SBSTTA 2017 2The GEF SGP presented their continuous support to Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities (IPLCs), and their work on the preservation of traditional knowledge (TK) and sustainable use of biodiversity at the 21st meeting of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice (SBSTTA), held in Montreal, Canada on 14-17 December 2017.

SGP has supported over 650 projects related to Article 8(j) in some 110 countries since 1992, and approximately, 15% of its project portfolio are with Indigenous Peoples. In 2014, SGP has strengthened its work on Article 8(j) by identifying Indigenous peoples’ and Communities’ Conserved Territories and Areas (ICCAs), as one of the signature cross-cutting thematic areas, and is implementing the Global Support Initiative to ICCAs with funds from the Government of Germany (BMU) International Climate Initiative (IKI), as well as through the introduction of an Indigenous Peoples Fellowship programme.

On 15 December, SGP organized a side event titled Contributions of Indigenous Peoples and the UNDP GEF-Small Grants Programme to CBD Article 8(j) and Aichi Biodiversity Target 18 on Traditional Knowledge to (i.) share contribution of Indigenous Peoples, and ICCAs in preserving and maintaining knowledge, practices and innovations relevant to the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity; (ii.) highlight the significance of meaningful engagement of Indigenous Peoples’ to achieve Article 8(j) and related provisions of the CBD, and 2020 Aichi Target 18;  and brainstorm on partnerships, indicators and tracking tools to measure contribution of ICCA- GSI to article 8 (j) and 2020 Aichi Target 18.

On 17 December, SGP co-organized a side event with the United Nations University Institute for the Advanced Study of Sustainability (UNU-IAS) and the Ministry of the Environment of Japan (MOEJ). The Community Action to Achieve the Aichi Targets side event presented best practices, lessons learned and country practical examples from the Community Development and Knowledge Management for the Satoyama Initiative (COMDEKS) Programme.  COMDEKS, one of SGP’s partnership programmes, provides finance to local community organizations to catalyze a process of participatory landscape planning and to carry out community projects that strengthen community livelihoods, conserve biodiversity, address climate change, and support local cultures.