By India Logan-Riley, Aotearoa, Pacific Indigenous Peoples Delegation
The first Conference of the Parties since the creation and entering into force of the Paris Agreement has come to a close. Although there are many aspects of the negotiations that concern the International Indigenous Peoples Forum on Climate Change, this particular CoP has seen large step forward for our engagement with the UNFCCC process.
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As of the closing plenary, the Local Communities and Indigenous Peoples platform was made official. The CoP President announced the following decision regarding the platform:
• To adopt an incremental approach to developing the local communities and indigenous peoples platform, referred to in decision 1/CP.21 paragraph 135, with a view to ensuring its effective operationalization;
• To request the Chair of the SBSTA to initiate the process to develop the local communities and indigenous peoples platform, which will include convening an open multi-stakeholder dialogue at SBSTA 46 on the operationalization of the platform to be co-moderated by the Chair of the SBSTA and a representative of indigenous peoples organizations;
• To invite Parties and other stakeholders to submit, by 31 March 2017, their views on the purpose, content and structure of the platform in order to inform the multi-stakeholder dialogue;
• To request the secretariat to prepare a report on the multi-stakeholder dialogue, which should also draw on the submissions;
• To also request the SBSTA to consider the report at SBSTA 47 under a new agenda item "local communities and indigenous peoples platform" and conclude its consideration at SBSTA 47 by forwarding recommendations for operationalization of the platform to COP23.
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This process over the last two weeks has not been smooth. There were times when we had to remind those involved that Indigenous Peoples in a way that is consistent with UNDRIP and other international legal expectations. However, we applaud the commitment to actioning this platform and look forward to the full, effective and meaningful partnership with the UNFCCC moving forward.