Can indigenous knowledge help us fight climate change?
Indigenous people represent only about six percent of the world’s population, but they inhabit around a quarter of the world’s land surface. And they share these regions with a hugely disproportionate array of plant and animal life. According to the UN and the World Bank, about 80 percent of our planet’s biodiversity is on land where indigenous people live.
Global climate policy has however been slow to recognise that indigenous knowledge – built up over centuries – is worth listening to. This is despite the fact that sometimes in very remote areas, where scientific and meteorological data is lacking, this knowledge may be all there is. Indigenous knowledge can provide valuable insight into what adaptations have worked in the past, and so provide an important guide to the future.
What are the barriers to bringing indigenous knowledge out from the margins of climate research and policy, and can they be overcome?
Nancy Kacungira, journalist, BBC Africa
Hindou Oumarou Ibrahim, environmental activist and member of Chad’s pastoralist Mbororo people and Earthshot Prize Council
Nigel Crawhall, chief of section, local and indigenous knowledge systems, UNESCO
Aida Sanchez, assistant professor at Norwegian University of Life Sciences
Presenters: Neal Razzell and Graihagh Jackson
Producer: Darin Graham
Researcher: Zoe Gelber
Editor: Emma Rippon
Source: BBC Worldservice
Date visited: 10 May 2021
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