A view of the forest in Central Kalimantan. Nanang Sujana, CIFOR

Peoples Forests Partnership leads call to increase climate finance for Indigenous Peoples

The first-of-its-kind group is seeking new partners to bolster the coalition’s goal to mobilize $20B annually by 2030 in support of IPLC efforts to combat the climate crisis.

Learn more about the Peoples Forests Partnership in “Unlocking direct finance for forest communities: A call for community-led conservation” at GLF Climate 2022.

The Peoples Forests Partnership – a major global initiative to rapidly scale up climate finance going directly to Indigenous peoples and local communities (IPLCs) – has announced its first call for applications for members, ahead of COP27.

Launched in COP26, the Peoples Forests Partnership aims to use the voluntary carbon markets to assure equitable, accessible, and culturally appropriate investment partnerships with IPLCs to protect the environment, while setting the best-in-class standard for forest communities to engage with climate finance.

The Peoples Forests Partnership sits in stage at COP26
Launch of the Peoples Forests Partnership at COP26. Peoples Forests Partnership

The Peoples Forests Partnership is aiming to mobilize $20 billion annually by 2030 in direct private investment in community-driven forest conservation and restoration projects. Additional members will scale the finance needed to secure and protect IPLC lands and help countries achieve climate targets and commitments, working to keep 1.5 degrees Celsius alive.

IPLCs are the world’s most effective guardians against tropical deforestation, according to the UN. Yet, these communities receive virtually no financial support from the climate finance community for their efforts: less than 1% of Official Development Assistance for climate mitigation and adaptation reaches IPLCs, according to a recent study.

“We have much progress to make to ensure IPLCs can equitably access climate finance. We need access to more information to make decisions on our own terms. The current terms of exchange between IPLCs and many intermediaries are very disadvantageous to communities. Peoples Forests Partnership strives to preserve IPLCs’ culture and traditions in the face of their critical contributions to stopping climate change.” Gustavo Sánchez, Board of Directors of the Mesoamerican Alliance of Peoples and Forests (AMPB)

The voluntary carbon market can serve as a key tool to advance climate action while supporting IPLC self-governance and land management. When designed in equitable partnership with IPLCs, carbon credits can ensure IPLCs receive direct and equitable access to climate finance and are able to preserve their rights, culture, and livelihoods at a scale necessary to battle our climate crisis.

“IPLCs are crucial to the preservation of nature, but there is insufficient understanding and appreciation of the value they bring to the protection of our forest ecosystems. Their contributions are not accurately reflected in market prices today. That needs to change. The Peoples Forests Partnership is an important step forward in this process,” said Mikkel Larsen, Chief Executive Officer of Climate Impact X.

The Peoples Forests Partnership is seeking applications from Indigenous organizations, conservation groups, companies, investors, and NGOs who support the growth of community-based carbon projects with their commitment to The Partnership’s principles.

Members will be selected based on criteria set forth by the Partnership’s executive committee that ensures equitable and high-integrity direct investment in community-based, forest carbon projects. The new members will join founding members including the National Organization of the Indigenous Peoples of the Colombian Amazon (OPIAC), the Mesoamerican Alliance of People and Forests (AMPB), RECOFTC, Forest Trends, the Center for Indigenous Peoples’ Research and Development, Wildlife Works, Everland, and GreenCollar.

As members of the Peoples Forests Partnership, organizations will be part of the first IPLC-led global coalition to enable direct dialogue with IPLCs who want to engage in emissions reduction projects, through cross-sector and -cultural collaboration with high-quality projects, developers, and funders.

The executive committee, formed in June 2022, has 50% representation by Indigenous Peoples’ and local communities’ organizations and 50% women, reflecting the coalition’s commitment to ensuring equitable inclusion.

Organizations interested in joining the Peoples Forests Partnership are encouraged to review the application process on the Peoples Forests Partnership website. New membership commitments will be announced in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt at COP27 in November 2022.



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