and investment clauses of free trade regimes and their impacts on the rights of indigenous peoples. She views the present report as the starting point for that issue, which she intends to be of continuing importance throughout the course of her mandate.

As a starting point for her ongoing work on international investment and free trade regimes, the report discusses a number of areas of concern, relating both to direct violations of the rights of indigenous peoples and the systemic impact of those regimes on their lives and communities.

The Special Rapporteur contends that investment clauses of free trade agreements and bilateral and multilateral investment treaties, as they are currently conceptualized and implemented, have actual and potential negative impacts on indigenous peoples’ rights, in particular on their rights to self-determination; lands, territories and resources; participation; and free, prior and informed consent. That is not to suggest that investments are inherently destructive. Future studies will focus on how investment agreements can be equally beneficial for indigenous peoples and investors.

The present report highlights her analysis of the unjust elements of the prevailing system of global economic and financial governance and the constriction of the protective capacity of States and local governance systems. It discusses how indigenous peoples, as some of the most marginalized in the world, bear a disproportionate burden of a system that contains systemic imbalances between the enforcement of corporate investors’ rights and human rights. The report concludes that both a more thorough review of implications of international investment and free trade agreements and deeper policy and systemic reforms are needed to ensure the respect, protection and fulfilment of indigenous peoples’ rights.

pdf Report to Human Rights Council - 2016. Impacts of international investment agreements on the rights of indigenous peoples Popular

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UNSR A:HRC:33:42.pdf

This is the report presented by the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples Vicky Tauli-Corpuz at the Human Rights Council Thirty-third session, Agenda item 3: Promotion and protection of all human rights, civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights, including the right to development. A/HRC/33/42 11 August 2016

 

Note by the Secretariat

The report transmitted herewith provides an analysis of the impacts of international investment agreements,including bilateral investment treaties and investment chapters of free trade agreements, on the rights of indigenous peoples.

Source: UNSRIP

Related to SDG 8: Decent work and economic growth and SDG 10: Reduced inequalities

pdf Conservation and indigenous peoples' rights. Report to the General Assembly, 2016 Popular

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Annual GA A:71:229.pdf

UNITED NATIONS

General Assembly

Seventy-first session

Item 66 (a) of the provisional agenda*

A/71/150. July 29, 2016

Rights of indigenous peoples

Note by the Secretary-General

The Secretary-General has the honour to transmit the report of the Special Rapporteur of the Human Rights Council on the rights of indigenous peoples, Victoria Tauli-Corpuz, submitted in accordance with Human Rights Council resolution 30/4.

Report of the Special Rapporteur of the Human Rights Council on the rights of indigenous peoples, Victoria Tauli‑Corpuz

Summary

The present report is submitted to the General Assembly by the Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples pursuant to her mandate under Council resolutions 15/14 and 24/9. In the report, the Special Rapporteur provides a brief summary of her activities since her previous report to the Assembly, as well as a thematic analysis of conservation measures and their impact on indigenous peoples' rights.

Protected areas have the potential of safeguarding the biodiversity for the benefit of all humanity; however, these have also been associated with human rights violations against indigenous peoples in many parts of the world. The complex violations that have been faced by indigenous peoples in the wake of evermore expanding protected areas have been raised by respective special rapporteurs during numerous country visits and communications to governments.

The present report charts legal developments and commitments and measures taken made to advance a human rights-based paradigm in conservation, while also identifying key remaining challenges. The report concludes with recommendations on how conservation, in policy and practice, can be developed in a manner which respects indigenous peoples' rights and enhances sustainable conservation.

 

Contents

I. Introduction

II. Activities of the Special Rapporteur

A. Participation in conferences

B. Country visits and communications

III. Conservation and indigenous peoples' rights

IV. Human rights legal standards and jurisprudence

A. The right to self-determination and land rights

B. Participation and free, prior and informed consent

C. Forced displacement and the right to reparation, including restitution

D. Regional human rights system

E. The Convention on Biological Diversity

V. Initial conservation practices and their consequences

VI. Paradigm shift since 2003

VII. Key conservation challenges and opportunities

A. Forced displacements and the failure to provide recognition of collective rights to lands, territories and natural resources

B. Inconsistent national legislation or poor application thereof

C. World Heritage sites and tourism

D. Indigenous management of protected areas

VIII. Conclusions

IX. Recommendations

 

 

I. Introduction

1. The present report is submitted to the General Assembly by the Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples pursuant to her mandate under Council resolutions 15/14 and 24/9. In the report, the Special Rapporteur provides a brief summary of her activities since her previous report to the Assembly (A/70/301) as well as a thematic analysis of conservation measures and their impact on indigenous peoples' rights.

II. Activities of the Special Rapporteur

A. Participation in conferences

2. As part of the fulfilment of her mandate, the Special Rapporteur participated in a number of international and national conferences and dialogues, including:

(a) The Paris Conference of Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in December 2015. Together with the Office of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights and the Special Rapporteur on human rights and the environment, the Special Rapporteur advocated for the inclusion of human rights in the Paris decisions. Language which recognizes the need to address human rights, including indigenous peoples' rights, in all climate change measure was included in the Paris Agreement;

(b) A symposium organized by the Canadian Feminist Alliance for International Action, the Canadian Journal of Women and the Law and the Native Women's Association of Canada in January 2016 on missing and murdered indigenous women to discuss the national inquiry launched by the Government in December 2015;

(c) The High-level Dialogue on the World Bank draft environmental and social standard on Indigenous Peoples in Addis Ababa in February 2016, which centred on the use of the term indigenous peoples and the requirement to obtain their free, prior and informed consent. The Special Rapporteur, together with the Chair of the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues and the Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, subsequently wrote a joint letter to the World Bank to express concerns regarding the weakening of the safeguards, with proposals for remedial language;

(d) A seminar on experiences in litigation of cases of violence against women and women's access to justice in Guatemala in February 2016, invited by Alianza Rompiendo el Silencio and Lawyers without Borders, Canada. The Special Rapporteur hailed the 26 February 2016 judgment in the Sepur Zarco case on sexual slavery of indigenous women by the Guatemalan military during the armed conflict as an important historical victory of justice for indigenous women and victims of sexual slavery worldwide;

(e) An international seminar on indigenous jurisdiction and access to justice in Bogotá in February 2016 by invitation of the Attorney General's Office. Her intervention underlined the need to increase dialogue and cooperation in the harmonization of indigenous jurisdiction and the ordinary justice system;

(f) A panel discussion organized by Columbia University in New York in May 2016 on how armed conflict and peace negotiations affect indigenous peoples;

(g) A meeting by invitation of the Nordic Trust Fund of the World Bank in June 2016. The Special Rapporteur discussed the importance of safeguarding indigenous peoples' rights in World Bank operations and programmes;

(h) Regional seminars co-organized by the Special Rapporteur and the International Work Group for Indigenous Affairs and the Asia Indigenous Peoples' Pact and Tebtebba on the impacts on investment treaties on the rights of indigenous peoples, in Lima for Latin America and in Bangkok for Asia, and a global seminar held in New York in May 2016, to obtain information for her second thematic report on this issue for the Human Rights Council in September 2016;

(i) The regular sessions of the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues and the Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. The Special Rapporteur held meetings with members of these mechanisms on ways to maintain and increase the coordination among them. In parallel to the sessions, she also held meetings with several State delegations and indigenous organizations.

B. Country visits and communications

3. Since her last report to the General Assembly, the Special Rapporteur carried out three official country visits to Sápmi (Finland, Norway and Sweden) in August 2015, Honduras in November 2015 and Brazil in March 2016. The reports of these visits will be presented to the Human Rights Council in September 2016.

4. During the Special Rapporteur's visit to Sápmi, the Special Rapporteur highlighted her concerns on the land rights situation of the Sami people. She observed that the increased drive to mineral extraction and the development of renewable energy projects in Sápmi was one of the main threats against the realization of the rights of the Sami people.

5. In Honduras, the Special Rapporteur noted that a fundamental problem faced by indigenous peoples was the lack of full recognition, protection and enjoyment of their rights to ancestral lands and natural resources and impunity for the increasing violence against indigenous peoples. During the visit, the Special Rapporteur met with Berta Cáceres, an indigenous Lenca activist who was killed four months later (on 3 March 2016) because of her protests against the Agua Zarca dam project, even though she had been awarded precautionary protection measures from the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights. The Special Rapporteur will continue to monitor the investigations into Ms. Caceres' murder and urges the State to hold the perpetrators accountable and break the vicious cycle of impunity.

6. Regarding Brazil, the Special Rapporteur expressed concern about the fact that that, in the eight years following the visit of her predecessor, there had been a disturbing absence of progress in the resolution of long-standing issues of key concern to indigenous peoples. She noted the convergence of various disconcerting developments endangering the rights of indigenous peoples. The risk of ethnocidal effects in such contexts could not be overlooked nor underestimated. The Special Rapporteur deeply regrets that, since her visit, killings and violent evictions of the Kaiowa Guarani peoples in Mato Grosso, some of which she visited, continue to take place.

7. The Special Rapporteur has continued to send communications, primarily to Governments, on specific cases of violations of the rights of indigenous peoples brought to her attention and encourages Member States to respond to these communications and to engage in a dialogue with her to improve the situation of indigenous peoples.

III. Conservation and indigenous peoples' rights

8. The impact that conservation initiatives have on indigenous peoples has been a constant and recurring theme since the establishment of the mandate of the Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples in 2001. The consequences indigenous peoples have faced in the wake of evermore expanding protected areas have been raised by respective special rapporteurs during numerous country visits and communications to governments.

9. The three Special Rapporteurs on the rights of indigenous peoples have, since the creation of the mandate, paid particular attention to the human rights violations that conservation measures have caused indigenous peoples worldwide, notably by the expropriation of land, forced displacement, denial of self-governance, lack of access to livelihoods and loss of culture and spiritual sites, non-recognition of their own authorities and denial of access to justice and reparation, including restitution and compensation.

10. The focus of the present report on terrestrial protected areas and, to a limited extent, on World Heritage sites, is not intended to diminish the onus on the key factors causing displacement of indigenous peoples from their lands and the overall violations of their rights to lands and territories by extractive industries, agribusiness expansion and mega infrastructure development. Previous special rapporteurs have written thematic reports on extractive industries and violations of the right to development of indigenous peoples.

11. While the conservation community is in the process of adopting conservation measures that respect the human rights of indigenous peoples, considerable implementation gaps remain and new threats to human rights-based conservation are emerging. The Special Rapporteur has therefore decided that it is a timely and important moment to explore this topic in further depth. The present report charts legal developments and commitments and measures taken made to advance a human rights-based paradigm in conservation, while also identifying certain key remaining challenges. The report concludes with recommendations on how conservation, in policy and practice, can be developed in a manner which respects indigenous peoples' rights and enhances sustainable conservation.

12. A protected area is a geographically defined area which is designated or regulated and managed to achieve specific conservation objectives.[1] Protected areas consist of many different conservation modalities, among them national parks and forests, wildlife refuges, marine areas, private and non-governmental organization (NGO)-governed preserves, indigenous peoples' protected areas, community lands and other areas where the protection of nature and the practice of sustainable livelihoods foster ecosystem integrity.

13. Protected areas have the potential of safeguarding biodiversity for the benefit of all humanity; however, these have also been associated with human rights violations against indigenous peoples in many parts of the world. For over a century, conservation was carried out with the aim of vacating protected areas of all human presence, leading to cultural destruction and large-scale displacements of indigenous peoples from their ancestral lands in the name of conservation. Past conservation measures caused complex and multiple violations of the collective and individual human rights of indigenous peoples.

14. The expanse of protected areas nearly doubled over a period two decades, from 8.7 million square kilometres in 1980 to 16.1 million square kilometres in 2000.[2] There is significant spatial overlap between the traditional lands of indigenous peoples and areas which retain the highest levels of high-biodiversity. Traditional indigenous territories encompass around 22 per cent of the world's land surface and they coincide with areas that hold 80 per cent of the planet's biodiversity.[3] It has been estimated that 50 per cent of protected areas worldwide has been established on lands traditionally occupied and used by indigenous peoples and that this proportion is highest in the Americas, where it may exceed 90 per cent in Central America. Bolivia, Brazil, Chile and Colombia, as well as Canada and the United States of America, all have a high percentage of protected areas on indigenous traditional territory. Overlap is also significant in Australia and New Zealand. Most of the protected areas in India, Nepal and the Philippines include the territories of indigenous peoples. Botswana, Cameroon, Kenya, Namibia, South Africa and the United Republic of Tanzania are among the African countries in which large parts of the protected areas are located on indigenous peoples' ancestral domains.[4]

15. Indigenous peoples retain strong spiritual links with the plants, trees and animals on their lands and protecting their lands is a sacred duty. Yet, indigenous peoples may not refer to themselves as conservationists and this has resulted in a considerable lack of acknowledgement within the conservation community of indigenous peoples' contribution to conservation.[5] There is increasing recognition that the ancestral lands of indigenous peoples contain the most intact ecosystems and provide the most effective and sustainable form of conservation.[6] Studies have demonstrated that the territories of indigenous peoples who have been given land rights have been significantly better conserved than the adjacent lands.[7] Yet, to date, the important role played by indigenous peoples as environmental guardians has still failed to gain due recognition. According to the United Nations Environment Programme World Conservation Monitoring Centre, in 2014, less than 5 per cent of protected areas worldwide were governed by indigenous peoples and local communities.[8]

16. Conservation efforts traditionally were state-centric and based on expropriation of lands subsequently placed under government control. Indigenous peoples were displaced, denied self-governance, deprived of access to natural resources for their livelihood and their traditional and spiritual links to ancestral land were disrupted. Marginalized and impoverished indigenous peoples have continued to struggle for access to their territories and tenure rights, resulting in enduring friction and conflict.

17. From the conservation perspective, the loss of the guardianship of indigenous peoples and the placing of their lands under the control of government authorities who have often lacked the capacity and political will to protect the land effectively, has left such areas exposed to destructive settlement, extractive industries, illegal logging, agribusiness expansion and large-scale infrastructure development. Even where national policies and laws require strict protection for protected areas, in many countries State agencies have still authorized mining, oil and gas extraction, logging, dams and reservoirs, highways and other projects in direct conflict with conservation goals.[9]

18. Mobilization of indigenous peoples' movements has led to advances in international law recognizing their collective right to their traditional lands and growing awareness among conservationists of the important role indigenous peoples play in conserving biodiversity are factors which have led to relatively recent, yet significant, shifts towards greater recognition of indigenous peoples' rights in the context of conservation. Leading conservation organizations have adopted commitments and policies seeking to adopt a "new paradigm" of undertaking conservation, while respecting the rights of indigenous peoples. However, significant gaps remain between these policies and their effective implementation on the ground.

19. Furthermore, among the principal challenges that indigenous peoples continue to face globally are difficulties in gaining legal recognition of collective ownership over their ancestral lands, especially when these have already been declared protected territories. National legislation is often contradictory. Laws pertaining to conservation and forestry are commonly not harmonized with subsequent national legislation and international law asserting the rights of indigenous peoples and the authorities responsible for enforcement of the different laws frequently fail to coordinate.

IV. Human rights legal standards and jurisprudence

20. The aim of the present section is to chart and affirm the existing legal obligations to guarantee indigenous peoples' rights in the context of conservation. The rights of indigenous peoples stem from various branches of international law and have developed through international human rights law, international labour law and international environment law. International and regional human right jurisprudence have further advanced the application of key indigenous peoples' rights in conservation. Taking stock of the standing in international law of indigenous peoples' rights in relation to conservation thus requires consideration of the interrelatedness of the different rights, notably self-determination, cultural and property rights, and appreciation of the complementarity of international human rights law and international environment law.

21. While human rights-based approaches to conservation have become widely accepted among conservation NGOs, their internal policy documents are at times elusive regarding the specific rights of indigenous peoples. This underlines the importance of reiterating the key applicable legal provisions.

A. The right to self-determination and land rights

22. Self-determination is a right in itself and is also a necessary pre-condition for the fulfilment of other human rights. The right is a fundamental principle in international law and has been interpreted in a variety of legal contexts. Self‑determination is considered an overarching right to indigenous peoples because of its cross-cutting nature and because it affirms their right to freely pursue their economic, social and cultural development. It is crucial to the issue of land conservation efforts because of its links with land rights and the right to participate within processes and decisions affecting them, such as the establishment and management of protected areas. The right to self-determination is enshrined within both the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (1966, article 1) and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (1966, article 1) and is included in the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (2007, article 3). Human rights treaty bodies, notably the Human Rights Committee, the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, have all affirmed, in analogous terms, that States must recognize and protect the rights of indigenous peoples to own, develop, control and use their communal lands and to participate in the management and conservation of the associated natural resources.[10] The Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and the Human Rights Committee have underlined the importance of the provision of land titles on

the ancestral lands by linking the right to self-determination with cultural rights(article 27 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and article 15 of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights).[11] The Indigenous and Tribal Peoples Convention, 1989 (No. 169) of the International Labour Organization (ILO) enshrines land rights for indigenous peoples in articles 14 to 19). The United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, which consolidates the rights of indigenous peoples already recognized in other human rights instruments and through the jurisprudence of the international human rights treaty bodies, affirms the right of indigenous peoples to own and control their lands (articles 25, 26 and 27).

B. Participation and free, prior and informed consent

23. Respect for the right to participate and to free, prior and informed consent are sine qua non elements of effective advancement of indigenous peoples' rights in practice. ILO Convention No. 169 sets out the duty of States to consult indigenous peoples through appropriate procedures and in particular through their representative institutions, whenever consideration is being given to legislative or administrative measures which may affect them directly (article 6). Human rights treaty bodies have consistently affirmed the principle of free, prior and informed consent of indigenous peoples in matters relating to their rights and interests and specifically in relation to their ancestral lands[12] and conservation.[13]

24. The Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples makes specific reference to conservation in article 29, which states that indigenous peoples have the right to the conservation and protection of the environment and the productive capacity of their lands or territories and resources and that States shall establish and implement assistance programmes for indigenous peoples for such conservation and protection, without discrimination. The Declaration furthermore states that indigenous peoples have the right to determine and develop priorities and strategies for the development or use of their lands or territories and other resources and that States shall consult and cooperate in good faith with the indigenous peoples concerned through their own representative institutions in order to obtain their free and informed consent prior to the approval of any project affecting their lands or territories and other resources, particularly in connection with the development, utilization or exploitation of mineral, water or other resources (article 32).

C. Forced displacement and the right to reparation, including restitution

25. Article 12(1) of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights establishes the right to liberty of movement and freedom to choose one's residence. This provision includes protection against all forms of forced internal displacement.[14] Persons whose rights or freedoms under the Covenant are violated shall have an effective remedy, as set out in article 2(3). In relation to forced evictions, the Committee on Economic and Social and Cultural Rights has affirmed that States must refrain from forced evictions and ensure that the law is enforced against its agents or third parties who carry out forced evictions.[15] The Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement emphasize that States are under a particular obligation to protect against the displacement of indigenous peoples and other groups with a special dependency on and attachment to their lands (principle 9). Due to the special relationship that indigenous peoples have with their land and the profound impact forced displacement has on their survival, human rights treaty bodies have consistently expressed concerns over the forcible displacement of indigenous peoples and urged States to provide reparation, with emphasis on the obligation to provide restitution of their original lands.[16] Reparation measures should be provided in accordance with international standards and, where appropriate, should entail elements of restitution, compensation, rehabilitation, satisfaction and guarantees of non-recurrence.[17]

26. ILO Convention No. 169 (article 16) and the Declaration on the Rights on Indigenous Peoples (article 10) stipulate that indigenous peoples shall not be forcibly removed from their lands unless they have provided their free, prior and informed consent. Should such violations have occurred, they have the right to fair reparation including restitution and compensation and, where possible, the option of returning to their lands. Article 28 of the Declaration furthermore stresses the right of indigenous peoples to redress, by means that can include restitution or, when this is not possible, just, fair and equitable compensation, for the lands, territories and resources which they have traditionally owned or otherwise occupied or used, and which have been confiscated, taken, occupied, used or damaged without their free, prior and informed consent. Unless otherwise freely agreed upon by the peoples concerned, compensation shall take the form of lands, territories and resources equal in quality, size and legal status or of monetary compensation or other appropriate redress.

D. Regional human rights systems

27. The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights and the Inter-American Court of Human Rights, with particular reference to property rights (article 21) of the American Convention on Human Rights, have provided key jurisprudence on the rights of indigenous peoples to communal lands, including in the context of protected areas. The Awas Tingni v. Nicaragua case decided by the Inter-American Court of Human Rights in 2001 set an important precedent as it was the first binding judgment, confirming that indigenous communal land rights arise by virtue of traditional occupation despite the lack of official legal title.[18] The Court has furthermore held that indigenous peoples maintain their property rights even when they have been forced to leave or have otherwise lost possession of their traditional lands, including where their lands have been expropriated or transferred to third parties, unless this was done consensually and in good faith.[19]

28. Of particular importance to the rights of indigenous peoples in the context of conservation is the judgment of the Court in the Kaliña and Lokono Peoples v. Suriname case in November 2015, relating to three nature reserves established on their ancestral territory which partly prevented their access.[20] The judgment ordered the State to implement a series of guarantees of non-repetition, including the legal recognition of territorial and other rights of all indigenous and tribal peoples in Suriname. The Court furthermore concluded that respect for the rights of indigenous peoples may have a positive impact on environmental conservation and therefore the rights of indigenous peoples and international environmental laws should be seen as complementary rather than exclusionary rights. In February 2015, the Special Rapporteur acted as an expert witness in the case and emphasized indigenous peoples' right to effective participation in conservation management and their right to restitution for lands incorporated into protected areas without their consent. She underlined three basic principles in relation to protected areas, as follows: first, that States must recognize and protect the rights of indigenous peoples to own, develop, control and use their communal lands, territories and resources; second, that decision-making in relation to all aspects of protected areas must take place with indigenous peoples' effective participation and consent where any restrictions on their rights may be proposed; and third, that indigenous peoples have a right to restitution and other forms of redress where their lands have been incorporated into protected areas without their consent.[21]

29. In the African human rights system, the African Commission on Human and People's Rights held in the case of Endorois Welfare Council v. Kenya[22] that the rights of the Endorois had been violated when they were denied access to their traditional lands after the lands were turned into a game reserve in 1973. The Commission found that the Kenyan State was obliged to recognize the communal land rights of the Endorois indigenous peoples and provide compensation and restitution by returning the lands or by providing alternative lands of equal extent and quality in agreement with the indigenous community. Importantly, the Commission found that, although their land had become a game reserve, the Endorois were its ancestral guardians and thus best equipped to maintain its delicate ecosystem and that their alienation from their land threatened their cultural survival and thus the encroachment was not proportionate to the public need.

E. Convention on Biological Diversity

30. The Convention on Biological Diversity was adopted in 1992 and, as at 5 July 2016, had gained the widespread support of 196 Parties.[23] The treaty refers to indigenous peoples' knowledge, innovations and practices for the conservation and customary use of biological diversity. Article 8 (j) of the Convention commits States parties to respect and maintain the knowledge, innovations and practices of indigenous and local communities which are relevant for conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity. The Convention, however, fails to contain explicit recognition of the human rights of indigenous peoples.

31. Protected areas are among the cross-cutting issues addressed under the Convention on Biological Diversity. In 2004, the seventh meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention adopted a programme of work on protected areas. It states that the establishment, management and monitoring of protected areas should take place with the full and effective participation of, and full respect for the rights of, indigenous peoples consistent with national law and applicable international obligations. In the programme of work, parties are requested to ensure that any resettlement of indigenous communities as a consequence of the establishment or management of protected areas will only take place with their prior informed consent that may be given according to national legislation and applicable international obligations.[24] In 2014, the Conference of the Parties adopted a decision which highlighted the requirement that protected areas and management regimes must be consensual and participatory if indigenous peoples' rights are to be respected. It also recognized the contribution of indigenous peoples' own conservation initiatives within their territories to the effective conservation of important biodiversity sites.[25]

32. In view of the targets set by the parties to the Convention to expand protected area coverage to at least 17 per cent of terrestrial and inland water areas and 10 per cent of coastal and marine areas by 2020, the Special Rapporteur stresses that States and conservation organizations need to implement measures to recognize the rights of indigenous peoples as a matter of priority.[26]

V. Initial conservation practices and their consequences

33. Conservation protected areas were initially established through the expropriation of the lands and territories of indigenous peoples and local communities. Colonial and post-colonial administrations around the world claimed common land for the State, without regard for the existing rights of traditional ownership and use under customary tenure. Such expropriated land was then allocated to new owners for new uses, such as settlement, exploitation, and conservation. In establishing the first "modern" protected areas in 1872 (Yellowstone National Park), and in 1890 (Yosemite National Park), the Government of the United States of America violently expelled the Native Americans who lived in and depended on the natural resources in those areas. This approach was influenced both by the perception of parks as pristine "wildernesses," devoid of human occupation and use, and by the interests of lobbies wanting to develop parks for tourism. Native peoples were seen as incompatible with those interests.[27]

34. Such protected areas were based on the following assumptions: protected areas should be created and governed by States; the goal of protected areas should be strict nature preservation with emphasis on biodiversity conservation and protected area management required protected areas to be uninhabited and without human use of natural resources. In its worst forms, coercive force was considered legally and morally justified to remove resident peoples and protect biodiversity.[28]

35. The exclusionary "fortress" approach to protected-area management spread across North America, to Africa, Australia, New Zealand, the Russian Federation and to parts of Asia and Latin America. It remained the dominant model of protected-area management for more than a century and its State-centric legacy still has significant impact on today's conservation efforts. Although a full accounting will never be possible, owing to lack of accurate records, there is abundant evidence that large numbers of indigenous persons were dispossessed. Estimates of the number that may have been displaced worldwide run into the millions.[29]

36. From the perspective of indigenous peoples, the creation of protected areas was perceived as colonialist, as the consequences for indigenous peoples who experienced them spelled subjugation and the loss of lands, autonomy and self-governance, livelihood resources as well as the rupture of cultural and spiritual links. Protected areas under State control imposed new laws and forms of control by Government institutions. In this sense, protected areas were seen as a vehicle for coercive assimilation by indigenous peoples.[30] Many of the egregious human rights violations against indigenous peoples which took place in the name of conservation occurred before the 1980s, such as forced displacement following the creation of African game parks. In many countries the ongoing legacy of these violations continues to affect their exercise of their rights.

37. New approaches to conservation have emerged during the past two decades. Indigenous peoples mobilized and started to pursue their customary land rights with the support of evolving international legal standards in favour of their rights in the 1970s and 1980s. States, in turn, began reforms to legally recognize some of these rights, notably in South America. In Colombia (1991) and in Brazil (1998) indigenous land rights became constitutionally entrenched. Protected-areas policies were gradually changed towards recognition of indigenous land rights in Australia, Canada and New Zealand.[31] Since the mid-1990s, the Australian Government has provided native title for indigenous peoples and supported co-management or their own management of protected areas.[32]

38. Protected areas in countries which have failed to undertake legal reforms and recognition of collective land rights for indigenous peoples have been marred by the highest and most persistent incidence of human rights violations against indigenous peoples. Furthermore, conservation efforts in countries where indigenous peoples remain marginalized have had the least sustainable and successful outcomes, which has prompted scrutiny of international conservation policies. Despite the fact that conservation is gradually embracing a human rights-based approach, significant challenges remain in ensuring its effective implementation.

VI. Paradigm shift since 2003

39. At the global level, protected-areas policy is shaped by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). A membership organization, as at April 2016, IUCN had 1,351 members, including 89 States, 128 government agencies,

48 affiliates, 112 international NGOs, and 974 national NGOs. The latter two categories include 12 indigenous peoples' organizations. Every four years, IUCN members meet at the World Conservation Congress, where resolutions are adopted on conservation policies, and every ten years a World Parks Congress is held to deliberate on global commitments related to protected areas. World Parks Congresses constitute the most important global forums for setting international standards and guidelines for protected areas. At the Congress held in Durban in 2003, the world's leading conservationists announced a "new paradigm" for protected areas which would respect the rights of indigenous peoples and local communities. This important shift in the approach to conservation was adopted in response to growing public opinion that conventional protected area models wrongly excluded or marginalized indigenous peoples and local communities from their governance and management.[33]

40. To implement this new vision for conservation, the Durban Accord and Action Plan were adopted.[34] Noting that the costs of the global protected area system had been inequitably borne by local communities, the Action Plan explicitly recognized the rights of indigenous peoples in relation to natural resources and biodiversity conservation and that the protected area system must take full account of the rights, interests and aspirations of indigenous peoples, as well as of their desire to have their lands, territories and resources secured and protected for their own social and cultural survival.

41. The Accord called upon the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity to ensure that indigenous peoples and local communities fully participate in the establishment and management of protected areas and that mechanisms be put in place to guarantee that they share the benefits from these areas. Likewise, protected area authorities were encouraged to promote the conditions and ensure the means for the effective engagement of indigenous peoples, local communities and other local stakeholders in conservation. The Action Plan relating to the recognition and guaranteeing of indigenous peoples' rights set out three major targets:

• All existing and future protected areas shall be managed and established in full compliance with the rights of indigenous peoples, mobile peoples and local communities

• Protected areas shall have representatives chosen by indigenous peoples and local communities in their management proportionate to their rights and interests

• Participatory mechanisms for the restitution of indigenous peoples' traditional lands and territories that were incorporated in protected areas without their free and informed consent shall be established and implemented by 2010.

42. Regretfully, these three Durban Action Plan targets are still far from being achieved. However, a number of steps have been taken by the IUCN community towards their achievement and new resolutions have been adopted by the World Conservation Congress, including the endorsement of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People in resolution 4.052 (2008), calling upon all IUCN members to apply it in their respective activities. At the World Parks Congress held in Sydney, Australia, in 2014, IUCN members reiterated in the "Promise of Sydney Vision" their commitment to working in partnership with indigenous peoples, recognizing their long traditions and knowledge and collective rights to land, water, natural resource and culture.

43. Considerable critique has nevertheless been raised that effective implementation of the new paradigm has been lagging and that new policies have been slow in transferring from paper to practice.[35] Leading conservation organizations have recognized their lack of progress. In 2009, IUCN and seven other international conservation NGOs launched the Conservation Initiative on Human Rights, with the aim of improving conservation policy and practice by promoting respect for human rights.[36] The conservation organizations that are members of the Initiative have all committed to four basic principles to guide integration of human rights in each organization's policies and practices, including a commitment not to contribute to infringements of human rights.[37]

44. In preparing the present report, the Special Rapporteur organized a consultation and invited the Conservation Initiative organizations to share information on their progress in advancing respect for indigenous peoples' rights. The responses showed overall positive developments and a strong awareness of the importance of building partnerships with indigenous peoples based on explicit recognition of, and respect for, their rights. As stated by Conservation International, "stewards of some of the most biodiverse places on Earth, indigenous peoples play a unique and invaluable role in conserving nature's vital resources and they often draw on their own traditional knowledge to design management practices that are best suited for their lands".[38] The Special Rapporteur also held consultations with indigenous peoples on the theme.

45. IUCN has, through its World Conservation Congress, adopted numerous resolutions affirming indigenous peoples' rights; however, each individual IUCN member organization designs and implements their own internal policies and guidelines. The majority of the large conservation organizations have adopted specific policies on indigenous peoples' rights, and several have developed specific guidelines on how to implement free, prior and informed consent in their projects. The World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) was the first international conservation organization to adopt principles on indigenous peoples' rights, already in 1996.

46. Most conservation organizations recognize that additional resources are needed for the dissemination of policies and for training of staff at the national level in order to advance the practical application of policies and guidelines on indigenous peoples' rights. Furthermore, monitoring of compliance and progress in advancing indigenous peoples' rights in practice still remains sorely lacking in many conservation organizations. Without such indicators, assessments of progress cannot be properly undertaken and transparency regarding how indigenous peoples' rights are promoted in practice will remain deficient.

47. Among the key challenges reported by conservation organizations in advancing in implementation at the national level are non-conducive political and legal settings in which indigenous peoples are not recognized. However, given the powerful position of conservation organizations vis-à-vis authorities in developing countries with weak rule of law, they should use their leverage better and more affirmatively in order to influence national authorities and advocate for legislative reform, the application of free, prior and informed consent and the restitution of ancestral lands of indigenous peoples. As indigenous rights to customary lands, territories and natural resources have yet to be effectively recognized in numerous countries, conservation organizations can play a key role in supporting indigenous peoples in such endeavours and encourage dialogue with authorities to this end. It is thus a positive development that several conservation organizations indicate that they are undertaking such efforts in numerous countries. The Special Rapporteur, however, urges that such engagement be significantly expanded to support legal and policy shifts in countries which still fail to recognize indigenous peoples' rights.

48. Examples of best practice reported include the mapping exercise facilitated by IUCN in Central America, which identified that the bulk of remaining forests and marine resources are within or bordering indigenous traditional lands. According to IUCN, the initiative provided a clear indication of the value and importance of supporting indigenous rights and tenure to meet conservation goals. WWF Indonesia states that, over the past five years, it has moved from including work with indigenous peoples under conservation targets to making it a specific target in itself, notably through working directly with indigenous peoples to document and integrate their territories in government plans, with a view to building stronger recognition of indigenous peoples' rights and more effective and equitable governance. WWF Cameroon is advocating with the Government for formalized national free, prior and informed consent requirements and guidelines. Additional examples of positive practices reported are support by transnational corporations for securing collective land rights in Indonesia and the United Republic of Tanzania.

49. Most conservation organizations lack complaints and grievance mechanisms or are in the initial stages of developing such measures. As a positive initiative, Conservation International is currently designing a complaints mechanism, to be effective in 14 countries, in consultation with indigenous communities. In 2011, IUCN established the Whakatane Mechanism to undertake assessments with recommendations, in order to mediate in situations where indigenous peoples have been negatively affected by conservation measures. The first two pilot assessments took place in 2011 and 2012, in Mount Elgon, Kenya and in Ob Luang National Park, Thailand. Implementation of the mechanism has, however, stalled and requires additional resources and support from IUCN members to become operational.

50. Several conservation organizations, including IUCN, WWF and Conservation International reported that they engage regularly with indigenous international forums or that they support the participation of indigenous representatives at key debates on environment and conservation. Some conservation organizations have established advisory bodies consisting of indigenous peoples and have ensured that indigenous peoples are represented in senior positions within their organization, including on their boards. In a positive development, IUCN is currently revising its membership requirements, in order to enable more indigenous organizations to join and formally engage in discussions on conservation policy and practice.

VII. Key conservation challenges and opportunities

51. The respective Special Rapporteurs on the rights of indigenous peoples have, since the establishment of the mandate in 2001, received numerous allegations of large-scale violations of the rights of indigenous peoples in the context of conservation measures. Among the consequences indigenous peoples have faced following forced displacement from protected areas are marginalization, poverty, loss of livelihoods, food insecurity, extrajudicial killings, and disrupted links with spiritual sites and denial of access to justice and remedy. The successive special rapporteurs have raised serious concerns over the impact that protected areas have had on indigenous peoples in a wide range of countries, including: Argentina, Botswana, Chile, Ecuador, Ethiopia, Honduras, Kenya, Mexico, Namibia, Nepal, the Russian Federation, South Africa and the United States of America.[39]

52. Many of these violations persist in countries where protected areas were declared prior to the introduction of rights-based conservation and where legal reforms in favour of indigenous peoples' rights remain deficient. The lack of collective land rights for indigenous people is a primary obstacle to ensuring that rights-based conservation becomes effective, as are conflicting legal norms and failure to implement legislation effectively. The declaration of World Heritage status on protected areas adds additional complexities. The management and co‑management of protected areas by indigenous peoples has to date only been applied to a limited extent but holds key potential in enhancing conservation in a manner which respects and enhances the rights of indigenous peoples.

A. Forced displacement and the failure to provide recognition of collective rights to lands, territories and natural resources

53. In Kenya, respective special rapporteurs have expressed long-standing concerns regarding the repeated evictions and forced displacement of several indigenous peoples, including the Ogiek and Sengwer from ancestral lands, which have been declared protected areas. The Ogiek have faced repeated evictions from their ancestral forest lands since the creation of the Mount Elgon national park in 1968 and further gazetting of their lands for the Chepkitale game park in 2000. The Sengwer continue to face displacement from the Embout forests, dating back to the 1970s. Forced away from their lands, indigenous peoples are denied their cultural and subsistence practices. Indigenous peoples who seek to return to their lands are regularly arrested and charged of poaching or even killed by armed "eco-guards". While indigenous peoples in Kenya have repeatedly emphasized their desire to engage in conservation, difficulties in settling collective land tenure remain a key obstacle.

54. A 2016 study by the Rainforest Foundation of 34 protected areas in five countries in the Congo Basin (Cameroon, Central African Republic, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Gabon and the Republic of the Congo) found that indigenous communities have virtually no tenure security over their traditional lands in any of the five countries. The creation of at least 26 of the protected areas resulted in partial or complete relocation or displacement of local indigenous and farming communities present in the area prior to park establishment. In no case was any reparation for the displacements reported. Furthermore, of the 34 protected areas studied, 25 bordered with logging concessions, 19 overlapped with mining concessions and 9 overlapped with oil concessions.[40]

55. Protected areas constitute approximately 20 per cent of the total landmass in Nepal. The National Parks and Wildlife Conservation Act in that country provides no recognition of indigenous peoples' right to consultation or to access their traditional lands and resources. During a country visit in 2009, the Special Rapporteur received reports of mistreatment, arbitrary detention and sexual abuse of indigenous villagers, in particular indigenous women, by Chitwan National Park rangers and military officials (see HRC/12/34/Add.3, para. 37).

B. Inconsistent national legislation or poor application thereof

56. The U'wa indigenous peoples in Colombia request that the National Park of El Cocuy, partly overlapping with the territory over which they hold legal title, be fully incorporated into it and placed under their custodianship. For the U'wa, the area has special spiritual and cultural significance, as the peak of the Cocuy mountain is home to the spirits and gods and cannot be tread upon without permission from U'wa spiritual authorities. The National Park was established in 1977, before the Constitution and national legislation was adopted on indigenous land rights, and the park remains under the jurisdiction of the government environment authorities. The U'wa reject the presence of settlers and tourism on the mountain and have expressed concern over the degradation of the park, claiming that the park authorities are not protecting the park properly. In discussions with government authorities, the U'wa have rejected co-management proposals and demanded to be designated the environmental authority for the protection of the park.

57. In India, Adivasis and tribal peoples have been evicted from tiger reserves for decades, often without any form of reparation. This continues to occur despite the Forest Rights Act of 2006, which only allows displacement from "critical wildlife habitats" if scientifically determined that the habitat is being damaged irreversibly and that co-existence is not possible. The Forest Rights Act stipulates that even then, displacement can only be carried out after obtaining free, prior and informed consent. In practice, however, displacement from protected areas continues across India through a combination of misinterpretation, coercion, and inducement. Reportedly, tribal peoples have faced prosecution for "offences" in protected areas, such as the traditional practice of collecting honey.[41]

58. Many States are still encumbered with legal, regulatory, and institutional frameworks developed for a strict wilderness conservation model. Commonly, agencies for protected areas and cultural heritage were institutionally separated from other government bodies to protect them from corruption and commercial interests. Independent or semi-independent agencies were given sovereign responsibility for decisions within protected areas in contradiction to other constitutional and legal provisions protecting the rights of indigenous peoples, resulting in overlapping jurisdictions.

59. An analysis undertaken by the NGO Rights and Resources Initiative in 2015 of 21 countries where conflicts affect indigenous peoples in protected areas concluded that inadequate, inconsistent and poorly implemented legislation is a key obstacle to advancing rights-based conservation. The same report noted that legal reforms undertaken since the 2003 World Parks Congress provide a measure of the response of countries to the "new paradigm" articulated in the Durban Accord. Their review of new legislation adopted between 2003 and 2014 showed that these years have largely represented a missed opportunity. Only 8 of the 21 countries enacted or reformed their protected area legislation related to community land and resource rights during this time period. Where such reforms occurred, they mostly focused on enabling co-management or making provisions for communities who already owned land to include their lands in national protected-area systems.[42]

C. World Heritage sites and tourism

60. Protected areas overlap with World Heritage sites in multiple instances. As raised by the previous Special Rapporteur (see A/67/301, paras. 33-42), the impact on indigenous peoples of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) World Heritage sites is a recurring concern, notably because, on numerous occasions, these sites have been declared without consultation with indigenous peoples and have a serious negative impact upon their rights. Protected areas with heritage status have in several instances resulted in forced removal of indigenous peoples or significant restrictions on their access to livelihood resources and sacred sites.[43] Furthermore, heritage listings often lead to an unprecedented increase in tourism. Yet, the Operational Guidelines for Implementation of the World Heritage Convention, which set out the procedure for the inscription of properties on the World Heritage list and the protection and conservation of sites, do not require participation by indigenous peoples. All three of the United Nations mechanisms dedicated specifically to promoting the rights of indigenous peoples, namely, the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues, the Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and the Special Rapporteur, have called for reforms on how the Convention is applied, underlining the urgent need to reform the Operational Guidelines through which potential heritage sites are assessed, so that they are aligned with the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and adopt procedures to ensure indigenous peoples' free, prior and informed consent.

61. There are numerous examples of protected areas with heritage status over which concerns have been raised by indigenous peoples. In Kenya, the designation of Lake Bogoria National Reserve as a World Heritage site in 2011 was undertaken without the consent of the indigenous Endorois community, despite the ruling by the African Court on Human and Peoples' Rights in favour of the Endorois indigenous peoples' rights in 2009. The Endorois people have expressed concern that the Government of Kenya may use the World Heritage status as a pretext for denying them restitution, as required by the Court's decision.[44]

62. In Argentina, the Special Rapporteur observed during a country visit in 2011 that after the Quebrada de Humahuaca was listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage site in 2003, there was a huge increase in tourism and in the economic value of the land occupied by indigenous peoples. The provincial government had issued land titles to foreign investors, and as a result, the surrounding indigenous communities were dispossessed of their land and had fewer water resources. The communities were not involved in the management of the site and derived no economic benefits therefrom. The Special Rapporteur recommended increased participation by indigenous peoples in the management of the site (see A/HRC/21/47/Add.2, paras. 50 and 97).

63. In Thailand, the Government requested the listing of the Kaeng Krachen National Park in 2013 as a World Heritage park in 2013 without consulting the local indigenous Karen peoples. The Karen have experienced forced evictions, destruction of housing and crops, arrests and enforced disappearances. On 17 April 2014, a Karen human rights defender disappeared after attending a meeting on a lawsuit against park officials for destruction of Karen housing in 2010/2011. Park officials acknowledged having detained him earlier that day for illegal possession of wild honey, but claimed to have released him subsequently. His whereabouts have been unknown since. The Karen have expressed concerns over the potential listing of the park as a World Heritage site, fearing that it would result in further evictions, prohibitions on the gathering of wild honey and herbs and an increase of tourism, which would affect the environment negatively, creating problems, notably with waste management. The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights has advised the World Heritage Committee to ensure that comprehensive consultations are held by the Thai Government with Karen communities, to ensure respect for their rights, to refrain from evictions and to ensure that the communities can participate in the management of the park if it is designated a World Heritage park.[45]

64. If the designation of World Heritage sites is done constructively and with the consent of the indigenous peoples affected, such status could provide an effective contribution to conservation and the protection of indigenous rights. In 2011, the World Heritage Committee incorporated the uranium-rich Koongarra area into the Kakadu National Park World Heritage site, at the joint request of the Government of Australia and the indigenous landowners, the Djok clan, which in effect barred future mineral development in the area.[46]

D. Indigenous management of protected areas

65. Over the past decade, increasing evidence supports the correlation between secure indigenous tenure and positive conservation outcomes, at times better than those achieved in State-managed protected areas. The effectiveness of indigenous-owned lands in resisting deforestation in Brazil is well known. In Namibia, community-based wildlife management has resulted in significant growth in wildlife populations, especially in areas that had formerly been subject to heavy poaching. In Australia and the United States of America, indigenous peoples effectively manage or co-manage protected areas, through dynamic and sustainable partnerships which seek to redress past exclusion policies. In the Philippines, the national Indigenous Peoples' Rights Act includes a provision that protected areas within or overlapping ancestral domains will remain protected but that indigenous communities have primary responsibility for maintaining and protecting such areas. The law governing protected areas in the Philippines, the National Integrated Protected Areas Act, calls for indigenous peoples' participation in protected-area management boards. However, certain obstacles remain. For example, indigenous participation in management boards is impeded by a lack of training and orientation for indigenous peoples on their roles and responsibilities and such meetings tend to be conducted using overly technical language.[47]

66. The management capacity of indigenous peoples is recognized as part of the new conservation paradigm. IUCN has committed to advocating for the recognition of "indigenous peoples and local community conserved territories and areas" in conservation policy as a new governance category. Yet, over the past decade only limited progress has been made towards their recognition and such governance still only exist in less than 5 per cent of all protected areas. Significant expansion of areas under indigenous management, coupled with solid partnerships with indigenous peoples for knowledge exchange, remain key opportunities for States and conservationists to operationalize the participation of indigenous peoples in conservation.

67. As the creation of protected areas and emerging conservation activities is further advanced by climate change initiatives, notably reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation in developing countries, and the role of conservation, sustainable management of forests, and enhancement of forest carbon stocks in developing countries, the active participation of indigenous peoples in these processes is essential to their sustainable success. The Special Rapporteur will continue to monitor these ongoing developments.

VIII. Conclusions

68. While the high rate of biodiversity in indigenous ancestral lands is well established, the contribution of indigenous peoples to conservation has yet to be fully acknowledged. Although a new rights-based paradigm to conservation has been advancing during the last decades, it remains in its initial stages of being applied. Rights-based conservation measures continue to be hampered by the legacy of past violations and by the lack of legal recognition by States of indigenous peoples' rights. Conservation organizations and indigenous organizations could be powerful allies in their mutually shared goals to safeguard biodiversity and protect nature from external threats such as unsustainable resource exploitation. Protected areas continue to expand, yet threats against them from extractive industry, energy and infrastructure projects are also increasing, and thus the urgency to address effective, collaborative and long-term conservation is of paramount importance. The escalating incidence of killings of indigenous environmentalists highlights the importance of conservationists and indigenous peoples joining forces.[48] Insecure collective land tenure continues to undermine the ability of indigenous peoples to effectively protect their traditional lands, territories and natural resources. Conservation organizations should make much more use of their leverage vis-a-vis States to advocate for the legal recognition of indigenous peoples' rights at the national level.

69. Full recognition of indigenous land rights and participation are key enabling conditions for conservation to be sustained. The Durban Action Plan which states that all existing and future protected areas shall be managed and established in full compliance with the rights of indigenous peoples and the Sydney Vision which promised that there should be redress and remedy for past and continuing injustices in accord with international agreements are powerful commitments of the conservation community. The Special Rapporteur believes that the effective implementation of these commitments can operationalize the human rights-based conservation paradigm.

IX. Recommendations

To States:

70. Undertake all necessary measures for the effective implementation of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and ratify the ILO Indigenous and Tribal Peoples Convention No. 169.

71. Adopt all necessary policy, legal and administrative measures for the full recognition of the rights of indigenous peoples over their lands, territories and resources as enshrined in international human rights law.

72. Review and harmonize the environmental, legal and institutional framework with their obligations regarding the rights of indigenous peoples and ensure that a rights-based approach is applied to the creation or expansion of existing protected areas.

73. Comply with the duty to consult and obtain the free, prior and informed consent of indigenous peoples before the development of conservation initiatives which may affect their rights.

74. Support partnerships between government authorities and indigenous peoples to encourage intercultural engagement in order to build trust and collaboration to favour of shared goals of sustainable conservation.

75. Comply with judgments and decisions of international and regional human rights monitoring mechanisms regarding indigenous peoples' rights.

76. Establish accountability and reparation mechanisms for infringements on indigenous rights in the context of conservation and provide redress for historical and contemporary wrongs.

To conservation organizations:

77. Respect and support the rights of indigenous peoples as recognized in international human rights law and enhance their ability to engage in conservation by advocating for recognition of their collective rights.

78. Shift the new paradigm from paper to practice; adopt human rights-based policies, including on the rights of indigenous peoples, and ensure effective dissemination of these and trainings for conservation staff, especially for those involved in implementation at the national and local level.

79. As part of due diligence, improve monitoring and include compliance with indigenous peoples' rights in regular project assessments. Ensure that information obtained through monitoring and reporting is transparent and accessible.

80. Develop mechanisms for solid partnerships for regular and continuous engagement with indigenous peoples, including ensuring their full and effective participation in designing, implementing and monitoring conservation initiatives.

81. Support indigenous peoples to develop and sustain their own conservation initiatives and exchange conservation management experiences with them. This will allow learning from indigenous traditional conservation measures and transfer of technical skills to engage indigenous peoples in protected areas management.

82. Ensure that culturally appropriate complaints mechanisms are available for indigenous peoples to voice their concerns over conservation initiatives and support initiatives for indigenous peoples' right to remedy in cases when conservation activities have negatively impacted their rights.

To donors:

83. Require that conservation organizations adopt human rights policies and monitor the application of human rights-based conservation programmes, notably in relation to indigenous peoples' rights.

84. Provide direct funding to better support indigenous peoples' own initiatives for conservation.

To UNESCO:

85. Reform the Operational Guidelines through which the World Heritage Convention is implemented to align them with the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and adopt procedures to ensure indigenous peoples' free, prior and informed consent.

To human rights monitoring mechanisms and relevant United Nations bodies and agencies:

86. Devote further attention to monitoring the impact conservation measures have on indigenous peoples, in order to promote a rights-based approach to protected areas management by government authorities and conservation organizations.

* * *

Source: UNSRIP

 

pdf Indigenous peoples’ organizations submit reply to list of issues for review of Nepal under Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Popular

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IP Report Nepal.pdf

Indigenous peoples’ organizations submit reply to list of issues for review of Nepal under Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities

Three indigenous peoples’ organizations have submitted a joint report on the rights of indigenous persons with disabilities in Nepal in reply to the list of issues for review of the country under the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Nepal Indigenous Disabled Association, National Indigenous Disabled Women Association Nepal and Asia Indigenous Peoples Pact submitted the report to the Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities following a national consultation and workshops with indigenous persons with disabilities.

Source: IPHRD

Related to SDG 10: Reduced inequalities

pdf Position Paper: PEREMPUAN AMAN on the SDGs Popular

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Position-Paper-English_SDGs-PEREMPUAN-AMAN-1.pdf

The United Nations (UN) has estimated the total number of Indigenous persons in the world is

about 370 million. About 2/3 of the total Indigenous population are concentrated in Asia, which

made Asia as the region with the highest cultural diversity in the world. With the diversity of

traditional knowledge, heritage and sustainable management system of natural resources,

Indigenous Peoples are capable of actively contributing to sustainable developments in their

countries. However, Indigenous Peoples in Asia are constantly marginalized from development

plans and the Indigenous Peoples’ concept of “development” is destroyed gradually. Indigenous

lands, natural resources and territories have been-and still are-taken over for “national

development” and “conservation” without the Indigenous Peoples’ consent

pdf Adaptation Actions for a Changing Arctic: Perspectives from the Barents Area Popular

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This report presents the results of the 2017 AMAP Assessment of Adaptation Actions for a Changing Arctic (AACA): Perspectives from the Barents Area. This is one of the three pilot study regions included in the AACA project. AACA is the first AMAP assessment dealing with adaptation actions and how to meet possible Arctic futures in these times of rapid change.

Copyright: AMAP 2017

pdf Draft Asia Pacific Regional Road Map Comments Recommendations AIPP 2016 Popular

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DraftAsiaPacificRegionalRoadMap_CommentsRecommendationsAIPP.pdf

General Comments:

The current draft does not clearly establish the need for alignment of the SDG implementation to the human rights obligations and commitments of states, as well as to the agreements for the protection and enhancement of biodiversity. These are cornerstone of the UN system that adopted the SDGs, and are thereby not additionality. The draft Road Map does not also provides for the operationalization of the principles of social and development justice to attain equality and equity which is critical in ending poverty, hunger, empowerment of women and ending discrimination and marginalization of indigenous peoples and vulnerable sectors. Further, there is also the need to implement the principles and measures to ensure transparency including information disclosure and accountability in the financing for development by both the public and the private sector. All these are essential in achieving the aim of the Development Agenda 2030 of “leaving no one behind”.

pdf Report of Nepal’s Indigenous Peoples for Voluntary National Review of Nepal Under the UN High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development Popular

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SDG-Nepal-shadow-report-2017.pdf

The Shadow Report is prepared collectively by Indigenous Peoples’ Network for SDGs in Nepal to respond to the Voluntary National Review of Nepalese government under the UN High Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development, 10 – 19 July 2017. The report highlights progress of implementation of the SDGs in the country from the perspective of indigenous peoples. This includes challenges in SDGs implementation as well as recommendations from the network to the Nepalese government with regard to the realization of the SDGs.

pdf Indigenous peoples recommendations for the SDG implementation in Malaysia Popular

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SDG-Workshop-Summaries-Malaysia.pdf

Country Workshop on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in Malaysia was held from 11 – 13 April, 2017 in Kipouvo village, Sabah. The workshop brought together around 60 representatives of indigenous peoples across the country to discuss about the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development including its national implementation plan and indigenous peoples in the country. The workshop was concluded with a half-day dialogue with the National Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (SUHAKAM) and CSO-SDGs Alliance among others.

Read the summary of the recommendations of indigenous peoples to the National Roadmap concerning the implementation of the SDGs by the Malaysian Economic Planning Unit of Malaysia.

pdf Summary Paper IPs Regional Priorities 2016 Popular

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SummaryReport_IPs-Regional-Priorities_APFSD-2016.pdf

UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP)

Asia-Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development 2016

Bangkok, April 3-5, 2016

SUMMARY PAPER

Indigenous Peoples’ Priorities in the implementation of 2030 Agenda in the Asia Region

Prepared by the Asia Indigenous Peoples Pact (AIPP)

Overcoming persistent marginalization of indigenous peoples to realize “leaving no one behind”

pdf Book: Leaving No One Behind: Sustainable Development Goals and Indigenous Peoples Popular

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Leaving-No-One-Behind-v4-Compressed.pdf

This book is based on the animation video, titled “Leave No One Behind – SDGs and Indigenous Peoples”. It aims to introduce what are the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for indigenous peoples.

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