Global trade, consumption, population growth, and urbanization drive transformations that, in part, drive nature’s destruction. The World Economic Forum ranks biodiversity loss as a global top-five risk. Clearly, protecting the environment should be high on political and policy agendas—but too often environmental governance is weak and policy implementation neglected.

India is among the top ten countries most vulnerable to climate change. A new study finds that the Forest Rights Act is an effective tool to enable rights-based and gender-responsive approaches to climate action and can legally empower forest dwellers to manage and govern nearly 40 million hectares of the country's forests.

The increased interest in carbon markets comes with a number of risks. Many forest carbon offsetting schemes are located in lands historically claimed, inhabited, and used by Indigenous Peoples and local communities but oftentimes the rights of these communities have not been secured, putting their well-being at risk — and threatening the future of carbon markets.

Several forest regulations recently introduced by Nepal’s Ministry of Forest and Environment are raising serious human rights concerns among the country’s local forest communities. These provisions, currently under cabinet review, are geared to become part of Nepal’s Forest Act. But local forest communities say they are in direct contrast to the Act’s spirit and violate their rights.

Indigenous community in Indonesia meets with leadership of palm oil company for first time in 25 years

Between December 6 - 9, 2021, representatives from the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) and PT Inecda Plantations traveled to Talang Parit to meet with the community for the first time since their complaint was submitted to the RSPO in 2020. These meetings offer a glimmer of hope for the community and the island’s natural resources since the Indonesian government issued PT Inecda a plantation permit in 1984.

Influencing the Peace Process in Colombia

Lack of secure land rights has long been a key driver of war and conflict in Colombia. Since the formation of the new republic, the country’s land ownership has accumulated in the hands of a small number of elite families, leaving thousands of rural populations without access to land.

A new report by the Forest Carbon Partnership Facility (FCPF), a global partnership for successfully reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation, and the World Bank’s fund for Enhancing Access to Benefits while Lowering Emissions (EnABLE), outlines tangible ways global communities can make inroads in the effort to mitigate climate change through strengthening Indigenous sovereignty.

Reflections on Nature-Based Solutions: Occasion for caution and hope

Nature-Based Solutions are broadly defined as solutions to societal challenges that involve working with nature. When anchored in culturally appropriate solutions and the self-determined priorities of local peoples, nature-based actions have the potential to strengthen synergies, transform human-environment interactions, and effectively drive system-wide transformation.

Progress and challenges of securing community land rights in Africa

Recognizing secure tenure rights for local communities and Indigenous Peoples is one of the key drivers of social peace and sustainable economic development. Addressing the common need for a platform to continue sharing experiences and knowledge, we helped establish the African Land Institutions Network for Community Rights (ALIN). To assess progress since meeting in Antananarivo, Madagascar in 2019, the 3rd ALIN Conference will be held in a hybrid format in Lomé, Togo and online from October 12-14, 2021.

New analysis reveals risks of investment in carbon offsets without community rights

This analysis shows that the vast majority of tropical forested countries seeking to benefit from international forest carbon markets have yet to define in law and in practice the rights of Indigenous Peoples, local communities, and Afro-descendant Peoples over carbon in their customary lands and territories.

COVID-19 and Community land rights in Liberia: A story of resilience and hope

Across the world, the outbreak of COVID-19 has created unprecedented challenges for RRI members and their communities. In many cases though, it has also led to opportunities for empowering local communities. This was the case for Social Entrepreneurs for Sustainable Development (SESDev), a Liberian non-profit that works on natural resource governance rights.

The Jungle Screams: Voices of the Amazon

The Amazon’s peoples and representative organizations, threatened by the ongoing pandemic, are calling upon supporters across the world to join their fight to protect the Amazonian territories from this crisis. The virtual gathering, "The Jungle Screams: Voices of the Amazon," will analyze and build proposals to fight Covid-19, climate change, patriarchy, gender-based violence, and political systems that hijack democracy. This event is open to participation.

As rising pollution levels, accelerating climate change, and population growth accumulate pressure on the world’s freshwater resources, there has never been a greater need to legally secure the freshwater rights of the Indigenous peoples and local communities who claim and steward over half of the world’s land — including vital watersheds that sustain healthy aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems.

Reclaiming the National Bison Range

After decades of battling misinformation, the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes recover their lands and the herd.

Should Ongoing Land Deals in the Congo Basin be Criminalized?

Africa is currently experiencing what can be called its “third great land transformation.” This follows the first one inaugurated by colonial powers, and a second one launched by postcolonial states for developmental and infrastructural purposes. The 21st century wave of land grabs, which has exploded in recent years, constitutes the third.

New tool tracks collective rights violations and impact in Latin America

A new study from RRI documents the multidimensional impacts and multiplier effects of collective rights violations by extractive industries and infrastructure development in Latin America. The study tracks 102 cases involving Indigenous Peoples, Afro-descendants, and local communities.

[Portuguese] Carta aberta da RRI à WWF Internacional

Em nome da Coalizão Rights and Resources Initiative (RRI), uma rede internacional de Povos Indígenas, Quilombolas, organizações comunitárias locais e seus aliados, estou escrevendo para informá-lo de nosso profundo desalento com o recém-lançado Relatório Planeta Vivo 2020.