Collective Territorial Rights and their Contribution to the Preservation of the Environment and the Adaptation a Mitigation of the Effects of Climate Change

Afro-descendant Territories in Latin America

May 30, 2023 |  2:00 PM- 4:00 PM (EST)|Church Center of the United Nations, New York, United States

Organized by the Black Communities Process of Colombia (PCN), Rights and Resources Initiative (RRI) and the Observatory of Ethnic and Peasant Territories of the Javeriana University of Colombia (OTEC).

Cartographic Viewer

In recent years, several Afro-descendant Peoples’ organizations have undertaken a strengthening process through regional articulation to influence the recognition of their territorial rights. As a fundamental step, they have worked to close the systematic and comprehensive information gap on the presence, lands, and territories of Afro-descendant Peoples in Latin America and the Caribbean.

Now we well present the recent results of a regional study, including a cartographic viewer on the side event on the theme of the right to Afro-descendant territory and the cartographic visibility of their lands, during the second session of the Permanent Forum on Peoples of African Descent held by the UN Human Rights Office to civil society actors, non-governmental organizations, academics, experts on issues related to Afro-descendants and all other relevant stakeholders.

This study will show the territorial presence of Afro-descendant Peoples on more than 205 million hectares in 16 countries of the region (Belize, Brazil, Bolivia, Colombia, Chile, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Suriname, and Venezuela) and the intersection with areas of great importance for biodiversity conservation and for the mitigation and adaptation to climate change. A work that was carried out in coordination with 20 Afro-descendant territorial and research organizations. 



Panel Moderator: Sonia Viveros, Fundación Azúcar/Red MAAD – Ecuador  

Opening Remarks: Andrés Mejía Pizano, Consul General of Colombia in New York 


  • José Luis Rengifo, Process of Black Communities (PCN), Colombia  
  • Omaira Bolaños, Rights and Resources Initiative (RRI), United States 
  • John Antón Sánchez, Institute of Higher National Studies (IAEN), Ecuador  
  • Yimene Calderón, Community Ethnic Development Organization (ODECO), Honduras  
  • María José Arrieta, Observatory of Ethnic and Peasant Territories, Universidad Javeriana (OTEC), Colombia  


Spanish with interpretation into English and Portuguese. 

Download here  the  report on Afro-descendant Peoples’ Territories in Biodiversity Hotspots across Latin America and the Caribbean.

Contact information: José Luis Rengifo, PCN, [email protected]; and Omaira Bolaños, RRI, [email protected].