Dear accredited NGOs and members of the ICH NGO Forum,
I am writing to let you know that the English and French versions of the Draft Declaration are now available.
Please find attached files, (ENG-FR) of the Draft Declaration on the Safeguarding, Promotion, and Mobilization of ICH in the Face of Climate Change that was drafted by the Working Group on ICH, Climate Change and the Environment and submitted to the Executive Board for consideration and comments. The Executive Board has now endorsed it and has asked us to circulate it to all accredited NGOs for further comments, additions and suggested changes. Please send your comments, if you have any, by Tuesday, 28 November to the following: Sekou BERTE, Chair of the Executive Board of the ICH NGO Forum; Laurier Turgeon, Chair of the Working Group; Lubna Marium, Secretary of the Working Group: firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org.
Accredited NGOs will also have a chance to comment on the Declaration at Kasane during the side event the WG is organizing on Tuesday 5 December 18h00. The revised and updated version of the Declaration will be presented to the members for ratification at the AGM on Wednesday evening 6 December at Kasane.
Following the symposium of the ICH NGO Forum in Rabat at 17.COM, a working group comprised of 15 members from all electoral groups, was created in September 2023 and it has worked intensively on this declaration as a first contribution to the Forum and to all ICH stakeholders on the issue of climate change and ICH. A sub-group led by the secretary, Lubna Murium, met regularly and consulted widely to draw up the declaration that picks up but goes beyond the UNESCO Operational Principals and Modalities aimed at guiding State Parties and other stakeholders in engaging ICH in various types of emergency situations caused by natural disasters and/or armed conflict, adopted by the GA in July 2020 (Resolution 8.GA 9). It should be pointed out that this Declaration concentrates solely on emergency situations caused by climate change and environmental transformations because of the very specific nature and particular needs of these situations.
The Working Group has purposely avoided dealing with climate change and armed conflict in the same declaration. The effects of climate change and the effects of conflict should not be conflated because they are distinct phenomena, even though they can interact and exacerbate each other in some situations. It is essential to maintain a clear understanding of the distinct nature of these challenges to develop appropriate strategies and policies to address them.
We encourage you to read the declaration and send your comments at your earliest convenience and no later than Tuesday 28 November.
Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions.
Very best wishes to you all and Happy New Year 2024,
ICH NGO Fourm